The Bayram Feast at the Muslim Internment Camps in Wünsdorf (1916)



Short German documentary showing religious celebrations at the end of Ramadan in the internment camps in Wünsdorf near Zossen.


This film, made at the POW internment camp in Wünsdorf near Zossen, showed an important religious event for the Muslim community. It was one of relatively few German documentaries to reach Dutch cinemas during the war and to be advertised in the Dutch trade press. Dutch film distributors were very reluctant to show German war documentaries and official German film propaganda, which proved to be counter-productive in the Netherlands. For example, Graf Dohna und seine Möwe (Smither, 1995) was watched in the Netherlands and other neutral countries with abhorrence (Bundesarchiv R901/71950). This documentary about the Muslims in Wünsdorf was, most likely, watched for its ethnographic interest. Dutch audiences were probably unaware of the role that the German camp played in preparing Muslim captives for undertaking anti-colonial activities in the French or British empire from where they originated.