NIE SCHIESST DER FASCISMUS IN WIEN EIN GOAL! / FASCISM WILL NEVER SCORE IN VIENNA!
Performance in public space by God’s Entertainment & Karl Wratschko
At the 'Maifestspiel der Wiener Arbeiterschaft' in Vienna in 1932, a banner with the inscription “Fascism Will Never Score in Red Vienna” was carried through the Prater Stadium. The masses cheered and the workers seemed strong and united in the fight against burgeoning fascism in Europe. From today’s perspective, this short sequence passed down to us in a film documenting the event from the 1930s is touching. Especially so knowing that Austrofascism was established only a short time after this event and it took just a few years for thousands of Viennese to cheer the invasion of German troops.
What would happen if a banner bearing the exact same line were used in a Viennese stadium today, almost 90 years later? Approval or protest? How much of which, and how fervent would they be?
Fascism Will Never Score in Vienna! aims to survey the political views of Austrian soccer fans. Sport, usually represented as apolitical, can in fact hardly be thought of without political orientation. Time and again, the actions of soccer fans become a political issue. At the last Vienna Derby on September 1, 2019, for example, some of the banners displayed in the stadium resulted in a police investigation. One of the banners was adorned with a skull and crossbones that strongly resembled the emblem of the SS, another pleaded for the reintroduction of the death penalty.
The reaction of the soccer fans to the banner “Fascism Will Never Score in Red Vienna” at the Vienna Derby on December 12, 2019 remains to be seen. Especially after the above-mentioned events at the last Vienna Derby, it will be especially interesting to see how and whether the fans of the two largest Viennese soccer clubs will position themselves. As we well know, fascism never sleeps …
With the support of the Cultural Department of the City of Vienna - MA7 and SHIFT III - Basis Kultur Wien
Photo: Peter Mayr