This paper discusses the Eichmann trial (1961) as a transnational media event. It describes on the one hand the co-operation of different institutions that facilitated the trial’s filming as well as the worldwide distribution of the footage. On the other hand it draws on East and West German television programs to show how the GDR used the Eichmann trial to campaign against the FRG. Examples from the East German Der schwarze Kanal and the West German Die rote Optik illustrate the reciprocal monitoring and commenting of the other side’s television program. The case of the Eichmann trial points at a significant role of broadcast media during the Cold War. Television advocated the respective political system with particular programs denigrating the other side which sometimes resulted in strong reactions.

Transnational, Media event, Cold War, West/East Germany
Netherlands Institute for Sound and Vision
VIEW Journal
Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)
VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture; Vol 3, No 5 (2014); 17-22

Keilbach, Judith. (2014). The Eichmann Trial on East German Television: On (Not) Reporting About a Transnational Media Event. VIEW Journal, 3(5), 17–22. doi:10.18146/2213-0969.2014.jethc052