The historian Stephan Malinowski sees the Hohenzollerns as responsible for the development of the Nazi regime. He provides the background in a book. There was an important prize for this.

The volume by the historian Stephan Malinowski on the connection between the Hohenzollerns as the house of the last German emperors and the Nazis has been honored as non-fiction book of the year.

A jury chose «The Hohenzollerns and the Nazis. Story of a collaboration” on Monday in Berlin from among the eight nominated books for the prize, which is endowed with 25,000 euros.

Malinowski wrote an “excellently researched and brilliantly told book about the role of the Hohenzollerns since 1918,” it said in justification. The book combines social and political contemporary history with a family portrait and is at the same time a milieu study of conservative and right-wing hostility to the republic.

“Malinowski gives a convincing answer to the Hohenzollerns’ demands for restitution and at the same time defends academic freedom against resistance.”

Malinowski described his volume as a “contribution to the cultural history of the right in the 20th century”. He also sees his study as a book “about a group of people who, on the basis of moderate performance, make excessive demands on the state”. When the volume was presented, Malinowski said: “Three generations in this family tried to destroy the republic and support National Socialism with the politically relevant actors, from beginning to end.”

Negotiations for the return of art objects

Negotiations on the return of art objects and compensation have been going on since 2014 between the federal government with the states of Berlin and Brandenburg on the one hand and the Hohenzollerns. The state of Brandenburg rejects compensation on the basis of the unification agreement. The Hohenzollerns are complaining about this. It’s about 1.2 million euros. According to the law, there is no compensation for those who “considerably promoted” the Nazi system.

In contrast to numerous historians, Georg Friedrich, Prince of Prussia, as chief negotiator for the Hohenzollerns, denies that his ancestors helped the National Socialists. He relies on other assessments. There are numerous legal disputes between Hohenzollerns and historians, media houses and other organizations. Malinowski, who also expressly thanked his lawyer at the award ceremony, was already affected.

The award from the Book Culture and Reading Promotion Foundation of the German Book Trade Association was presented for the second time. 205 books from 130 publishers were registered.

Relevance of the topic, narrative power, presentation, language and quality of the research were evaluated. Bettina Baltschev (“On the Edge of Happiness. Over the Beach”), Alice Bota (“The Women of Belarus. Of Revolution, Courage and the Urge for Freedom”), Stefan Creuzberger (“The German-Russian Century. Story of a special relationship »), Samira El Ouassil

Minister of State for Culture Claudia Roth (Greens) described art and culture as the voice of democracy. The non-fiction prize came at a time when violence was being used with propaganda and disinformation. Literature and non-fiction books are necessary in order to be able to get involved as democrats and contribute to debates.