Czechs and Sudeten Germans lived together peacefully as neighbors for centuries. But with the advent of the Second World War, around three million Sudeten Germans had to leave their homeland after 1945.
What is the situation today regarding the reconciliation of Czechs and Germans?
For a long time, each country had its own version of history. A “separate” memory of the events from 1918 to the present. In addition, the Czechs and Slovaks only recently dealt with displacement (Czech: Odsun). Before that the subject was taboo for them.
Since 2002, a young generation of Czechs, like the Antikomplex group, has embarked on a critical reflection on Czech post-war history. It addresses the fact that the Czech side also lost something through this displacement. More than 1,000 ghost settlements, so-called lost places, bear witness to this today. They can be found in the former Sudeten areas, especially in the Erzgebirge.
Petr Mikšíček, co-founder of the Antikomplex group, talks about this approach. He is the organizer of the Landart Festival, which is held regularly in the abandoned Sudet village of Königsmühle.
In addition, Czech author Kateřina Tučková also has her say in her novel, Gerta. The German Girl. In 2009, she addressed the issue of displacement from a German perspective for the first time, which caused controversy.
In the international co-production Sudetenland – Lost Homeland, German, Czech, and Austrian contemporary witnesses speak for the first time. They visit the sites of the events.
Historians from the Czech Republic, Germany and Austria also provide an insight into the revision’s current status.
Czech-German writing partners, Vít Poláček and Matthias Schmidt, have created an emotional film. Unembellished and yet conciliatory, it tells of a dark chapter in European history.
Bettina Offermann | firstname.lastname@example.org
A co-production by
LOOKSfilm, MDR, Česká televize, ORF
In cooperation with
In association with
Matthias Schmidt, Vít Poláček