Seven decades of Der Spiegel

Despite a slump in sales and wrangles between its editors and online team, Der Spiegel still is Germany’s most relevant magazine. Now the weekly teamed up with publishing house DVA to create a 500-page tome celebrating its 70th anniversary.

In its foreword, Klaus Brinkbäumer mentions a night in Chicago as one of the most memorable experiences of his career as a journalist. The current editor in chief was among Barack Obama supporters awaiting the presidential election result. Brinkbäumer also writes about the complex changes in society ever since – from fears concerning racism to Donald Trump’s tendency to lash out at opponents on Twitter.

Der Spiegel managed to compensate its weakness in sales by becoming one of the country’s most important online news platforms. However, this book focuses on milestones in print – crucial articles; photographs taken during interviews with Billy Wilder, Boris Becker, Bill Clinton and many more; all the covers showing Fidel Castro, Marlene Dietrich, Joschka Fischer in sneakers among others.

It has to be seen whether Der Spiegel can handle the growing pressure created by rival publications and the soaring amount of well-researched information which can be found online for free. Regardless of these challenges, “70. DER SPIEGEL 1947–2017” is a beautifully crafted collection demonstrating the power of high quality journalism.

70. DER SPIEGEL 1947–2017
By Klaus Brinkbäumer, Hauke Janssen and others
Published by DVA (

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