Film/Public Viewing, Literatur/Performance

ART & HISTORY: RECHNITZ – Film & Artist Talk

Still Christoph Kolar: RECHNITZ (der Würgeengel)

Christoph Kolar is presenting „Rechnitz (der Würgeengel)“ Film by Christoph Kolar (following Elfriede Jelinek), 2014, ca. 42 Min. Literary introduction by Irmi Horn.

From 24th to 25th of March 1945 was a big NS evening gala in the castle of Rechnitz – Margit Batthyany, born as Thyssen-Bornemisza: near 200 Jewish-Hungarian forced laborers were murdered by the guests this night.

In the final phase of the National Socialist reign, the area of Burgenland became a place of inhuman atrocities. When the front line of the war approached at the turn of 1944/45, the NS authorities planned to stop the Red Army’s advance by constructing the so-called ‘South East Wall’, a defensive fortification composed of anti-tank ditches and trenches. Local civilians, foreign workers, prisoners of war and Jewish-Hungarian forced laborers were deployed for digging the trenches. Several labor camps were established along the border to Hungary, with up to 40.000 Jewish-Hungarian men and women penned up inside. It is estimated that more than a third of them were murdered by guards or died as a result of the inhuman working and living conditions.


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