History of Literature









German literature


 

CONTENTS:

Origins and Middle Ages

Late Middle Ages and early Renaissance


The 18th century

The 19th century

The 19th century. Fin de siecle movements

The 20th century





 


German literature
 



The 20th century
 

Georg Trakl
Georg Heym
Gottfried Benn
Ernst Toller
Georg Kaiser

Franz Kafka "The Trial"

Alfred Doblin
Hermann Broch
Robert Musil
Anna Seghers

Joseph Roth
Franz Werfel
Arnold Zweig
Stefan Zweig
Wolfgang Borchert
Max Frisch
Friedrich Durrenmatt
Bertolt Brecht
Theodor Adorno
Nelly Sachs
Paul Celan
Heinrich Boll
Gunter Grass
Peter Weiss
Peter Handke

Ingeborg Bachmann
Uwe Johnson
Thomas Bernhard
Christa
Wolf
Lion Feuchtwanger
Erich Maria Remarque
Carl Jung
Rudolf Carnap
Martin Heidegger
Karl Jaspers
Moritz Schlick
Hans-Georg Gadamer
Jurgen Habermas

 




The 20th century



German Modernism Expressionism


German Modernism emerged from turn-of-the-century Aestheticism. Like European Modernism as a whole, German Modernism was in fact a cluster of different literary movements, including Expressionism, Neue Sachlichkeit (“New Objectivity”), and Dada. Of these, Expressionism is the best known and most important. Beginning about 1910 and reaching its culmination during World War I, Expressionism was a powerful response to the chaos and suffering of modern life. Georg Trakl, Georg Heym, and Gottfried Benn created terrifying images of war, urban life, oppression, and illness in their lyric poetry, and, although Trakl expressed a visionary mysticism in his battlefield scenes, Heym and Benn presented reality as grotesque, distorted, and starkly unrelieved. At the same time, their poetry, like Expressionist art of the period, is full of such colours as red, gold, purple, and blue, which bear an often hermetic or deeply personal significance for these writers. The anthology Menschheitsdämmerung (1919; The Dawn of Humanity), edited by Kurt Pinthus, was a rich and influential collection of Expressionist poetry. Expressionist drama used the same methods of grotesque distortion to attack what it saw as the soullessness of modern technology and the subjection of workers to machines. Yet Expressionist drama often took a more optimistic approach to the machine age, in part because of impulses derived from Italian Futurism. Whereas the Futurists glorified the machine, however, the Expressionists saw it more as an instrument that might help bring about a socialist utopia. The Expressionist stage became a vehicle to effect a transformation of consciousness in the audience. Die Wandlung (1919; Transfiguration), a play by Ernst Toller, depicts this kind of transformation in a young man who turns his horrific war experience into a new awareness of the brotherhood of man; his play Masse-Mensch (1920; Man and the Masses) presents the tragic attempt of a woman worker to effect a mass revolution among her fellow workers and lead them beyond violence toward peaceful coexistence. The dramas Gas I (1918) and Gas II (1920), by Georg Kaiser, show how a group of gas production workers are thwarted in their attempt to gain control of technology and establish a workers’ utopia in brotherhood and peace.
 


Georg Trakl


born Feb. 3, 1887, Salzburg, Austria
died Nov. 3, 1914, Cracow, Galicia, Austria-Hungary [now Kraków, Pol.]

Expressionist poet whose personal and wartime torments made him Austria’s foremost elegist of decay and death. He influenced Germanic poets after both world wars.

Trakl trained as a pharmacist at the University of Vienna (1908–10). He led an unhappy existence; he was moody and withdrawn and had become addicted to drugs as early as 1904. Moreover, he felt an incestuous attraction to his younger sister Margarete and was plagued by restless wanderlust.

The patronage of a periodical publisher and of the philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein, who secretly gave him part of a patrimony, enabled Trakl to devote himself to poetry; he brought out his first volume, Gedichte (“Poems”), in 1913. The following year he became a lieutenant in the army medical corps and, in Galicia, was placed in charge of 90 serious casualties whose agonies he, as a mere dispensing chemist, could hardly relieve. One patient killed himself while Trakl watched helplessly; he also saw deserters being hanged. He either attempted or threatened to shoot himself in the aftermath of these horrors and was sent to a military hospital at Cracow for observation. There he died of an overdose of cocaine, perhaps taken inadvertently.

Trakl’s intense lyrics infuse lamentation for the present with longing for a pastoral past. Much of his work is rife with negative, often disturbing imagery. A volume of selected poems, translated into English by Lucia Getsi as Poems, was published in 1973.
 

 

 


Georg Heym





Georg Heym (30 October 1887– 16 January 1912) was a German writer. He is particularly known for his poetry, representative of early Expressionism

 

Heym was born in Hirschberg, Lower Silesia in 1887 to Hermann and Jenny Heym. Throughout his short life, he was constantly in conflict with social conventions. His parents, members of the Wilhemine middle class, had trouble comprehending their son's rebellious behavior. Heym's own attitude towards his parents was paradoxical; on the one hand he held a deep affection for them, but on the other he strongly resisted any attempts to suppress his individuality and autonomy.

In 1900 the Heyms moved to Berlin, and there Georg began unsuccessfully attending a series of different schools. Eventually, he arrived at the Friedrich-Wilhelms-Gymnasium at Neuruppin in Brandenburg. He was very unsatisfied, and as a way to achieve some release he began writing poetry. After he graduated and went to study law at Würzburg, he started writing plays as well. However, publishers largely ignored his work.

In 1910 Heym met the poet and writer Simon Guttmann, who invited Heym to join the recently founded Neue Club, a descendant of a student society at the University of Berlin. Other members of the Club included Kurt Hiller, Jakob van Hoddis, and Erwin Loewenson (also known as Golo Gangi). Often visiting were Else Lasker-Schüler, Gottfried Benn, and Karl Kraus. Although the Club had no actual stated objective, its members all shared a sense of rebellion against contemporary culture and possessed a desire for political and aesthetic upheaval. The Club held "Neopathetisches Cabaret" meetings in which members presented work, and it was here that Heym first gained notice. His poetry immediately attracted praise. In January 1911, Ernst Rowohlt published Heym's first book and the only one to appear in his lifetime: Der ewige Tag.

Heym later went through several judicial jobs, none of which he held for long due to his lack of respect for authority. On 16 January 1912, Heym and his friend Ernst Balcke went on a skating trip to the frozen Havel. They never returned. A few days later their bodies were found. Appearances indicated that Balcke had fallen through the ice and Heym had attempted to save him but fell in as well. Heym remained alive for half an hour, calling out for help. His cries were heard by some nearby forestry workers, but they were unable to reach him.
 

 

 


Gottfried Benn



 

born May 2, 1886, Mansfeld, Ger.
died July 7, 1956, Berlin

German poet and essayist whose expressionistic pessimism and conjurations of decay in the period immediately after World War I gradually mellowed into a philosophy of pragmatism. He was perhaps the most significant poet in post-World War II Germany.

The son of a Lutheran clergyman, Benn studied theology at the University of Marburg, then transferred to the academy there for military-medical instruction and became a specialist in venereal and skin diseases. He took medical jobs on cruise ships, got to know the Mediterranean (a frequent setting in his poems), and as a German officer in World War I was made medical supervisor of jail inmates and prostitutes in occupied Brussels.

Degeneracy and medical aspects of decay are important allusions in his early poems, which also were shadowed by the death of his first wife (1914) and the suicide of an actress friend. His first and third collections of verse were fittingly titled Morgue (1912) and Fleisch (1917; “Flesh”).

Because of his expressionism and despite his right-wing political views, the Nazi regime penalized him both as a writer and as a physician; in 1937, publication was forbidden to him. To escape harassment, he rejoined the army.

Benn regained literary attention with Statische Gedichte (1948; “Static Poems”) and the simultaneous reappearance of his old poems. While busily writing, he remained a practicing physician until he was 68. His gradual loss of cynicism is richly reflected in the autobiography Doppelleben (1950; “Double Life”). A broad selection of his poetry and prose in English translation was published under the title Primal Vision (1961).
 

 

 


Ernst Toller


born Dec. 1, 1893, Samotschin, Ger.
died May 22, 1939, New York, N.Y., U.S.


dramatist, poet, and political activist, who was a prominent exponent of Marxism and pacifism in Germany in the 1920s. His Expressionist plays embodied his spirit of social protest.

Toller studied at Grenoble University in France but went back to Germany in 1914 to join the army. Invalided after 13 months at the front during World War I, Toller launched a peace movement in Heidelberg. To avoid arrest he fled to Munich, where he helped lead a strike of munition workers and was finally arrested. In 1919 Toller, an Independent Socialist, was elected president of the Central Committee of the revolutionary Bavarian Soviet Republic. After its suppression he was sentenced to imprisonment for five years. A scheme to get him shot in the prison yard was frustrated by a kindly old guard, who routed him away from the gunmen.

In confinement Toller wrote Masse-Mensch (1920; Man and the Masses, 1923), a play that brought him widespread fame. Books of lyrics added to his reputation. In 1933, immediately before the accession of Hitler, he emigrated to the United States. Also in that year he brought out his vivid autobiography, Eine Jugend in Deutschland (I Was a German, 1934).

In Hollywood Toller had a brief, unhappy stint as a scriptwriter. Impoverished, convinced that his plays were passé, and separated from his young wife, he committed suicide in his Manhattan hotel.
 

 

 


Georg Kaiser



 

born Nov. 25, 1878, Magdeburg, Ger.
died June 4, 1945, Ascona, Switz.


leading German Expressionist dramatist.

Kaiser’s father was a merchant, and he apprenticed in the same trade. He went to Argentina as a clerk but contracted malaria and was forced to return to Germany. During a long convalescence he wrote his first plays, mainly satirical comedies that attracted little attention. His first success was Die Bürger von Calais (1914; The Burghers of Calais). Produced in 1917 at the height of World War I, the play was an appeal for peace in which Kaiser revealed his outstanding gift for constructing close-knit drama expressed in trenchant and impassioned language. He followed this with a series of plays in which he showed man in deadly conflict with the modern world of money and machines: Von Morgens bis Mitternachts (1916; From Morn to Midnight), and the Gas trilogy, consisting of Die Koralle (1917; The Coral), Gas I (1918), and Gas II (1920). Written in terse and fragmented prose, these plays established him as a leader of the Expressionist movement.

In 1920 Kaiser was arrested for selling the furniture of a house he was renting. Arguing that artists deserve special treatment before the law, he defended his actions as necessary for his work, but he was convicted of embezzlement and jailed for six months. In his subsequent plays he showed that Expressionism was only a phase in his career. These plays, considered the products of his artistic maturity, are more intimate and embody a deep experience of love: Oktobertag (1928; The Phantom Lover), Der Gärtner von Toulouse (1938; The Gardener of Toulouse), Alain und Elise (1940), and others.

In 1938, after the Nazis had banned his plays for their antiwar stance, Kaiser went into exile in Switzerland, where he continued his prolific output of over 60 plays until his death. His last work, published posthumously in 1948, was a mythological trilogy of verse dramas: Zweimal Amphitryon (Twice Amphityron), Pygmalion, and Bellerophon.
 






Franz Kafka

The works of
Franz Kafka, especially his two stories Das Urteil (1913; The Judgment) and Die Verwandlung (1915; The Metamorphosis), owe much to Expressionism and are often considered in the context of that movement. But his writing is better understood as an early phase of experimental Modernism. Kafka’s central concern, like that of other 20th-century Modernists, is the problematic nature of human subjectivity and the limitations of individual perception and knowledge. His striking narrative technique, first developed in The Judgment, of presenting reality from a limited third-person point of view enables readers to identify with his oppressed and passive protagonists while also recognizing that their view is deeply flawed. Kafka’s unfinished novels, especially Der Prozess (1925; The Trial) and Das Schloss (1926; The Castle), explore further aspects of the individual’s inescapable entrapment in subjectivity. Like many other Modernists, Kafka also treated problems of authority and power. His characters feel hopelessly subjugated to inexplicable forces associated with patriarchal social structures and an overly mechanized and bureaucratic modern world. The Brief an den Vater (posthumously published, 1960; “Letter to His Father,” bilingual edition, 1966), written in 1919 but never actually delivered to his father, reveals the autobiographical background to the father-son conflict Kafka depicted in many of his stories, a thematic concern he shared with the Expressionists. The grotesque element in Kafka’s writing stems from his tendency to take metaphors literally, as when the “spineless” Gregor Samsa, protagonist of The Metamorphosis, wakes up one morning to find he has become an insect, a creature without a spine. Kafka’s love of paradoxes and logical puzzles gave rise to a highly symbolic style of writing that makes his works resistant to any single interpretive key.

 


Franz Kafka


"The Trial"



 

German-language writer

born July 3, 1883, Prague, Bohemia, Austria-Hungary [now in Czech Republic]
died June 3, 1924, Kierling, near Vienna, Austria

Main
German-language writer of visionary fiction, whose posthumously published novels—especially Der Prozess (1925; The Trial) and Das Schloss (1926; The Castle)—express the anxieties and alienation of 20th-century man.

Life
Franz Kafka, the son of Julie Löwy and Hermann Kafka, a merchant, was born into a prosperous middle-class Jewish family. After two brothers died in infancy, he became the oldest child, remaining forever conscious of his role as older brother; Ottla, the youngest of his three sisters, became the family member closest to him. Kafka strongly identified with his maternal ancestors because of their spirituality, intellectual distinction, piety, rabbinical learning, eccentricity, melancholy disposition, and delicate physical and mental constitution. He was not, however, particularly close to his mother, a simple woman devoted to her children. Subservient to her overwhelming, ill-tempered husband and his exacting business, she shared with her spouse a lack of comprehension of their son’s unprofitable and possibly unhealthy dedication to the literary “recording of [his]…dreamlike inner life.”

The figure of Kafka’s father overshadowed his work as well as his existence; the figure is, in fact, one of his most impressive creations. For, in his imagination, this coarse, practical, and domineering shopkeeper and patriarch, who worshiped nothing but material success and social advancement, belonged to a race of giants and was an awesome, admirable, but repulsive tyrant. In Kafka’s most important attempt at autobiography, Brief an den Vater (written 1919; Letter to Father), a letter that never reached the addressee, Kafka attributed his failure to live—to cut loose from parental ties and establish himself in marriage and fatherhood—as well as his escape into literature, to the prohibitive father figure, which instilled in him the sense of his own impotence. He felt his will had been broken by his father. The conflict with the father is reflected directly in Kafka’s story Das Urteil (1913; The Judgment). It is projected on a grander scale in Kafka’s novels, which portray in lucid, deceptively simple prose a man’s desperate struggle with an overwhelming power, one that may persecute its victim (as in The Trial) or one that may be sought after and begged in vain for approval (as in The Castle). Yet the roots of Kafka’s anxiety and despair go deeper than his relationship to his father and family, with whom he chose to live in close and cramped proximity for the major part of his adult life. The source of Kafka’s despair lies in a sense of ultimate isolation from true communion with all human beings—the friends he cherished, the women he loved, the job he detested, the society he lived in—and with God, or, as he put it, with true indestructible Being.

The son of an assimilated Jew who held only perfunctorily to the religious practices and social formalities of the Jewish community, Kafka was German both in language and culture. He was a timid, guilt-ridden, and obedient child who did well in elementary school and in the Altstädter Staatsgymnasium, an exacting high school for the academic elite. He was respected and liked by his teachers. Inwardly, however, he rebelled against the authoritarian institution and the dehumanized humanistic curriculum, with its emphasis on rote learning and classical languages. Kafka’s opposition to established society became apparent when, as an adolescent, he declared himself a socialist as well as an atheist. Throughout his adult life he expressed qualified sympathies for the socialists, he attended meetings of the Czech Anarchists (before World War I), and in his later years he showed marked interest and sympathy for a socialized Zionism. Even then he was essentially passive and politically unengaged. As a Jew, Kafka was isolated from the German community in Prague, but, as a modern intellectual, he was also alienated from his own Jewish heritage. He was sympathetic to Czech political and cultural aspirations, but his identification with German culture kept even these sympathies subdued. Thus, social isolation and rootlessness contributed to Kafka’s lifelong personal unhappiness. Kafka did, however, become friendly with some German-Jewish intellectuals and literati in Prague, and in 1902 he met Max Brod; this minor literary artist became the most intimate and solicitous of Kafka’s friends, and eventually he emerged as the promoter, saviour, and interpreter of Kafka’s writings and as his most influential biographer.

The two men became acquainted while Kafka was studying law at the University of Prague. He received his doctorate in 1906, and in 1907 he took up regular employment with an insurance company. The long hours and exacting requirements of the Assicurazioni Generali, however, did not permit Kafka to devote himself to writing. In 1908 he found in Prague a job in the seminationalized Workers’ Accident Insurance Institute for the Kingdom of Bohemia. There he remained until 1917, when tuberculosis forced him to take intermittent sick leaves and, finally, to retire (with a pension) in 1922, about two years before he died. In his job he was considered tireless and ambitious; he soon became the right hand of his boss, and he was esteemed and liked by all who worked with him.

In fact, generally speaking, Kafka was a charming, intelligent, and humorous individual, but he found his routine office job and the exhausting double life into which it forced him (for his nights were frequently consumed in writing) to be excruciating torture, and his deeper personal relationships were neurotically disturbed. The conflicting inclinations of his complex and ambivalent personality found expression in his sexual relationships. Inhibition painfully disturbed his relations with Felice Bauer, to whom he was twice engaged before their final rupture in 1917. Later his love for Milena Jesenská Pollak was also thwarted. His health was poor and office work exhausted him. In 1917 he was diagnosed as having tuberculosis, and from then onward he spent frequent periods in sanatoriums.

In 1923 Kafka went to Berlin to devote himself to writing. During a vacation on the Baltic coast later that year, he met Dora Dymant (Diamant), a young Jewish socialist. The couple lived in Berlin until Kafka’s health significantly worsened during the spring of 1924. After a brief final stay in Prague, where Dymant joined him, he died of tuberculosis in a clinic near Vienna.


Works
Sought out by leading avant-garde publishers, Kafka reluctantly published a few of his writings during his lifetime. These publications include two sections (1909) from Beschreibung eines Kampfes (1936; Description of a Struggle); Betrachtung (1913; Meditation), a collection of short prose pieces; and other works representative of Kafka’s maturity as an artist—The Judgment, a long story written in 1912; two further long stories, Die Verwandlung (1915; Metamorphosis) and In der Strafkolonie (1919; In the Penal Colony); and a collection of short prose, Ein Landarzt (1919; A Country Doctor). Ein Hungerkünstler (1924; A Hunger Artist), four stories exhibiting the concision and lucidity characteristic of Kafka’s late style, had been prepared by the author but did not appear until after his death.

In fact, misgivings about his work caused Kafka before his death to request that all of his unpublished manuscripts be destroyed; his literary executor, Max Brod, disregarded his instructions. Brod published the novels The Trial, The Castle, and Amerika in 1925, 1926, and 1927, respectively, and a collection of shorter pieces, Beim Bau der chinesischen Mauer (The Great Wall of China), in 1931. Such early works by Kafka as Description of a Struggle (begun about 1904) and Meditation, though their style is more concretely imaged and their structure more incoherent than that of the later works, are already original in a characteristic way. The characters in these works fail to establish communication with others; they follow a hidden logic that flouts normal, everyday logic; their world erupts in grotesque incidents and violence. Each character is only an anguished voice, vainly questing for information and understanding of the world and for a way to believe in his own identity and purpose.

Many of Kafka’s fables contain an inscrutable, baffling mixture of the normal and the fantastic, though occasionally the strangeness may be understood as the outcome of a literary or verbal device, as when the delusions of a pathological state are given the status of reality or when the metaphor of a common figure of speech is taken literally. Thus in The Judgment a son unquestioningly commits suicide at the behest of his aged father. In The Metamorphosis the son wakes up to find himself transformed into a monstrous and repulsive insect; he slowly dies, not only because of his family’s shame and its neglect of him but because of his own guilty despair.

Many of the tales are even more unfathomable. In the Penal Colony presents an officer who demonstrates his devotion to duty by submitting himself to the appalling (and clinically described) mutilations of his own instrument of torture. This theme, the ambiguity of a task’s value and the horror of devotion to it—one of Kafka’s constant preoccupations—appears again in A Hunger Artist. The fable Vor dem Gesetz (1914; Before the Law, later incorporated into The Trial) presents both the inaccessibility of meaning (the “law”) and man’s tenacious longing for it. A group of fables written in 1923–24, the last year of Kafka’s life, all centre on the individual’s vain but undaunted struggle for understanding and security.

Many of the motifs in the short fables recur in the novels. In Amerika, for example, the boy Karl Rossmann has been sent by his family to America. There he seeks shelter with a number of father figures. His innocence and simplicity are everywhere exploited, and a last chapter describes his admission to a dreamworld, the “nature-theatre of Oklahoma”; Kafka made a note that Rossmann was ultimately to perish. In The Trial, Joseph K., an able and conscientious bank official and a bachelor, is awakened by bailiffs, who arrest him. The investigation in the magistrate’s court turns into a squalid farce, the charge against him is never defined, and from this point the courts take no further initiative. But Joseph K. consumes himself in a search for inaccessible courts and for an acquittal from his unknown offense. He appeals to intermediaries whose advice and explanations produce new bewilderment; he adopts absurd stratagems; squalor, darkness, and lewdness attend his search. Resting in a cathedral, he is told by a priest that his protestations of innocence are themselves a sign of guilt and that the justice he is forced to seek must forever be barred to him. A last chapter describes his execution as, still looking around desperately for help, he protests to the last. This is Kafka’s blackest work: evil is everywhere, acquittal or redemption is inaccessible, frenzied effort only indicates man’s real impotence.

In The Castle, one of Kafka’s last works, the setting is a village dominated by a castle. Time seems to have stopped in this wintry landscape, and nearly all the scenes occur in the dark. K. arrives at the village claiming to be a land surveyor appointed by the castle authorities. His claim is rejected by the village officials, and the novel recounts K.’s efforts to gain recognition from an authority that is as elusive as Joseph K.’s courts. But K. is not a victim; he is an aggressor, challenging both the petty, arrogant officials and the villagers who accept their authority. All of his stratagems fail. Like Joseph K., he makes love to a servant, the barmaid Frieda, but she leaves him when she discovers that he is simply using her. Brod observes that Kafka intended that K. should die exhausted by his efforts but that on his deathbed he was to receive a permit to stay. There are new elements in this novel; it is tragic, not desolate. While the majority of Kafka’s characters are mere functions, Frieda is a resolute person, calm and matter-of-fact. K. gains through her personality some insight into a possible solution of his quest, and, when he speaks of her with affection, he seems himself to be breaking through his sense of isolation.

Kafka’s stories and novels have provoked a wealth of interpretations. Brod and Kafka’s foremost English translators, Willa and Edwin Muir, viewed the novels as allegories of divine grace. Existentialists have seen Kafka’s environment of guilt and despair as the ground upon which to construct an authentic existence. Some have seen his neurotic involvement with his father as the heart of his work; others have emphasized the social criticism, the inhumanity of the powerful and their agents, the violence and barbarity that lurk beneath normal routine. Some have found an imaginative anticipation of totalitarianism in the random and faceless bureaucratic terror of The Trial. The Surrealists delighted in the persistent intrusions of the absurd. There is evidence in both the works and the diaries for each of these interpretations, but Kafka’s work as a whole transcends them all. One critic may have put it most accurately when he wrote of the works as “open parables” whose final meanings can never be rounded off.

But Kafka’s oeuvre is also limited. Each of his works bears the marks of a man suffering in spirit and body, searching desperately, but always inwardly, for meaning, security, self-worth, and a sense of purpose. Kafka himself looked upon his writing and the creative act it signified as a means of “redemption,” as a “form of prayer” through which he might be reconciled to the world or might transcend his negative experience of it. The lucidly described but inexplicable darkness of his works reveal Kafka’s own frustrated personal struggles, but through his powerless characters and the strange incidents that befall them the author achieved a compelling symbolism that more broadly signifies the anxiety and alienation of the 20th-century world itself.

At the time of his death, Kafka was appreciated only by a small literary coterie. His name and work would not have survived if Max Brod had honoured Kafka’s testament—two notes requiring his friend to destroy all unpublished manuscripts and to refrain from republishing the works that had already appeared in print. Brod took the opposite course, and thus the name and work of Kafka gained worldwide posthumous fame. This development took place first during the regime of Adolf Hitler, in France and the English-speaking countries—at the very time when Kafka’s three sisters were deported and killed in concentration camps. After 1945 Kafka was rediscovered in Germany and Austria and began to greatly influence German literature. By the 1960s this influence extended even to the intellectual, literary, and political life of communist Czechoslovakia.
 




Other works of German Modernism

A foundational novel for German Modernism is
Rilke’s Die Aufzeichnungen des Malte Laurids Brigge (1910; The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge). Set in Paris and presented in the form of fragmentary jottings, the novel depicts modern city life as the multiple reflexes of a disoriented narrator who tries in vain to recapture the straightforward narrative logic he recalls from stories heard and read in his youth. Thomas Mann’s Der Zauberberg (1924; The Magic Mountain), a bildungsroman set in the self-contained and seemingly timeless world of a tuberculosis sanatorium, interweaves an exploration of human psychology with philosophical reflection in an attempt to reveal the subtle interplay of rationalism and the irrational in modern culture. In Der Steppenwolf (1927; Eng. trans. Steppenwolf), Hermann Hesse also developed many concerns of Modernism, depicting the ordeals of a divided psyche torn between the conventional and the artistic worlds, the feminine and the masculine, reason and hallucination. The novel ends with a grotesque surrealistic episode set in a “Magic Theatre.” Other novelists of this period continued to experiment with the presentation of consciousness in a fractured world. Berlin Alexanderplatz (1929; Alexanderplatz, Berlin) by Alfred Döblin, the trilogy Die Schlafwandler (1930–32; The Sleepwalkers) by Hermann Broch, and the unfinished novel Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften (1930–43; The Man Without Qualities) by Robert Musil use multiple techniques such as stream-of-consciousness narration, montage, essayistic reflection embedded in the narrative, and experimental visionary passages to explore the problematic relation between individual consciousness and a modern world that is experienced as a threat to individual identity. All three writers took a deep interest in the psychological and social determinants of criminality: the protagonist of Döblin’s novel is a released prisoner; the main character in the third volume of Broch’s trilogy becomes involved in a life of crime; and several characters in Musil’s novel are obsessed with the fate of a condemned sex-murderer.

A substantial part of Musil’s experimental novel was written during his Swiss exile from Adolf Hitler’s Reich. Similarly, Broch’s stream-of-consciousness novel Der Tod des Vergil (1945; The Death of Virgil) was written during his exile in America, as was Thomas Mann’s pathbreaking novel on the genesis of Nazism and its relation to the aesthetic, Doktor Faustus (1947; Doctor Faustus). Anna Seghers’s novel Das siebte Kreuz (1942; The Seventh Cross) depicts the escape of seven prisoners, only one of whom survives, from a concentration camp. Other important exile writers were Bertolt Brecht, Joseph Roth, Franz Werfel, Arnold Zweig, and Stefan Zweig. Among the communist writers who had fled from Nazi Germany a major debate took place about the merits of realist as opposed to Modernist techniques. The issue was whether straightforward presentation of reality or formal experimentation was a more effective way of raising social consciousness in readers of literature. The main proponent of the realist cause was the theorist and literary historian Georg Lukacs (György Lukács); on the Modernist side were Brecht and Seghers. This debate was later to have significant repercussions in East Germany.
 


Alfred Döblin




 

born Aug. 10, 1878, Stettin, Ger.
died June 26, 1957, Emmendingen, near Freiburg im Breisgau, W.Ger.

German novelist and essayist, the most talented narrative writer of the German Expressionist movement.

Döblin studied medicine and became a doctor, practicing psychiatry in the workers’ district of the Alexanderplatz in Berlin. His Jewish ancestry and socialist views obliged him to leave Germany for France in 1933 after the Nazi takeover, and in 1940 he escaped to the United States, where he converted to Roman Catholicism in 1941. He returned to Germany in 1945 at the war’s end to work for the Allied occupying powers, but he resettled in Paris in the early 1950s. He was seeking treatment in Germany for ill health when he died.

Although Döblin’s technique and style vary, the urge to expose the hollowness of a civilization heading toward its own destruction and a quasi-religious urge to provide a means of salvation for suffering humanity were two of his constant preoccupations. His first successful novel, Die drei Sprünge des Wang-lun (1915; The Three Leaps of Wang-lun), is set in China and describes a rebellion that is crushed by the tyrannical power of the state. Wallenstein (1920) is a historical novel, and Berge, Meere und Giganten (1924; “Mountains, Seas, and Giants”; republished as Giganten in 1932) is a merciless anti-utopian satire.

Döblin’s best-known and most Expressionistic novel, Berlin Alexanderplatz (1929; Alexanderplatz, Berlin), tells the story of Franz Biberkopf, a Berlin proletarian who tries to rehabilitate himself after his release from jail but undergoes a series of vicissitudes, many of them violent and squalid, before he can finally attain a normal life. The book combines interior monologue (in colloquial language and Berlin slang) with a somewhat cinematic technique to create a compelling rhythm that dramatizes the human condition in a disintegrating social order.

Döblin’s subsequent books, which continue to focus on individuals destroyed by opposing social forces, include Babylonische Wandrung (1934; “Babylonian Wandering”), sometimes described as a late masterwork of German Surrealism; Pardon wird nicht gegeben (1935; Men Without Mercy); and two unsuccessful trilogies of historical novels. He also wrote essays on political and literary topics, and his Reise in Polen (1926; Journey to Poland) is a stimulating travel account. Döblin recounted his flight from France in 1940 and his observations of postwar Germany in the book Schicksalsreise (1949; Destiny’s Journey).
 

 

 


Hermann Broch




 

born Nov. 1, 1886, Vienna, Austria
died May 30, 1951, New Haven, Conn., U.S.

Austrian writer who achieved international recognition for his multidimensional novels, in which he used innovative literary techniques to present a wide range of human experience.

In 1927 Broch renounced his inheritance by selling his family’s textile mill and enrolling in the University of Vienna in order to pursue studies in physics, mathematics, and philosophy. His first major work was the trilogy Die Schlafwandler (1931–32; The Sleepwalkers), which traces the disintegration of European society between 1888 and 1918, depicting the triumph of the realist over the romanticist and the anarchist. Paralleling the historical process, the novel moves from a subtle parody of 19th-century realism through expressionism to a juxtaposition of many different forms, including poetry, drama, narrative, and essay.

Between 1934 and 1936 Broch worked on a novel that was published posthumously in 1953 as Der Versucher; three versions of it were later published together as Bergroman, 4 vol. (1969), and it has also appeared as Die Verzauberung (1976; Eng. trans. The Spell). This complex novel exemplifies his theory of mass hysteria in its portrayal of a Hitlerian stranger’s domination of a mountain village.

In 1938 Broch spent several weeks in a Nazi prison. His release was obtained through the international efforts of friends and fellow artists, including James Joyce. Later that year he emigrated to the United States.

One of Broch’s later works, Der Tod des Vergil (1945; The Death of Virgil), presents the last 18 hours of Virgil’s life, in which he reflects on his times, an age of transition that Broch considered similar to his own. Broch later turned from literature to devote himself to political theory and attempts to aid European refugees.

His other works include Die unbekannte Grösse (1933; The Unknown Quantity), Die Schuldlosen (1950; “The Innocents”), and numerous essays, letters, and reviews.
 

 

 


Robert Musil




 

also called Robert, Edler (Nobleman) Von Musil

born Nov. 6, 1880, Klagenfurt, Austria
died April 15, 1942, Geneva, Switz.

Austrian-German novelist, best known for his monumental unfinished novel Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften (1930–43; The Man Without Qualities).

Musil received a doctorate from the University of Berlin in 1908 and then held jobs as a librarian and an editor before serving in the Austrian army in World War I (1914–18). (He inherited the Edler title, awarded his father in 1917, but did not use it as an author.) From 1918 to 1922 Musil was a civil servant in Vienna and thereafter worked randomly as a writer and journalist. He lived in Berlin (1932–33) but returned to Vienna until the Nazi Anschluss of 1938, when he fled to Switzerland, where he lived first in Zurich and then in Geneva.

Musil began writing as a student and attracted some notice in the 1920s writing various fiction and two plays, Die Schwärmer (1920; The Enthusiasts) and Vinzenz und die Freundin bedeutender Männer (1924; “Vincent and the Lady Friend of Important Men”), both of which were performed in Berlin and Vienna. In 1924 he began his main work, Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften, a witty and urbane view of life in the glittering world of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, told from the viewpoint of Ulrich, a fictionalized Musil. The First Book was published in 1930, and part of the Second Book in 1933; a remaining portion was published posthumously in 1943.
 

 

 


Anna Seghers




Anna Seghers (November 19, 1900–June 1, 1983) was a German writer famous for depicting the moral experience of the Second World War.

 

Born Netty Reiling in Mainz in 1900 of Jewish descent, she married Laszlo Radvanyi, a Hungarian Communist in 1925.

In Cologne and Heidelberg she studied history, the history of art and Chinese. She joined the Communist Party of Germany in 1928, at the height of its struggle against the burgeoning National Socialist German Workers Party. Her 1932 novel, Die Gefährten was a prophetic warning of the dangers of Fascism, which led to her being arrested by the Gestapo.


Tombstone of Anna Seghers in BerlinAfter German troops invaded the French Third Republic in 1940, she fled to Marseilles and one year later to Mexico, where she founded the anti-fascist 'Heinrich-Heine-Klub', named after the German Jewish poet Heinrich Heine, and founded Freies Deutschland (Free Germany), an academic journal. During this time, she wrote The Seventh Cross, for which she received the Büchner-Prize in 1947. The novel is set in 1936 and describes the escape of seven prisoners from a concentration camp. It was published in the United States in 1942 and produced as a movie in 1944 by MGM starring Spencer Tracy. The Seventh Cross was one of the very few depictions of Nazi concentration camps, in either literature or the cinema, during World War II.

Seghers best-known story The Outing of the Dead Girls (1946), written in Mexico, was an autobiographical reminiscence of a pre-World War I class excursion on the Rhine river in which the actions of the protagonist's classmates are seen in light of their decisions and ultimate fates during both world wars. In describing them, the German countryside, and her soon-to-be destroyed hometown Mainz, Seghers gives the reader a strong sense of lost innocence and the senseless injustices of war, from which there proves to be no escape, whether or not you sympathized with the Nazi party. Other notable Seghers stories include Sagen von Artemis (1938) and The Ship of the Argonauts (1953), both based on myths.

In 1947, Anna Seghers returned to Germany, moved to West Berlin, and became a member of the SED in the zone occupied by the Soviets. In 1950, she moved to East Berlin and became a co-founder of the freedom movement of the GDR. In 1951, she received the first Nationalpreis der DDR, the Stalin Peace Prize also in 1951, and the "Ehrendoktorwürde der Universität Jena" in 1959. In 1981, she became "Ehrenbürgerin" of her native town Mainz. She died in Berlin on June 1, 1983.

 

 

 


Joseph Roth


 

born Sept. 2, 1894, Brody, Galicia, Austria-Hungary [now in Ukraine]
died May 27, 1939, Paris, France

journalist and regional novelist who, particularly in his later novels, mourned the passing of an age of stability he saw represented by the last pre-World War I years of the Habsburg empire of Austria-Hungary.

Details about Roth’s early years, religious beliefs, and personal life are little known; Roth himself made a practice of concealing or transforming such biographical information. It is known that he studied at Lemberg (now Lviv, Ukraine) and Vienna and then served in the Austrian army from 1916 to 1918. After the war he worked as a journalist in Vienna and Berlin and was a regular contributor to the Frankfurter Zeitung (1923–32). During this period he wrote several novels, including Radetzkymarsch (1932; Radetzky March), considered his best novel, an excellent portrait of the latter days of the monarchy. Roth was concerned with the dilemma of individual moral heroes in a time of decadence and moribund traditions. A number of his plots treat the difficulties of the father-son relationship; the aged emperor Francis Joseph appears repeatedly as a paternal figure. In 1933 Roth immigrated to Paris, where he spent the remainder of his life. In his final years he viewed the past with increasing nostalgia, a sentiment evident in the six novels that were written during this exile period. Die Kapuzinergruft (1938; “The Capuchin Tomb”) is an example. Der stumme Prophet (1966; The Silent Prophet), the story of a failed revolutionary, was written in 1929.
 

 

 


Franz Werfel


born Sept. 10, 1890, Prague [now in Czech Republic]
died Aug. 26, 1945, Hollywood, Calif., U.S.


German-language writer who attained prominence as an Expressionist poet, playwright, and novelist and whose works espoused human brotherhood, heroism, and religious faith.

The son of a glove manufacturer, Werfel left home to work in a Hamburg shipping house. Shortly afterward he published two books of lyric poems, Der Weltfreund (1911; “The World’s Friend”) and Wir sind (1913; “We Are”). After fighting on the Italian and Galician fronts in World War I, he became antimilitary, recited pacifistic poems in cafés, and was arrested. His playwriting career began in 1916 with an adaptation of Euripides’ Trojan Women, which had a successful run in Berlin. He turned to fiction in 1924 with Verdi, Roman der Oper (Verdi, A Novel of the Opera). In 1929 he married Alma Mahler. International fame came with Die vierzig Tage des Musa Dagh (1933; The Forty Days of Musa Dagh), an epic novel in which Armenian villagers resist Turkish forces until rescued by the French.

When the Nazis incorporated Austria in 1938, Werfel, a Jew, settled in an old mill in southern France. With the fall of France in 1940 (reflected in his play Jakobowsky und der Oberst, written in 1944 and successfully produced in New York City that year as Jakobowsky and the Colonel), he fled to the United States. In the course of his journey, he found solace in the pilgrimage town of Lourdes, France, where St. Bernadette had had visions of the Virgin. He vowed to write about the saint if he ever reached America and kept the vow with Das Lied von Bernadette (1941; The Song of Bernadette). His novel was the basis for a popular film (1943) that won four Academy Awards.
 

 

 


Arnold Zweig


born Nov. 10, 1887, Glogau, Silesia, Ger. [now Głogów, Poland]
died Nov. 26, 1968, East Berlin, E.Ger.

German writer best known for his novel Der Streit um den Sergeanten Grischa (1927; The Case of Sergeant Grischa).

In 1933 Zweig left Germany for Czechoslovakia. He later lived as an émigré in Palestine until 1948, when he moved to East Germany. He served as president of the East German Academy of Arts from 1950 to 1953.

The Case of Sergeant Grischa depicts the social workings of the German army during World War I through the story of the Russian prisoner Grischa’s tragic encounter with the vast machine of Prussian military bureaucracy. Zweig’s other works include Junge Frau von 1914 (1931; Young Woman of 1914), De Vriendt kehrt Heim (1932; De Vriendt Goes Home), Erziehung vor Verdun (1935; Education Before Verdun), and Einsetzung eines Königs (1937; The Crowning of a King), each of which pursues the fortunes of characters introduced in The Case of Sergeant Grischa.
 

 

 


Stefan Zweig




 

born November 28, 1881, Vienna, Austro-Hungarian Empire [now in Austria]
died February 22, 1942, Petrópolis, near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Austrian writer who achieved distinction in several genres—poetry, essays, short stories, and dramas—most notably in his interpretations of imaginary and historical characters.

Zweig studied in Austria, France, and Germany before settling in Salzburg in 1913. In 1934, driven into exile by the Nazis, he emigrated to England and then, in 1940, to Brazil by way of New York. Finding only growing loneliness and disillusionment in their new surroundings, he and his second wife committed suicide.

Zweig’s interest in psychology and the teachings of Sigmund Freud led to his most characteristic work, the subtle portrayal of character. Zweig’s essays include studies of Honoré de Balzac, Charles Dickens, and Fyodor Dostoyevsky (Drei Meister, 1920; Three Masters) and of Friedrich Hölderlin, Heinrich von Kleist, and Friedrich Nietzsche (Der Kampf mit dem Dämon, 1925; Master Builders). He achieved popularity with Sternstunden der Menschheit (1928; The Tide of Fortune), five historical portraits in miniature. He wrote full-scale, intuitive rather than objective, biographies of the French statesman Joseph Fouché (1929), Mary Stuart (1935), and others. His stories include those in Verwirrung der Gefühle (1925; Conflicts). He also wrote a psychological novel, Ungeduld des Herzens (1938; Beware of Pity), and translated works of Charles Baudelaire, Paul Verlaine, and Émile Verhaeren.
 




 

The post-1945 period: “Stunde Null”

In the part of Germany that became West Germany in 1949, the immediate aftermath of World War II was known as the “Stunde Null,” or “zero hour.” Writers felt that the need to make a clean sweep after the defeat of Nazism had left them in a cultural vacuum, but in fact the postwar situation made it possible to establish new connections with European and American literature.
Ernest Hemingway and Jean-Paul Sartre were among the most important literary influences of this period.

Radio plays—for example, Wolfgang Borchert’s Draussen vor der Tür (1947; “Outside the Door,” Eng. trans. The Man Outside)—were a highly popular form. Stage drama also exercised considerable influence throughout the early postwar years. The Swiss playwrights Max Frisch and Friedrich Dürrenmatt used drama to reflect on Nazism and the postwar period. Bertolt Brecht, who had returned to East Berlin in 1949, exerted considerable influence, even though many of his major plays—including Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder (1941; Mother Courage and Her Children), Der gute Mensch von Sezuan (1943; The Good Woman of Setzuan), and Leben des Galilei (1943; Life of Galileo, also translated into English as Galileo)—had been written during his exile years. His theoretical writings developed a new theatrical model designed to overcome the Aristotelian principles that had dominated German theatre since Lessing. Instead of the three unities of time, place, and action, Brecht argued for what he termed “epic theatre,” in which plot is developed in the manner of a chronicle by means of a loosely linked series of episodes. The audience was to focus less on the outcome of the dramatic plot than on the characters’ motivations and on alternative actions they might have chosen. Brecht’s principle of the Verfremdungseffekt (“alienation effect”) called for a deliberately artificial style of acting that drew attention to the fact that what was taking place on stage was a play, not the “real life” suggested by naturalist drama. The alienation effect, designed to discourage empathy with the protagonist and to stimulate critical responses in the audience, became a touchstone for postwar dramatists.

 


Wolfgang Borchert




 

born May 20, 1921, Hamburg, Ger.
died Nov. 20, 1947, Basel, Switz.

playwright and short-story writer who gave voice to the anguish of the German soldier after World War II.

As a young man Borchert wrote several plays and a large number of poems, but he was determined to be an actor. In 1941 he was drafted into the army. The rigours of his army service resulted in jaundice, frostbite, malnutrition, and progressive liver degeneration. He spent much of his military career in jail, accused of self-mutilation (he lost a finger). From his cell he wrote anti-Nazi letters and mocked propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels. Borchert returned to Hamburg after the war, but ill health forced him to leave an acting troupe he had cofounded. He began writing short stories in January 1946 and, though bedridden, produced most of the body of his work in the remaining two years of his life. He died the day before his most famous work, the play Draussen vor der Tür (1947; “Outside the Door”; Eng. trans. The Man Outside), was first staged. It presents a wounded former prisoner’s attempt to discover a reason to keep on living.

Many of Borchert’s stories, first collected in Die Hundeblume: Erzählungen aus unseren Tagen (1947; “The Dandelions: Tales of Our Days”), are based on personal experience. They include boyhood memories as well as the war and prison stories for which he is best known. The heroes of his stories, who are victims and are often in physical pain, seek meaning but find death and ruin.

 

 


Max Frisch



 

born May 15, 1911, Zürich, Switz.
died April 4, 1991, Zürich

Swiss dramatist and novelist, noted for his depictions of the moral dilemmas of 20th-century life.

In 1933 Frisch withdrew from the University of Zürich, where he had studied German literature, and became a newspaper correspondent. After touring southern and eastern Europe from 1934 to 1936, he returned to Zürich, where he studied architecture. Frisch worked as an architect after service in the Swiss army during World War II. He abandoned architecture in 1955 to devote himself full-time to writing.

Frisch’s play Santa Cruz (1947) established the central theme found throughout his subsequent works: the predicament of the complicated, skeptical individual in modern society. One of Frisch’s earliest dramas is the morality play Nun singen sie wieder (1946; Now They Sing Again), in which Surrealistic tableaux reveal the effects caused by hostages being assassinated by German Nazis. His other historical melodramas include Die chinesische Mauer (1947; The Chinese Wall) and the bleak Als der Krieg zu Ende war (1949; When the War Was Over). Reality and dream are used to depict the terrorist fantasies of a responsible government prosecutor in Graf Öderland (1951; Count Oederland), while Don Juan oder die Liebe zur Geometrie (1953; Don Juan, or The Love of Geometry) is a reinterpretation of the legend of the famous lover of that name. In his powerful parable play Biedermann und die Brandstifter (1958; The Firebugs, also published as The Fire Raisers), arsonists insinuate themselves into the house of the weak-willed, complacent Biedermann, who allows them to destroy his home and his world rather than confront them. Frisch’s later plays include Andorra (1961), with its theme of collective guilt, and Biografie (published 1967; Biography), which deals with social relationships and their limitations.

Frisch’s early novels Stiller (1954; I’m Not Stiller), Homo Faber (1957), and Mein Name sei Gantenbein (1964; A Wilderness of Mirrors) portray aspects of modern intellectual life and examine the theme of identity. His autobiographical works include two noteworthy diaries, Tagebuch 1946–1949 (1950; Sketchbook 1946–1949) and Tagebuch 1966–1971 (1972; Sketchbook 1966–1971). His later novels include Montauk: Eine Erzählung (1975), Der Mensch erscheint im Holozän (1979; Man in the Holocene), and Blaubart (1982; Bluebeard).
 

 

 


Friedrich Dürrenmatt


born Jan. 5, 1921, Konolfingen, near Bern, Switz.
died Dec. 14, 1990, Neuchâtel


Swiss playwright, novelist, and essayist whose satiric, almost farcical tragicomic plays were central to the post-World War II revival of German theatre.

Dürrenmatt, who was educated in Zürich and Bern, became a full-time writer in 1947. His technique was clearly influenced by the German expatriate writer Bertolt Brecht, as in the use of parables and of actors who step out of their roles to act as narrators. Dürrenmatt’s vision of the world as essentially absurd gave a comic flavour to his plays. Writing on the theatre in Theaterprobleme (1955; Problems of the Theatre), he described the primary conflict in his tragicomedies as humanity’s comic attempts to escape from the tragic fate inherent in the human condition.

His plays often have bizarre settings. His first play, Es steht geschrieben (1947; “It Is Written”), is about the Anabaptist suppression in Münster in 1534–36. In it, as in Der Blinde (1948; “The Blind Man”) and Romulus der Grosse (1949; Romulus the Great), Dürrenmatt takes comic liberties with the historical facts. Die Ehe des Herrn Mississippi (1952; The Marriage of Mr. Mississippi), a serious play in the guise of an old-fashioned melodrama, established his international reputation, being produced in the United States as Fools Are Passing Through in 1958. Among the plays that followed were Der Besuch der alten Dame (1956; The Visit); Die Physiker (1962; The Physicists), a modern morality play about science, generally considered his best play; Der Meteor (1966; The Meteor); and Porträt eines Planeten (1970; Portrait of a Planet).

In 1970 Dürrenmatt wrote that he was “abandoning literature in favour of theatre,” no longer writing plays but working to produce adaptations of well-known works. In addition to plays, Dürrenmatt wrote detective novels, radio plays, and critical essays.
 

 

 


Bertolt Brecht



 

original name Eugen Berthold Friedrich Brecht

born Feb. 10, 1898, Augsburg, Ger.
died Aug. 14, 1956, East Berlin


German poet, playwright, and theatrical reformer whose epic theatre departed from the conventions of theatrical illusion and developed the drama as a social and ideological forum for leftist causes.

Until 1924 Brecht lived in Bavaria, where he was born, studied medicine (Munich, 1917–21), and served in an army hospital (1918). From this period date his first play, Baal (produced 1923); his first success, Trommeln in der Nacht (Kleist Preis, 1922; Drums in the Night); the poems and songs collected as Die Hauspostille (1927; A Manual of Piety, 1966), his first professional production (Edward II, 1924); and his admiration for Wedekind, Rimbaud, Villon, and Kipling.

During this period he also developed a violently antibourgeois attitude that reflected his generation’s deep disappointment in the civilization that had come crashing down at the end of World War I. Among Brecht’s friends were members of the Dadaist group, who aimed at destroying what they condemned as the false standards of bourgeois art through derision and iconoclastic satire. The man who taught him the elements of Marxism in the late 1920s was Karl Korsch, an eminent Marxist theoretician who had been a Communist member of the Reichstag but had been expelled from the German Communist Party in 1926.

In Berlin (1924–33) he worked briefly for the directors Max Reinhardt and Erwin Piscator, but mainly with his own group of associates. With the composer Kurt Weill he wrote the satirical, successful ballad opera Die Dreigroschenoper (1928; The Threepenny Opera) and the opera Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny (1930; Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny). He also wrote what he called “Lehr-stücke” (“exemplary plays”)—badly didactic works for performance outside the orthodox theatre—to music by Weill, Hindemith, and Hanns Eisler. In these years he developed his theory of “epic theatre” and an austere form of irregular verse. He also became a Marxist.

In 1933 he went into exile—in Scandinavia (1933–41), mainly in Denmark, and then in the United States (1941–47), where he did some film work in Hollywood. In Germany his books were burned and his citizenship was withdrawn. He was cut off from the German theatre; but between 1937 and 1941 he wrote most of his great plays, his major theoretical essays and dialogues, and many of the poems collected as Svendborger Gedichte (1939). The plays of these years became famous in the author’s own and other productions: notable among them are Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder (1941; Mother Courage and Her Children), a chronicle play of the Thirty Years’ War; Leben des Galilei (1943; The Life of Galileo); Der gute Mensch von Sezuan (1943; The Good Woman of Setzuan), a parable play set in prewar China; Der Aufhaltsame Aufstieg des Arturo Ui (1957; The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui), a parable play of Hitler’s rise to power set in prewar Chicago; Herr Puntila und sein Knecht Matti (1948; Herr Puntila and His Man Matti), a Volksstück (popular play) about a Finnish farmer who oscillates between churlish sobriety and drunken good humour; and The Caucasian Chalk Circle (first produced in English, 1948; Der kaukasische Kreidekreis, 1949), the story of a struggle for possession of a child between its highborn mother, who deserts it, and the servant girl who looks after it.

Brecht left the United States in 1947 after having had to give evidence before the House Un-American Activities Committee. He spent a year in Zürich, working mainly on Antigone-Modell 1948 (adapted from Hölderlin’s translation of Sophocles; produced 1948) and on his most important theoretical work, the Kleines Organon für das Theater (1949; “A Little Organum for the Theatre”). The essence of his theory of drama, as revealed in this work, is the idea that a truly Marxist drama must avoid the Aristotelian premise that the audience should be made to believe that what they are witnessing is happening here and now. For he saw that if the audience really felt that the emotions of heroes of the past—Oedipus, or Lear, or Hamlet—could equally have been their own reactions, then the Marxist idea that human nature is not constant but a result of changing historical conditions would automatically be invalidated. Brecht therefore argued that the theatre should not seek to make its audience believe in the presence of the characters on the stage—should not make it identify with them, but should rather follow the method of the epic poet’s art, which is to make the audience realize that what it sees on the stage is merely an account of past events that it should watch with critical detachment. Hence, the “epic” (narrative, nondramatic) theatre is based on detachment, on the Verfremdungseffekt (alienation effect), achieved through a number of devices that remind the spectator that he is being presented with a demonstration of human behaviour in scientific spirit rather than with an illusion of reality, in short, that the theatre is only a theatre and not the world itself.

In 1949 Brecht went to Berlin to help stage Mutter Courage und ihre Kinder (with his wife, Helene Weigel, in the title part) at Reinhardt’s old Deutsches Theater in the Soviet sector. This led to formation of the Brechts’ own company, the Berliner Ensemble, and to permanent return to Berlin. Henceforward the Ensemble and the staging of his own plays had first claim on Brecht’s time. Often suspect in eastern Europe because of his unorthodox aesthetic theories and denigrated or boycotted in the West for his Communist opinions, he yet had a great triumph at the Paris Théâtre des Nations in 1955, and in the same year in Moscow he received a Stalin Peace Prize. He died of a heart attack in East Berlin the following year.

Brecht was, first, a superior poet, with a command of many styles and moods. As a playwright he was an intensive worker, a restless piecer-together of ideas not always his own (The Threepenny Opera is based on John Gay’s Beggar’s Opera, and Edward II on Marlowe), a sardonic humorist, and a man of rare musical and visual awareness; but he was often bad at creating living characters or at giving his plays tension and shape. As a producer he liked lightness, clarity, and firmly knotted narrative sequence; a perfectionist, he forced the German theatre, against its nature, to underplay. As a theoretician he made principles out of his preferences—and even out of his faults.
 

 

Despite concerns, codified by German philosopher Theodor Adorno in 1949, about the possibility of “lyric poetry after Auschwitz,” poetry was in fact produced quite prolifically during the immediate postwar years. The exile poets Nelly Sachs and Paul Celan emerged as two of the most prominent poetic voices to reflect on the concentration camp experience. Celan’s poem Todesfuge (“Death Fugue,” from his collection Mohn und Gedächtnis [1952; “Poppy and Memory”]) is perhaps the best-known poem of the entire postwar period. Gottfried Benn’s lecture Probleme der Lyrik (1951; “Problems of the Lyric”), essentially a restatement of the formalist precepts of early 20th-century Modernism, enabled postwar German poetry to reconnect with the European tradition. Under Benn’s influence, much postwar poetry tended to be abstract and hermetic; but there was also a more socially critical tradition, initiated by Hans Magnus Enzensberger in his volume Verteidigung der Wölfe (1957; “In Defense of Wolves”).

Short stories by Borchert, Heinrich Böll, and others took stock of the postwar situation in a straightforward, realistic style, and early novels, such as Böll’s Und sagte kein einziges Wort (1953; And Never Said a Word, also translated in English as Acquainted with the Night), depicted the misery of family life among the ruins. Though maligned as “Trümmerliteratur” (“rubble literature”), these works played a significant role in documenting and reinforcing the change of values that had taken place in Germany since the end of the war.

In East Germany the literary situation was very different from that of West Germany. Established in 1949, East Germany declared itself the cultural “heir” of the communist resistance to Nazism. Adapting the doctrine espoused by Georg Lukacs during the Modernism debate of the 1930s, the official literary mode was Socialist Realism. By this was meant a type of literature that avoided formal experimentation, was concerned with social reality, and turned upon a “positive hero” (or heroine) whose ultimate affirmation of community ideals is intended to serve as a model for the reader’s own approach to the vicissitudes of life. In response to various attempts to break the rigidity of this prescribed form, a writers’ conference at Bitterfeld in 1959 called for closer cooperation between writers and workers. Erwin Strittmatter’s Ole Bienkopp (1963; “Old Beehead,” Eng. trans. Ole Bienkopp), a novel about an old man who establishes a peasant commune, and Christa Wolf’s Der geteilte Himmel (1963; Divided Heaven), in which a young woman decides to return to East Germany after having experienced the lures of the West, are good examples of Socialist Realism.
 


Theodor Adorno



 

born Sept. 11, 1903, Frankfurt am Main, Ger.
died Aug. 6, 1969, Visp, Switz.

German philosopher who also wrote on sociology, psychology, and musicology.
Adorno obtained a degree in philosophy from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt in 1924. His early writings, which emphasize aesthetic development as important to historical evolution, reflect the influence of Walter Benjamin’s application of Marxism to cultural criticism. After teaching two years at the University of Frankfurt, Adorno immigrated to England in 1934 to escape the Nazi persecution of the Jews. He taught at the University of Oxford for three years and then went to the United States (1938), where he worked at Princeton (1938–41) and then was codirector of the Research Project on Social Discrimination at the University of California, Berkeley (1941–48). Adorno and his colleague Max Horkheimer returned to the University of Frankfurt in 1949. There they rebuilt the Institute for Social Research and revived the Frankfurt school of critical theory, which contributed to the German intellectual revival after World War II.
One of Adorno’s themes was civilization’s tendency to self-destruction, as evinced by Fascism. In their widely influential book Dialektik der Aufklärung (1947; Dialectic of Enlightenment), Adorno and Horkheimer located this impulse in the concept of reason itself, which the Enlightenment and modern scientific thought had transformed into an irrational force that had come to dominate not only nature but humanity itself. The rationalization of human society had ultimately led to Fascism and other totalitarian regimes that represented a complete negation of human freedom. Adorno concluded that rationalism offers little hope for human emancipation, which might come instead from art and the prospects it offers for preserving individual autonomy and happiness. Adorno’s other major publications are Philosophie der neuen Musik (1949; Philosophy of Modern Music), The Authoritarian Personality (1950, with others), Negative Dialektik (1966; Negative Dialectics), and Ästhetische Theorie (1970; “Aesthetic Theory”).
 

 

 


Nelly Sachs




 

born Dec. 10, 1891, Berlin, Ger.
died May 12, 1970, Stockholm, Swed.


German poet and dramatist who became a poignant spokesperson for the grief and yearnings of her fellow Jews. When, with Shmuel Yosef Agnon, she was awarded the 1966 Nobel Prize for Literature, she observed that Agnon represented Israel whereas “I represent the tragedy of the Jewish people.”

The daughter of a prosperous manufacturer, Sachs grew up in the fashionable Tiergarten section of Berlin and began writing verse at age 17. Romantic and conventional, her poems of the 1920s appeared in newspapers but were mainly for her own enjoyment.

As the advent of Nazism in Germany darkened her life, she sought comfort in ancient Jewish writings. In 1940, after learning that she was destined for a forced-labour camp, she escaped to Sweden with the help of the Swedish novelist Selma Lagerlöf, with whom she had corresponded and who interceded with the Swedish royal family on her behalf. Sachs lived with her mother in a one-room apartment, learned Swedish, and translated German poetry into Swedish and Swedish poetry into German.

Sachs’s lyrics from those years combine lean simplicity with imagery variously tender, searing, or mystical. Her famous “O die Schornsteine” (“O the Chimneys”), in which Israel’s body drifts upward as smoke from the Nazi death camps, was selected as the title poem for a 1967 collection of her work in English translation. Another collection in English translation, The Seeker, and Other Poems, was published in 1970.

Her best-known play is Eli: Ein Mysterienspiel vom Leiden Israels (1951; Eli: A Mystery Play of the Sufferings of Israel, included in the O the Chimneys collection). Before she won the Nobel Prize on her 75th birthday, she received the 1965 Peace Prize of German Publishers. In accepting the award from the land she had fled, she said (in the spirit of concord and forgiveness that are among the themes in her poems), “In spite of all the horrors of the past, I believe in you.”
 

 

 


Paul Celan

pseudonym of Paul Antschel

born Nov. 23, 1920, Cernăuți, Rom. [now Chernovtsy, Ukraine]
died May 1, 1970, Paris, Fr.

poet who, though he never lived in Germany, gave its post-World War II literature one of its most powerful and regenerative voices. His poetry was influenced stylistically by French Surrealism, and its subject matter by his grief as a Jew.

When Romania came under virtual Nazi control in World War II, Celan was sent to a forced-labour camp, and his parents were murdered. After working from 1945 to 1947 as a translator and publisher’s reader in Bucharest, Celan moved to Vienna, where he published his first collection of poems, Der Sand aus den Urnen (1948; “The Sand from the Urns”). From the outset his poetry was marked by a phantasmagoric perception of the terrors and injuries of reality and by a sureness of imagery and prosody.

Settling in Paris in 1948, where he had studied medicine briefly before the war, he lectured on language at the École Normale and translated French, Italian, and Russian poetry, as well as Shakespeare, into German. His second volume of poems, Mohn und Gedächtnis (1952; “Poppy and Memory”), established his reputation in West Germany. Seven volumes of poetry followed, including Lichtzwang (1970; “Lightforce”). The fullest English translation of his work is Speech-Grille and Selected Poems (1971). He died by his own hand.
 



 

The late 1950s and the ’60s


In the other German-speaking countries, the late 1950s and early 1960s saw the emergence of a number of novelists whose works have since become contemporary classics. In Switzerland,
Max Frisch explored the problem of guilt in his novels Homo Faber (1957; Eng. trans. Homo Faber), the story of an engineer who becomes a modern Oedipus, and Stiller (1954; I’m Not Stiller), about a man who refuses to take responsibility for his past. In West Germany, Heinrich Böll produced his Billard um halb zehn (1959; Billiards at Half-Past Nine), a brilliant novel in several voices that plays two generations of Germans off against each other as they look back at Nazism. At the same time, Günter Grass, perhaps the most important writer of the period and later, in 1999, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, began to publish what eventually became known as his Danzig trilogy, consisting of Die Blechtrommel (1959; The Tin Drum), Katz und Maus (1961; Cat and Mouse), and Hundejahre (1963; Dog Years). The trilogy presents a grotesquely imaginative retrospective on the Nazi period. The narrator of Die Blechtrommel is the dwarf Oskar Matzerath, who claims that he deliberately stopped growing on his third birthday out of protest against the corruptions of adult society under Nazism. He expresses his opposition by means of his toy drum as well as by his almost supernatural ability to shatter glass with his voice. Despite his initial protest, however, Oskar allows himself to be co-opted by the Nazis, joining a performing group that entertains soldiers on the Atlantic front. After the end of World War II, Oskar chooses to become involved in the slick deception of the government-sponsored West Concert Bureau, which promotes collective repression of the Nazi period. The novel’s ultimate irony lies in the fact that Oskar is telling his story from a mental hospital. With its virtuosic command of language, its innovative reworking of the picaresque tradition, and its sophisticated approach to German social history, Die Blechtrommel was a landmark in postwar German literature.

Dramatists of this period were increasingly concerned with the relation between the Nazi past and the political realities of the present. Documentary drama, using material from the war-crimes trials of 1961–65, proliferated: Der Stellvertreter (1963; The Deputy), by Rolf Hochhuth; Die Ermittlung (1965; The Investigation), by Peter Weiss; and Prozess in Nürnberg (1968; “Trial in Nürnberg”), by Rolf Schneider, are famous examples. Tankred Dorst, Peter Weiss, Dieter Forte, and Hans Magnus Enzensberger also explored the theme of the “lesson of history” in a number of plays written circa 1970. The play Kaspar (1968; Eng. trans. Kaspar), by Peter Handke, takes its starting point in the story of the foundling Kaspar Hauser and his gradual acquisition of language and culture, showing him being browbeaten into learning German and becoming increasingly dehumanized in the process. Although this play did not explicitly address the question of the Nazi past, it explored the degree to which an individual can preserve the spirit of resistance in the face of overwhelming pressures.
 


Heinrich Böll



 

German author
in full Heinrich Theodor Böll
born Dec. 21, 1917, Cologne, Ger.
died July 16, 1985, Bornheim-Merten, near Cologne, W.Ger.

Main
German writer, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1972. Böll’s ironic novels on the travails of German life during and after World War II capture the changing psychology of the German nation.

The son of a cabinetmaker, Böll graduated from high school in 1937. He was called into compulsory labour service in 1938 and then served six years as a private and corporal in the German army, fighting on the Russian and other fronts. Böll’s wartime experiences—being wounded, deserting, becoming a prisoner of war—were central to the art of a writer who remembered the “frightful fate of being a soldier and having to wish that the war might be lost.” After the war he settled in his native Cologne.
Böll’s earliest success came with short stories, the first of which were published in 1947; these were later collected in Wanderer, kommst du nach Spa (1950; Traveller, If You Come to Spa). In his early novels Der Zug war pünktlich (1949; The Train Was on Time) and Wo warst du Adam? (1951; Adam, Where Art Thou?), he describes the grimness and despair of soldiers’ lives. The uneasiness of reality is explored in the life of a mechanic in Das Brot der frühen Jahre (1955; The Bread of Our Early Years) and in a family of architects in Billard um halb zehn (1959; Billiards at Half-Past Nine), which, with its interior monologues and flashbacks, is his most complex novel. In the popular Ansichten eines Clowns (1963; The Clown), the protagonist deteriorates through drinking from being a well-paid entertainer to a begging street musician.
Böll’s other writings include Und sagte kein einziges Wort (1953; Acquainted with the Night) and Ende einer Dienstfahrt (1966; End of a Mission), in which the trial of a father and son lays bare the character of the townspeople. In his longest novel, Gruppenbild mit Dame (1971; Group Portrait with Lady), Böll presented a panorama of German life from the world wars to the 1970s through the accounts of the many people who have figured in the life of his middle-aged “lady,” Leni Pfeiffer. Die verlorene Ehre der Katharina Blum (1974; The Lost Honour of Katharina Blum) attacked modern journalistic ethics as well as the values of contemporary Germany. Was soll aus dem Jungen bloss werden?; oder, Irgendwas mit Büchern (1981; What’s to Become of the Boy?; or, Something to Do with Books) is a memoir of the period 1933–37. The novel Der Engel schwieg (The Silent Angel) was written in 1950 but first published posthumously in 1992; in it a German soldier struggles to survive in war-ravaged Cologne after World War II. Der blasse Hund (1995; The Mad Dog) collected previously unpublished short stories, while another early novel, Kreuz ohne Liebe (“Cross Without Love”), was first published in 2003.
A Roman Catholic and a pacifist, Böll developed a highly moral but individual vision of the society around him. A frequent theme of his was the individual’s acceptance or refusal of personal responsibility. Böll used austere prose and frequently sharp satire to present his antiwar, nonconformist point of view. He was widely regarded as the outstanding humanist interpreter of his nation’s experiences in World War II.
 

 

 


Günter Grass


born Oct. 16, 1927, Danzig [now Gdańsk, Pol.]


German poet, novelist, playwright, sculptor, and printmaker who, with his extraordinary first novel Die Blechtrommel (1959; The Tin Drum), became the literary spokesman for the German generation that grew up in the Nazi era and survived the war. In 1999 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature for his accomplishments.

In his native Danzig, Grass passed through the Hitler Youth movement and was drafted during World War II. As he revealed in 2006, he was called up to the Waffen-SS (the elite military wing of the Nazi Party) at age 17, two years after he had been refused as a volunteer for submarine duty. He was wounded in battle and became a prisoner of war in 1945. Later, while an art student in Düsseldorf, he supported himself as a dealer in the black market, a tombstone cutter, and a drummer in a jazz band. Encouraged by the writers’ association Gruppe 47, he produced poems and plays, at first with little success. In 1956 he went to Paris and wrote Die Blechtrommel (filmed 1979). This exuberant picaresque novel, written in a variety of styles, imaginatively distorts and exaggerates his personal experiences—the Polish-German dualism of Danzig, the creeping Nazification of average families, the attrition of the war years, the coming of the Russians, and the complacent atmosphere of West Germany’s postwar “economic miracle.” Underlying the anarchic fantasy is the moral earnestness that earned Grass the role of “conscience of his generation.” It was followed by Katz und Maus (1961; Cat and Mouse) and an epic novel, Hundejahre (1963; Dog Years); the three together form a trilogy set in Danzig.

His other novels—always politically topical—include Örtlich Betäubt (1969; Local Anaesthetic), a protest against the Vietnam War; Der Butt (1977; The Flounder), a ribald fable of the war between the sexes from the Stone Age to the present; Das Treffen in Telgte (1979; The Meeting at Telgte), a hypothetical “Gruppe 1647” meeting of authors at the close of the Thirty Years’ War; Kopfgeburten; oder, die Deutschen sterben aus (1980; Headbirths; or, The Germans Are Dying Out), which describes a young couple’s agonizing over whether to have a child in the face of a population explosion and the threat of nuclear war; Die Rättin (1986; The Rat), a vision of the end of the human race that expressed Grass’s fear of nuclear holocaust and environmental disaster; and Unkenrufe (1992; The Call of the Toad), which concerned the uneasy relationship between Poland and Germany. In 1995 Grass published Ein weites Feld (“A Broad Field”), an ambitious novel treating Germany’s reunification in 1990. The work was vehemently attacked by German critics, who denounced Grass’s portrayal of reunification as “misconstrued” and “unreadable.” Grass, whose leftist political views were often not well received, was outspoken in his belief that Germany lacked “the politically organized power to renew itself.” Mein Jahrhundert (1999; My Century), a collection of 100 related stories, was less overtly political than many of his earlier works. In it Grass relates the events of the 20th century using a story for each year, each with a different narrator.

Grass was a long-time participant in Social Democratic Party politics in West Berlin, fighting for social and literary causes. When he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1999, there were many who believed that his strong, and sometimes unpopular, political beliefs had prevented him from receiving the prize far earlier. Grass’s disclosure of his membership in the Waffen-SS, which came just before publication of his memoir Beim Häuten der Zwiebel (2006; Peeling the Onion), caused widespread controversy, with some arguing that it undercut his moral authority. He had previously claimed he had been drafted into an air defense unit in 1944.

 

 


Peter Weiss

born Nov. 8, 1916, Nowawes, near Potsdam, Ger.
died May 10, 1982, Stockholm, Swed.


German dramatist and novelist whose plays achieved widespread success in both Europe and the United States in the 1960s.

The son of a textile manufacturer who was Jewish by origin but Christian by conversion, Weiss was brought up a Lutheran. In 1934 he and his family were forced into exile by Nazi persecution. He lived in England, Switzerland, and Czechoslovakia before settling, in 1939, in Sweden. He painted and made films (which showed the influence of the Surrealists) and also illustrated a Swedish edition of the Thousand and One Nights. Later he turned to fiction and drama. His early works were in Swedish, but by 1950 he had decided to publish in German. His initial literary influence was the novelist Franz Kafka, whose dreamlike world of subtle menace and frustration impressed Weiss. An important later influence was the American writer Henry Miller.

Weiss’s Die Verfolgung und Ermordung Jean Paul Marats, dargestellt durch die Schauspielgruppe des Hospizes zu Charenton unter Anleitung des Herrn de Sade (The Persecution and Assassination of Jean-Paul Marat as Performed by the Inmates of the Asylum of Charenton Under the Direction of the Marquis de Sade, usually referred to as Marat/Sade) pits the ideals of individualism and of revolution against each other in a setting in which madness and reason seem inseparable. The play was first performed in West Berlin in 1964 and received a celebrated staging in New York City in 1965 by Peter Brook, who filmed it in 1967. Die Ermittlung (1965; The Investigation) is a documentary drama re-creating the Frankfurt trials of the men who carried out mass murders at Auschwitz; at the same time, it attacks later German hypocrisy over the existence of concentration camps and investigates the root causes of aggression. Weiss’s other plays include documentary dramas attacking Portuguese imperialism in Angola, Gesang vom lusitanischen Popanz (1967; The Song of the Lusitanian Bogey); and American policy in the Vietnam War, Viet Nam Diskurs (1968; Discourse on Viet Nam).

Weiss wrote three autobiographical novels: Der Schatten des Körpers des Kutschers (1960; “The Shadow of the Body of the Coachman”), Abschied von den Eltern (1961; The Leavetaking), and Fluchtpunkt (1962; Exile). He won a number of literary awards, including the Charles Veillon Prize for Fluchtpunkt in 1963 and the Georg Büchner Prize in 1982. He was also a member of Gruppe 47, an association of German-speaking writers formed after World War II.
 

 

 


Peter Handke



 

born December 6, 1942, Griffen, Austria


avant-garde Austrian playwright, novelist, poet, and essayist, one of the most original German-language writers in the second half of the 20th century.

Handke, the son of a bank clerk, studied law at Graz University from 1961 to 1965 and contributed pieces to the avant-garde literary magazine manuskripte. He came to public notice as an anticonventional playwright with his first important drama, Publikumsbeschimpfung (1966; Offending the Audience), in which four actors analyze the nature of theatre for an hour and then alternately insult the audience and praise its “performance,” a strategy that arouses varied reactions from the crowd. Several more plays lacking conventional plot, dialogue, and characters followed, but Handke’s other most significant dramatic piece is his first full-length play, Kaspar (1968), which depicts the foundling Kaspar Hauser as a near-speechless innocent destroyed by society’s attempts to impose on him its language and its own rational values. Handke’s other plays include Das Mündel will Vormund sein (1969; “The Ward Wants to Be Guardian”; Eng. trans. My Foot My Tutor) and Der Ritt über den Bodensee (1971; The Ride Across Lake Constance).

Handke’s novels are for the most part ultraobjective, deadpan accounts of characters who are in extreme states of mind. His best-known novel, Die Angst des Tormanns beim Elfmeter (1970; The Goalie’s Anxiety at the Penalty Kick), is an imaginative thriller about a former football (soccer) player who commits a pointless murder and then waits for the police to take him into custody. Die linkshändige Frau (1976; The Left-Handed Woman) is a dispassionate description of a young mother coping with the disorientation she feels after she has separated from her husband. Handke’s memoir about his deceased mother, Wunschloses Unglück (1972; “Wishless Un-luck”; Eng. trans. A Sorrow Beyond Dreams), is also an effective work.

Handke also wrote short stories, essays, radio dramas, and autobiographical works. The dominant theme of his writings is that ordinary language, everyday reality, and their accompanying rational order have a constraining and deadening effect on human beings and are underlain by irrationality, confusion, and even madness.
 





The 1970s and ’80s


The 1970s were marked by an inward turning that became known as Neue Subjektivität (“New Subjectivity”). The dominant genre was lyric poetry. Its authors had formerly been involved in the “student revolution” of 1967–68, which had called for a new politicization of literature in the face of the Vietnam War and the problems of the Third World. After the student movement died down, the young writers returned somewhat reluctantly to everyday domesticity, which they described in their poetry in affectionate detail, though also with a distinct touch of irony. The New Subjectivity is documented in Jürgen Theobaldy’s anthology Und ich bewege mich doch: Gedichte vor u. nach 1968 (1977; “And Yet I Move: Poems Before and After 1968”). In the novel, the turn inward was powerfully represented by Peter Handke in autobiographical works such as Der kurze Brief zum langen Abschied (1972; Short Letter, Long Farewell), an account of an American tour that is also about the collapse of his marriage, and Wünschloses Unglück (1972; “Wishless Unluck,” Eng. trans. A Sorrow Beyond Dreams), a sensitive portrait of his mother and her suicide. His novel Die linkshändige Frau (1976; The Left-Handed Woman) delicately explores the inner feelings of a young married woman who tries to live on her own with her child in the Frankfurt suburbs. Ingeborg Bachmann’s novel Malina (1971) splits its autobiographical persona into a sensitive, feminine self and a masculine double who is a writer; the novel contains visionary and lyrical passages. Walter Kempowski’s series of novels beginning with Tadellöser & Wolff (1971) reached a wider audience by depicting the everyday life of a middle-class family during the Third Reich. Sentimental, nostalgic, and gently ironic, these quasi-autobiographical novels explore the problematic nature of the positive family memories still somewhat guiltily cherished by many of those who were not persecuted by the Nazis.

In East Germany, where the official socialist line still eschewed subjectivity and inwardness, Christa Wolf brilliantly explored the problems of interiority in her novel Nachdenken über Christa T. (1968; The Quest for Christa T.), a meditation about a dead friend who is, in essence, an alter ego of the narrator. In Flugasche (Flight of Ashes), written in East Germany during the 1970s but not published until 1981 and then in West Germany, Monika Maron depicted the tension between inner and outer reality in the attempt of a young woman journalist to present unpleasant truths about the lives of workers in the industrial town of Bitterfeld. While she does succeed in writing an article that causes the power plant to be shut down, she herself is under threat of expulsion from the Communist Party at the conclusion of the novel.

Subjectivity was not the only theme of the 1970s, however. In West Germany, writers such as Enzensberger, Grass, and Böll continued to follow political developments in their writing. Two vast novel projects originating in this period combine techniques of perspectivized narration with the problem of fact versus fiction that was increasingly dominating the retrospective on Nazism: Jahrestage: aus dem Leben von Gesine Cresspahl (1970–83; Anniversaries: From the Life of Gesine Cresspahl), by Uwe Johnson, and Die Ästhetik des Widerstands (1975–81; “The Aesthetics of Resistance”), by Peter Weiss. Weiss’s novel, an ambitious attempt to depict the intellectual and political development of a young communist Resistance fighter, is a remarkable mixture of history, myth, and fantasy embedded in a running discussion of political and aesthetic theory.

The feminist movement in Germany led to the emergence of a prolific and innovative group of women writers. Women were encouraged to feel and write through their bodies rather than through conventional rationality, and the distinctiveness of feminine sensibility became a hotly debated issue. Karin Struck’s novel Klassenliebe (1973; “Class Love”), an exploration of female sexuality, and Verena Stefan’s Häutungen (1975; Shedding), a collection of notes and jottings that trace a young woman’s search for identity, became classic works of German feminism.

This period was also marked by a preoccupation with generational differences, brilliantly developed by Peter Schneider in Vati (1987; “Daddy”), in which a young German lawyer travels to South America to meet his father, who has fled there to escape trial for Nazi crimes (the figure of the father is modeled on the Nazi doctor Josef Mengele). Auslöschung: ein Zerfall (1986; Extinction), by Thomas Bernhard, takes the form of a violently insistent and seemingly interminable diatribe by a first-person narrator who returns from Rome to Austria for a family funeral. Bernhard’s novel expresses intense feelings of disgust and anger about Austria’s collaboration in Nazism. Elfriede Jelinek’s novel Die Klavierspielerin (1983; The Piano Teacher), the story of a musician dominated by her possessive mother, is a terrifying story of family violence told from a feminist perspective.
 


Ingeborg Bachmann


born June 25, 1926, Klagenfurt, Austria
died Oct. 17, 1973, Rome, Italy

Austrian author whose sombre, surreal writings often deal with women in failed love relationships, the nature of art and humanity, and the inadequacy of language.

Bachmann grew up in Kärnten during World War II and was educated at the Universities of Graz, Innsbruck, and Vienna. She received a doctoral degree in philosophy from Vienna in 1950. Bachmann’s literary career began in earnest in 1952, when she read her poetry to members of the avant-garde Gruppe 47. She produced two volumes of verse, Die gestundete Zeit (1953; “Borrowed Time”), about the sense of urgency produced by the passage of time, and Anrufung des grossen Bären (1956; “Invocation of the Great Bear”), featuring poems of fantasy and mythology. Of her several radio plays, the best known is Der gute Gott von Manhattan (1958; “The Good God of Manhattan” in Three Radio Plays). First broadcast on May 29, 1958, it is about a couple attacked by a covert group that seeks to destroy all traces of love.

Following Bachmann’s five landmark lectures on literature at the University of Frankfurt in 1959–60, she shifted her focus from poetry to fiction. During this period she also wrote the libretti for Hans Werner Henze’s operas Der Prinz von Homberg (1960; from a play by Heinrich von Kleist) and Der junge Lord (1965; from a fable by Wilhelm Hauff). Among her prose writings are Das dreissigtse Jahr (1961; The Thirtieth Year) and the lyrical novel Malina (1971; Eng. trans. Malina). She also published essays, stories, and more radio plays. Her death by fire may have been a suicide.

Much attention was given to Bachmann’s work both in her lifetime and after her death, and several of her writings were translated into English. A volume of selected poems, In the Storm of Roses, was published in 1986; it was the inspiration for Elizabeth Vercoe’s composition In the Storm: Four Songs on Texts by Ingeborg Bachmann for medium voice, clarinet, and piano. Some of Bachmann’s stories were translated in Three Paths to the Lake (1989), and a bilingual edition of her collected poems, translated and introduced by Peter Filkins, was published as Songs in Flight (1995). Fragments of two novels intended to complete the trilogy begun with Malina were translated and published together in a single volume entitled The Book of Franza & Requiem for Fanny Goldmann (1999).

 

 


Uwe Johnson


born July 20, 1934, Cammin, Germany
found dead March 12, 1984, Sheerness, Kent, England

German author noted for his experimental style. Many of his novels explore the contradictions of life in a Germany divided after World War II.

Johnson grew up during the difficult war years. In East Germany he studied German at the Universities of Rostock and Leipzig, graduating from the latter in 1956. That same year he attempted to publish his first novel, Ingrid Babendererde: Reifeprüfung 1953 (published posthumously in 1985; “Ingrid Babendererde: School-Leaving Exam 1953”), but it was refused by several East German publishers when he declined to alter it to suit their ideology. He eventually found a West German publisher for his second novel, Mutmassungen über Jakob (1959; Speculations About Jakob). Its modernist narrative and its frank engagement with the problems faced daily by German citizens brought Johnson critical acclaim. Aware that his work would not be published in East Germany as long as he wrote what he wished to write and unable—because of his political record—to find a job there, he moved to West Berlin shortly after publishing the novel. This move was an event he distinctly did not consider “escape.”

Once in the West, Johnson became a member of Gruppe 47, a writers’ association. He continued to experiment with narrative and examine the meaning of a divided land with the publication of Das dritte Buch über Achim (1961; The Third Book About Achim); Karsch, und andere Prosa (1964; "Karsch and Other Prose"), a collection of shorter fiction that included the novella Eine Reise wegwohin (An Absence); and Zwei Ansichten (1965; Two Views). In each of these works, Johnson’s narrative abruptly shifts from one consciousness or setting to another; words assume different meanings when used by different characters; and objects and events are described with intricate exactness, as if to emphasize their constancy against the mutability of emotions, memory, and human expression.

From 1966 to 1968, Johnson lived in New York. There he began his masterwork, the tetralogy Jahrestage: aus dem Leben von Gesine Cresspahl (1970–73, 1983; Anniversaries: From the Life of Gesine Cresspahl). In it he used a montage technique, combining newspaper clippings, notes, and diary entries—as well as the presence of a writer named Uwe Johnson—to examine the issues that continued to engage him. He published the first three volumes upon his return to West Berlin. In 1974 Johnson moved to England, ostensibly to complete his tetralogy. There he underwent a personal crisis, and, though he continued to publish other work, he suffered from writer’s block; the last volume of Jahrestage was not finished until the year before his death.

Johnson’s later works included a reflection on the poet Ingeborg Bachmann, Eine Reise nach Klagenfurt (1974; A Trip to Klagenfurt: In the Footsteps of Ingeborg Bachmann), published after her death; Berliner Sachen (1975; “Berlin Matters”), a volume of previously published essays, including two in English; and Begleitumstände: Frankfurter Vorlesungen (1980; “Circumstances: Frankfurt Lectures”), a collection of autobiographical lectures he gave to reestablish the poetics chair at the University of Frankfurt. Living an isolated life in England and, by many accounts, drinking heavily, Johnson died at home on or about February 23, 1984, but his body was not discovered until some three weeks later.

 

 


Thomas Bernhard





 

born Feb. 9/10, 1931, Cloister Heerland, Neth.
died Feb. 12, 1989, Gmunden, Austria

Austrian writer who explored death, social injustice, and human misery in controversial literature that was deeply pessimistic about modern civilization in general and Austrian culture in particular.

Bernhard was born in a Holland convent; his mother, unwed at the time, had fled there from Austria to give birth. After a year, she returned to her parents in Vienna, where her father, writer Johannes Freumbichler (1881–1949), became the major influence on Bernhard. After surviving a life-threatening coma and repeated hospitalizations (1948–51) in tuberculosis sanatoriums, he studied music and drama in Salzburg and Vienna.

Bernhard achieved little success with several collections of poetry in the late 1950s, but in 1963 he gained notoriety with his first novel, Frost (Eng. trans. Frost). In such novels as Verstörung (1967; “Derangement,” Eng. trans. Gargoyles), Das Kalkwerk (1970; The Lime Works), and Korrektur (1975; Corrections), he combined complex narrative structure with an increasingly misanthropic philosophy. In 1973 Bernhard withdrew his drama Die Berühmten (“The Famous”) from the prestigious Salzburg Festival because of a controversy over staging. After its publication in 1984 his novel Holzfällen (Woodcutters, or Cutting Timber: An Irritation) was seized by police for allegedly criticizing a public figure. Even before its premiere in November 1988, Bernhard’s last play, Heldenplatz (“Heroes’ Square”), a bleak indictment of anti-Semitism in contemporary Austria, provoked violent protests. His other plays include Ein Fest für Boris (1968; A Party for Boris), Die Jagdgesellschaft (1974; The Hunting Party), Die Macht der Gewohnheit (1974; The Force of Habit), and Der Schein trügt (1983; Appearances Are Deceiving).

Bernhard’s memoirs were translated in Gathering Evidence (1985), a compilation of five German works published between 1975 and 1982.
 



 

Postmodernism


In the last decades of the 20th century, German literature was influenced by international postmodernism, a movement that combined heterogeneous elements in order to appeal simultaneously to a popular and a more sophisticated readership. Parody, pastiche, and multiple allusions to other types of cultural production are characteristic of postmodernist literature. Günter Grass’s Der Butt (1977; The Flounder) and Die Rättin (1986; The Rat), with their convoluted inset narratives, lyric interludes, recipes for favourite German dishes, revisions of fairy tales, and ironic representations of contemporary feminism, were at first misunderstood because they were judged by the standards of the canonical modern novel. Once viewed in the light of postmodernism, however, these novels underwent a critical reevaluation. Patrick Süskind’s Das Parfum: die Geschichte eines Mörders (1985; Perfume: The Story of a Murderer), with its brilliant imitations of literary styles from various periods, was another work of German postmodernism that became an international best-seller.



 

After reunification

Following the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, writers began to explore the tensions between the economic, social, and cultural values of West and East Germany. There was intense debate about the East German experience under communism, in particular about whether the psychological need to come to terms with this experience was comparable to the soul-searching that had been undertaken after the end of World War II.

Monika Maron addressed this issue in her novel Stille Zeile Sechs (1991; Silent Close No. Six), set in the 1980s and ostensibly a story about the discovery of guilt incurred by an important East German party functionary during the Third Reich. By exploring the rift between actions and desires, the novel becomes an inquiry into the responsibility of historians and writers in general. The link between the communist and the Nazi eras is established in a key scene that metaphorically brings together violence past and present.

One year earlier, Christa Wolf’s narrative Was bleibt (1990; What Remains) had unleashed a violent controversy about the form and function of reflections on the East German past. The subject of the story was Wolf’s reactions to surveillance by the East German state security police. Some readers saw the tale as a self-serving portrayal of the author as a victim of communism; these readers failed to notice, however, the thread of self-critique woven into the narrative. In 1993 it was revealed, in a further twist of irony, that Wolf herself had given information to the security police for a brief period. The Christa Wolf case became paradigmatic for the difficulties of coming to terms with East Germany’s communist past. It was succeeded by another debate that broke out after the secret police files of several other well-known writers became available. One outraged victim of surveillance, Reiner Kunze, published a selection from his own files under the title Deckname “Lyrik” (1990; “Code Name ‘Lyric’”). At the same time, some members of an apparently oppositional group of East German writers, known as the Prenzlauer Berg poets after the district in Berlin where they lived, were shown to have acted as informants for the secret police. The resulting discussions stimulated a probing reexamination of the problem of autonomous art and the relation of aesthetics to ideology.
 


Christa Wolf

born March 18, 1929, Landsberg an der Warthe, Germany [now Gorzów Wielkopolski, Poland]


German novelist, essayist, and screenwriter most often associated with East Germany.

Wolf was reared in a middle-class, pro-Nazi family. With the defeat of Germany in 1945, she moved with her family to East Germany. She studied at the Universities of Jena and Leipzig (1949–53), thereafter working as editor of the East German Writers’ Union magazine and as a reader for book publishers. After 1962 she was a full-time writer.

Wolf’s first novel was Moskauer Novelle (1961; “Moscow Novella”). Her second novel, Der geteilte Himmel (1963; Divided Heaven; filmed 1964), established her reputation. This work explores the political and romantic conflicts of Rita and Manfred. He defects to West Berlin for greater personal and professional freedom; she, after a brief stay with him, rejects the West and returns to East Berlin. The novel brought Wolf political favour.

Nachdenken über Christa T. (1968; The Quest for Christa T.) concerns an ordinary woman who questions her socialist beliefs and life in a socialist state and then dies prematurely of leukemia. Though well received by Western critics, the novel was severely attacked by the East German Writers’ Congress, and its sale was forbidden in East Germany.

Wolf’s other works include Kindheitsmuster (1976; A Model Childhood), a semiautobiographical account of growing up in the Third Reich; Till Eulenspiegel (1972; filmed 1974), which interprets the folk legend from a Marxist point of view; Kassandra (1983; Cassandra), an inner monologue that associates nuclear power with patriarchal power; Was bleibt (1990; What Remains), an account of the surveillance practices of the East German government, in which Wolf implicates herself; Störfall (1987; Accident: A Day’s News), which juxtaposes the Chernobyl disaster with the narrator’s brother’s brain tumour operation; Auf dem Weg nach Tabou (1997; Parting from Phantoms: Selected Writings, 1990–1994); Medea: A Novel (1998); and Leibhaftig (2002; In the Flesh), in which the narrator experiences a health crisis that parallels the disintegration of the East German state. The memoir Ein Tag im Jahr: 1960–2000 (2003; One Day a Year) was a project 40 years in the making. Once each year, on September 27, Wolf recorded her thoughts on her life and surroundings, and the book provides a unique look at East Germany from the rise of the Berlin Wall to the post-unification period.

 






The turn of the 21st century



In the mid-1990s a new generation of writers emerged who finally provided the “reunification” novels that critics had expected immediately after the fall of the Berlin Wall. Thomas Brussig’s grotesquely comic novel Helden wie wir (1995; Heroes Like Us) was a satiric reworking of the debate about the East German secret police. Thomas Hettche’s Nox (1995; “Night”) has a strangely omniscient narrator in the form of a young man whose throat has been slit in a sadomasochistic sexual act during the night the Wall came down. Nox draws a rather too obvious equivalence between its narrator’s wound, from which he is dying, and the “wound” of the divided Germany, which, on the face of things, is about to be healed. Nonetheless, Hettche succeeds in transforming this central metaphor into a multilayered analysis of postunification psychology. The cityscape of Berlin comes to stand for national and individual memory, conserved, as it were, beneath the surface of streets and canals and the no-man’s-land of the former border.

In these and other novels of the late 20th and early 21st centuries, the Nazi past continues to haunt German writing. Marcel Beyer’s novel Flughunde (1995; “Flying Foxes,” Eng. trans. Flughunde) recounts the deaths of Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels’s children through the eyes of two narrators: the eldest daughter, Helga, and a sound technician who had worked for Goebbels. Long after the children’s deaths, the technician begins to recognize his own role in their murders at the hands of their mother. Thomas Lehr’s experimental novella Frühling (2001; “Spring”) employs drastically ruptured syntax to reproduce, in the form of a hesitating interior monologue, the final 39 seconds of its protagonist’s life. Only toward the end of the story does the narrator, who has just completed a suicide pact with his female lover, come to understand his father’s guilt as a former concentration-camp doctor. This guilt, which has already caused the narrator’s young brother to commit suicide, is revealed as the solution to a childhood scene that the narrator has never fully understood. In contrast to German novels of the 1960s, which attempted to “master” the Nazi past through narration, these more recent novels belong to what has come to be called “memory culture.”

Linked with debates about the problem of memorializing the victims of Nazism in the form of public monuments, German-language novels of the 1990s explicitly probe questions about how memories of the Nazi period can best be represented. The Austrian writer Christoph Ransmayr’s powerful Morbus Kitahara (1995; The Dog King) is set in a dystopian landscape that resembles Mauthausen concentration camp and in an imagined alternative history in which Germany has not been permitted to redevelop its industrial capabilities following World War II. W.G. Sebald’s haunting novel Austerlitz (2001; Eng. trans. Austerlitz)—the story of a man who had been saved from Nazi Germany and adopted by an English couple but who has been traveling in search of the places he believes to have been way stations in his early life—has had international success as a moving, though puzzling, exploration of memory, real and imagined.

Judith Ryan

 

 

APPENIX

 


Lion Feuchtwanger




 

born July 7, 1884, Munich, Ger.
died Dec. 21, 1958, Los Angeles, Calif., U.S.


German novelist and playwright known for his historical romances.

Born of a Jewish family, Feuchtwanger studied philology and literature at Berlin and Munich (1903–07) and took his doctorate in 1918 with a dissertation on poet Heinrich Heine. Also in 1918 he founded a literary journal, Der Spiegel. His first historical novel was Die hässliche Herzogin (1923; The Ugly Duchess), about Margaret Maultasch, duchess of Tirol. His finest novel, Jud Süss (1925; also published as Jew Süss and Power), set in 18th-century Germany, revealed a depth of psychological analysis that remained characteristic of his subsequent work—the Josephus-Trilogie (Der jüdische Krieg, 1932; Die Söhne, 1935; Der Tag wird kommen, 1945); Die Geschwister Oppenheim (1933; The Oppermanns), a novel of modern life; and Der falsche Nero (1936; The Pretender). Jud Süss tells the story of a brilliant and charismatic Jewish financier who adroitly manages the revenues of the Duke of Württemberg. After the tragic death of his daughter, Süss voluntarily renounces the pursuit of power and is tried and executed by his political enemies.

Exiled in 1933, Feuchtwanger moved to France; from there he escaped to the United States in 1940 after some months in an internment camp, described in The Devil in France (1941; later published in its original German as Unholdes Frankreich and Der Teufel in Frankreich). Of his later works the best known are Waffen für Amerika (1947; also published as Die Füchse im Weinberg; Eng. trans. Proud Destiny), Goya oder der arge Weg der Erkenntnis (1951; This Is the Hour), and Jefta und seine Tochter (1957; Jephthah and His Daughter). He translated Christopher Marlowe’s Edward II (in collaboration with playwright Bertolt Brecht) and plays by Aeschylus and Aristophanes.

 

 

 


Erich Maria Remarque


born June 22, 1898, Osnabrück, Ger.
died Sept. 25, 1970, Locarno, Switz.


novelist who is chiefly remembered as the author of Im Westen nichts Neues (1929; All Quiet on the Western Front), which became perhaps the best-known and most representative novel dealing with World War I.

Remarque was drafted into the German army at the age of 18 and was wounded several times. After the war he worked as a racing-car driver and as a sportswriter while working on All Quiet on the Western Front. The novel’s events are those in the daily routine of soldiers who seem to have no past or future apart from their life in the trenches. Its title, the language of routine communiqués, is typical of its cool, terse style, which records the daily horrors of war in laconic understatement. Its casual amorality was in shocking contrast to patriotic rhetoric. The book was an immediate international success, as was the American film made from it in 1930. It was followed by a sequel, Der Weg zurück (1931; The Road Back), dealing with the collapse of Germany in 1918. Remarque wrote several other novels, most of them dealing with victims of the political upheavals of Europe during World Wars I and II. Some had popular success and were filmed (e.g., Arc de Triomphe, 1946), but none achieved the critical prestige of his first book.

Remarque left Germany for Switzerland in 1932. His books were banned by the Nazis in 1933. In 1939 he went to the United States, where he was naturalized in 1947. After World War II he settled in Porto Ronco, Switz., on Lake Maggiore, where he lived with his second wife, the American actress Paulette Goddard, until his death.
 

All Quiet on the Western Front

Erich Maria Remarque
1898-1970

The epigraph of Ail Quiet on the Western Front states that the intention of the book is to be neither an accusation nor a confession, but an account of a generation, Including the survivors, "destroyed by the war." But rather than a warning, or even a statement of self-defense, this epigraph, marked by its simplicity and clarity, is a one-sentence declaration, however quiet, that what follows is a story of destruction.
In the polarized political debates of the Weimar Republic, the Great War was not a topic but a touchstone for all else. How you understood the war, its origins, its conduct, surrender, and defeat, was the index to your understanding of the past and to your understanding of how liveable or damaged the future could be. Given this interpretive context, the pacifism of the novel could satisfy neither left nor right ends of the critical spectrum in inter-war Germany. But Remarque's text does not assume or argue for pacifism; it simply enacts it as an appalled response to the daily efficiencies of organized slaughter. It is this quiet, certain, yet exploratory demonstration of the utter inhumanity of war that constitutes the magnificence of All Quiet on the Western Front as an anti-war novel.
Central to Remarque's achievement is the voice of Paul Baumer, the novel's nineteen-year-old narrator. He is one of a band of front-line soldiers whose experience of war strips the mythology of heroism bare, leaving the tedium, the earth-shaking fear, the loneliness, and the anger of men whose bodies are neither protected nor honored by military uniforms. The novel ends with the disappearance of Baumer's voice; it is replaced by the polite brevity of the report of his death on a day in which all was quiet on the western front.

 

 


Carl Jung


born July 26, 1875, Kesswil, Switz.
died June 6, 1961, Küsnacht


Swiss psychologist and psychiatrist who founded analytic psychology, in some aspects a response to Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis. Jung proposed and developed the concepts of the extraverted and the introverted personality, archetypes, and the collective unconscious. His work has been influential in psychiatry and in the study of religion, literature, and related fields.

Learn more about "Carl Jung" Early life and career
Jung was the son of a philologist and pastor. His childhood was lonely, although enriched by a vivid imagination, and from an early age he observed the behaviour of his parents and teachers, which he tried to resolve. Especially concerned with his father’s failing belief in religion, he tried to communicate to him his own experience of God. In many ways, the elder Jung was a kind and tolerant man, but neither he nor his son succeeded in understanding each other. Jung seemed destined to become a minister, for there were a number of clergymen on both sides of his family. In his teens he discovered philosophy and read widely, and this, together with the disappointments of his boyhood, led him to forsake the strong family tradition and to study medicine and become a psychiatrist. He was a student at the universities of Basel (1895–1900) and Zürich (M.D., 1902).

He was fortunate in joining the staff of the Burghölzli Asylum of the University of Zürich at a time (1900) when it was under the direction of Eugen Bleuler, whose psychological interests had initiated what are now considered classical studies of mental illness. At Burghölzli, Jung began, with outstanding success, to apply association tests initiated by earlier researchers. He studied, especially, patients’ peculiar and illogical responses to stimulus words and found that they were caused by emotionally charged clusters of associations withheld from consciousness because of their disagreeable, immoral (to them), and frequently sexual content. He used the now famous term complex to describe such conditions.

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Association with Freud
These researches, which established him as a psychiatrist of international repute, led him to understand Freud’s investigations; his findings confirmed many of Freud’s ideas, and, for a period of five years (between 1907 and 1912), he was Freud’s close collaborator. He held important positions in the psychoanalytic movement and was widely thought of as the most likely successor to the founder of psychoanalysis. But this was not to be the outcome of their relationship. Partly for temperamental reasons and partly because of differences of viewpoint, the collaboration ended. At this stage Jung differed with Freud largely over the latter’s insistence on the sexual bases of neurosis. A serious disagreement came in 1912, with the publication of Jung’s Wandlungen und Symbole der Libido (Psychology of the Unconscious, 1916), which ran counter to many of Freud’s ideas. Although Jung had been elected president of the International Psychoanalytic Society in 1911, he resigned from the society in 1914.

His first achievement was to differentiate two classes of people according to attitude types: extraverted (outward-looking) and introverted (inward-looking). Later he differentiated four functions of the mind—thinking, feeling, sensation, and intuition—one or more of which predominate in any given person. Results of this study were embodied in Psychologische Typen (1921; Psychological Types, 1923). Jung’s wide scholarship was well manifested here, as it also had been in The Psychology of the Unconscious.

As a boy Jung had remarkably striking dreams and powerful fantasies that had developed with unusual intensity. After his break with Freud, he deliberately allowed this aspect of himself to function again and gave the irrational side of his nature free expression. At the same time, he studied it scientifically by keeping detailed notes of his strange experiences. He later developed the theory that these experiences came from an area of the mind that he called the collective unconscious, which he held was shared by everyone. This much-contested conception was combined with a theory of archetypes that Jung held as fundamental to the study of the psychology of religion. In Jung’s terms, archetypes are instinctive patterns, have a universal character, and are expressed in behaviour and images.

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Character of his psychotherapy
Jung devoted the rest of his life to developing his ideas, especially those on the relation between psychology and religion. In his view, obscure and often neglected texts of writers in the past shed unexpected light not only on Jung’s own dreams and fantasies but also on those of his patients; he thought it necessary for the successful practice of their art that psychotherapists become familiar with writings of the old masters.

Besides the development of new psychotherapeutic methods that derived from his own experience and the theories developed from them, Jung gave fresh importance to the so-called Hermetic tradition. He conceived that the Christian religion was part of a historic process necessary for the development of consciousness, and he also thought that the heretical movements, starting with Gnosticism and ending in alchemy, were manifestations of unconscious archetypal elements not adequately expressed in the mainstream forms of Christianity. He was particularly impressed with his finding that alchemical-like symbols could be found frequently in modern dreams and fantasies, and he thought that alchemists had constructed a kind of textbook of the collective unconscious. He expounded on this in 4 out of the 18 volumes that make up his Collected Works.

His historical studies aided him in pioneering the psychotherapy of the middle-aged and elderly, especially those who felt their lives had lost meaning. He helped them to appreciate the place of their lives in the sequence of history. Most of these patients had lost their religious belief; Jung found that if they could discover their own myth as expressed in dream and imagination they would become more complete personalities. He called this process individuation.

In later years he became professor of psychology at the Federal Polytechnical University in Zürich (1933–41) and professor of medical psychology at the University of Basel (1943). His personal experience, his continued psychotherapeutic practice, and his wide knowledge of history placed him in a unique position to comment on current events. As early as 1918 he had begun to think that Germany held a special position in Europe; the Nazi revolution was, therefore, highly significant for him, and he delivered a number of hotly contested views that led to his being wrongly branded as a Nazi sympathizer. Jung lived to the age of 85.

The authoritative English collection of all Jung’s published writings is Herbert Read, Michael Fordham, and Gerhard Adler (eds.), The Collected Works of C.G. Jung, trans. by R.F.C. Hull, 20 vol., 2nd ed. (1966–79). Jung’s The Psychology of the Unconscious appears in revised form as Symbols of Transformation in the Collected Works. His other major individual publications include Über die Psychologie der Dementia Praecox (1907; The Psychology of Dementia Praecox); Versuch einer Darstellung der psychoanalytischen Theorie (1913; The Theory of Psychoanalysis); Collected Papers on Analytical Psychology (1916); Two Essays on Analytical Psychology (1928); Das Geheimnis der goldenen Blüte (1929; The Secret of the Golden Flower); Modern Man in Search of a Soul (1933), a collection of essays covering topics from dream analysis and literature to the psychology of religion; Psychology and Religion (1938); Psychologie und Alchemie (1944; Psychology and Alchemy); and Aion: Untersuchungen zur Symbolgeschichte (1951; Aion: Researches into the Phenomenology of the Self). Jung’s Erinnerungen, Träume, Gedanken (1962; Memories, Dreams, Reflections) is fascinating semiautobiographical reading, partly written by Jung himself and partly recorded by his secretary.

Michael S.M. Fordham
Frieda Fordham

 

 

 


Rudolf Carnap



German-American philosopher

born May 18, 1891, Ronsdorf, Ger.
died Sept. 14, 1970, Santa Monica, Calif., U.S.

Main
German-born U.S. philosopher of Logical Positivism. He made important contributions to logic, the analysis of language, the theory of probability, and the philosophy of science.

Education.
From 1910 to 1914 Carnap studied mathematics, physics, and philosophy at the universities of Jena and Freiburg im Breisgau. At Jena he attended the lectures of Gottlob Frege, now widely acknowledged as the greatest logician of the 19th century, whose ideas exerted a deep influence on Carnap.

After serving in World War I, Carnap earned his doctorate in 1921 at Jena with a dissertation on the concept of space. He argued that the conflicts among the various theories of space then held by scholars resulted from the fact that those theories actually dealt with quite different subjects; he called them, respectively, formal space, physical space, and intuitive space and exhibited their principal characteristics and fundamental differences.

For several years afterward Carnap was engaged in private research in logic and the foundations of physics and wrote a number of essays on problems of space, time, and causality, as well as a textbook in symbolic, or mathematical, logic (Abriss der Logistik, 1929; a considerably different later German version appeared in English translation: Introduction to Symbolic Logic and Its Applications, 1958).


Career in Vienna and Prague.
In 1926 Moritz Schlick, the founder of the Vienna Circle—a small group of philosophers, mathematicians, and other scholars who met regularly to discuss philosophical issues—invited Carnap to join the faculty of the University of Vienna, where he soon became an influential member of the Circle. Out of their discussions developed the initial ideas of Logical Positivism, or Logical Empiricism. This school of thought shared its basic Empiricist orientation with David Hume, a Scottish Empiricist, and Ernst Mach, an Austrian physicist and philosopher. Its leading members, informed and inspired by the methods and theories of contemporary mathematics and science, sought to develop a “scientific world view” by bringing to philosophical inquiry the precision and rigour of the exact sciences. As one means to this end, Carnap made extensive use of the concepts and techniques of symbolic logic in preference to the often inadequate analytic devices of traditional logic.

Carnap and his associates established close connections with like-minded scholars in other countries, among them a group of Empiricists that had formed in Berlin under the leadership of Hans Reichenbach, an eminent philosopher of science. With Reichenbach, Carnap founded a periodical, Erkenntnis (1930–40), as a forum for the new “scientific philosophy.”

The basic thesis of Empiricism, in a familiar but quite vague formulation, is that all of man’s concepts and beliefs concerning the world ultimately derive from his immediate experience. In some of his most important writings, Carnap sought, in effect, to give this idea a clear and precise interpretation. Setting aside, as a psychological rather than a philosophical problem, the question of how human beings arrive at their ideas about the world, he proceeded to construe Empiricism as a systematic-logical thesis about the evidential grounding of empirical knowledge. To this end, he gave the issue a characteristically linguistic turn by asking how the terms and sentences that, in scientific or in everyday language, serve to express assertions about the world are related to those terms and sentences by which the data of immediate experience can be described. The Empiricist thesis, as construed and defended by Carnap, then asserts that the terms and sentences of the first kind are “reducible” to those of the second kind in a clearly specifiable sense. Carnap’s conception of the relevant sense of reducibility, which he always stated in precise logical terms, was initially rather narrow but gradually became more liberal.

In his first great work, Der logische Aufbau der Welt (1928; Eng. trans.—with a smaller work—The Logical Structure of the World: Pseudoproblems in Philosophy), Carnap developed, with unprecedented rigour, a version of the Empiricist reducibility thesis according to which all terms suited to describe actual or possible empirical facts are fully definable by terms referring exclusively to aspects of immediate experience, so that all empirical statements are fully translatable into statements about immediate experiences.

Prompted by discussions with his associates in Vienna, Carnap soon began to develop a more liberal version of Empiricism, which he elaborated while he was professor of natural philosophy at the German University in Prague (1931–35); he eventually presented it in full detail in his essay “Testability and Meaning” (Philosophy of Science, vol. 3 [1936] and 4 [1937]). Carnap argued that the terms of empirical science are not fully definable in purely experiential terms but can at least be partly defined by means of “reduction sentences,” which are logically much-refined versions of operational definitions, and “observation sentences,” whose truth can be checked by direct observation. Carnap stressed that usually such tests cannot provide strict proof or disproof but only more or less strong “confirmation” for an empirical statement.

Sentences that do not thus yield observational implications and therefore cannot possibly be tested and confirmed by observational findings were said to be empirically meaningless. By reference to this testability criterion of empirical significance, Carnap and other Logical Empiricists rejected various doctrines of speculative metaphysics and of theology, not as being false but as making no significant assertions at all.

Carnap argued that the observational statements by reference to which empirical statements can be tested may be construed as sentences describing directly and publicly observable aspects of physical objects, such as the needle of a measuring instrument turning to a particular point on the scale or a subject in a psychological test showing a change in pulse rate. All such sentences, he noted, can be formulated in terms that are part of the vocabulary of physics. This was the basic idea of his “physicalism,” according to which all terms and statements of empirical science—from the physical to the social and historical disciplines—can be reduced to terms and statements in the language of physics.

In later writings, Carnap liberalized his conception of reducibility and of empirical significance even further so as to give a more adequate account of the relation between scientific theories and scientific evidence.


Career in the United States.
By the time “Testability and Meaning” appeared in print, Carnap had moved to the United States, mainly because of the growing threat of German National Socialism. From 1936 to 1952 he served on the faculty of the University of Chicago. During the 1940–41 school year, Carnap was a visiting professor at Harvard University and was an active participant in a discussion group that included Bertrand Russell, Alfred Tarski, and W.V.O. Quine.

Soon after going to Chicago, Carnap joined with the sociologist Otto Neurath, a former fellow member of the Vienna Circle, and with an academic colleague, the Pragmatist philosopher Charles W. Morris, in founding the International Encyclopedia of Unified Science, which was published, beginning in 1938, as a series of monographs on general problems in the philosophy of science and on philosophical issues concerning mathematics or particular branches of empirical science.

Since his Vienna years, Carnap had been much concerned also with problems in logic and in the philosophy of language. He held that philosophical perplexities often arise from a misunderstanding or misuse of language and that the way to resolve them is by “logical analysis of language.” On this point, he agreed with the “ordinary language” school of Analytic Philosophy, which had its origins in England. He differed from it, however, in insisting that more technical issues—e.g., those in the philosophy of science or of mathematics—cannot be adequately dealt with by considerations of ordinary linguistic usage but require clarification by reference to artificially constructed languages that are formulated in logical symbolism and that have their structure and interpretation precisely specified by so-called syntactic and semantic rules. Carnap developed these ideas and the theoretical apparatus for their implementation in a series of works, including Logische Syntax der Sprache (1934; The Logical Syntax of Language) and Meaning and Necessity (1947; 2nd enlarged ed., 1956).

Carnap’s interest in artificial languages included advocacy of international auxiliary languages such as Esperanto and Interlingua to facilitate scholarly communication and to further international understanding.

One idea in logic and the theory of knowledge that occupied much of Carnap’s attention was that of analyticity. In contrast to the 19th-century radical Empiricism of John Stuart Mill, Carnap and other Logical Empiricists held that the statements of logic and mathematics, unlike those of empirical science, are analytic—i.e., true solely by virtue of the meanings of their constituent terms—and that they can therefore be established a priori (without any empirical test). Carnap repeatedly returned to the task of formulating a precise characterization and theory of analyticity. His ideas were met with skepticism by some, however—among them Quine, who argued that the notion of analytic truth is inherently obscure and the attempt to delimit a class of statements that are true a priori should be abandoned as misguided.

From about 1945 onward, Carnap turned his efforts increasingly to problems of inductive reasoning and of rational belief and decision. His principal aim was to construct a formal system of inductive logic; its central concept, corresponding to that of deductive implication, would be that of probabilistic implication—or, more precisely, a concept representing the degree of rational credibility or of probability that a given body of evidence may be said to confer upon a proposed hypothesis. Carnap presented a rigorous theory of this kind in his Logical Foundations of Probability (1950).

Carnap spent the years from 1952 to 1954 at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, where he continued his work in probability theory. Subsequently, he accepted a professorship at the University of California at Los Angeles. During those years and indeed until his death, Carnap was occupied principally with modifications and considerable extensions of his inductive logic.

Carl G. Hempel

 

 

 


Martin Heidegger




German philosopher

born September 26, 1889, Messkirch, Schwarzwald, Germany
died May 26, 1976, Messkirch, West Germany

Main
German philosopher, counted among the main exponents of existentialism. His groundbreaking work in ontology and metaphysics determined the course of 20th-century philosophy on the European continent and exerted an enormous influence in virtually every other humanistic discipline, including literary criticism, hermeneutics, psychology, and theology.

Background and youth
The son of a Roman Catholic sexton, Heidegger showed an early interest in religion. Intending to become a priest, he began theological studies at the University of Freiburg in 1909 but switched to philosophy and mathematics in 1911. His interest in philosophy dated from at least 1907, however, when he undertook an intensive study of Von der mannigfachen Bedeutung des Seienden nach Aristoteles (1862; “On the Manifold Meaning of Being According to Aristotle”) by the 19th-century German philosopher Franz Brentano.

Brentano’s work in ontology helped to inspire Heidegger’s lifelong conviction that there is a single, basic sense of the verb “to be” that lies behind all its varied usages. From Brentano Heidegger also developed his enthusiasm for the ancient Greeks—especially the pre-Socratics. In addition to these philosophers, Heidegger’s work is obviously influenced by Plato, Aristotle, the Gnostic philosophers of the 2nd century ad, and several 19th- and early 20th-century thinkers, including the early figures of existentialism, Søren Kierkegaard and Friedrich Nietzsche; Wilhelm Dilthey, who was noted for directing the attention of philosophers to the human and historical sciences; and Edmund Husserl, the founder of the phenomenological movement in philosophy.

While still in his 20s, Heidegger studied at Freiburg with Heinrich Rickert, the leading figure of the axiological school of neo-Kantianism, and with Husserl, who was then already famous. Husserl’s phenomenology, and especially his struggle against the intrusion of psychologism into traditionally philosophical studies of man, determined the background of the young Heidegger’s doctoral dissertation, Die Lehre vom Urteil im Psychologismus: Ein kritisch-positiver Beitrag zur Logik (“The Doctrine of Judgment in Psychologism: A Critical-Positive Contribution to Logic”; 1914). Consequently, what Heidegger later said and wrote about anxiety, thinking, forgetfulness, curiosity, distress, care, and awe was not meant as psychology; and what he said about man, publicness, and other-directedness was not intended to be sociology, anthropology, or political science. His utterances were meant to disclose ways of Being.


Philosophy
Heidegger began teaching at the University of Freiburg during the winter semester of 1915 and wrote his habilitation thesis on the 13th-century English Franciscan philosopher Duns Scotus. As a colleague of Husserl, Heidegger was expected to carry the phenomenological movement forward in the spirit of his former master. As a religiously inclined young man, however, he went his own way instead. While serving as a professor ordinarius at Marburg University (1923–28), he astonished the German philosophical world with Being and Time (1927). Although almost unreadable, it was immediately felt to be of prime importance, whatever its relation to Husserl might be. In spite of—and perhaps partly because of—its intriguingly difficult style, Being and Time was acclaimed as a masterpiece not only in German-speaking countries but also in Latin ones, where phenomenology was well established. It strongly influenced Jean-Paul Sartre and other existentialists in France, and on the basis of this work Heidegger came to be regarded as the leading atheistic existentialist, though he always rejected that label. The reception of Being and Time in the English-speaking world was chilly, however, and its influence there was negligible for several decades.

Heidegger’s declared purpose in Being and Time is to show what it means for a person to be—or, more accurately, how it is for a person to be. This task leads to a more fundamental question: what does it mean to ask, “What is the meaning of Being?” These questions lie behind the obviousness of everyday life and, therefore, also behind the empirical questions of natural science. They are usually overlooked, because they are too near to everyday life to be grasped. One might say that Heidegger’s entire prophetic mission amounts to making each person ask this question with maximum involvement. Whether one arrives at a definite answer is, in the present crisis of mankind, of secondary importance.

This crisis, according to Heidegger, stems from the deep “fall” (Verfall) of Western thought since the time of Plato, a condition brought about by the one-sided development of technological thinking and the neglect of other kinds, resulting in alienation (Entfremdung)—or, as expressed in terms more central to Heidegger’s thought, in a “highly inauthentic way of being.” Although fallenness, or inauthenticity, is an inescapable feature of human existence—i.e., it is an existential, and an essential, potentiality (Möglichkeit)—epochs and individuals may be coloured by it in different degrees. This somewhat stern outlook was mitigated in Heidegger’s later writings, in which he suggested that it is possible to find a kind of “redemption” through “thinking of Being”—a process that would be led, he believed, by the continental European countries rather than the eastern or other western ones.

As an aid in the effort to get back to “thinking of Being” and its redemptive effects, Heidegger employs linguistic, or hermeneutical, techniques. He develops his own German, his own Greek, and his own etymologies—for example, he coins about 100 new complex words ending with “-being.” In reading his works one must, therefore, translate many key terms back into Greek and then consider his free, often special (but never uninteresting) interpretations and etymologies.

The wealth of ideas in Being and Time is best discussed in conjunction with those developed in another, shorter work, What Is Metaphysics? (1929), which was originally delivered as an inaugural lecture when Heidegger succeeded Husserl at Freiburg in 1928. As Heidegger learned from Husserl, it is the phenomenological and not the scientific method that unveils man’s ways of Being. Thus, in pursuing this method, Heidegger comes into conflict with the dichotomy of the subject-object relation, which has traditionally implied that man, as knower, is something (some-thing) within an environment that is against him. This relation, however, must be transcended. The deepest knowing, on the contrary, is a matter of phainesthai (Greek: “to show itself” or “to be in the light”), the word from which phenomenology, as a method, is derived. Something is just “there” in the light. Thus, the distinction between subject and object is not immediate but comes only later through conceptualization, as in the sciences.

Man stands out from things (ex-sists, not merely ex-ists), says Heidegger in Being and Time, never being completely absorbed by them but nevertheless being nothing (no-thing) apart from them. Man dwells in a world that he has been, and continues to be, “thrown into” until death. Being thrown into things, being-there (Da-sein), he falls away (Verfall) and is on the point of being submerged into things. He is continually a pro-ject (Ent-wurf); but periodically, or even normally, he may be submerged in things to such a degree that he is temporarily absorbed (Aufgehen in). He is then nobody in particular; and a structure that Heidegger calls das Man (“the they”) is revealed, recalling certain Anglo-American sociological criticisms of modern industrial society that stress man’s “other-directedness”—i.e., his tendency to measure himself in terms of his peers. But Heidegger’s phenomenological metaphors avoid the concepts of social science as much as possible in favour of the concepts of ontology. Characteristic of das Man are idle talk (Gerede) and curiosity (Neugier). In Gerede, talker and listener do not stand in any genuine personal relation or in any intimate relation to what is talked about; hence, it leads to shallowness. Curiosity is a form of distraction, a need for the “new,” a need for something “different,” without real interest or capability of wonder.

But there is a mood, anxiety or dread (Angst), that functions to disclose (dis-close) authentic being, freedom (Frei-sein), as a potentiality. It manifests the freedom of man to choose himself and take hold of himself. The relevance of time, of the finiteness of human existence, is then experienced as a freedom to meet one’s own death (das Freisein für den Tod), as a preparedness for and a continuous relatedness to death (Sein zum Tode). In anxiety, all entities (Seiendes) sink away into a “nothing and nowhere,” and man hovers in himself as ex-sisting, being nowhere at home (Un-heimlichkeit, Un-zu-hause). He faces no-thing-ness (das Nichts); and all average, obvious everydayness disappears—and this is good, since he now faces the potentiality of authentic being.

Thus, for Heidegger the “sober” (nüchtern) anxiety and the implied confrontation with death are primarily of methodological importance, because through them fundamental structures are revealed. Among them are potentialities for being joyfully active (“. . . knowing joy [die wissende Heiterkeit] is a door to the eternal”). Anxiety opens man up to Being. This does not imply that Being partakes in the dark aspect of dread, however; Being is associated with “light” and with “the joyful” (das Heitere). Being “calls the tune”; “to think Being” is to arrive at one’s (true) home. Although Heideggerian students are often baffled by just what Being and Thinking stand for, it is clear that Heidegger opposes a cult of mankind and wishes to call attention to something greater.

In the early 1930s Heidegger’s thought underwent a change that scholars call his Kehre (“turning around”). Although some specialists regard the Kehre as a turning away from the central problem of Being and Time, Heidegger himself denied this, insisting that he had been asking the same basic question since his youth. Nevertheless, in his later years he clearly became more reluctant to offer an answer, or even to indicate a way in which an answer might be found.


Heidegger and Nazism
In the months after the appointment of Adolf Hitler as chancellor of Germany in January 1933, German universities came under increasing pressure to support the “national revolution” and to eliminate Jewish scholars and the teaching of “Jewish” doctrines, such as the theory of relativity. After the rector of Freiburg resigned to protest these policies, the university’s teaching staff elected Heidegger as his successor in April 1933. One month later, Heidegger became a member of the Nazi Party, and until he resigned as rector in April 1934 he helped to institute Nazi educational and cultural programs at Freiburg and vigorously promoted the domestic and foreign policies of the Nazi regime. Already during the late 1920s he had criticized the dissolute nature of the German university system, where “specialization” and the ideology of “academic freedom” precluded the attainment of a higher unity. In a letter of 1929, he bemoaned the progressive “Jewification” (Verjudung) of the German spirit. In his inaugural address, Die Selbstbehauptung der deutschen Universität (“The Self-Assertion of the German University”), he called for reorganizing the university along the lines of the Nazi Führerprinzip, or leadership principle, and celebrated the fact that university life would henceforward be merged with the state and the needs of the German Volk. During the first month of his rectorship, he sent a telegram to Hitler urging him to postpone an upcoming meeting of university rectors until Gleichschaltung—the Nazi euphemism for the elimination of political opponents—had been completed. In the fall of 1933, Heidegger began a speaking tour on behalf of Hitler’s national referendum to withdraw Germany from the League of Nations. As he proclaimed in one speech: “Let not doctrines and ideas be your guide. The Führer is Germany’s only reality and law.” Heidegger continued to support Hitler in the years after his rectorship, though with somewhat less enthusiasm than he had shown in 1933–34.

At the end of the war in 1945, a favourably disposed university de-Nazification commission found Heidegger guilty of having “consciously placed the great prestige of his scholarly reputation … in the service of the National Socialist Revolution,” and he was banned from further teaching. (The ban was lifted in 1950.) In later years, despite pleas from friends and associates to disavow publicly his Nazi past, Heidegger declined to do so. Instead, in his own defense, he preferred to cite a maxim from the French poet Paul Valéry: “He who thinks greatly must err greatly.” In his book Introduction to Metaphysics, published in 1953, Heidegger retrospectively praised “the inner truth and greatness of National Socialism.”

Beginning in the 1980s, there was considerable controversy among Heidegger scholars regarding the alleged connection between Heidegger’s philosophy and his political views in the 1930s and ’40s. Were there affinities between Heidegger’s philosophical thought, or his style of philosophizing, and the totalitarian ideals of the Nazis? Supporters of Heidegger, repeating a view prominent in the first decades after the war, argued that there was nothing inherently fascistic in his philosophy and that claims to the contrary grossly distorted his work. Opponents, on the other hand, cited parallels between the critical treatment in Being and Time of notions such as “publicness,” “everydayness,” “idle talk,” and “curiosity” and fascist-oriented critiques of the vapidity and dissoluteness of bourgeois liberalism. They also pointed to more specific similarities evident in Division II of Being and Time, in which Heidegger emphasizes the centrality of the Volk as a historical actor and the importance of “choosing a hero,” an idea widely promoted among the German right as the Führerprinzip. For these scholars, Heidegger’s philosophical critique of the condition of man in modern technological society allowed him to regard the Nazi revolution as a deliverance that would make the world “safe for Being.” Among those who shared this view were the German existentialist philosopher Karl Jaspers, who wrote in a letter to the head of the de-Nazification commission that “Heidegger’s manner of thinking, which to me seems in its essence unfree, dictatorial, and incapable of communication, would today be disastrous in its pedagogical effects.”


Assessment
Heidegger’s thought has been faulted on other grounds as well. Some have suggested that his phenomenological method rests on a grandiose illusion, and that the search for “thinking Being” is merely a disguised quest for a kind of belief in God. In the same vein, others have charged that Heidegger’s abstruse terminology is only a mask disguising and mystifying a more traditional approach to philosophy. Such negative evaluations, if joined with a sincere attempt to follow Heidegger’s own path through his writings, would not be incompatible with his thought. After all, he asks—or rather, provokes—his readers to question, not to listen to answers. It is, therefore, misleading to present Heidegger’s philosophy as a set of clearly understandable results. His metaphors must remain, rather than be translated into the usual philosophical terminology that he rejected.

Arne D. Naess
Richard Wolin

 

 


Karl Jaspers




German philosopher
in full Karl Theodor Jaspers

born Feb. 23, 1883, Oldenburg, Ger.
died Feb. 26, 1969, Basel, Switz.

Main
German philosopher, one of the most important Existentialists in Germany, who approached the subject from man’s direct concern with his own existence. In his later work, as a reaction to the disruptions of Nazi rule in Germany and World War II, he searched for a new unity of thinking that he called world philosophy.

Early life and education
Jaspers was the oldest of the three children of Karl Wilhelm Jaspers and Henriette Tantzen. His ancestors on both sides were peasants, merchants, and pastors who had lived in northern Germany for generations. His father, a lawyer, was a high constable of the district and eventually a director of a bank.

Jaspers was delicate and sickly in his childhood. As a consequence of his numerous childhood diseases, he developed bronchiectasis (a chronic dilation of the bronchial tubes) during his adolescent years, and this condition led to cardiac decompensation (the inability of the heart to maintain adequate circulation). These ailments were a severe handicap throughout his adult life.

Jaspers entered the University of Heidelberg in 1901, enrolling in the faculty of law; in the following year he moved to Munich, where he continued his studies of law, but without much enthusiasm. He spent the next six years studying medicine at the Universities of Berlin, Göttingen, and Heidelberg. After he completed his state examination to practice medicine in 1908, he wrote his dissertation Heimweh und Verbrechen (“Nostalgia and Crime”). In February 1909 he was registered as a doctor. He had already become acquainted with his future wife, Gertrud Mayer, during his student years, and he married her in 1910.


Research in clinical psychiatry
In 1909 Jaspers became a volunteer research assistant at the University of Heidelberg psychiatric clinic, a position he held until 1915. The clinic was headed by the renowned neuropathologist Franz Nissl, who had assembled under him an excellent team of assistants. Because of his desire to learn psychiatry in his own way without being regimented into any particular pattern of thought by his teachers, Jaspers elected to work in his own time, at his own pace, and with patients in whom he was particularly interested. This was granted to him only because he agreed to work without a salary.

When Jaspers started his research work, clinical psychiatry was considered to be empirically based but lacking any underlying systematic framework of knowledge. It dealt with different aspects of the human organism as they might affect the behaviour of human beings suffering from mental illness. These aspects ranged from anatomical, physiological, and genetic to neurological, psychological, and sociological influences. A study of these aspects opened the way to an understanding and explanation of human behaviour. Diagnosis was of paramount importance; therapy was largely neglected. Aware of this situation, Jaspers realized the conditions that were required in order to establish psychopathology as a science: a language had to be found that, on the basis of previously conducted research, was capable of describing the symptoms of disease well enough to facilitate positive recognition in other cases; and various methods appropriate to the different spheres of psychiatry had to be worked out.

Jaspers tried to bring the methods of Phenomenology—the direct investigation and description of phenomena as consciously experienced, without theories about their causal explanation—into the field of clinical psychiatry. These efforts soon bore fruit, and his reputation as a researcher in the forefront of new developments in psychiatry was established. In 1911, when he was only 28 years old, he was requested by Ferdinand Springer, a well-known publisher, to write a textbook on psychopathology; he completed the Allgemeine Psychopathologie (General Psychopathology, 1965) two years later. The work was distinguished by its critical approach to the various methods available for the study of psychiatry and by its attempt to synthesize these methods into a cohesive whole.


Transition to philosophy
In 1913 Jaspers, by virtue of his status in the field of psychology, entered the philosophical faculty—which included a department of psychology—of the University of Heidelberg. His academic advance in the university was rapid. In 1916 he was appointed assistant professor in psychology; in 1920 assistant professor in philosophy; in 1921 professor in philosophy; and in 1922 he took over the second chair in that field. The transition from medicine to philosophy was due in part to the fact that, while the medical faculty was fully staffed, the philosophical faculty needed an empirical psychologist. But the transition also corresponded to Jaspers’ intellectual development.

In 1919 Jaspers published some of his lectures, entitled Psychologie der Weltanschauungen (“Psychology of World Views”). He did not intend to present a philosophical work but rather one aimed at demarcating the limits of a psychological understanding of man. Nevertheless, this work touched on the border of philosophy. In it were foreshadowed all of the basic themes that were fully developed later in Jaspers’ major philosophical works. By investigating the legitimate boundaries of philosophical knowledge, Jaspers tried to clarify the relationship of philosophy to science. Science appeared to him as knowledge of facts that are obtained by means of scholarly methodological principles and that are apodictically certain and universally valid. Following Max Weber, a sociologist and historian, he asserted that scientific principles also applied to both the social and humanistic sciences. In contrast to science, Jaspers considered philosophy to be a subjective interpretation of Being, which—although prophetically inspired—attempted to postulate norms of value and principles of life as universally valid. As Jaspers’ understanding of philosophy deepened, he gradually discarded his belief in the role of a prophetic vision in philosophy. He bent all his energies toward the development of a philosophy that would be independent of science but that would not become a substitute for religious beliefs. Though the resulting system presupposed science, it passed beyond the boundaries of science in an effort to illuminate the totality of man’s existence. For Jaspers man’s existence meant not mere being-in-the-world but rather man’s freedom of being. The idea of being oneself signified for Jaspers the potentiality to realize one’s freedom of being in the world. Thus, the task of philosophy was to appeal to the freedom of the individual as the subject who thinks and exists and to focus on man’s existence as the centre of all reality.

The elaboration of these germinal ideas occupied Jasper’s thought from 1920 to 1930. During this decade his brother-in-law, Ernst Mayer, himself a philosopher of repute, worked with him. During these years he also enjoyed the friendship of Martin Heidegger. Somewhat later, this friendship broke up because of Heidegger’s entry into the National Socialist Party.

In the early years of the 1930s the fruits of his intellectual labour became evident: in 1931 Die geistige Situation der Zeit (Man in the Modern Age, 1933) was published; in 1932 the three volumes of Philosophie (Philosophy, 1969) appeared—perhaps the most systematic presentation of Existential philosophy in the German language. A book on Max Weber also appeared in 1932.


Conflict with the Nazi authorities
When Hitler came into power in 1933, Jaspers was taken by surprise, as he had not taken National Socialism seriously. He thought that this movement would destroy itself from within, thus leading to a reorganization and liberation by the other political forces active at the time. These expectations, however, did not materialize. Because his wife was Jewish, Jaspers qualified as an enemy of the state. From 1933 he was excluded from the higher councils of the university but was allowed to teach and publish. In 1935 the first part of his future work on logic, entitled Vernunft und Existenz (Reason and Existenz, 1955), appeared; in 1936 a book on Nietzsche; in 1937 an essay on Descartes; in 1938 a further work preliminary to his logic, entitled Existenzphilosophie (Philosophy of Existence, 1971). Unlike many other famous intellectuals of that time, he was not prepared to make any concessions to the doctrines of National Socialism. Consequently, a series of decrees were promulgated against him, including removal from his professorship and a total ban on any further publication. These measures effectively barred him from carrying on his work in Germany.

Friends tried to assist him to emigrate to another country. Permission was finally granted to him in 1942 to go to Switzerland, but a condition was imposed by the Nazis that required his wife to remain behind in Germany. He refused to accept this condition and decided to stay with his wife, notwithstanding the dangers. It became necessary for his friends to hide his wife. Both of them had decided, in case of an arrest, to commit suicide. In 1945 he was told by a reliable source that his deportation was scheduled to take place on April 14. On March 30, however, Heidelberg was occupied by the Americans.

Disillusioned by the events of these years, Jaspers withdrew more and more into himself. He revised the General Psychopathology in an effort to make it represent the high point of a free but responsible search for knowledge of man, as distinct from science, which had betrayed man. He also completed his work on logic, Von der Wahrheit (“Of Truth”), the first part of which was intended to throw the light of reason on the irrational teachings of the times. These works appeared in print in 1946 and 1947.


Postwar development of thought
After the capitulation of Germany, Jaspers saw himself confronted with the tasks of rebuilding the university and helping to bring about a moral and political rebirth of the people. He dedicated all of his energies in the postwar years toward the accomplishment of these two tasks. He also represented the interests of the university to the military powers. He gathered his thoughts on how the universities could best be rebuilt in his work Die Idee der Universität (1946; The Idea of the University, 1959). He called for a complete de-Nazification of the teaching staff, but this proved to be impossible because the number of professors who had never compromised with the Nazis was too small. It was only gradually that the autonomous university of the pre-Nazi years could once again assert itself in Germany. Jaspers felt that an acknowledgment of national guilt was a necessary condition for the moral and political rebirth of Germany. In one of his best political works, Die Schuldfrage (1946; The Question of German Guilt, 1947), he stated that whoever had participated actively in the preparation or execution of war crimes and crimes against humanity was morally guilty. Those, however, who passively tolerated these happenings because they did not want to become victims of Nazism were only politically responsible. In this respect, all survivors of this era bore the same responsibility and shared a collective guilt. He felt that the fact that no one could escape this collective guilt and responsibility might enable the German people to transform their society from its state of collapse into a more highly developed and morally responsible democracy. The fact that these ideas attracted hardly any attention was a further disappointment to Jaspers. In the spring of 1948 he accepted a professorship in philosophy in Basel, Switz. In spite of the apparent neglect of Jaspers’ ideas of a moral regeneration of the German people, his departure for Basel was regarded as a betrayal by many of the German people. Jaspers himself hoped to find there a peace of mind that might enable him to work through and revise once again his whole approach to the entire field of philosophy.

This revision was guided mainly by the conviction that modern technology in the sphere of communication and warfare had made it imperative for mankind to strive for world unity. This new development in his thinking was defined by him as world philosophy, and its primary task was the creation of a mode of thinking that could contribute to the possibility of a free world order. The transition from existence philosophy to world philosophy was based on his belief that a different kind of logic would make it possible for free communication to exist among all mankind. His thought was expressed in Der philosophische Glaube (1948; The Perennial Scope of Philosophy, 1949) and Der philosophische Glaube angesichts der Offenbarung (1962; Philosophical Faith and Revelation, 1967). Since all thought in its essence rests on beliefs, he reasoned, the task confronting man is to free philosophical thinking from all attachments to the transient objects of this world. To replace previous objectifications of all metaphysical and religious systems, Jaspers introduced the concept of the cipher. This was a philosophical abstraction that could represent all systems, provided that they entered into communication with one another by means of the cipher. In other words, the concept of the cipher enabled a common ground to be shared by all of the various systems of thought, thus leading to a far greater tolerance than had ever before been possible. A world history of philosophy, entitled Die grossen Philosophen (1957; The Great Philosophers, 2 vol., 1962, 1966), had as its aim to investigate to what extent all past thought could become communicable.

Jaspers also undertook to write a universal history of the world, called Vom Ursprung und Ziel der Geschichte (1949; The Origin and Goal of History, 1953). At the centre of history is the axial period (from 800 to 200 bc), during which time all the fundamental creations that underlie man’s current civilization came into being. Following from the insights that came to him in preparing this work, he was led to realize the possibility of a political unity of the world in a 1958 work called Die Atombombe und die Zukunft des Menschen (The Future of Mankind, 1961). The aim of this political world union would not be absolute sovereignty but rather world confederation, in which the various entities could live and communicate in freedom and peace.

Under the influence of these ideas, Jaspers closely observed, during the latter years of his life, both world politics and the politics of Germany. When the efforts toward democracy in Germany appeared to him to turn more and more into a national oligarchy of parties, he wrote a bitter attack on these tendencies in Wohin treibt die Bundesrepublik? (1966; The Future of Germany, 1967). This book caused much annoyance among West German politicians of all shades. Jaspers, in turn, reacted to their unfair reception by returning his German passport in 1967 and taking out Swiss citizenship.

At the time of his death in 1969, Jaspers had published 30 books. In addition, he had left 30,000 handwritten pages, as well as a large and important correspondence.

Hans Saner

 

 


Moritz Schlick




born April 14, 1882, Berlin
died June 22, 1936, Vienna

German logical empiricist philosopher and a leader of the European school of positivist philosophers known as the Vienna Circle.

After studies in physics at Heidelberg, Lausanne, Switz., and Berlin, where he studied with the German physicist Max Planck, Schlick earned his Ph.D. with a thesis on physics. His treatise, “Das Wesen der Wahrheit nach der modernen Logik” (1910; “The Nature of Truth According to Modern Logic”), reflected his scientific training and helped him obtain a teaching post at the University of Rostock in 1911. In 1922, after a year of teaching at Kiel, he became professor of the philosophy of inductive sciences at Vienna. There his disenchantment with earlier philosophies of knowledge crystallized, and he sought to establish new ways of ascertaining the nature of “how men know what they know,” by referring to the methods of the sciences.

The group of philosophers that gathered around Schlick at Vienna included Rudolf Carnap and Otto Neurath and the mathematicians and scientists Kurt Gödel, Philipp Frank, and Hans Hahn. Influenced by Schlick’s predecessors in the chair of philosophy in Vienna, Ernst Mach and Ludwig Boltzmann, the Circle also drew on the work of philosophers Bertrand Russell and Ludwig Wittgenstein. The members of the Circle were united by their hostility to the abstractions of metaphysics, by the grounding of philosophical statements on empirical evidence, by faith in the techniques of modern symbolic logic, and by belief that the future of philosophy lay in its becoming the handmaiden of science.

As the reputation of the Circle grew through its books, journals, and manifestos, philosophers in other countries who were similarly inclined became familiar with one another’s work. In 1929, as the movement for Logical Positivism began to expand, Schlick went to California briefly as a visiting professor at Stanford University. He continued to direct the Circle’s activities and to write for its new review, Erkenntnis (Knowledge), from the time of his return to Europe until his death, which resulted from gunshot wounds inflicted by a deranged student.

Schlick was a prolific essayist and was the author of such books as Raum und Zeit in der gegenwärtigen Physik (2nd ed. 1919; Space and Time in Contemporary Physics, 1920); Allgemeine Erkenntnislehre (1918; “General Theory of Knowledge”); Fragen der Ethik (1930; Problems of Ethics, 1939); and the posthumous Grundzüge der Naturphilosophie (1948; Philosophy of Nature, 1949) and Natur und Kultur (1952).
 

 

 

 


Hans-Georg Gadamer

born , February 11, 1900, Marburg, Germany
died March 13, 2002, Heidelberg

German philosopher whose system of philosophical hermeneutics, derived in part from concepts of Wilhelm Dilthey, Edmund Husserl, and Martin Heidegger, was influential in 20th-century philosophy, aesthetics, theology, and criticism.

The son of a chemistry professor, Gadamer studied the humanities at the universities of Breslau, Marburg, Freiburg, and Munich, earning his doctorate in philosophy under Heidegger at Freiburg in 1922. He lectured in aesthetics and ethics at Marburg in 1933, at Kiel in 1934–35, and again at Marburg, where he was named extraordinary professor in 1937. In 1939 he was made full professor at the University of Leipzig. He later taught at the universities of Frankfurt am Main (1947–49) and Heidelberg (from 1949). He became professor emeritus in 1968.

Gadamer’s most important work, Wahrheit und Methode (1960; Truth and Method), is considered by some to be the major 20th-century philosophical statement on hermeneutical theory. His other works include Kleine Schriften, 4 vol. (1967–77; Philosophical Hermeneutics, selected essays from vol. 1–3); Dialogue and Dialectic (1980), comprising eight essays on Plato; and Reason in the Age of Science (1982), a translation of essays drawn from several German editions.

 

 

 


Jurgen Habermas



(born June 18, 1929) is a German philosopher and sociologist in the tradition of critical theory and American pragmatism. He is perhaps best known for his work on the concept of the public sphere, the topic (and title) of his first book. His work focused on the foundations of social theory and epistemology, the analysis of advanced capitalistic societies and democracy, the rule of law in a critical social-evolutionary context, and contemporary politics—particularly German politics. Habermas's theoretical system is devoted to revealing the possibility of reason, emancipation, and rational-critical communication latent in modern institutions and in the human capacity to deliberate and pursue rational interests.

Habermas was born in Düsseldorf, North Rhine-Westphalia.

Until his graduation from gymnasium, Habermas lived in Gummersbach, near Cologne. His father, Ernst Habermas, was executive director of the Cologne Chamber of Industry and Commerce, and was described by Habermas as a Nazi sympathizer. He was brought up in a staunchly Protestant milieu, his grandfather being the director of the seminary in Gummersbach. He studied at the universities of Göttingen (1949/50), Zürich (1950/51), and Bonn (1951–54) and earned a doctorate in philosophy[1] from Bonn in 1954 with a dissertation entitled, Das Absolute und die Geschichte. Von der Zwiespältigkeit in Schellings Denken ("The absolute and history: on the contradiction in Schelling's thought"). His dissertation committee included Erich Rothacker and Oskar Becker.

From 1956 on, he studied philosophy and sociology under the critical theorists Max Horkheimer and Theodor Adorno at the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University Frankfurt am Main Institute for Social Research, but because of a rift between the two over his dissertation—Horkheimer had made unacceptable demands for revision—as well as his own belief that the Frankfurt School had become paralyzed with political skepticism and disdain for modern culture—he finished his habilitation in political science at the University of Marburg under the Marxist Wolfgang Abendroth. His habilitation work was entitled, Strukturwandel der Öffentlichkeit; Untersuchungen zu einer Kategorie der Bürgerlichen Gesellschaft (published in English translation in 1989 as The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere: an Inquiry into a Category of Bourgeois Society). In 1961, he became a privatdozent in Marburg, and—in a move that was highly unusual for the German academic scene of that time—he was offered the position of "extraordinary professor" (professor without chair) of philosophy at the University of Heidelberg (at the instigation of Hans-Georg Gadamer and Karl Löwith) in 1962, which he accepted. In 1964, strongly supported by Adorno, Habermas returned to Frankfurt to take over Horkheimer's chair in philosophy and sociology.

He accepted the position of Director of the Max Planck Institute in Starnberg (near Munich) in 1971, and worked there until 1983, two years after the publication of his magnum opus, The Theory of Communicative Action. Habermas then returned to his chair at Frankfurt and the directorship of the Institute for Social Research. Since retiring from Frankfurt in 1993, Habermas has continued to publish extensively. In 1986, he received the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, which is the highest honour awarded in German research. He also holds the uncharacteristically postmodern position of "Permanent Visiting" Professor at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, and "Theodor Heuss Professor" at The New School, New York.

Habermas was awarded The Prince of Asturias Award in Social Sciences of 2003. Habermas was also the 2004 Kyoto Laureate in the Arts and Philosophy section. He traveled to San Diego and on March 5, 2005, as part of the University of San Diego's Kyoto Symposium, gave a speech entitled The Public Role of Religion in Secular Context, regarding the evolution of separation of Church and State from neutrality to intense secularism. He received the 2005 Holberg International Memorial Prize (about € 520,000).

Habermas was famous as a teacher and mentor. Among his most prominent students were the pragmatic philosopher Herbert Schnädelbach (theorist of discourse distinction and rationality), the political sociologist Claus Offe (professor at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin) , the social philosopher Johann Arnason (professor at La Trobe University and chief editor of the journal Thesis Eleven), the sociological theorist Hans Joas (professor at the University of Erfurt and at the University of Chicago), the theorist of societal evolution Klaus Eder, the social philosopher Axel Honneth (the current director of the Institute for Social Research), the American philosopher Thomas McCarthy, the co-creator of mindful inquiry in social research Jeremy J. Shapiro, and the assassinated Serbian prime minister Zoran Đinđić.

 

Habermas constructed a comprehensive framework of social theory and philosophy drawing on a number of intellectual traditions:

the German philosophical thought of Immanuel Kant, Friedrich Schelling, G. W. F. Hegel, Wilhelm Dilthey, Edmund Husserl, and Hans-Georg Gadamer
the Marxian tradition — both the theory of Karl Marx himself as well as the critical neo-Marxian theory of the Frankfurt School, i.e. Max Horkheimer, Theodor Adorno, and Herbert Marcuse
the sociological theories of Max Weber, Émile Durkheim, and George Herbert Mead
the linguistic philosophy and speech act theories of Ludwig Wittgenstein, J.L. Austin, P. F. Strawson, Stephen Toulmin and John Searle
the developmental psychology of Jean Piaget and Lawrence Kohlberg
the American pragmatist tradition of Charles Sanders Peirce and John Dewey
the sociological social systems theory of Talcott Parsons and Niklas Luhmann
Neo-Kantian thought
Jürgen Habermas considered his major achievement to be the development of the concept and theory of communicative reason or communicative rationality, which distinguishes itself from the rationalist tradition by locating rationality in structures of interpersonal linguistic communication rather than in the structure of either the cosmos or the knowing subject. This social theory advances the goals of human emancipation, while maintaining an inclusive universalist moral framework. This framework rests on the argument called universal pragmatics - that all speech acts have an inherent telos (the Greek word for "end") — the goal of mutual understanding, and that human beings possess the communicative competence to bring about such understanding. Habermas built the framework out of the speech-act philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein, J. L. Austin, and John Searle, the sociological theory of the interactional constitution of mind and self of George Herbert Mead, the theories of moral development of Jean Piaget and Lawrence Kohlberg, and the discourse ethics of his Heidelberg colleague Karl-Otto Apel.

He carried forward the traditions of Kant and the Enlightenment and of democratic socialism through his emphasis on the potential for transforming the world and arriving at a more humane, just, and egalitarian society through the realization of the human potential for reason, in part through discourse ethics. While Habermas conceded that the Enlightenment is an "unfinished project," he argued it should be corrected and complemented, not discarded. In this he distanced himself from the Frankfurt School, criticizing it, as well as much of postmodernist thought, for excessive pessimism, misdirected radicalism and exaggerations.

Within sociology, Habermas's major contribution was the development of a comprehensive theory of societal evolution and modernization focusing on the difference between communicative rationality and rationalization on the one hand and strategic/instrumental rationality and rationalization on the other. This included a critique from a communicative standpoint of the differentiation-based theory of social systems developed by Niklas Luhmann, a student of Talcott Parsons.

His defence of modernity and civil society has been a source of inspiration to others, and is considered a major philosophical alternative to the varieties of poststructuralism. He has also offered an influential analysis of late capitalism.

Habermas saw the rationalization, humanization, and democratization of society in terms of the institutionalization of the potential for rationality that is inherent in the communicative competence that is unique to the human species. Habermas believed communicative competence has developed through the course of evolution, but in contemporary society it is often suppressed or weakened by the way in which major domains of social life, such as the market, the state, and organizations, have been given over to or taken over by strategic/instrumental rationality, so that the logic of the system supplants that of the lifeworld.

 

Habermas introduces the concept of “reconstructive science” with a double purpose: to place the “general theory of society” between philosophy and social science and re-establish the rift between the “great theorization” and the “empirical research”. The model of “rational reconstructions” represents the main thread of the surveys about the “structures” of the world of life (“culture”, “society” and “personality”) and their respective “functions” (cultural reproductions, social integrations and socialization). For this purpose, the dialectics between “symbolic representation” of “the structures subordinated to all worlds of life” (“internal relationships”) and the “material reproduction” of the social systems in their complex (“external relationships” between social systems and environment) has to be considered. This model finds an application, above all, in the “theory of the social evolution”, starting from the reconstruction of the necessary conditions for a phylogeny of the socio-cultural life forms (the “hominization”) until an analysis of the development of “social formations”, which Habermas subdivides into primitive, traditional, modern and contemporary formations. This paper is an attempt, primarily, to formalize the model of “reconstruction of the logic of development” of “social formations” summed up by Habermas through the differentiation between vital world and social systems (and, within them, through the “rationalization of the world of life” and the “growth in complexity of the social systems”). Secondly, it tries to offer some methodological clarifications about the “explanation of the dynamics” of “historical processes” and, in particular, about the “theoretical meaning” of the evolutional theory’s propositions. Even if the German sociologist considers that the “ex-post rational reconstructions” and “the models system/environment” cannot have a complete “historiographical application”, these certainly act as a general premise in the argumentative structure of the “historical explanation”.

 

 

 
 
 
 

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