Notice the word for kaput on the page. Self would have loved to blow it up even more. The narrator thinks kaput is a good substitute for the word ‘dead,’ which apparently was censored out of the dictionary because the target readership was soldiers (The narrator’s delicious sense of irony is intact, even after undergoing the unspeakable).
A German critic wrote that A Woman in Berlin could not be considered an accurate work of literary witness but should be treated as a literary creation of the 1950s. Self has never heard anything so absurd in her life. Anonymous kept a diary for eight weeks in 1945. Because it was not published until the 1950s, it can’t be considered accurate?
Was anyone publishing rape stories in 1945? 1946? Ever heard of that hot-selling genre in the post-war period? No doubt publishers were falling all over themselves to be the first to put out this searing portrayal of men abasing women — notwithstanding the fact that all the heads of publishing houses in that period were men, and might have felt a little embarrassed.
And as for the critic who said this work could not be an accurate portrayal of war-time, could he just shut up? The critic said he was not denying that rapes occurred, just that Anonymous could not have been writing accurately about it.
Of course he would know first-hand about rape stories? Him being such a connoisseur?
Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.