Henryk Modest Broder (born Henryk Marcin Broder on 20 August 1946) is a Polish born German journalist, author and TV personality, known as the most outspoken personality in the German-Jewish community.
Broder is known for polemics, columns and comments in written and audiovisual media. He wrote for the magazine Der Spiegel as well as its online version and the daily Berlin newspaper Der Tagesspiegel. Since 2010, he's been writing for Die Welt. He is co-editor of Der Jüdische Kalender (The Jewish Calendar), a compilation of quotes and texts relating to German Jewish culture, published annually. Besides his numerous publications, he appears as a frequent guest on German TV talk shows. In 2010 and 2011 he produced and starred, alongside Egyptian-German writer and political scientist Hamed Abdel-Samad, in the satirical TV series "Entweder Broder - Die Deutschland-Safari" ("Either Broder - The Germany Safari"); the ten episodes to date were broadcast on "ARD - Das Erste" ("First German Television") and have been highly successful.
Broder is especially interested in Vergangenheitsbewältigung, Islam, Israel and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He sees a close relationship between German criticism of Israel's policies and Antisemitism, a view criticized by, among others, the French-German columnist Alfred Grosser.
Born in Katowice, Silesia, Poland, Broder moved to Cologne with his family in 1958. Both of his parents were survivors of Nazi concentration camps. In Cologne, he studied economics, law and psychology but failed to graduate. Together with fellow student and nascent writer Fred Viebahn (de), whom he had known since high school times, he founded and edited two short-lived radically liberal quarterlies ("PoPoPo" and "Bubu/Eiapopeyea"). In the late 1960s he took over the St. Pauli-Nachrichten (de) together with the journalist Michel Roger Lang, a then highly successful tabloid newspaper in Hamburg, along with Günter Wallraff, Stefan Aust and the photographer Günter Zint (de), in order to agitate the working class of the city with a combination of leftist articles, nude photography and lonely hearts ads.
In the 1970s, he wrote for the satirical magazine Pardon(de). From 1979 to 1981 he published, together with fellow journalist Peter Finkelgruen (de), the periodical "Freie Jüdische Stimme" ("Free Jewish Voice"). In 1981, he left Germany to work in Israel for a while, but continued to write for high level periodicals as Die Zeit, Profil, Die Weltwoche, and Süddeutsche Zeitung. In the 1980s he also hosted the television talk-show Leute, along with Elke Heidenreich, which ran on Sender Freies Berlin; one of their guests was African-American poet Rita Dove, who had just won the 1987 Pulitzer Prize and is married to Fred Viebahn, Broder's old friend from Cologne.
Broder wrote a series of books which dealt with the relationship between Germans and Jews, respectively the growing German Jewish community. Together with Eike Geisel, Broder published essays, books and a documentary about the Jüdischer Kulturbund (Jewish Cultural Union), a previously unknown chapter of Jewish German cultural life during the Third Reich. He wrote books about foreign policy with special regard to Israel, Islam and the growing German Jewish community.
Ever since Operation Entebbe, Broder grew more and more critical of the German approach towards Israel and what Broder sees as appeasement towards Islamic threats. In Broder's opinion, Antizionism is in essence anti-Semitic.
Broder's trademark is his polemical, blunt and quick-witted style. He publishes hate mail and heated exchanges between him and critics on his website at henryk-broder.com. The result of some of Broder's polemics were a series of lawsuits, some won and some lost by him. Many of Broder's writings for outlets such as spiegel.de and welt.de are archived at the Achse des Guten (de) weblog which he, together with two other prominent German journalists, operates as a collaborative platform for the unfettered expression of about two dozen of his colleagues.
- 1986 Preis des 5. International Publizistikwettbewerbs Klagenfurt
- 2005 Schubart-Literaturpreis
- 2007 Goldener Prometheus (de) for Broder's online journalism, especially the way he treated the Jyllands-Posten Muhammad cartoons controversy
- 2007 Ludwig-Börne-Preis
- Wer hat Angst vor Pornographie? Ein Porno-Report, Melzer, Darmstadt 1970
- As co-author: Die Schere im Kopf. Über Zensur und Selbstzensur, Köln 1976
- Danke schön. Bis hierher und nicht weiter. Mit Beiträgen von Detlef Hartmann, Ulrich Klug, Uwe Maeffert, Ulrich Vultejus, Konkret Literatur-Verlag, Hamburg 1980
- Der Ewige Antisemit. Über Sinn und Funktion eines beständigen Gefühls, 1986
- Fremd im eigenen Land. Juden in der Bundesrepublik, 1987
- Ich liebe Karstadt und andere Lobreden, 1987
- with Geisel, Eike: Premiere und Pogrom. Der Jüdische Kulturbund 1933–1941. Texte und Bilder, Siedler, Berlin 1992 ISBN 3-88680-343-0
- Erbarmen mit den Deutschen, 1993
- Schöne Bescherung! Unterwegs im Neuen Deutschland, 1994
- Volk und Wahn, Goldmann, München 1996
- Die Juden von Mea Shearim, 1997
- Die Irren von Zion, Hoffmann und Campe, Hamburg 1998
- Jedem das Seine, Ölbaum Verlag 1999
- www.deutsche-leidkultur.de, Ölbaum Verlag 1999
- Kein Krieg, nirgends: Die Deutschen und der Terror, Berlin Verlag, Berlin 2002
- A Jew in the New Germany, University of Illinois Press, Champaign, 2003
- Hurra, wir kapitulieren - Von der Lust am Einknicken, wjs Verlag, 2006
- Kritik der reinen Toleranz, wjs Verlag, Berlin 2008
- Vergesst Auschwitz! Der deutsche Erinnerungswahn und die Endlösung der Israel-Frage, Albrecht Knaus Verlag, Munich 2012
- Ach So! Gad Granach und Henryk Broder on Tour CD, Ölbaum-Verlag, Augsburg 2000, ISBN 3-927217-40-9
- Grosser, Alfred (1 September 2008). "Verschleierung als Methode". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. (German)
- Wir sind alle traumatisiert (We all are traumatised): "Der Antizionismus ist für Nichtjuden wie für Juden nur eine Ausrede, ihren Antisemitismus sozusagen in einer politisch aseptischen Form präsentieren zu können. Kein Mensch geht hin und sagt: Ich bin Antisemit. Es gibt keinen Antizionismus, der seinen Ursprung nicht im Antisemitismus hätte ...Dass in einer aufgeklärten Diskussion alle Positionen vertreten werden können, ist selbstverständlich. Kritik an Israel ist vollkommen selbstverständlich." (Antizionism is for Jews and non-Jews just a pretext to present antisemitism in a political aseptical version. Nobody just comes around saying "I am an antisemite." There is no Antizionism which doesn't have its origin in antisemitism [...] It's a matter of course that in an enlightened argument any position can be held. Criticism of Israel is a matter of course.)
- This article incorporates information from the revision as of 20 June 2006 of the equivalent article on the German Wikipedia.
- Henryk Broder's official homepage - in German
- Henryk Broder's page at Die Achse des Guten
- Henryk Broder inofficial Facebook fan page
- Review: The last days of Europe, a lecture in Maastricht by Henryk Broder, 28 February 2007
- Broder's speech at the 2007 Ludwig-Börne-Preis - in German