The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum

by Heinrich Boll

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Last Updated September 5, 2023.

The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum, or: How Violence Develops and Where It Can Lead was a novel by Heinrich Böll, published in its original German (as Die Verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum, oder: Wie Gewalt Entstehen und Wohin Sie Führen Kann) in 1974.

In the novel and subsequent (1975) film version, Katharina Blum is a young housekeeper who falls in love with a young man.

That young man, Ludwig Götten, is wanted by the police on suspicion of being a bank robber.

Police investigators and tabloid journalists hound Blum about the case. The most intrusive journalist is named Tötges, played by Dieter Laser in the film, and the climax of both the novel and the film is a violent confrontation between him and Blum.

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