By Olaf Berwald
The performs and prose works of the German author, director, and political activist Peter Weiss (1916-1982) have been immensely influential within the shaping of ecu Modernism within the moment 1/2 the 20 th century. Combining exploratory aesthetic openness with an uncompromising moral force, Weiss's literary works, specifically the performs Marat/Sade (1964), The research (1968), and Holderlin (1971), in addition to the unconventional The Aesthetics of Resistance (1975-81) proceed to supply very important issues of reference for any dialogue of tradition and politics in our occasions. Berwald's research serves as a complete advent to Weiss's paintings and imaginative and prescient. The introductory bankruptcy outlines Weiss's existence and paintings in exile. 3 chapters offer certain discussions of Weiss's theater paintings, from his early ugly performs and the documentary dramas from the Nineteen Sixties that handle Auschwitz, Angola, and Vietnam, to his most intricate performs during which intellectuals are staged as outsiders. the following 4 chapters speak about Weiss's prose works, which come with his autobiographical novels from the early Sixties, essays and notebooks on artwork and politics, and his summum opus, The Aesthetics of Resistance.
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Extra resources for An Introduction to the Works of Peter Weiss (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture)
However, Lenin, who is aware that he will not live much longer, issues a warning to Trotsky concerning the coming fight for power within the Communist Party: Wir sind einander gewachsen. Aber ich hab nur noch wenige Jahre. Studenweise bin sich schon weg, ausgelöscht. Die andern, sie werden dich nicht neben sich dulden, wenn ich nicht da bin. Deine Selbstsicherheit, deine Weltsicht, sie werden nur Hochmut, Eitelkeit drin sehn. Sie werden sich zusammentun und dich ausstoßen. (54–55) The act ends by illustrating Lenin’s premonition.
Anstatt revolutionärer Kunst, anstatt Kunst als Entdeckerfreude, Schreck vorm Unbekannten, Sentimentalität, hohler Idealismus. (81) Trotsky’s predictable counterargument warns against what he calls anarchist desires and cites the threat by other nations as the reason for a necessary authoritarianism of the state. Scene 13 begins in another station of Trotsky’s exiled life, this time in Norway. Trotsky is examined by a doctor, whose cynical comments indicate that he has connections to Stalin’s secret service.
This and other scenes highlight that both of them favored violence and disregarded individual human freedom and life when they thought that the revolution was in danger. However, the play makes it clear that the systematic perversion of Lenin’s and Trotsky’s revolutionary project is embodied by Stalin and his followers. In scene 11, Lenin’s death is juxtaposed with his frustration about the disproportionate role of bureaucracy and with his growing fear of Stalin’s looming grab for power. Lenin is shown as sharing Trotsky’s fundamental doctrine that the revolution has to be spread all over the world.
An Introduction to the Works of Peter Weiss (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture) by Olaf Berwald