COMING SOON TO THE “ON THE MARGINS” SERIES

BARBARA YELIN

IRMINA

In the mid-1930s, Irmina, an ambitious young German, moves to London. There she meets Howard Green, one of the first black students at Oxford. However, their relationship comes to an abrupt end when Irmina is forced to return home, to Hitler’s Germany. She finds a job at the Ministry of War and marries an architect working for the SS. They both ignore what’s happening in Germany, silently accepting fascism, just living their lives.

Yelin stresses that she wanted to explore how Irmina could go from being a brave rule-breaker to a silent Nazi “supporter”. This is, in fact, one of the most distressing questions of World War II: the possible complicity of ordinary people in fascist regimes because of their silence. How much they knew and why they turned a blind eye to it?