By Raymond Furness
Containing entries on over 400 authors of fiction, poetry and drama from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, this priceless paintings of reference provides fabric of a spread and intensity that no different booklet at the topic in English attains. For the second one variation, the entries were up to date to incorporate the latest works of German literature. a couple of new entries were further, dealing specifically with the East German literary scene and the altering literary panorama after reunification. as well as uncomplicated biographical proof, the better half bargains summaries, info on involvement in literary teams and political advancements, faculties and routine, serious phrases and features of the opposite arts, together with movie.
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Additional info for A Companion to Twentieth-Century German Literature
The major cycle ‘Der Stoff zum Leben’, part I of which appeared in the last of these collections, has since been extended to three parts. The stories ‘Der Schlamm’, ‘Der Hörsaal’ (1964) and ‘Die Bretter’ (1968), collected in Das ungezwungene Leben Kasts (1972, extended 1979 by the addition of ‘Die Tribüne’) are based on personal experience as a worker and student and mark a break with the earlier ‘Aufbauliteratur’ and the work which emerged from the Bitterfeld movement. Unvollendete Geschichte (1975) is still more openly critical of government mistrust of the people; its publication in the GDR’s leading literary periodical Sinn und Form was one of the earliest signs of a change in policy at the top adumbrated in Honecker’s programmatic anti-taboos speech of 1971.
Thomas Brasch, Sarah Kirsch, Bernd Jentzsch, Reiner Kunze, Günter Kunert, Jurek Becker, Stefan Schütz, Karl-Heinz Jakobs, Erich Loest, Klaus Schlesinger), which, although not every decision to leave can be linked directly to the Biermann case, was not reversed before 1989. While it is difficult to separate Biermann’s notoriety from his achievement and assess his influence in the GDR precisely, there is no doubt that he has succeeded in reaching a wide audience without making any concessions to pop culture and its commercialism.
The portrayal of the ‘Riesin’ verges upon the bizarre. Das Schutzengelhaus (1934) 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. Billinger was considered a ‘safe’ writer by the Nazis because of his description of peasant life, although the baroque excesses, particularly of many of the plays, are hardly exemplary. Perchtenspiel (1928, first performed at the Salzburg Festival) mixes natural and supernatural, modern and mystical, in an uncomfortable manner; Rauhnacht (1931) and Spiel vom Knecht (1932) anticipate the theatre of Franz Xaver Kroetz.