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Hakoah swimmers Fritzi Löwy, Lucie Goldner, and Hedy Bienenfeld with trainer Zsigo Wertheim

Pierre Gildesgame Maccabi Sports Museum, Israel1930

Jewish Museum Vienna

Jewish Museum Vienna
Vienna, Austria

Hakoah was founded in Vienna in 1909. Its soccer team was Austrian champion in 1925, as was the water polo team in 1927-1928. The wrestlers were also successful and acted in addition as bodyguards for other Hakoah athletes to protect them from anti-Semitic attacks. Fritzi Löwy and Hedy Bienenfeld are the only Austrian women swimmers ever to have won medals at a European championship (1927). Lucie Goldner, Ruth Langer, and Judith Deutsch were nominated for the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin, but boycotted them as a protest against the Nazi regime. In response, the Austrian Swimming Association banned them for life and stripped them of all their titles. The pro-Zionist Hakoah was instrumental in helping young people in particular to develop their self-awareness. The sporting “muscular Jew” was a counter to the distorted anti-Semitic stereotypes. After 1945, Hakoah again played an important role in re-establishing the Jewish identity.

Details

  • Title: Hakoah swimmers Fritzi Löwy, Lucie Goldner, and Hedy Bienenfeld with trainer Zsigo Wertheim
  • Creator: Pierre Gildesgame Maccabi Sports Museum, Israel
  • Date Created: 1930
  • Location Created: Vienna
  • Rights: Pierre Gildesgame Maccabi Sports Museum, Israel

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