4 MODERN GERMAN LITERATURE These changes of outlook would, no doubt, if they had been left to themselves, have worked their own way to a new expres- sion. But Germany, always receptive to ideas, has at all stages of new development in her literature caught the vivifying fire from abroad. Now, while Marx and Darwin were working so to speak under the surface, ideas came in with a rush from three foreign sources: Russia, France, and Norway. Much as in the eighteenth century Rousseau had forced on literature a change of front with his paradox of 'back to nature', Tolstoy now, with his denunci- ation of the depravity of the cultured classes and his preaching of asceticism, raised a new ideal, and turned attention to the misery of the poor. His Powers of Darkness (1886) was a powerful influence. Dostoieffsky, with his minute and relentless psychology and his strange characters, pointed to new directions. Zola, following up Taine's theory of milieu, proclaimed that the meticulous methods of science should be applied to literature, that an author should give a slice of life seen through a temperament. Zola's procedure, deliberately photographical, seemed the denial of poetry and in- spiration; in actual result, however, he achieves the effect of poetry by his gigantic symbolism. Ibsen, too, in the plays of his maturity, made a show of the abnegation of poetry in the shorn plainness of his dialogue; but he again in his latest plays wedded an illusory realism to a mystical and wistful symbolism. The stark ugliness of Tolstoy's picture of life reappears in the first period of naturalism. Zola is more than any one else the acclaimed model of the first naturalists, both in drama and the novel. Ibsen lends form and substance to the dramas of the iconoclasts; he himself, however, had continued the problem plays of Hebbel, and there is thus in the naturalistic plays which are modelled on those of Ibsen a chain of continuity with a link forged across the sea.1 Another strongly emphasized feature of the new naturalism is hostility to the doctrines of Christianity. This is, however, nothing new in German literature. There is anti-religious feeling in Gott- fried Keller's Der grune Heinrich (1854) and in Spielhagen's Pro- blematische Naturen (1861); and the anti-clerical atmosphere of Paul Heyse's Kinder der Welt (1873) had been denounced as the glorification of Sodom and Gotnorrha. Anti-clericalism goes to- gether with the assertion of the rights of the senses (Gufczkow's 1 Dramatists who continue Hebbel directly in our period belong to neo- classicism.