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Draft of government proposal to allow the performance of German songs, 13 July 1959: As relations with Germany and Austria improved, the official policy against German language performances began to relax
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July 13 1959
The German language The ambivalent attitude of the country's national institutions toward the German language and culture, in the wake of the Holocaust, was expressed among other ways in the decisions of the "Film and Plays Censorship Board" This body's legal authority was based on a law dating back to the period of the British Mandate. From the time of the establishment of the state onward, it functioned as an official board of censorship. To a great extent, it reflected the zeitgeist, the mood of the general public in Israel in those years. Foreign languages in general, and the German language in particular, were regarded as negative influences. Gradually, as relations with Austria and West Germany were slowly normalized, there was increased pressure to allow musical productions and movies in German. In December 1955, the Minister of the Interior - who bore overall responsibility for the decisions of the board - tabled a proposal to the government to abolish the ban on the German language, with a number of limitations and provisos. The heated arguments over the proposal that broke out among government ministers laid bare the scope of disagreement over the issue of Germany and German culture. But in the end, a decision was made, enabling the council to adopt a more moderate policy vis-a-vis public performances originating from Germany. Yet, a public appearance of singers and a choir, who performed in German, still required government approval, as this particular document shows. By the way, Pinchas Rosen, the government minister who tabled the proposal, was himself an immigrant from Germany.
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National State Archives, ג-5549/7
 
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