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Villainous Legacies
24th January 2024

Villainous Legacies: The vicious sides of the never-ending 90s Berlin Fairytale

How to critically reclaim Berlin’s mythic early 1990s post-reunification Heydays? For one evening, Michael Stock’s 1993 film Prinz in Hölleland (Prince in Hell) beams us into a queer-punk vision of the post-reunification capital—long before the start-ups and co-working sites of the present day.

Yet, as shown in the feature, there is always an abyss lingering in Punk Paradise. In the second part of the evening, Ben Miller, co-host of the podcast Bad Gays, downloaded nearly two million times, will read an excerpt of his outstanding book on the mischievous homosexuals of history.

The director Michael Stock will be present for a talk about the film with curator Justus Karl Heitzelmann.

Prinz in Hölleland, dir. Michael Stock
Germany, 1993, 90 min
German (original version with English subtitles)

Ben Miller

Ben Miller is a writer and historian living in Berlin. With Huw Lemmey, he hosts Bad Gays, a podcast about evil and complicated queers in history, which has been downloaded nearly two million times; a book based on the show and passionately arguing for a more complex and political queer public history, Bad Gays: A Homosexual History, was published by Verso in 2022, received rave reviews in the Washington Post and the Los Angeles Review of Books, among others.

Committed to public history and to collaborative, interdisciplinary, artistic, and community-based research, Ben is a Doctoral Fellow at the Graduate School of Global Intellectual History at the Freie Universität, teaches at the Freie Universität, the Berlin Writer’s Workshop, NYU Berlin, and Humboldt Universität, has received long-term research stipendia from the Deutscher Akademischer Auschtauschdienst and the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, and been published in Radical History Review. His research focuses on primitivism and the rise of gay liberation in the German-speaking and anglophone worlds. He has been a guest expert and documentary narrator for Netflix (Eldorado: Everything The Nazis Hate, 2023).

Justus Karl Heitzelmann

Justus Karl Heitzelmann is a researcher, producer and curator who embraces the spectacle and tries to get a hold of the power of death upon life. He has a deep interest for the archives, as an archeology of the self, yet of the community, and as a mode of making the ephemeral tangible. Recently he has collaborated with Boros Collection, Schwules Museum, Kunstverein Göttingen, GSL Projects and Whole Festival, as well as alongside Caique Tizzi for HAU Berlin, Julia Stoschek Collection, Neue Nationalgalerie and Kunstverein München, after pursuing studies at Humboldt University in Berlin and Goldsmiths, University of London.