The title [anderkawer] is a made-up word, blending the phonetic spelling of the English word undercover and its pronunciation with a German accent.



Bund für Menschenrecht
The association Bund für Menschenrecht (BfM, Union for Human Rights) was an organization of gay men, lesbians, and trans people in the Weimar Republic founded in 1920. It its heyday (1930) the organization claimed to have 48,000 members, but that number also included the subscribers to the journals for gays and lesbians published by Radzuweit, the president of the association. The association dissolved in 1934 after the Nazis came to power due to lack of membership.


The magazine Frauen­liebe was a weekly in the format of 22 x 29 cm that was published by Karl-Bergmann Verlag from 1926 to 1930 with a circulation of 10,000 and cost 20 pfennig. The 1926 law Gesetz zur Bewahrung der Jugend vor Schund- und Schmutzschriften (Act to Protect Youth from Smut and Obscene Writings), passed in 1926, led in 1928 to a twelve-month ban on its public display, street sales, and presentation in bookstores. But the magazine continued publication until being included a second time in the list of obscene literature in May 1931, which brought the publication to an end.  


Homosexuality Squad
The Homo­sexuellen­dezernat or Homosexuality Squad was part of Kriminal­inspektion B (Criminal Investigation Department B) and was also responsible for extortion, which affected many gay men due to their criminal liability under Section 175. Gay and transsexual spaces were tolerated due to the influence of advisers like Magnus Hirschfeld and the general climate of social liberalization in Weimar Berlin. This incipient tolerance ended with the rise of the Nazis to power. In September 1935, Section 175 was amended to cover all sexual acts between men, making it possible to imprison gay men. The police played a part in the Nazi system. In major cities, the Homosexuality Squad worked closely with the Gestapo and the Reichszentrale zur Bekämpfung der Homosexualität und Abtreibung (National Center to Fight Homosexuality and Abortion). While lesbian sexual activities were not legally proscribed, with the excuse of “asociality” or mental illness, lesbian women were also repressed and interned. As of 1944, the Berlin Homosexuality Squad was ordered to collect information on lesbians as well.


Lesbians and gay men often entered into so-called “Kamerad­schafts­ehen,” “marriages of comradeship” or “marriages of convenience.” They even inserted wanted ads in gay and lesbian magazines for this purpose.


Magnus Hirschfeld
Magnus Hirschfeld (b. 1868 in Kolberg, today Kołobrzeg) was a gay Jewish doctor and sexual researcher. He shaped the first gay movement in the world in 1897, founding the Wissenschaftlich-humanitäre Komitee, which promoted the rights of gays, lesbians, and transsexuals and the abolition of Section 175, which criminalized sexual acts between men. In 1919, he founded the Institut für Sexual­wissen­schaft (Institute for Sexology) in Berlin. The institute was banned by the Nazis in 1933 and its building ransacked. Hirschfeld died in exile in 1935.


National­sozialistische Volks­wohl­fahrt (NSV) was founded by the Nazis in 1932 as a registered charity. The association was funded by donations and member­ship fees, in 1939 reaching a member­ship of eleven million. The NSV increasingly took on state tasks, primarily in the realm of child and youth work like the so-called Kinder­land­ver­schickung, the evacuation of children to the countryside. In 1945, the KSV was banned by the allies.


The Procurement Law (Section § 180), passed in 1872, made so-called “procurement” a criminal offense. The term Kuppelei (procurement) was used to refer to the promotion and toleration of sex outside marriage (“fornication”). This law remained on the books in West Germany until 1969; in East Germany it was repealed a year before. 


Section 175
Section 175 (1872–1994) made sexual acts between men a crime and enabled the persecution of gay people. In 1935, the Nazis expanded Section 175 from covering acts that were beischlafähnlich (“like sleeping together”) to “all licentious acts,” making even a mere touch or a look illegal.While East Germany returned to the original version of Section 175 in 1950 and no longer prosecuted cases of homosexuality among adults in the 1960s, in West Germany the 1935 version was kept on the books and even confirmed by the Federal Constitutional Court in 1957, while female homosexuality was excluded from the law’s purview.In East Germany, in 1968 a new penal code came into effect that criminalized same sex acts of adults with children of women and men until 1988. In West Germany, Section 175 was reformed for the first time in 1969/1973, so that only sexual acts with minors under age 18 were punishable.In 1994, the section was abolished. In 2017, the Act on Criminal Rehabilitation of Persons Convicted for Consensual Homosexual Acts after May 8, 1945 came into effect for those men convicted under Section 175, but most of them were no longer alive.


male, masculine, manly
Latin: virilis, see: vir = man


Wir Freundinnen
In October 1951, the first lesbian magazine in West Germany began circulation, Wir Freundinnen: Monatsschrift für Frauenfreundschaft, published by Charles-Grieger-Verlag, Hamburg. Its format was DIN A5 and it cost 1 DM. An especially interesting aspect of the journal is that it included no advertising for businesses or bars. Charles Grieger (1903–1972) was an artist, graphic designer, and publisher of gay and lesbian magazines, many of the illustrations in Wir Freundinnen were his work. He used his magazines (such as Die Freunde) as a mouthpiece for the rights of queers with political actions, for example collecting funds for the “Kampffond Gatzweiler” to fund a suit against Gatzweiler and to fund publication of a text to counteract his homophobic publications. Due to these political actions, the magazines were increasingly the target of the authorities and were banned and confiscated several times (under the Act to Regulate the Dissemination of Writings Harmful to Young Persons). This affected the publisher and caused financial difficulties that probably led to the discontinuation of the journal Wir Freundinnen after only five issues in May 1952.