David Cesarani

Frau Führer

Eva Braun: Life with Hitler

By

Allen Lane/The Penguin Press 321pp £25 order from our bookshop

In Oliver Hirschbiegel’s film Downfall Juliane Köhler plays Eva Braun as an irrepressibly vivacious blonde, grabbing a cigarette between bombardments in mischievous defiance of Hitler, but standing by her Führer until she courageously shares his end. Like the other women in the bunker, apart from the evil Magda Goebbels, she is portrayed as essentially innocent. But was Eva a victim of circumstances? Was her fate determined by Nazi ideas about gender or was she a willing collaborator?

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