Video Interviews with Contemporary Witnesses of the Viennese Youth Welfare System

Twelve survivors of the Viennese Spiegelgrund facilities as well as of other institutions and camps tell their life stories. At the center are childhood memories—set between Austrofascism and National Socialism—that are characterized by the difficult social conditions at the time, by adverse family circumstances, and by the coldness and violence prevailing in those institutions. These accounts reveal the brutality with which the National Socialist youth welfare system proceeded against social outsiders, but also highlight the glaring continuities after 1945.

The uncut video recordings and transcripts of these interviews will be kept at the Documentation Center of Austrian Resistance for future research and education purposes. Excerpts of the interviews will be presented in the exhibition at the Otto-Wagner Hospital as well as online. These versions constitute selections made from a total of 45 hours of video material and are subtitled.