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Peculiar Pageantry

One of my characters is most certainly a Nazi.  There is no need for her to be coy about it.  From where she’s standing, she’s in the majority.  Everyone she knows is a Nazi.  For a time.  So, knowing I want to write about a young Nazi girl, I set her in Munich and make her the right age to grow up as a Hitler Youth girl, a BDM – Bundes Deutscher Madel.  Perhaps I have her born at the very instant that the Fuhrer-to-come is yelling in a beer hall Putsch.

She’s probably not old enough to have taken part in The Night of the Amazons festivities that I came across today.  I should say that one particular problem with doing Nazi research is also stumbling into modern fascist sites.  If we ever lose our Freedom of Googling right, I fear for my Cookies.  Anyway.  The Night of the Amazons was a pageant which various sites say is based on the Bread Riots of the French Revolution, but in seeking out footage of this pageant, that didn’t seem to be the story to me.

You can watch footage of the event on the DVD “The Nazis: A Warning from History” as well as various spots on Youtube.  And the audience are certainly dressed for Versailles.  But the performers are nubile young women in various states of undress, jostling on cart and horseback, some with their dignity tucked behind a frond.  A lucky few are clothed; above they look like cocktail waitresses at a Jolly Rogers, while others are veiled to spin as dervishes or wearing a fetching helmut and nappy ensemble.  More remarkable than their nudity, for that shouldn’t be a shock where a Nazi celebration of beauty is concerned, is that the women are costumed for a world of cultures.  There are Indians, Amazons, and slaves of every race.  The woman painted gold is dancing in a vaguely Chinese-fashion; women bang ribboned tambourines in a manic tarantella that brings to mind the gypsies their party was already persecuting.  Freakish, bizarre and, it must be said, strangely intriguing.  These are a people who like their pageantry, however peculiar.

One cultural group is noticeable in its absence.  Perhaps their representation was a step too far, even for Nazis ready to party.

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