When both the mission and the relationship fail, he moves to Rome and abandons journalism for novel-writing. The last of A-Z 7 these, having saved a picture by Paul Klee from Nazi sequestration, undertakes to act as an intermediary in negotiations with the American side, but he is arrested and shot by a homosexual corporal who hopes thus to protect himself. The surrender plan comes to nothing after the major receives a secret order to withdraw in preparation for the imminent Ardennes offensive.
The situation, the constellation of characters and the symbolical role of the work of art recall Sansibar, but the larger scale of the later novel allows Andersch to analyse the interaction of personal motivation and political duress with much greater subtlety. Andersch also produced a number of short story collections Geister und Leute. Zehn Geschichten She studied at Zurich university, and later became associated with Nietzsche, who wished to marry her, with Rilke, Gerhart Hauptmann, Frank Wedekind and other notable literary figures.
She travelled widely and accompanied Rilke to Russia twice, visiting Tolstoi at his country estate. Andres, Stefan —70 Born in the Moselle area, with Italy the setting of many of his works, Andres, after a period as a Capuchin novice and as a student, settled in Positano, where he spent the years —49; in his later years he lived in the Rhineland until and in Rome. A companion to twentieth-century german literature 8 Andres owed his popularity, which reached its height in the s and has since much abated, to numerous unpretentious novels and stories with rural and Mediterranean settings, in which a Catholic morality, tolerant of the healing forces of time and nature, sees the characters through to a positive resolution of their problems Der Mann von Asteri , Der gefrorene Dionysos —also under the title Die Liebesschaukel —Die Hochzeit der Feinde , Ritter der Gerechtigkeit , Die Reise nach Portiuncula One of several plays, Sperrzonen , and the novel Der Taubenturm represent a more realistic approach to the Third Reich and its aftermath than Die Sintflut.
Andres returned to the theme of commitment after a struggle with conscience in the posthumously published Die Versuchung des Synesios , centred on a fifthcentury bishop of Cyrene. Andrian entered the diplomatic service, travelled widely and became briefly governor-general of Poland. Hofmannsthal was instrumental in his appointment as director of the Hoftheater, but the November revolution of abruptly terminated this. Andrian turned increasingly towards religion and a conservative stance, viz. Andrian A-Z 9 stands very much under the shadow of Hofmannsthal, whose death in seemed to him to signify the death-knell of Austrian culture.
The correspondence with Hofmannsthal was published in However, although his exile experiences in Spain, where he took part as a non-combatant in the Spanish Civil War —9 , and in Colombia, where he spent the years —50, inspired poetry of a political dimension, he rarely conformed to socialist realist norms then or later. Arp, Hans or Jean — Born in Strasbourg, Arp enjoyed a mixed cultural environment, and wrote in both French and German; he was talented enough to feel at ease as both graphic artist and lyric poet.
In Arp exhibited his paintings and became associated with the Blaue Reiter group. He contributed also to the Sturm periodical ed. Herwarth Walden and attempted to emulate the effects of abstract art in literature. The first volume of his collected poetry, Die wolkenpumpe, appeared in and was characterized by grotesque and startling imagery, automatic writing and the deliberate cultivation of absurdity.
A brilliant linguist—he claims to understand twenty-six languages in addition to the eight from which he has translated—and master of stylistic masks, he is also a connoisseur of black romanticism, surrealism, baroque formalism and dialect. His best-known book remains that by which he became known: med ana schwoazzn dintn , and his work done in collaboration with other members of the Wiener Gruppe, to which he ceased to claim allegiance before its eventual dissolution, includes besides Montagen further dialect poems, hosn rosn baa Because Artmann prefers the short form and the fragment, he is best approached through collections and anthologies such as The Best of H.
Thirty-two mini-plays are assembled in die fahrt zur insel nantucket and all the prose until in Grammatik der Rosen three vols. Readers in search of exuberant fantasy, verbal prestidigitation and the ludic transmutation and promiscuous juxtaposition of every conceivable form, tone, register, genre and trivial topos, need look no further; those after spiritual or psychological depth, reflection on serious contemporary issues, realistic depiction of milieu and genuine historical awareness must look elsewhere.
Das poetische Werk, in ten volumes, appeared in Die Geschichte vom General Suter and Der Verrat von Novara were immensely popular, the latter play enjoying over two thousand performances. She worked from in New York but returned to her homeland in , only to be caught up in the political upheavals in the course of which Bukovina first became part of Romania, then in was absorbed by the Soviet Union, then after occupation by German troops rejoined Romania when that country entered the war on the German side in She narrowly escaped deportation, and was forced to spend the years —4 in hiding in the ghetto.
Thanks to MargulSperber her first collection of poems, Der Regenbogen , was published; written in the manner of the early Rilke and Hofmannsthal, it was later rejected by her as an epigonal work. Her second and most important collection, Blinder Sommer, did not appear until and was scarcely noticed; the title poem, containing reflections on the postHolocaust situation, is followed by poems evoking New York, poems on language and the art of poetry, autobiographical poems and poems of identification with the Jewish spiritual heritage.
The theme of exile with its multiple meanings is here already present and is repeated in further variations in the subsequent collections which appeared almost yearly throughout the s and s. Jeder Tropfen ein Stein appeared in B Bachmann, Ingeborg —73 Born in Klagenfurt, Ingeborg Bachmann studied philosophy from to , concentrating on Wittgenstein and Heidegger and gaining a doctorate for a dissertation on the latter. She spent long periods in Rome, where she died of the effects of a domestic fire accident. Although her use of imagery from nature can be related to the romantic tradition of the Stimmungsbild, behind the majority of her poems lies the concrete experience of a damaged childhood in the Austrian provinces during the Third Reich.
A melancholy sense of loss and fear that personal relationships are not only doomed to transience but threatened by socio-political forces pervades her work, even when a note of fulfilment is present as in the love poems of the second collection, at the end of which she also expresses faith in the transcending power of art. In Malina, what appears at first to be an account of the course of a triangle involving the female narrator, the mysterious Malina and her lover Ivan turns out to be a form for the analysis of a deep psychic wound with the help of Jungian categories.
A complete edition, Werke, in four volumes, appeared in Bahr later championed expressionism in his essay of the same name. The dramatist Bahr worked briefly under Max Reinhardt in Berlin, and was Dramaturg at the Burgtheater: his plays were meant as entertainment, and Das Konzert is probably the most successful, with its amusing portrayal of the idolatry enjoyed by the pianist Gustav Heink. In he married the Wagner-singer Anna Mildenburg.
Bahr was also one of the initiators of the Salzburg Festival. Ball, Hugo — Ball, one of the co-founders of Dadaism, originally studied acting at the Max Reinhardt school in Berlin and, shortly before the First World War, became director of the Munich Kammerspiele. Ball greeted the outbreak of war as a welcome cataclysm and sought to enlist. He was rejected, but managed to witness trench warfare in Belgium: he reacted in disgust and horror. After the war he attacked the arrogance of the German intellectual tradition in Zur Kritik der deutschen Intelligent, , turned increasingly to religion Die Folgen der Reformation and Byzantinisches Christentum and befriended Hermann Hesse.
The less personal, more flippant novel Flametti oder vom Dandysmus der Armen had appeared in Briefe aus den Jahren — was published in Barlach, Ernst — Sculptor, graphic artist, dramatist and novelist, Ernst Barlach was without doubt the most gifted of those expressionists Arnold Schoenberg and Oskar Kokoschka were others who enjoyed a rich diversity of talent.
Hailed as one of the greatest German sculptors of A-Z 15 the twentieth century, Barlach also achieved considerable acclaim for his plays, and he was awarded the Kleist prize in for his outstanding literary gifts. The play is mystical and sombre, exploring the conflict between the principle of transcendence the Father and that of immanence the Mother , with the son as the battlefield.
A brooding atmosphere prevails throughout as the son attempts to escape the clinging maternal influence; although he perishes in the struggle the knowledge of an immaculate spiritual conception is gained. Die echten Sedemunds describes a fight for genuine values and religious awareness within a family; Der Findling is a mystery play which shows the power of love to redeem and transform.
The North German atmosphere prevails throughout most, and a wry, often clumsy, humour is often prevalent. Barlach frequently published lithographs and woodcuts, illustrating his plays those for Der Findling are especially successful : these complement the work he did in wood, stone and bronze. His eminence in both sculpture and drama is now assured: Das dichterische Werk three vols appeared between and , was reprinted between and , and two volumes of letters were published in and Bartsch described the life of the peasants in south-west Styria and the threat of Slav encroachment; other novels he published over twenty were characterized by excessive sentimentality and pretentiousness.
Bartsch wrote with a facility which impaired his earlier reputation. His plays include Ohne Gott and Fernes Schiff Vom sterbenden Rokoko is a collection of Novellen. Bauer, Wolfgang — Bauer was born in Graz, where he studied and has continued to live. However, he cannot be bracketed with a dated pop culture, as he uses its trappings for his own purposes, sharing with the early Handke and other Austrians a concern with appearance and reality and a stage method which demonstrates delusion and deception in ever more sophisticated variations through the way in which characters adopt roles and force them on one another through manipulation.
Was sind wir? Wohin gehen wir? Werke seven vols began to appear in His Uferdasein is a collection of short stories concerned with blindness: those who cannot see are able to explore, writes Baum, an inner world of sensations and mystic awareness with a greater facility. Als etwas, was er eigentlich nie war und was ihm nie zuerkannt wurde. Vielleicht ist Oskar nur ein trauriges Symbol der sogenannten deutschen Juden in Prag. His prose style is reminiscent of that of E. Hoffmann, and his predilection for the macabre he intended to write a Grabenbuch looks back to Edgar Allan Poe. Baum was killed by a stray piece of shrapnel in That same year saw the publication of Menschen im Hotel, one of the most characteristic novels of the Weimar Republic.
A thinly veiled description of the Hotel Adlon, it cleverly enmeshes the destinies, pathetic and frequently sordid, of the guests staying beneath its roof. She wrote her later novels in English: Berlin Hotel attempted unsuccessfully to regain the popularity of the earlier novel, although the descriptions of air-raids over Berlin have a certain graphic quality. Her autobiography Es war alles ganz anders appeared in Bayer, Konrad —64 A member of the Wiener Gruppe, Bayer remained until his death the most wilfully experimental of the five in his work and his life style.
Artmann was his mentor, with whom he shared a taste for surrealism and black romanticism. Becher, Johannes R. A confessional drama, Arbeiter, Bauern, Soldaten, appeared in Becher became a Communist deputy in the Reichstag in the Weimar Republic, fled Germany in February and eventually settled in Moscow. The Neue deutsche Volkslieder and Deutsche Sonette are undistinguished. Editions of his work include Auswahl four vols, ; Auswahl six vols, ; Gesammelte Werke eighteen vols, — A three-volume Werke appeared in Grosz was an early mentor and is portrayed in the novel Das Profit Deutsch-amerikanische Chronik portray the struggle of exiles to survive in the Brazilian jungle and in New York.
Becker, Jurek — Becker spent his childhood in the ghetto of Lodz, Poland, and in two concentration camps before settling in Berlin in Apparent too is its connection to the subject of story-telling, which is an abiding preoccupation of the central characters, who usually narrate their own story. In his account of his successful career as a writer Georg Bieneck reveals himself as a careerist, opportunist and above all as a fraudulent manipulator of all those with whom he comes into contact.
When his estranged wife confronts him with the truth about himself, he accepts that he has flouted socialist principles. Other novels focus on Jewish victims of the Holocaust whose inability to come to terms with the traumas left by their experiences renders them unwilling outsiders in either German state Der Boxer , Bronsteins Kinder , or similar figures whose failure to accommodate themselves to the expectations of their professional and social milieu leads not to active protest but to withdrawal, illness and attempted suicide Schlaflose Tage , Aller Welt Freund Neither these novels, nor the twenty-five stories of the collection Nach der ersten Zukunft , were published in the GDR.
Amanda herzlos , ostensibly a A-Z 21 private story about a woman and her relationships to three men, a conforming sports writer, a dissident author and a journalist from the West, viewed from their respective points of view, throws light on the mediocrity of life in the closing years of the GDR. Warnung vor dem Schriftsteller contains thoughts on the differences between East and West German literature.
Wir sind auch nur ein Volk is a television series on post-Wende Germany. In them reality in the form of particles of everyday life is filtered through the subjectivity of the author, who then carefully arranges these often fragmentary and disparate perceptions, occasionally conveyed in deliberately ungrammatical and punctu-ation-free form, in measured proportions to form a symmetrical whole.
Faithful to the view that the old generic divisions are no longer valid, Becker combines lyrical, anecdotal and dramatic elements, exposes the stereotyped nature of the language associated with particular activities, in order to indicate how jargon hinders access to reality, cf. In concentrating on the effects of industrial activity in the urban landscape these poems become the vehicle of regret for the loss of the idyll represented by pre-industrial nature and fear of environmental catastrophe. Becker is also the author of numerous radio plays. The Gesammelte Werke appeared in , the correspondence with Hofmannsthal in More important is the more substantial novel Wunschkost , which tells of the POW Ulmer, whose comrades ensure that he escapes death from pneumonia by collecting enough money to buy penicillin.
Deutsche Lyrik seit 45 , In diesem Lande leben wir. Deutsche Gedichte der Gegenwart , and has recently returned to the short story Bruderherz Worte Bilder Menschen represents a crosssection of his early work. Werke six vols began to appear in Benn, Gottfried — Generally acknowledged to be one of the most outstanding German lyric poets of the twentieth century, Gottfried Benn came from a family of Protestant parsons, studied medicine in Marburg and Berlin and published, shortly after graduating as a medical officer in , a cycle of poems entitled Morgue und andere Gedichte.
Wir wollen den Rausch. Wir rufen Dionysos und Ithaka! The collection Fleisch appeared in , Schutt and Spaltung in and respectively. In an incomprehensible universe meaning is only achieved through the poetic act, the mysterious fusion of disparate parts: Broadway, interstellar space, the Parthenon, the cervical cortex. Benn moved in the same circle as Klabund, Oskar Loerke and J. His standpoint is clearly expressed in Der neue Staat und die Intellektuellen of Benn found himself, however, out of favour with the authorities for his earlier poems, his formalism and modernism, and was attacked in as a purveyor of lewd pornography.
In isolation he concentrated upon a definition of poetry as being an act of defiance in the face of absurdity and nihilism. Benn remained in Berlin after ; the brilliance, intensity, and also the tone of quiet resignation in his poetry attracted a growing readership who were prepared to condone his earlier political views. In Benn delivered a famous lecture at Marburg University on problems of writing lyric poetry, a lecture quoted and discussed in Cambridge by T. Eight volumes of Gesammelte Werke ed. A complete edition Stuttgarter Ausgabe began publication in In there appeared his first novel, Das Gesetz des Atum, a derivative E.
Hoffmann and pseudo-expressionistic account of student life in which Atum, an ancient Egyptian sun-god, acts as judge and paradigm. Surprisingly, the book was not banned by the Nazis. Bergengruen remained within Germany, although life became increasingly difficult for him: in he was removed from the Reichsschrifttumskammer, although he was allowed to publish Am Himmel wie auf Erden in A historical novel which is set in sixteenth-century Brandenburg, the book also hints at punishment and a higher destiny; Bergengruen, by now a devout Catholic, was not blinded by the initial successes of the German army.
Der Tod von Reval is a grotesquely humorous Totentanz; Der spanische Rosenstock a delightful piece of escapism. After the war Bergengruen published his Rittmeister trilogy, and also collected his poetry and published it in two volumes, Die heile Welt and Figur und Schatten Bernhard, Thomas —89 A dominant but eccentric figure in contemporary German letters, with Handke the bestknown Austrian writer of recent decades, Bernhard has monomaniacally devoted himself to an ever more elaborate transposition of his bleak vision of the senselessness of human existence into a vast output of work in prose fiction, autobiography and drama, in which mental disturbance, physical decay and death are the permanent themes.
After travels in Sicily, Britain and Poland Bernhard withdrew to a farm in the centre of Upper Austria which he turned into a hermitage for the production of the works eighteen full-length plays, seven full-length novels, numerous stories and shorter prose in addition to the autobiographical series which poured without interruption from his pen in the following twenty-four years. Many of the figures in his novels and plays indulge in more or less literary forms of the Schwadronade tirade or flyting monologue characteristic of Austrian folk culture.
Many of them are locked into inescapable family relationships defined by the dialectic of domination and servitude e. Alternatively the discipline demanded by art turns its practitioners into performing machines indistinguishable from circus animals, as in the Salzburg plays Der Ignorant und der Wahnsinnige and Die Macht der Gewohnheit In setting all his novels in remote parts of rural Austria Bernhard challenges like several contemporary Austrian novelists the strong tradition of the Heimatroman as represented by e.
Stifter, Rosegger and Waggerl, inverting its values to create black idylls. He often models his figures on real persons, making the connection more or less explicit e. Gesammelte Gedichte appeared in His prose is spare and pointed, conveying static situations without dramatic conflict. The eight Kindergeschichten A-Z 27 are not only for children; the strange but harmless obsessions of the aged eccentrics who populate them are portrayed with sympathy, while a few stories, in which the withdrawal to a private world leads to the invention of a private language, recall the inspired nonsense of Lear and Carroll.
Bichsel has attacked Swiss conservatism in combative newspaper articles, essays and speeches collected in Geschichten zur falschen Zeit and Schulmeistereien Der Busant marks a return to the short story, which forms the subject of the Frankfurt lecture Der Leser. Zur Stadt Paris contains forty-eight miniature stories. Bonifaz oder Der Matrose in der Flasche recounts the picaresque adventures on land and sea of the title-figure. The original version of Maria Morzeck oder Das Kaninchen bin ich was produced and filmed in the GDR; however, neither book nor film reached the public and Bieler left the GDR for Prague in , eventually settling in Munich in Bieler is also the author of numerous radio plays, some of which are collected in Drei Rosen aus Papier , Still wie die Nacht.
Bienek, Horst —90 Born in Silesia, Bienek had contacts with Brecht and the Berliner Ensemble until, after taking part in an anti-Stalinist protest in West Berlin, he was deported to the Soviet Union, where he spent the following four years in the Gulag. He subsequently lived in the West, mainly in Munich and its environs.
Each of volumes I—III focuses on one day in the lives of the Piontek family and their friends: 31 August , 4 September , Good Friday , while in volume IV the action is divided between the occupation of Gleiwitz by the Russians and the destruction of Dresden in February , an episode into which Bienek introduces the unnamed but clearly identifiable figure of Gerhart Hauptmann.
Together the novels throw much light on everyday life during the Third Reich and in particular on German-Polish-Jewish relations in a frontier area plagued by communal strife. Childhood and growing up in Silesia are also the subject of Beschreibung einer Provinz. Aufzeichnungen, Materialien, Dokumente and Reise in die Kindheit , and his other volumes of poetry Gleiwitzer Kindheit and Die Zeit danach are autobiographically based.
Poems: Wer antwortet wem Prinz Kuckuck. His works for the stage, and further novels, were not so successful. The Gesammelte Werke ten volumes appeared between and Biermann, Wolf — Poet, singer, composer and guitar virtuoso, Biermann, whose communist father was murdered in Auschwitz in , was born into a working-class family in Hamburg. From until September he was forbidden to perform in the GDR and all his publications and records appeared only in the West Die Drahtharfe , Mit Marx- und Engelszungen , Deutschland.
Having been given permission to take part in a concert tour of the Federal Republic he was deprived of his citizenship on 16 November after performing with spectacular success in Cologne.
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He belongs both to an international line of poetmusicians incl. Despite the difficulties of maintaining his role in the West and the occasional signs of resignation e. A journey to Hamburg in inspired the stanzas of Deutschland.
Yet even birthday poems for his children are given a political dimension in the context of the nuclear threat. Klappe zu. Billinger, Richard — Born in Upper Austria, from peasant stock, Billinger trained for the priesthood but later turned to writing. His novels deal with the interaction of the sacred and the profane, generally in a rural setting: Die Asche des Fegefeuers established his reputation.
Das Schutzengelhaus deals with the experiences of Philomela Spielhahn, a town-dweller, during a holiday in the country, a situation somewhat akin to that of Cold Comfort Farm. Perchtenspiel , first performed at the Salzburg Festival mixes natural and supernatural, modern and mystical, in an uncomfortable manner; Rauhnacht and Spiel vom Knecht anticipate the theatre of Franz Xaver Kroetz.
The Gesammelte Werke twelve volumes appeared between and Binding, Rudolf — An author known primarily through his Novellen and war diary, Rudolf Binding was a late developer as a writer and did not publish until he was over forty.
The Gesammelte Werke two volumes appeared in , with Die Briefe in The Nazis forbade him to write because of his expressionist poetry; he died almost completely blind. Blei, Franz — Blei, a versatile critic, essayist and writer, was most influential in the literary life at the turn of the century, founding various journals, of which Hyperion was the most famous. Blei also wrote poetry and plays, some conventional Der dunkle Weg and Logik des Herzens , but Die Welle, produced by Hugo Ball in the Munich Kammerspiele , with Blei himself acting in it, demonstrated his links with more experimental theatre.
He died in Westbury, Long Island. Six volumes of Vermischte Schriften were published from to ; the Schriften in Auswahl, with an essay by A. A-Z 33 Blunck, Hans — A writer of prose, poetry and plays, Hans Blunck born in Altona became identified with Blut und Boden literature and the cult of North-German earnestness, mission and superiority.
From to Blunck was president of the newlyformed Reichsschrifttumskammer; relations between him and Joseph Goebbels became strained, and Hanns Johst replaced him. A ten-volume edition of his writings appeared in he received the Goethe medal in the same year. Blunck was pronounced a Nazi sympathizer and collaborator by the Denazification Tribunal in he insisted that the verdict was unjust. The Gesammelte Werke in Einzelausgaben fifteen vols appeared from to ; Dramen und Lustspiele two vols , also in ; Das Gesamtwerk four vols between and Bobrowski, Johannes —65 Bobrowski was born in Tilsit and grew up in Memel, and all his poetry and much of his prose result from the effort to reconstruct through memory the landscape and childhood experiences of this frontier area, in which Poles, Lithuanians, Russians and Jews had lived in close proximity for generations.
Bobrowski was both conservative in his debt to poets such as Klopstock mainly ignored in the twentieth century and, in the context of GDR writing, in his Christian commitment, and modernist in his development of free verse and of a fragmentary prose form which allows several voices and perspectives to emerge. Along with Peter Huchel he is a master of the humanized landscape. Despite his circumscribed themes his influence is present in the work of several writers, incl.
Bobrowski wrote his earliest poems as a soldier in Russia, some of which appeared in the periodical Das innere Reich before the end of the war, but the majority of his poems can be dated to the years — The award in the latter year of the prize of Gruppe 47 after his second reading before the group and the publication of his first collection Sarmatische Zeit made him known in the West. Ganz neue Xenien , the last a series of satirical epigrams on figures in the contemporary German literary landscape.
Haufe, appeared from The attitudes which find consistent expression in both his fiction and his public writings e. All present the senselessness of war by adopting the perspective of the ordinary soldier whose only escape from the horrors of combat, the total subordination to his superiors and the souldestroying boredom of military routine is the memory or fantasy of private happiness. In Und sagte kein einziges Wort the predicament of the soldier come home, forced by inadequate housing to meet his wife in hotel rooms, is exacerbated by the unsympathetic attitude of the better off and contrasted with ecclesiastical pomp and tasteless advertising.
Their accounts, in throwing light on the separate stages of her biography, add up to a panorama of the period to , placing Gruppenbild firmly in the tradition of the Zeitroman. Acts of terrorism by the Rote Armee Faktion better known as the Baader-Meinhof group forced the authorities in the Federal Republic to mobilize state power to an extent unprecedented in its history in order to arrest, try and convict them.
While the anti-terrorist campaign undoubtedly had the support of public A companion to twentieth-century german literature 36 opinion, it occasionally led to excesses which undermined rights guaranteed by the constitution as those suspected of sympathizing with or sheltering terrorists were subjected to police surveillance and vilified by sections of the press.
For all his faults, parochialism, sentimentality, black-and-white characterization, he demonstrated that the novel is still able to show how people relate to one another as members of a family, a community and a nation. A collected edition, Werke, in ten volumes, appeared in Bonsels, Waldemar — Traveller, publisher and writer of popular novels and stories, Bonsels made his reputation with Die Biene Maja und ihre Abenteuer , a charming account of a queen bee and the adventures that befall it.
A year before his death he republished, under the title Das vergessene Licht, an earlier pseudo-Christian novel. Borchardt, Rudolf — An author remembered for his essays and translations, Borchardt was one of a group of writers R. The neo-romantic aspects of his earlier poetry Jugendgedichte increasingly gave way to classical forms. Borchardt was an accomplished linguist and translated from Greek, English and Italian: his Dante Deutsch —30 is an acknowledged masterpiece. Borchardt was a close associate of Hugo von Hofmannsthal.
Vermischte Gedichte appeared in The novel Vereinigung durch den Feind hindurch was published in Vienna: the title refers to an essay on military tactics. Borchardt, who was partly Jewish, was arrested by the Gestapo, but later released; he died in the Tyrol at the end of the war. He also wrote numerous poems, only a few of which were eventually published. Die traurigen Geranien made available further unpublished material. His first novel Der zweite Tag , in which the impressions received on a train journey are registered in minute detail, bare of symbol and metaphor, can be associated with the Cologne school of realism including Wellershoff, Herburger, Elsner.
The poems, eventually collected in Gedichte — , show the influence of the Americans W. Politics, reflection on the function of poetry and moments of satisfaction and hope contrasted with fear of the impersonal forces of the state are further topics in the later poems. In taking up a Third World theme, it marks a significant departure from what was in danger of becoming a new provincialism and can be compared with similar works by Uwe Timm and F. The play Rotter concerns the self-imposed conformity of an underprivileged figure determined to prove himself in both the Third Reich and the early years of reconstruction.
Liebe macht Tod is a variation of Romeo and Juliet. Braun, Felix — A fervent literary disciple of Hofmannsthal, Felix Braun was a minor writer associated with the Viennese cultural scene at the turn of the century his autobiography Das Licht der Welt. Geschichte eines Versuches, als Dichter zu leben gives a sympathetic and informative account of meetings with Hofmannsthal, Rilke, Wildgans, Ginzkey, Mell, Stefan Zweig, Werfel and others. He travelled widely, living in Italy and also in exile in England.
His verse dramas betray much sensitivity but little dramatic talent: themes are derived from classical antiquity Tantalos , Aktaion and Der Tod des Aischylos and from the history of the house of Habsburg Kaiser Karl V and Rudolf der Stifter. The collections Wir und nicht sie , Gedichte , extended and Gegen die symmetrische Welt are marked by mastery of numerous short forms and a critical dialogue with earlier German poets.
The dialectic of past and present, of Utopian hope and reality is treated in manifold variations, culminating in the last volume in fragmentary forms which appear to reflect a fear of stagnation. Bodenloser Satz presents the decline of the GDR through an account of environmental pollution. Texte in zeitlicher Folge appeared in eight volumes between and Brecht, Bertolt — Brecht was one of a group of young dramatists who emerged during the early years of the Weimar Republic and whose works frequently awarded the Kleist prize created theatrical scandals by their fearless outspokenness and reluctance to conform to accepted standards.
Through collaboration with Feuchtwanger and others Brecht, with cunning and undeniable talent, kept abreast of the modern techniques of a man like Piscator. It was after the enormous success of this work, a work that the audience seemed bent on enjoying at all costs, that Brecht tended to the extremes of dogmatism which he felt were necessary to convey his social message: the need for a new society, free from exploitation and privilege.
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What makes Mann ist Mann , the Dreigroschenoper and Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny — 9 such good entertainment is the plenitude of ebullient characters, rooted in a fantastic Victorian, Anglo-American or Anglo-Indian world never found in reality but culled from the legends of the roaring twenties, or the heyday of the British Raj; Brecht never ceased to admire the world of boxers, lumberjacks, colonial soldiers and gangsters, which he may, in part, have derived from the expressionist cult of vital, atavistic forces.
Brecht needed also the stimulus of collaboration, which stemmed from a sincere desire to discuss and learn rather than from paucity of invention, as the critic Alfred Kerr claimed, who sought constantly to detect plagiarism. Brecht wrote closely with Klabund, who would later give Brecht the idea for Der kaukasische Kreidekreis. After the burning of the Reichstag Brecht fled to Vienna; he attended the meeting at Sanary-sur-mer of exiled writers, and thence moved to Denmark, to the province of Svendborg, where he watched events in Germany most closely.
A-Z 43 The view that Brecht, deprived of a theatre, turned his attention to formulating a Marxist aesthetic of drama, a theoretically determined system, is erroneous: the subsequent theorizing was an attempt to explain to himself as well as to others how it happened that this or that particular work had been written and produced in a particular way. His theoretical writings reflect the way in which he meditated upon his own work: there is nothing rigid nor inflexibly ideological about his speculation.
The tone is light, frequently wryly humorous, often curious, but always allowing for movement and renewal; a rare intelligence is at work which questions, worries, retreats, adapts and restates. The Messingkauf dialogues, a four-handed conversation piece, relate more directly to theatrical problems, and stress above all the need for lightness of touch, Spiel, and a kind of elegance in acting which contains sobriety within it.
The rapier thrust is preferred to the sabre blow, the elliptical precision of Chinese art to Germanic ponderousness and an athletic form of acting to the pretentiously histrionic. This was to be the play with which the Berliner Ensemble opened in ; it has remained in the repertoire ever since and has been staged by the leading theatres throughout the world.
Every scene, and there are twelve of them, is supposed to stand as a self-contained unit indeed, in theory they should be virtually interchangeable , but a cumulative effect is undeniable, and there are moments that are conventionally dramatic, which enthral, rather than alienate, the audience. Brecht did not approve of the reactions of the audience after the first performance: in notes to the play he added certain modifications which were intended to emphasize the more negative qualities of the central character.
He had been forced, he A companion to twentieth-century german literature 44 claimed, to overstate the differences between the conventional theatre and his own in order that certain abuses be rectified: there was nothing sacrosanct or dogmatic about his suggestions. As early as Aufstieg und Fall der Stadt Mahagonny he had, in fact, stressed that an overschematic differentiation between dramatic and epic was unsuitable: it was simply a matter of emphasis.
A Companion to Twentieth-Century German Literature
In he had written a conventional play—admittedly not one of his best—on Aristotelian lines, Die Gewehre der Frau Carrar, which provided opportunity for splendid acting on the part of the heroine. Brecht turned on the critics and admonished them to look at his plays as plays, without preconceived ideas or theories. His initial concern was to show Galileo as a man determined to live, whose cunning recantation enables the truth to be heard despite the strictures of the Church. The issues are intellectual, but the play provides magnificent theatre, especially in the scene of the dressing of the Pope, the transformation of man to institution as each layer of clothing is added.
The Soviet purges sickened him, as did the American situation: the work on the film Hangmen Also Die with Fritz Lang made him entirely disillusioned with the American film industry. The theme of goodness occupied him once again, but the basic theme concerns the rightness of giving the child or the disputed land to those best able to tend or cultivate it.
The play is most successful in the portrayal of the judge Azdak, a figure compounded of the vitality and amoral zest of Baal, of Puntila and, to a lesser extent, of Galileo himself. Brecht returned to Europe at the end of The setting up of his own Theater am Schiffbauerdamm brought little comfort: the Berliner Ensemble was boycotted by the orthodox critics, the workers made up only a small percentage of the audience, and government pressure was brought to bear at every point.
It is perhaps significant that Brecht wrote nothing of original merit for the theatre after his return to East Berlin; he adapted, produced and modified, turning his attention, amongst other things, to Waiting for Godot and Pineapple Poll. He withdrew again into poetry and wrote, in the Buckower Elegien, some of his finest.
With economy, grace and sobriety he evoked a world of trees and water, silence and serenity, far from the turmoil of Berlin. A companion to twentieth-century german literature 46 Brinkmann, Rolf Dieter —75 Brinkmann, whose early death in a road accident on a visit to London put an end to a career which may or may not have been in the doldrums, began in association with the Cologne realists Wellershoff, Herburger, Elsner, etc.
Never political, he combined crude vitalism, linguistic virtuosity and an obsession with the surface detail of everyday life; only the last of these features, however, was taken up and developed by others e. While his poetry already seems dated and undisciplined, his final major prose work Rom. Blicke may prove to be a seminal work in its combination of verbal and photographic commentary, besides maintaining the strong German tradition of literature portraying the metropolis.
Britting, Georg — Poet, playwright and writer of narrative prose, Britting started to write after the First World War he was badly wounded in He collaborated on many expressionist journals Die rote Erde, Der Sturmreiter, Der silberne Spiegel and edited his own, Die Sichel, with Josef Achmann, who contributed the graphic designs. Britting greatly admired Georg Heym; he also wrote grotesque versions of biblical themes Hiob, Kain, Jor auf der Flucht, etc.
During the Second World War Britting turned increasingly to nature poetry, leaving behind the excesses of expressionism and the parodistic elements of Hamlet. Lob des Weines, a collection of twenty poems, appeared in more were added after the war Britting turned to traditional themes and structures, although his imagery remained fresh and striking.
Broch insisted upon an intellectualization of the novel, on working out, by sheer intellectual effort, the troubles of the world. Theoretical essays alternated with works of imagination: philosophical, mass-psychological and socio-economic investigations return ultimately to a religious realization of the fallenness of man; the inability to love is the root cause, for Broch, of human unhappiness.
Both Broch and Musil embarked upon vast novels that would encompass the problems of the age, combining rationalism and mysticism. The Schlafwander trilogy —2 , encyclopedic and polyhistorical novels, have as their concern the disintegration of values and the decay of European civilization in the period — The first, Pasenow oder die Romantik, has been compared with Fontane, but the secure ground of the nineteenth century has been left far behind: the age seems bent on radical solutions, and the symbol of the uniform seems an apt one.
The second, Esch oder die Anarchie, portrays the insubstantiality of the existence of the small book-keeper Esch, who is able neither to escape from Europe nor to come to terms with it; the third, Huguenau oder die Sachlichkeit, portrays violence and anarchic forces which destroy the narcissistic world of the heroine. The realization of the helplessness of the word when faced by the unspeakable will be a concern of many writers in the twentieth century, especially in German-speaking countries.
The fourth novel, Die Schuldlosen , treats twentieth-century themes and uses certain dates , and as points of reference: the dangers of solipsism are analysed with considerable sensitivity. The novel is uncomfortably suspended between political allegory and romantic myth. The character of Mutter Gisson with her Demeterlike qualities fails to convince, the symbolism being forced and obtrusive, but the description of mass psychology is masterful. The speculative study on A companion to twentieth-century german literature 48 Massenpsychologie stands comparison with the essay Masse und Macht by Elias Canetti as one of the most perceptive analyses of the relationship between the individual self and the corporate whole.
Broch, of Jewish parentage, was arrested when the Nazis invaded Austria, but was released on the intervention of writers like James Joyce. He settled in America and wrote his last novels there. The Gesammelte Schriften ten vols appeared between and reprinted ; the Kommentierte Werkausgabe 13—17 vols appeared from to His early story Tod den Toten!
As a Jew, Brod became a Zionist in , and he became especially interested in the more conservative faith of his co-religionists from the eastern provinces of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Brod emigrated to Tel Aviv in and died there in In that year his autobiography Streitbares Leben appeared, which contains enlightening references to Kafka and also to Franz Werfel, of whose conversion to Christianity see Das Lied von Bernadette Brod did not approve.
He produced three volumes of war poetry, Aus meiner Kriegszeit. Gedichte , Kamerad, als wir marschierten. Kriegsgedichte and Soldaten der Erde. Neue Kriegsgedichte A war novel, Bunker Geschichte einer Kameradschaft , was widely read it was translated into English as Pillbox Gesamtausgabe der Gedichte in Eine Auswahl der Gedichte appeared in Bronnen, Arnolt originally Bronner, — Dramatist and novelist, Bronnen was one of the most extreme of the young talented writers who made the opening years of the Weimar Republic a fascinating and often disturbing experience.
His play Vatermord written in , performed in Berlin in was the first of many scandals that surrounded his name; the portrayal of brutal violence and uninhibited sexuality outraged the audience. Die Geburt der Jugend is a chaotic description of anarchic youth; the older generation is annihilated by sexually demented adolescents. In his comedy Die Exzesse the erotic desires of the woman, Hildegarde, find satisfaction in contemplation of intercourse with a goat.
Katalaunische Schlacht looks back to the war as a time of frenzied and erotic ecstasy. Rheinische Rebellen is an overtly nationalist play; Ostpolzug , a monodrama, fuses ancient and modern in its portrayal of Alexander the Great. The novel O. Bronnen worked for the film industry in the s, also the Reichsrundfunkgesellschaft.
His relations with the Nazis were, however, strained. His autobiography Arnolt Bronnen gibt zu Protokoll appeared in ; Tage mit Brecht posthumously in Bruckner, Ferdinand pseudonym of Theodor Tagger, — Primarily a dramatist, Bruckner achieved fame in with his play Krankheit der Jugend, a crass and naturalistic portrayal of adolescent sexuality, much indebted to Freud. Bruckner used techniques made famous by Erwin Piscator; his greatest success was Elisabeth von England , where the stage is again split between the two realms, Catholic Madrid and Protestant London, with both antagonists praying to the same god for victory.
Bruckner also turned his attention, with less success, to classical themes Timon and Pyrrhus und Andromache perf.
A very successful play was Die Rassen , one which exploits the generation conflict and also the tension between Jew and Aryan. Bruckner emigrated to America in and returned to Europe in , spending the last years of his life in Berlin. Dramatische Werke and Schauspiele nach historischen Studien were both published in An edition of Dramen appeared in Brust was helped by Kurt Wolff; he lived in isolation in Memel and moved to Cranz after the Lithuanian occupation.
Brust shares with many expressionists a predilection for crass and often shocking climaxes. Brust turned towards a portrayal of pseudoreligious experiences in a series of other plays Cordatus. He died in obscurity, isolation and poverty at the age of forty-three; the Nazis initially tolerated his writing, believing him to be an acceptable poet of East Prussian life, although later his work was condemned as degenerate.
The Dramen — ed. Horst Denkler appeared in Since then he has written stories Ein schwarzer, abgrundtiefer See , extended and Babylon and novels which concentrate on human foibles and idiosyncrasies in domestic and professional contexts, although social and political pressures, implicitly criticized, are present in various forms. Essays Kritiken Glossen Unpolitische Betrachtungen zu Literatur und Politik demonstrate individual interests Haiti, Alejo Carpentier and more general concerns of his generation ecology, post-history, apocalypse , the latter present also in Bericht aus dem Innern der Unruhe.
Gorlebener Tagebuch , on demonstrations against nuclear power. Central to the rest of his work is his relationship to the American continent and in particular Haiti, which he visited for the first time in and where he has ancestral links. In the reportages Aus der neuen Welt. Afro-amerikanische Impressionen An informative document on Burckhardt is the Festschrift which appeared on his seventieth birthday, Dauer im Wechsel Burger, Hermann —89 Burger studied in Zurich, wrote dissertations on Paul Celan and contemporary Swiss literature and taught for a while at the Federal Technical University in Zurich.
His chief works, Schilten. Burger shares with the Austrian Thomas Bernhard and with other contemporary Swiss writers e. Meyer the theme of death as the ultimate threat to personal identity, which he treats with an even greater degree of linguistic virtuosity and reflective intensity. He committed suicide in Brunsloben and Menzenmang volume I and volume II, chapters 1—7 of the planned tetralogy Brenner on the scion of a cigar manufacturing dynasty in search of his childhood appeared in and Der unsichtbare Held, a Nibelungen drama, appeared in the same year.
A companion to twentieth-century german literature 54 Burte published poems in Alemannic dialect Madlee ; a further anthology appeared in Die Seele des Maien. Burte received much acclaim for his work, the Kleist prize for Wildfeber and other distinctions during the Third Reich. The sinologist Peter Kien, obsessed by his own private library, and retreating ever further into a state of solipsism, is ultimately destroyed by fire, ancient symbol of transformation.
The other characters, Pfaff, Theresa Krumbholz and Fischerle, are also utterly self-centred and convinced of their own importance. The idea for the novel came to Canetti in when he witnessed the burning of the Palace of Justice by a mob in Vienna. Canetti moved to Paris in and to London in the following year. In he published Masse und Macht, a sociological, anthropological study of crowds and power: here fire is interpreted as a symbol for the crowd.
A collection of aphorisms made between and , Aufzeichnungen, appeared in Das Geheimnis der Uhr. Aufzeichnungen — appeared in In Canetti was awarded the Nobel prize for literature. A companion to twentieth-century german literature 56 Carossa, Hans — Son of a doctor, Hans Carossa studied medicine in Munich and Leipzig, then settled as a medical practitioner in Bavaria.
Verwandlungen einer Jugend is a less successful sequel. The novel Geheimnisse des reifen Lebens uses the diary form to explore human relationships. After the war Carossa attempted to explain his situation at that time in Ungleiche Welten Further autobiographical details of his life appeared in Aufzeichnungen aus Italien ; a scattering of short stories appeared in the s. In his work Carossa eschews modernist experimentation; he appealed to the educated middle-class German reader with his cultivation of humanistic values derived from Goethe.
Unlike his parents Celan escaped deportation when his home was occupied by the Nazis, but awareness of the Holocaust is at the centre of his work, his approach to the problems of language and communication in general long a preoccupation of writers from the linguistic melting-pot of Central Europe and the Balkans being linked to the impossibility of conveying the extreme physical and existential exposure of the persecuted.
These, together with translations of twentyone sonnets by Shakespeare and poems by Char, Supervielle, Michaux, Yessenin, Mandelstam, Block and others, were assembled in the provisional Gesammelte Werke in five volumes. Despite the increasing number of exegeses see the Celan-Jahrbuch: — there is still uncertainty on the question whether his work may be interpreted by reference to the Bible and the esoteric Judaism in which he was partly educated, or whether it represents an ever more private exploration and probing of language and its elements on the edge of silence.
He was a man of mystical tendency whose experience of the Holocaust placed obstacles in the way to religious enlightenment; the distortion and reversal of normal syntactical relationships which are a marked feature of his work are related to this central paradox. However, he remained attached to Jewish culture, as is evident especially in late poems set in Jerusalem. Gesammelte Werke five volumes appeared in Chotjewitz, Peter O. His defence of members of the Baader-Meinhof group during the seventies influenced along with Kafka the fragmentary novel Die Herren des Morgengrauens He has also produced works which owe their origin to experiences in Italy Malavita.
Mafia zwischen A companion to twentieth-century german literature 58 gestern und morgen and Briganten , a play on Mayakovsky Weltmeisterschaft im Klassenkampf and radio plays. Csokor, Franz Theodor — Csokor is known primarily as an Austrian expressionist dramatist. After Csokor fled into eastern Europe; he was finally arrested in Yugoslavia, and interned. A selection of his works, Du bist gemeint, with a foreword by Erhard Buschbeck, appeared in The book is a conversation manual containing basic notions and expressions that facilitate communication with foreign interlocutors.
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