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Oberammergau: The Troubling Story of the World's Most Famous Passion Play
The Bavarian village of Oberammergau has staged the trial, crucifixion, and resurrection of Christ nearly every decade since 1634. Each production of the Passion Play attracts hundreds of thousands, many drawn by the spiritual benefits it promises. Yet Hitler called it a convincing portrayal of the menace of Jewry, and in 1970 a group of international luminaries boycotted ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published June 12th 2001 by Vintage
(first published 2000)
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I learned about the passion play at Oberammergau when my parents attended it in 1960. When I saw a review of this book, it sounded like it could flesh out their story -- and teach me some things about Germany, where I lived for four years. James Shapiro's book did that, but in excrutiating detail. The detail was in all the wrong places for this reader. I wanted to know more about the human drama involved in the villagers' divisions over the play -- relatively recent history, and -- one would thi ...more
Odd that the author chose to end the book before the year 2000 production was staged. Very well researched. This was another weeding find of mine. I wish I had been mature enough to enjoy the nuances of the village on my previous trips throughout he region.
James S. Shapiro is Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University who specialises in Shakespeare and the Early Modern period. Shapiro has served on the faculty at Columbia University since 1985, teaching Shakespeare and other topics, and he has published widely on Shakespeare and Elizabethan culture.More about James Shapiro...