Submitted by: Julia Sneeringer

I've used Fassbinder's Marriage of Maria Braun in courses on Europe after 1945 and European women's history. The students said that they liked the film very much, as it's quite entertaining. The film gives an excellent sense of West German recovery, relations with black American GIs, the hunger years, materialism, and the whole "wir sind wieder was" phenomenon.

I use Camus' The Fall in my post-'45 course to discuss the postwar intellectual climate. The novel is short and the language fairly straightforward, but it allows the students to talk about spectator guilt, the resistance, and the philosophy of existentialism. Besides, it's far less dreary than Sartre. Later in the semester, we read Beauvoir's Second Sex, which, among other things, serves as a nice counterpart to the male existentialist perspective of Camus.

If you have access to a good film library, I'd also recommend "I'm Alright Jack", a Peter Sellers skewering of class relations in postwar Britain, and "Larks on a String", a Menzel-Hrabal production produced during the Czech thaw of '68 - it's a subtle satire of the ruling party.

Good luck!

Julia Sneeringer