Chloë Daniel

Chloë Daniel lives in Berlin and blogs about Germany.

From The Blog
23 July 2021

The full devastation wreaked by Germany’s cataclysmic floods has emerged slowly. As the waters subside, survivors have cautiously waded back through the mud and rubble to salvage what is left of their communities. Last week an unusual zone of low pressure trapped between two areas of high pressure meant that two months’ rain fell in 48 hours. The Ahr, Erft, Swist, Trierbach and Volme, usually less than a metre deep as they wind through small towns and villages on their way to the Rhine, were transformed into fierce and destructive torrents.

Tyler Carrington’s​ micro-history Love at Last Sight opens like a work of true crime, with the unsolved case of Frieda Kliem, a 39-year-old seamstress murdered on 17 June 1914 in a forest on the outskirts of Berlin. The murderer was presumed to be a man she met through a personal ad, Paul Kuhnt, who made off with her keys and plundered her apartment. He was tried for her murder but not...

From The Blog
25 February 2020

At 10 p.m. on Wednesday, 19 February, 43-year-old Tobias Rathjen opened fire in a shisha bar in the western German town of Hanau, 15 miles from Frankfurt. Having killed four people he moved on to another shisha bar, sprayed bullets into the crowd and killed five more people. He returned home in his black BMW, shot his mother and then turned the gun, a pistol he had acquired legally and used regularly at a local shooting club, on himself. 

When​ I first came to Berlin in 2002, house façades were still pockmarked by shrapnel, weeds grew in the empty plots of bombsites and the wind whipped round the new skyscrapers on Potsdamer Platz, built to fill the no-man’s-land between former East and former West. In Hannah’s Dress, Pascale Hugues writes about one of these ordinary-extraordinary streets: the one she...

The Good Swimmer: Survival in Nazi Germany

Chloë Daniel, 3 November 2016

The German word​ for ‘submerged’ is untergetaucht; it’s also the original title of Marie Jalowicz Simon’s memoir, which has been published in English as Gone to Ground. The term has come to be used of the 15,000 or so Jews who attempted to remain undiscovered in Nazi Germany during the war – they called themselves ‘U-Boats’. Half of them were in...

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