Camouflaged publications represent a special form of literature. In order to get around the banning of texts by the censor, highly charged material was given an unprepossessing appearance with innocuous titles or faked mastheads. Amongst others, the dust jackets of literary classics from the publisher Reclam’s Universal Library and the Insel-Bücherei series were used as wrapping.
Most camouflaged publications stem from the Nazi era. Eighty percent alone were put into circulation by the banned Communist Party of Germany. The texts were enclosed as small pamphlets printed on India paper in daily groceries, film packaging and seed packets. This is how articles critical of the Nazi regime by the emigrant writer Thomas Mann, for example, found their way into teabags from the Lyon’s Tea brand. Instructions for constructing short-wave radios, with which foreign anti-fascist channels could be received, and tips on faking illness in order to be spared serving in the War were also illegally distributed with harmless titles.