The 2017 Northfield Conference, “Legacy of 1848 & Holocaust Education”, concluded with “Thoughts on Being German,” a poignant and heartfelt address delivered by Hans Jörg Gudegast, aka Eric Braeden. Born in Bredenbek, Schleswig-Holstein, Gudegast experienced firsthand the horrors of World War II prior to his immigration to the United States in 1959.
Eric lives in Pacific Palisades, CA, known as “Weimar am Pazifik“ since 1933; across from his house is the elegant villa where Thomas Mann, a German literature Nobel laureate from Schleswig-Holstein, spent his years in exile during the Second World War. Braeden has appeared in over 120 TV productions and films, including “Titanic“ (1997). Beginning in 1980, he has made daily appearances on US TV, as well as in 28 other countries world-wide with “The Young and the Restless,“ and in 1989 he founded the “German-American Cultural Society.“ In 2007, Eric became only the second German actor (after Marlene Dietrich) to receive a Star in the Hollywood Walk of Fame. His recent memoir is titled I'll Be Damned: How My Young and Restless Life Led Me to America's #1 Daytime Drama. -