A Demon-Haunted Land: Witches, Wonder Doctors, and the Ghosts of the Past in Post-WWII Germany (Compact Disc)
In the aftermath of World War II, a succession of mass supernatural events swept through war-torn Germany. A messianic faith healer rose to extraordinary fame; enormous crowds traveled to witness apparitions of the Virgin Mary. Most strikingly, scores of people accused their neighbors of witchcraft and found themselves in turn hauled into court in turn on charges of defamation, assault, and even murder.While many histories emphasize Germany's rapid transition from genocidal dictatorship to liberal democracy, A Demon-Haunted Land places in full view the toxic mistrust and spiritual malaise that unfolded alongside the economic miracle. Drawing on previously unpublished archival materials, acclaimed historian Monica Black argues that the surge of supernatural obsessions stemmed from the unspoken guilt and shame of a nation remarkably silent about what was euphemistically called "the most recent past." This shadow history irrevocably changes our view of postwar Germany, revealing the cost of trying to bury a horrific legacy.