The material culture of the German nuclear industry I: Official paraphernalia

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While the history of nuclear power industry and the heritage value of nuclear power stations has been commented on in a number of academic papers (Gunn, 2012; Holtorf & Högberg, 2014, 2015; Rindzevičiūtė, 2016; Taylor & Freer, 2002), the tangible heritage of that industry is not being preserved, as most decommissioned power plants are being built back to greenfield sites. The material culture associated with these power plants and the material culture associated with the anti-nuclear movement has also seen comparatively little formal assessment and documentation.
Although a printed matter, posters, promotional brochures and picture postcards are ephemera and as such they are not systematically collected by the German National Library (Kucera, Picard, & Pleßke, 1992; Matthias & Wiechmann, 2009) or other national or state institutions in Germany (e.g. Landesarchiv Baden-Württemberg, 2008).
Elsewhere, the author has discussed the nature and production of underground comics disseminated throughout the anti-nuclear movement in the 1980s (Dirk H.R. Spennemann, 2015, 2016) as well as the nature and iconography of picture postcards published by postcard publishers and local photographers (Dirk H.R. Spennemann, 2021a). Other work examined the iconography of QSL cards distributed to amateur radio enthusiasts by the German nuclear power industry as well as the underlying marketing strategy (Dirk H.R. Spennemann, subm.).
This present study documents the official paraphernalia associated with German nuclear power, such as coats of arms of German communities showing atomic symbols, uniform patches of the fire services of nuclear power plants, as well as commemorative medals and machine franking stamps. A parallel study documents the marketing materials distributed by the German nuclear power industry (Dirk H.R. Spennemann, 2021b).
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationAlbury, NSW
PublisherInstitute of Land Water and Society
Number of pages39
ISBN (Print)9781864673975
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021

Publication series

NameILWS Report


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