Embodying German Suffering : Rethinking Popular Hunger during the Hunger Years (1945-1949)
Almost as soon as the Second World War was over, Germans began describing the Allied occupation as the ›Hunger Years‹. It was a time that was and still is imagined as dominated by the incessant demands of the body. This contribution uses postwar hunger as a way of approaching the history of the body in modern Germany, arguing that postwar hunger offered a bodily form of continuity with the Third Reich, while simultaneously framing German bodies in particularly postwar and anti-Nazi ways. Germans cast their own hunger as a redemptive expression of collective identity, while at the same time claiming that it connected them with the victims of Nazi barbarism.