(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "ModernGermanLiterature18801950"

444                  MODERN  GERMAN  LITERATURE

many, but Asia is the mother of religion, and in prophetic Judaism
is the vision of the religion to be. His Drei JLeden uber dasjudentum
(1911), with its contrast of der sensorische Mensch and der motorisck
Mensch (the first 'handelt in Eildern\ the second 'empfindet in Bs-
wegungetf\ gave a stimulus to the speculations of the expressionist
theoreticians. Buber belongs to literature rather than to philo-
sophy by his new translation of the Bible and the 'legendary anec-
dotes' of Das verborgene Ucht (1924),

The 'Kulturphiksophetf can hardly be set cheek by jowl with
philosophers even of the calibre of Hermann von Keyserling; but
they must have adequate treatment by reason of their immense
influence on the National Socialist ideology and therefore on Nazi
literature. The racialism of today goes back to PAUL DE LAGARDE
(1827-91), one of the first to react against materialism and the
Darwinistic interpretation of society (Dmtscfa Schnffen, 1886). An-
other forerunner was JULIUS LANGBKHN (1851-1907), who created
a sensation with an anonymous book, TLembrandt als Er^ieher. Von
einem Deutschen (1890). The author - *der Rembrandtdeutsche', as
he came to be called - was a disciple of Lagarde, and the very title
of his book, which echoes Nietzsche's Schopenhauer als Er%ieher,
shows that he was a Nieteschean as well* certainly he continues
Nietzsche in his thesis that Germany was in a process of decay,
and that the only hope lay in its spiritual regeneration. This re-
generation, he thought, would be effected by the Low German
stock, to which he himself as a Holsteiner and his symbol Rem-
brandt as a Dutchman belonged. He held up Rembrandt as a great
personality at the opposite pole of the tendencies of his own day:
Rembrandt was a great creative soul, while today the world is run
(to death) by the hair-splitting specialists of science. Regeneration
would come from North-West Germany, he argued, because here
is the cradle of the Aryans, and a nation is reborn from its birth-
place. Racial fanatic as Langbehn is, he admits that assimilation
of foreign cultures might improve the Nordic race: Rembrandt's
close association with Jews (including Spinoza) no doubt led him
to his conclusion that the aristocratic Jews of the West must be
distinguished from the degenerated plebeian Jews of Poland and
Russia. (Nietzsche had literally envisaged an improvement of the
Nordic stock by assimilation of Jew culture.) There is a foretaste
of the B&tf und T&oden theory in Langbehn's insistence that Rem-
brandt was an cearth-born' artist with all the virtues of his native