Different From The Others (1919)

Food:

Now that the weather is cool, it is time for hot drinks. And in the spirit of this German film, here are two recipes for German hot winter drinks: Feuerzangenbowle and Glühwein.

Feuerzangenbowle is made with red wine, rum and carmelized sugar. In a large pot or kettle filled with the red wine, add cinnamon sticks, cardamom, and allspice. Cut up the oranges and lemons, crush fruit to release the juice, and add to the punch along with the cloves. Warm to a steaming mixture. Do not boil! Remove pot from heat and place on a low-heat source to keep it warm. Place a sugar cone on a metal rack/screen or clamped in metal tongs above the warm punch. Slowly pour the high-proof rum over the Zuckerhut or sugar cubes and let soak for a minute. Carefully light the Zuckerhut or sugar cubes and let the flaming sugar carmelize and drip into the punch mix. Add rum as needed to keep the flame going until the sugar cone process is done.

Glühwein, is called “glow wine.” Heat the red wine in a pot, but don’t let it boil. Cut the lemon and orange into slices and add to the wine. Then add the cinnamon, cloves, sugar and a little cardamom or ginger (to taste). Heat everything for about 5 minutes (but do not boil!) and let stand for about an hour. Before serving, reheat and strain. Serve in prewarmed mugs or tea glasses.

LGTBQ Film Series #1:

“Different From The Others” (1919) or “Anders als die Andern” is considered the first ever LGTBQ film. It was released in Berlin, following the end of the Great War, and it was nearly lost when the Nazis came to power in 1933 and destroyed nearly all prints in a fascist bonfire. The story was co-written by Richard Oswald and Magnus Hirschfeld, who also had a small part in the film and partially funded the production through his Institute for Sexual Science. The film was intended as a polemic against the then-current laws under Germany’s Paragraph 175, which made homosexuality a criminal offense. It is believed to be the first pro-gay film in the world.

It is a silent film about love and betrayal. In the film, a violinist, Paul Körner (Conrad Veidt), falls in love with one of his male students, when a sleazy extortionist attempts to expose Körner for being a homosexual. The threat of blackmail causes him to contemplate his own sexual orientation and come to terms with it. He takes the man to court, where a judge is sympathetic, but the public scandal created ruins his career and drives him to suicide.

The film explicitly argues that being gay was natural and that the only problem with relationships between the same sex were the laws that criminalized them. Director Richard Oswald was considered one of the most prolific filmmakers of his time, creating the notable horror film “Unheimliche Geschichten” (1932) and “Around the World in Eighty Days” (1919), until, as a Jew, he was forced to Nazi Germany, first to occupied France and then to the United States.

According to dramatist Claudio Macor, in Berlin in 1919, famous sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld became concerned with the increase in male suicide and decided to make a film to educate young gay men, hiring Richard Oswald to direct. The film saw a successful 1919 release in Germany initially, but after protests by conservative and anti-semitic groups sparked debate about the boundaries of free speech, a censor’s office formed a ban on screenings of the film in 1920, on the basis that it could recruit underage viewers to homosexuality. The film was still permitted for use in private and by medical professionals until 1933 when the Nazis attempted to have it destroyed. Fortunately, some copies were salvaged and later restored, so that it can still be seen today.

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