Modernism both influenced and was fascinated by the rhetorical and aesthetic manifestations of fascism. In examining how four artists and writers represented fascist leaders, Annalisa Zox-Weaver aims to achieve a more complex understanding of the modernist political imagination. She examines how photographer Lee Miller, filmmaker Leni Riefenstahl, writer Gertrude Stein and journalist Janet Flanner interpret, dramatize and exploit Hitler, Goering and Petain. Within their own artistic medium, each of these modernists explore confrontations between private and public identity, and historical narrative and the construction of myth. This study makes use of extensive archival material, such as letters, photographs, journals, unpublished manuscripts and ephemera, and includes ten illustrations. This interdisciplinary perspective opens up wider discussions of the relationship between artists and dictators, modernism and fascism, and authority and representation.
Annalisa Zox-Weaver is Associate Editor of Women's Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal.
Introduction: occupations; 1. In her image: Leni Riefenstahl's cinematic Hitler; 2. Stein's secret sharers: great men and modernist authority; 3. 'A face inappropriate to fame': Janet Flanner, the 'Fuhrer' profiles, and the image of the fascist leader; 4. Berchtesgaden is burning: Lee Miller, iconicity, and the demise of the Nazi leader; Conclusion: from monster to muse; Bibliography; Index.