This book offers visual, social-historical analyses of paintings and drawings of the renowned German Communist artist Karl Schwesig. It follows the course of Schwesig’s internments, but is dedicated primarily to the plight of foreign Jewish persons and Christians (of Jewish descent) who were interned at Camps Saint-Cyprien, Gurs, and Noé in the French free zone. The artworks created by Schwesig provide the themes investigated in each chapter. The works describe the dehumanizing treatment that contributed to and characterized the racialization of foreign Jewish and “mixed-race” persons in France’s free zone and the attempted elimination of political dissidents. The volume includes color plates.

chapter |14 pages


chapter 1|27 pages

“I Fought National Cannibalism With … Art” 1

Karl Schwesig, the Ethos of Düsseldorf, and the Weight of Stigmatization, 1933–1939

chapter 3|41 pages

“Many of These Unfortunate People Are Intellectuals” 1

Art, Culture, Illness, and Death at Camp Gurs

chapter 5|13 pages

“Cruelty … That Dehumanizes Its Victims Before It Destroys Them” 1

The Violence of Racialization