Uwe Nettelbeck

Trials - Court Records 1967 - 1969

(German title: Prozesse)
ca. 188 pages
Uwe Nettelbeck

Uwe Nettelbeck

Uwe Nettelbeck (1940–2007) was a journalist, author and music producer. He worked, among other things, as a court reporter and film critic for DIE ZEIT, before he became the deputy editor-in-chief of the magazine konkret in 1969. Between 1970 and 1975, he produced the Krautrock-band Faust. From 1976 onwards up until his death, he published the magazine Die Republik together with his wife Petra Nettelbeck.

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Brilliant reportages on some of the most spectacular criminal cases after WWII


During the 1960s, the German Federal Republic is living through its most radical change to date: traditional values lose their cogency, the bourgeois family only represents constraint to many people, students bring their protest from the universities onto the streets, and the first RAF-generation forms itself. As a court reporter for DIE ZEIT, Uwe Nettelbeck is in the thick of it. He reports on common fates, but also on some of the most spectacular trials in post-war Germany, such as that of the »funfair killer« Jürgen Bartsch, or the Arsonist-Trial against Andreas Baader, Gudrun Ensslin and others in Frankfurt.

Almost fifty years later, this volume collects the court reportages that made Nettelbeck one of the most famous journalists in Germany for the first time. Still today, they belong among the best articles ever to have been published in German newspapers. Nettelbeck writes comprehensibly, always driven by the wish to understand the motives, the circumstances and the events and to make them understandable to readers. And in doing so, he creates a unique panorama of that eventful time. But his masterful texts are more than mere records: throughout, he takes sides with the victims of justice, politics and society. Where others try to convince, he demands of the reader to take position.


»Walter Benjamin’s ideal of an ›analytic description‹ is fulfilled in Nettelbeck’s best texts.« Der Tagesspiegel

»Uwe Nettelbeck was one of the best court reporters of his time […] These fates are of a merciless inevitability. With a lot of sensitivity and great accuracy, Nettelbeck portrays people whose lives have left no freedom to shape them. This collection reveals a brilliant author whose precise and committed court reportages are definitely worth reading retrospectively.« SWR2