German Horror (Deutsche Horrorfilme und Horrorliteratur)

I was checking my blog stats today and found out that two recent views came from Germany.    I was a German major in college and therefore I begin to be curious about what is happening today in the horror genre for both German movies and literature, since I unfortunately know little about either.

I did a quick search on Google for “German horror” and found this interesting article on IMDb.  I did another search for “German horror fiction” and “German horror literature” and found almost nothing of interest.  I searched for “German horror writers” and found the German Horror Writers Circle on Facebook, which I might use as a starting point for further investigations.   Later, I may search in German, but today I confined my inquiries to what is available in English due to a lack of time inflicted by other pressing matters.

I have to admit I have read very little modern German literature compared to German lit of the 19th century, that I am woefully unfamiliar with most modern German writers, and  that I am completely unfamiliar with modern German horror writers.  I know that in the distant past, Germany and other German-speaking lands have produced excellent writers of horror such as E.T.A. Hoffmann (see my post about Hoffmann) and Jeremias Gotthelf (“The Black Spider”, 1842).    Given the dearth of information readily available on modern German horror (at least on Google), I think the IMDb article mentioned above may have a point that because of German history since 1933, Germany may have (understandably) lost its taste for horror.   I find that unfortunate, because now that my curiosity about German horror has been aroused, I would love to read some first-rate German horror or at least see one or two first-rate German horror films from the last decade or two.

Therefore, my question for you in this blog is:  if you are familiar with German horror, what films or books do you recommend as introductions to the world of German horror?

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3 thoughts on “German Horror (Deutsche Horrorfilme und Horrorliteratur)

  1. Hi Man,

    my name is Franz, I live in munich, germany and hold a master’s degree in german literature. I chose german horror-literature (or Schauerliteratur as gothic literature was called here) of all eras as my topic for my final exams. Funny enough, I am also the guy who compiled the imdb-list you linked above. Thanks for saying it’s an interesting list. All in all I (unfortunately) have to say, that the contemporary horror-literature-scene in germany is quite small. There’s lots of “Pulp”-literature but not much stuff, that shows a will to create good, innovative literature. However, there are some rather recent works, that are worth checking out, I think.

    1. Christiane Neudecker: Das siamesische Klavier; Great, innovative and really creepy short-story-collection. It really scare me and this doesn’t happen that often anymore.
    2. Stefan Kiesbye: Hemmersmoor; Creepy “Backwoods/Smalltown”-Horror-Novel featuring lots of violence and characters lacking humanity en passant. Before you know it, you feel trapped in a bleak and fascinating world.
    3. Thomas Glavinic: LISA; Rather experimental monologue of a guy who does his own never-ending radio-show, where he tells people, that he and his son are followed by an entity called LISA. This was received mixed but I am glad that it exists.

    Anyway… I love your blog and think it’s cool, that you are interested in this. If you want to, I can give you some more tips on horror-classics and contemporary stuff. I also know some of the pulp-texts, but for now I quit as it is 2:34 a.m. on a tuesday night.

    Cheers and good night,

    Franz from munich aka Moucherot (on imdb)

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    • Lieber Franz,
      I would love to hear your tips and opinions on German or any other type of horror. Please feel free to comment any time you like, and, since you have a Master’s degree in German literature, I would like to invite you to submit an article/post on horror whether it is in Germany, the US, or anywhere else. Anything you submit should be, of course, in English as that is what the majority of my followers speak, but I don’t mind if it is in German or another language so long as an English translation accompanies it. There are some guidelines with reference to length and so forth on my Submissions page. Feel free to contribute to the blog at any time, even if it is only a brief comment.

      I thank you for your suggestions for books and stories. I will have to check them out as soon as my schedule allows. I have read very little German literature of any type over the past couple of decades and I am really eager to catch up with what is going on in contemporary Germany.

      Unfortunately, it has been a long time since I was in Germany (1978), but I remember its beauty and I did spend a few days in Munich seeing the Olympic stadium, the Hofbrauhaus, and other Sehenswuerdigkeiten, Hopefully, I will be able to return one day. I would love to see the changes since re-unification and to be able to visit Berlin without having to pass through barbed-wire fences while being watched by the Stasi. I can’t imagine how everything has changed.

      sincerely,
      Phil Slattery

      Like

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