Skip to content

Insights of the Exhibition

The permanent exhibition presents the history of forced labour during the time of National Socialism as an omnipresent mass phenomenon. It shows the day-to-day lives of displaced men, women, and children – inside the camp, at work and in exchange with the German population. It visualises the impact the racial hierarchy of the National Socialist-regime had on the lives of forced labourers.    

This web page presents some of the exhibition’s photographies and objects. Additionally it offers various biographies of former forced labourers as well as Germans – perpetrators, profiteers, bystanders and relievers.  



Prologue and
History of the Ground

Der private Blick auf Zwangsarbeit. Ein Familienfilm, Berlin-Lichtenberg, 1943

Nazi forced labour was marked by its omnipresence, dimension and racism – a system of public social marginalisation.


A Cornerstone of the Nazi State
Logic und Logistics of Forced Labour

Logik und Logistik der Zwangsarbeit

Various offices administrated forced labour – they regulated the displacement and assignment all over Europe.

ARGUS Flugzeugmotor

Armaments industry, agriculture or private households; forced labour existed in all field. Resistance was hardly to be found.


No Freedom in Free Time.
The Daily Life of a Forced Labourer

Living quarters, healthcare and nutrition followed racial specification. Women and children were exposed to additional violence.

Disziplinierung durch Terror

Repression went from disciplining inside the working place, incarceration in Gestapo-labour camps to executions without trial.

Der Umgang mit der NS-Zwangsarbeit nach 1945

After liberation by the end of the war, they returned to their countries. Their struggle for remembrance and compensation lasted decades.