The films form a counterpoint to the perception of the communist countries by the West, since they shed a light on their self-image and self-perception during the times of the important political and social events of the 20th century.
Among these, there are political-military overthrows (wars and revolutions) in Europe, Asia and Central America, i.a. the Russian Revolution, the Second World War and the Holocaust, the Cold War or the nuclear war. Their implications are underlined by numerous newsreels and programmes which convey a curated, ideal image of the political, social and economic developments, and, beyond this, an idealised day-to-day life in the communist countries.
The collection has been subdivided into 24 sub-collections. For studies of East and South-East Europe, films from the following collections are of particular interest:
- Lenin and the Russian Revolution
- The Second World War and the rise of fascism
- The Holocaust and war crime
- Global tensions and the Cold War
- Soviet cinematic magazines and weekly newsreels
- Youth and education
- Health and medicine
- Politics and society
- Technology, aerospace and science
The film material has been synchronised in the English language, provided with English subtitles and transcribed in its entirety. The transcripts are available in the form of downloadable PDF files.
A comprehensive description (in German) can be found in the blog OstBib.
Blog article in OstBib
Access is available to registered users of the Bayerische Staatsbibliothek via the Database Information System.
The service is accessible free of charge also Germany-wide and at German institutes abroad within the scope of the national license.
► Socialism on Film: The Cold War and International Propaganda