But while the names and works of many of the targeted authors are still popular today, others like German writers Maria Leitner and Georg Hermann have virtually been forgotten....
This shows that in some ways the book burning had a long-term effect, according to Olaf Zimmermann, managing director of the German Council of Culture.
"Yes, it's disgraceful, but the sad fact is that many authors whose books landed on the bonfires have faded into obscurity," he said.
Today an underground memorial marks the spot on what is now August Bebel Platz. Conceived as an "empty library," visitors can view it through a glass window built into the pavement.I've always been struck by the fact that, as the article mentions, the "burn list" was compiled by students who very aggressively worked to purge public and private libraries of the books before the burnings finally took place. It is good to mark this kind of anniversary, I think, in order to remind ourselves that mass hysteria is never that far away from sweeping the world up into some kind of new craziness that we will regret as soon as the smoke clears (pun intended). After all, this was only 75 years ago, the blink of an eye, really.
"It is the right monument in the right place," according to Klaus Staeke, president of the Academy of Arts.
Records show that at least 35,000 books were burned in 22 cities between May and the end of August 1933 in an event unseen since the Middle Ages.
In Berlin, Nazi Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels delivered a midnight speech in which he said: "The era of Jewish intellectualism is now at an end. The soul of the German people can express itself again."