Marriage of Maria Braun 3
Politicsin “The Marriage of Maria Braun”
Politics in “The Marriage of Maria Braun”
Having been setin a country that has experience its worst defeat that followed itssurrender towards the end of the 2nd World War, TheMarriage of Maria Braun (1979) present the narrative of a youngwoman. The young woman struggles to recover from the war, andeventually ended up being one among the apex predators within thebusiness chain before eventually meeting her death. The Marriageof Maria Braun centers primarily on the women that lived duringyears that follow Germany’s defeat. The paper, therefore, ispolitical discussion within the film and the place of German politicsafter the World War II.
First, an airraid destroys the little that is left in one of the German townswhile Herman and Maria Braun exchanged marriage vows. After theirnight together, her husband is sent by the government to war. At thetime of Herman’s absence, Maria is employed as a bar hostess, whichis patronized by the American soldiers. She meets a Black G.I, Billy,whom she has an affair with and later a child after she was told thather husband had died during the war (Brockmann, 2010, p. 51). Fromhere, it is evident that the film is an allegory to German politics.The Maria character throughout the film is likened to her countrysince it attempts to rebuild after its destruction following the war.
Maria, in hersituation, did everything so as to meet her needs. Here, it islikened to the country’s feeling of shame and in spite of allthese there still remained the country’s political awareness thatbehind every shattered country, there was still a great and longcultural heritage that justifies a sense of the country’s pride.What it took to be a German was intertwined between such conflictingsituations as that of Maria. According to Uecker (2001, p. 47), suchinternal tension was heightened by the presence of occupying forces,and in particular from the Americans. However, Europe’s politicaldevelopment, and with the Iron Curtain descending prompted a rethink.It was important that the German industry remain within Germancustody.
The film’sdirector embraced the idea and connection in a manner that Maria’scomplicated situation turns out to be emblematic to the WestGermany’s political development from the end of the 2ndWorld War up to the Economic Miracle. From the onset, prior to thecredits, the first image is that of Adolf Hitler pinned in theregistry’s office. Here, Herman and Maria had gone to exchangetheir vows, and bomb explosion causes the image to crash on the hardfloor, which is symbolically an end to Hitler’s regime. Accordingto Elsaesser (1997, p. 21), an end to Nazis’ dictatorship meant theGermany experienced a “chance to restructure a state that could befreer and more humane that the German political state before this.”In the film, it is what Maria appears to endorse with a clearenunciating “Ja”, while in the registry office.
Towards the end of the film, however, it is clear that the Germanpolitics is “moving towards the right, that is, it is going in thedirection that upholds the status quo rather than change it”(Brockmann, 2010, p. 56). Success to Maria, which is a representationin any case, a Pyrrhic victory, is conditional upon sacrificial ofher humanity. This, however, has been undermined by a deal done by apatriarchy that has returned to assume control. Uecker (1997, p. 53)noted that the film represent yet another possibility that theGermans had to return to the right track. This is made clear towardsthe end of the film when Herman’s last word “nein”, is shoutedwhile Maria enter the house to light her cigarette. This exclamationis thus an authorial shout on the Germany’s political development:the country has taken the wrong turn at the same time fail to createits own political identity.
BROCKMANN , Stephen (2010) . Eine kritische Geschichte desdeutschen Films . Camden House. http://www.myilibrary.com?id=287636.
ELSAESSER , T. ( 1997). Fassbinders Deutschland Geschichte ,Identität, vorbehalten . Amsterdam, Amsterdam University Press .http://public.eblib.com/choice/publicfullrecord.aspx?p=437582 .
Uecker, M. (2001). A Fatal Deutsch Marriage : The National Subtextvon Fassbinders <i> Die Ehe Der Maria Braun . Deutsch Lifeand Letters. 54, 45-59 .