Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)

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      Previous Figure Next Figure. Email or Customer ID. Forgot your password? Forgot password? Old Password. New Password. Password Changed Successfully Your password has been changed. Returning user. Request Username Can't sign in? Forgot your username? Enter your email address below and we will send you your username. When, in happier days, one discussed with Germans such questions as Democracy, or the problems of poverty, the representative of each nation was wont to claim for his own side superior con- ditions. We had indeed assumed that the absorption of small concerns into big ones, and the replacement of men by machines would be — in the long run — all to the advantage of the workers, to their greater political freedom as well as to their material prosperity.

      The German was easily able to retort upon us the constant and increasing disgrace of our skims, the obvious signs of poverty in our streets as com- pared with his own, and even claimed in the general dealings of man with man, a truer feeling for democracy in his own country than in ours. And one may freely admit the truth of each diagnosis, if we speak candidly not within hearing one of another. Socialism as a creed, and a body of formulated doctrine had undoubtedly made more headway in Germany than in England, though we were beginning to catch up on our own lines, and by our own method of muddling through and patchwork legislation.

      In the meantime, the German Government, which claimed its subjects as a matter of course from the cradle to the grave, had already enunciated one of the cardinal doctrines of Socialism as it were inad- vertently, while English workmen, by combination, or in some cases, by mere lucky chance, here and there had secured better conditions for themselves than their comrades of the International. What remained in both countries, which we were each reluctantly compelled to admit, was an obstinate residuum of poverty, that has, so far, baffled all the efforts of social reformers, both above and below.

      With the emer- gence of the new class of millionaires, the submergence of the tenth, or more than the tenth part of non-millionaire humanity becomes ever more pronounced. Possibly even the organised workers become more, rather than less enslaved to capitalists.

      Certainly, the organisation of, and especially the speeding up of industry pushes further down the weaklings who are unable to make terms for themselves in the general struggle. These are almost invariably inarticulate. But the best elements in both countries have long endeavoured to speak for them, and the noblest tones in all the literature we are describing are heard precisely in those works where Pity is invoked for the submerged.

      There is a whole series of autobiography, in which we can trace the wretched- ness of poverty — or the comparative affluence of the employed workman — beginning from the period of extreme indi- vidualism through the flickering discontents and abortive strikes and struggles for amelioration right up to the present- day mass-utterances of organised Socialism.

      Some of these, such as the autobiography of Adelheid Popp, or of Bebel, are available, and comparatively known in English transla- tion. A well-known Professor of Economics, for example, was fortunate enough to discover, and humane enough to insist upon having published, a remarkable life-history of a quite ordinary workman, Karl Fischer, written in the evening of his life, with no ulterior thought than to amuse his then leisure hours.

      It is an extraordinarily interesting human document, giving a picture, unequalled so far as I know, of the struggles of an average decent respectable working man to get a living, without any extraneous aid, either from combination of his fellows, or from philanthropy, or public officials. Verity is stamped upon every line of it, and like all veracious stories, it attracts and compels attention.

      Karl Fischer lived through the epoch of railway beginnings and constructions, and his life is a mirror of the outward change that was creeping over Germany during our period, as well as of the habits and customs of workers. Of their thoughts, or of his own he says little, but much is implied by his method of nothing extenuating , or setting down aught in bitterness. The editor's work consisted merely in curtailment of the numerous repetitions and unnecessary details that such an unpractised hand was liable to.

      Karl Fischer was not in any sense a hero, even to himself. The value of his self-portrait lies just in the fact that he is so completely the average man. I can only compare him in this respect with " Bettesworth," and the contrast between the English and German type, as exemplified by the two, would lead to many interesting reflections. The father, a baker, brought him up in a God-fearing fashion, teaching him to read and learn by heart the Bible, and in his own inarticulate way, perhaps loved the boy. Karl speaks of both parents with a curious sort of impartiality, quietly remarking that there were perhaps faults on both sides.

      This unimpassioned tone is one of the valuable qualities of the b X k. It reflects perhaps that general acceptance of things as they are that oftentimes astonishes those who have attempted to learn something of the thoughts of the poor. Kail Fischer's memory and power of visualisation are remarkable and his fidelity to fact is literal to the verge of dulness.

      For example, he was for a long time engaged with other men in digging and carting earth for the railway works. Each workman had his allotted station for digging, and if one got into his neighbour's ground he used some form of objurgation or remonstrance. Fischer fills a page with all the different ways in which the several workmen expressed this same very simple idea.

      Now and then he gives an incidental character sketch, but above all the man himself stands out self-portrayed, yet without conscious self-analysis. He says, for example, of some conduct of doubtful morality, " It was not in me to do such a thing. One section is significantly and succinctly entitled " Krank " ill! Afterwards he became somewhat more prosperous, and worked as an artisan in the Steinfabrik stone-works at Osnabriick.

      Finally he takes leave of his readers in an amusing and yet pathetic scene. Having in vain appealed against what he felt to be his unjust dismissal from the Steinfabrik, he solaced himself by shouting from outside the door to the director within, " Well, here I am outside, come out yourself then from your office! You can't stay there any longer! Take yourself out in good time! You'll send people away, will you, who have been working here ever so long, whom you know nothing about!

      Who has made you a director? And vet as we follow him through his toilsome career, we cannot but admire the courage of the man, the helpless, dogged struggle not to be drawn under to the ranks of the submerged, the dumb doing of duty, scarcely even supported by the sense of duty, the dumb, unresentful endurance of suffering and want. Herr Gohre states that the man " is by no means a Social Democrat, has a strong religious sentiment, and is to this day full of reverence for the Emperor. After two volumes of the Denkwiird- igkeiten had been published, Dr. Gohre rescued some further fragments from oblivion and put together a small volume of sketches, " Aus einem Arbeiterlehen " from a workman's life.

      Apart from its value as a revelation of the class to which he belongs, Fischer's own quality appears gradually unfolded with more of rarity than appears at the outset. Even as regards literary style his book has the value of its simplicity, and that purity of language which comes from having studied mainly one book of first-class merit, namely, Luther's Bible.

      In fact, he reveals himself as of an essentially fine, though essentially reserved and hidden, character, and with an ironic humour in addition to that more common fortitude of the poor already noted. He is a man who could be affectionate, though not passionate, did circum- stances allow, but whose lot is cast in such wise that he has never tasted the joys of domesticity.

      He has no pride in honest work, like the ideal labourer of a rich man's fiction, neither has he any shame for the fate that leads him, after a long illness, to become a tramp and a beggar, though the beggary resulted in an imprisonment, the legality of which he neither questions nor resents. To outwit the constable, and to escape the disagreeables of life in any way even slightly illegitimate, is accepted by him as in the natural order of things. He is not precisely God-fearing, yet has a Protestant contempt for the lip-worship of Roman Catholics, and is too sincere to perform the ritual expected from wor- shippers at the Catholic services in the Kempen Hospital, where illness detained him for some months.

      For the writer has no arriere-pensee that such or such a sentiment migiit haply be acceptable or otherwise to the " visitor. The later phase, when a sense of solidarity and esprit de corps develops, belongs to political as well as social history, and will be spoken of in a later chapter.

      💝 E Books Collections Under The Sea Djvu 0716679086

      In the meantime, I will refer briefly to the treatment of " The Poor," as distin- guished from the working-class, by novelists and play- wrights. These naturally tend towards the lurid, for the evils of poverty are only tolerable to the spectator when they are visualised as pictures, in which the deep shadows are compensated by rare streaks of light. Below the stratum, then, to which the Karl Fischers belong, we find reference to poor basket, or broom-makers, weavers, sweated workers and even to street loafers, prisoners, and outcasts of all sorts.

      Such beings arouse a profound pity in certain writers, pre- eminently the brothers, Karl and Gerhardt Hauptmann, whose chief successes are just the portrayal of outcasts. These, and other less known writers, seek industriously to discover the underlying humanity hidden and covered up under the concealing mask of wretchedness. Their work is useful, in so far as they can succeed in making their person- ages interesting. But here, particularly, the lack of humour which strikes English readers, nurtured upon Dickens, or even upon Pett Ridge, when they enter first into German literature, is abundantly evident.

      The German poor, it would seem, are merely wretched, chilled, hungry, despairing, without any of that buoyant reaction that we find in corresponding English types. Perhaps it is safer for the comparatively prosperous to cultivate an attitude of intoler- ance towards the miseries of the poor, and indeed a similar note is creeping into our own fiction. The social conscience, on all hands, and in nil countries, is becoming aroused, and laughter is swallowed up in pity.

      Those German writers whose theme is poverty make us feel it the hateful thing it is. Presently, two, then three other men were walking near him, then ten, twenty, at length big crowds, always, as it were, clinging to his side. He turned to the right and left, looking searchingly into all the faces. Some were pale and silent, others red and angry ; some had eyes set wide apart, glowing between the high cheek-bones; others, faces on which the skin hung loosely as on those of the dead.

      And below the faces, always the same lean, tired-looking bodies thinly clad in rags.

      Der Untertan by Heinrich Mann

      It is, after all, actually a superficial view, for one may safely assume, even such a crowd of undistinguished men would have among them salient types, recognisable by themselves, and still more by a writer of genius. Only the profoundly pessimistic regard all such men as equally miserable, and cherish the conviction that the remedy for poverty is hardly to be found. It is implied that we have, and shall have, the poor always with us. The indignation of the Hauptmanns, and their like, does not lead them to suggest solutions of the problem, unless these are to be found in the mere contemplation of facts as they are.

      On that side, in attention to veracious detail, as in the passage quoted above, the Germans are strongest. It is one of the main theses of this book to show that on the side of reform, social regeneration, or whatever one may call it, they are, as it were, struck by a kind of paralysis, an atrophy of the will, which comes, I cannot but think, from having given up the habit of faith in the good governance of the world. The great novel of modern industry is still awaiting its creator.

      Perhaps it can only be written when present con- ditions are beginning to recede into the past, and some new combinations, already dimly seen on the horizon, have emerged. That of the English is slightly humorous, of the French resentful, of the Germans perhaps bitter. But when one makes use of the expression, "student," one is reminded how much the problems of poverty have been dealt with from the outside. All over Europe we were beginning to try not only to understand, but to know, if needs be from our own experience, what poverty truly is, and to approach the poor as individuals and as human beings, not as objects of charity.

      The professional philan- thropist was not so much in evidence until recendy in Germany. Accordingly the novelist, in writing of outcasts, had not to step down mentally. He had only to project himself into such lives just as he would into those of other sections of the community with which he had no personal acquaintance. The poor workman who writes of his own struggles makes no reference to charitable ladies, or philan- thropic agencies.

      He is on his own legs for good or ill. And the poor working-woman achieves deliverance, so far as she does achieve it, by union with her fellow-sufferers, not bv helping hands from a higher social stratum. The lady, or woman of the middle-class, is suspect by the genuine working-woman ; she is in evidence as a rescue-worker, or as toying with Socialism, like our fashionable slumming ladies, but Mrs. Jellyby is not a German type. In truth where landless men are rare in the country, and where town workmen are mostly combined, it is surprising that poverty on a large scale can still continue.

      Accordingly poverty — so far as it exists — is not held to be blameworthy. The philanthropist who " does not so much love the poor, as hate his ways," is exchanged for a person of benevolent thought, rather than of action, and a fatalist to boot, who tolerates the defects due to want of means, perceiving that the cause — poverty — is itself unavoidable.

      When an attempt is definitely made to combat evils, we get into the region of Socialism and politics, and away from poverty proper — of the altogether helpless kind. Brutality as from the highly placed to the inferior, is predicated in German novels of the officer, or N. The born gentleman's complacent condescension is not admissible into a system which recognises the State as supreme, the State which was identified in the German view with God, and which imposed in actual fact the levelling function that Christianity performs in theory.

      It is difficult to'judge whether there was more hope for the individual poor than among ourselves. Probably the national virtue of " Tiicktigkeit " did make it possible for many poor men to rise above the border-line of poverty, and a brainy artisan could achieve a highly-paid post as manager or expert adviser in some special department of industry. This did not, however, prevent what the brain-worker himself felt to be exploitation of his talents, and resentment hence arose, among the semi-professional as well as in the working-classes, strictly so-called, against the capitalist system which made this possible.

      Engel now published in the Reclam edition, Freytag The problem of plutocracy versus aristocracy is dealt with from the point of view of a quasi-hberal of that epoch, namely, with the assured conviction that work is the best condition for all classes of the community. The Buddenbrooks are a family of merchant princes, residing presumably in the author's birthplace, Liibeck.

      Their progress and gradual declension in social prestige is presented with startling vigour and vividness, beginning with the weekly Thursday gathering of the clan at the house of old Johann Buddenbrooks. Johann becomes Consul, i. He is a more deli- cately drawn Dombey ; he builds a fine new house and splendid music-room, which becomes the new place of family reunion.

      But Hermann Hagenstrom, a Jew, is lying in wait to trip up the pride of the Buddenbrooks. The period covered by the history of the Buddenbrooks included the beginning of the new epoch after Reference is made to the Franco-Prussian war, but an intense and concentrated interest in local and family affairs, and in the life of the town, is the note of the story. Buddenbrooks will probably take rank as the classical example in faction of the narrow intensity of the old burgher class. Knoop, lies midway in thought and treatment between Buddenbrooks and WiskoUens.

      The story is dated in the sixties, when a new and strenuous generation was rising from the ashes of the spent Revolution. The author came of a patrician family of Bremen, and he probably pictures that ancient commercial town in this and a later novel. Die Hochmogenden. Large scale production, i Max Kretzer' s Meister Timpe desciihes the gradual ruin by the new Fabrik of a craftsman of the old tj'pe working with his apprentices. But though vastly inferior, it has the geniality so plentifully lacking in its proto- type, and for that reason has numbered its tens of thousands of readers against Mann's thousands.

      The Wiskottens are a cheerful family of good masters, founders of a Fabrik which has its home in one of the side valleys of the Rhine. The Fabrik and its surrounding town, consisting of the workpeople employed there, is the equivalent of Port Sunlight and similar creations of modern industry. Large scale distribution. Die Ehre, in which the honourable manager marries the partner's daughter. Soil tind Haben. The last pages of the book are devoted to the apotheosis of Wagmus, and the opening festivities of the huge new stores built by the architect, Cornelius Arbst.

      After having his brain exploited for the benefit of the firm, he reaps his reward in the hand of his employer's daughter. An infamous marriage. See Wagmus. Joshua arranges for his second wife's lover to marry her niece pp. High finance. Wedekind, Der Marquis von Keith. The so-called or rather self-styled " Marquis " is an adventurer of nameless origin, who wanders over the face of the earth betraying men and women for the sake of his speculations.

      Roguery on a colossal scale. Micawber type. Tobler in Der Gehiilfe, by R. Autobiography, i Adelheid Popp. An English translation of the short, poignant autobiography of Adelheid Popp was published in 2. The author was born in at Inzerchorf, near Vienna. Frau Popp is now one of the acknow- ledged women Socialist leaders.

      She married happily, and found her- self in a family group, including her husband and her brother, of like mind with herself. She was left a widow in , with two children. Her autobiography appeals, like Fischer's, to readers of literary taste, quite apart from interest in economics. His autobiography is accessible in English form, but hardly belongs to Bellettristik.

      Awaiting their English translators : — 3 Lily Braun's Memoiren einer Socialistin see above covers the whole ground of industrial develop- ment from individualism to socialism.

      Felix Krull Thomas Mann (Teil 3 von 4) Hörbuch

      The writer speaks as an eye- witness of the earlier and abortive strikes, which her own class the aristocratic regarded as mere rebellions, to be put down by force, and even cruelty. Then she notes the gradual evolution of organised labour, and finally the various points of cleavage between Labour men themselves. With her husband named Brandt in the novel she joins the party of which Bebel was the acknowledged head, and of him as well as of other notable Socialists vivid pictures are given. Bertsch, a German workman living in New York — a veiled autobiography.

      The Poor apart from politics. Gerhart Hauptmann. The greater number of his plays, as well as the novel, Emmanuel Quint, diveconcQined. Die Weber was not only his earliest success, but remains in some sense his most earnest contribution both to the dramatic and the social problem. Its period belongs to pre-industrial-revolution times, and records a rising of the Silesian weavers in , of which the poet's grandfather, himself a weaver, was an eye-witness.

      The work of Gerhart's elder and less able brother, Carl Hauptmann, deserves attention on account of its prevailing tone of sympathy. In two plays, Die armen Besenbiender and Die lange Jule, and in the sketches called Schicksale, he descends to the lowest types, and yet makes them human and pitiful. Less well-known. Schmidtbonn's Der Heilsbringev The Saviour. Joseph Weingarten, skipper of a Rhine boat, is a half- crazy prophet, who aspires to be the saviour of the poor, but without thought or forethought lands them and himself in a bog of confusion and tragedy.

      Outcasts, i Aufder Insel, by the pastor, Fritz Phillippi. A volume of short stories of criminals imprisoned in an island fortress. Exploitation of talents. Kerkhoven, by Korfiz Holm. Nothing strikes the English traveller so forcibly as the presence of the small landowner in countries like Germany where peasant proprietorship prevails. We feel ourselves indeed in a foreign land when we get away from the big towns which tend to assimilate to a type European rather than national, and come upon men and women working in the fields w'ith that persistent tenacity and minute attention that proclaims the owner rather than the servant.

      If we are fortunately able to converse with them, we usually meet with the courtesy that one expects to find among social equals, and may even discover the vein of humour that lurks beneath a sluggish exterior manner. Though his com- plete enfranchisement fromseffdom only dates backward for about a century since , it has since been a recognised policy with German statesmen to encourage the small land- owner Bauer by all manner of customs and institutions, while admitting the necessity, nay, even insisting on the value to the community of the man of large estates Gross- grundbesitz.

      She has learnt from the mistakes and experiences of her neighbours. So many forces in modern life tend towards the gradual extinction of the peasantry that strong counteraction is needed, which the German Government took pains to supply. Yet despite these efforts writers of a conservative turn lamented the exodus towards the towns, and reformers wrote propagandist tracts in the guise of fiction upholding the virtues of the simple country life, and the value to the State of a sturdy peasantry.

      The war, which has stimulated the " Back-to-the-land " move- ment in England, may perhaps have emphasised the same trend in Germany, and while our peasantry may possibly be revived, theirs may be saved from extinction, and thus, as seems likely in other matters, our land systems also may ultimately approximate.

      In the meantime, it was only the more observant, or the more pessimistic, who noted or feared the gradual disappearance of the peasant class. An English reader is struck in their fiction, as he is, in fact, by its manifold variety, its ubiquitous presence and vitality. The solitude of country life tends to idiosyncracies which easily become elements of comedy or farce. The lighter journalists and sketch-writers make use of these, but novelists dwell with even more gusto on the serious or tragic sides of peasant life.

      The varied environments of North, South, or East Germany give them a chance not to be missed of land- scape painting. And the popularity of novelists whose per- manent renown will be due to their Heimatkunst skilful use of local colour is closely associated with their first-hand knowledge of peasant life.

      For the son of the peasant follows the lure of the big town Grossstadt , and takes to literature as a profession, only to return perhaps in later life to the paternal farm, disillusioned, and ready to vaunt the village ways which he has spent his best years in escaping. Much of the " Back-to-the-land " problem, as it appears in literature, is due to the jaded sensations of the townsman, as writers themselves often perceive. The novelist admires, too, that love of the soil, of " Mother Earth," or " the Earth," which is another form of love of country. We see the peasant, after his military service has been duly performed, returning with longing to his ancestral Gut farm , conscious that here, too, he has a duty to the State as well as to him- self.

      But candour compels the painter to show another side to the idyllic picture. A man's iittachment to his farm may be of such tenacious sort, that he even grudges the inheritance to his only son, and keeps him in the position of a Knecht labourer long after the period when he should be settling down in marriage — the happy possessor of land of his own. The sentimental view of the " merry peasant " whose brow is wet with honest sweat and all of whose dealings are square and upright, was put forward just at the time when a new order was beginning to threaten, in which small men of all sections of the community seemed liable to be swallowed up by the whales of commerce or industry.

      The sentimentalist is always with us, and looms larger perhaps in German fiction than in any other. Thus, one of the tribe, in a centenary novel of the war of freedom took the opportunity of preaching the virtues of the industrious vine-dresser who transformed barren acres and a devastated homestead into a rich and smiling patrimony.

      And novelists of higher standing have vaunted the occupa- tion of farming as in itself the best moulder of character. But the material progress of the successful peasant leads just as inevitably to grossness and the ordering of life on merely material lines, as success in commerce and industry. Thus the marriage of convenience is shown in the German plays, as in those of Ireland, to be a peculiar characteristic of the peasant class.

      The landless, or portionless maiden, however attractive, is out of the running in the matrimonial market as against well-portioned girls. We have pictures of rebellious wives and revolting daughters fleeing from the simplicity of rural environment to the garish town, as well as of the more conventional type of prodigal son. These wives and daughters do not, as in English fiction, belong to the labouring class, though they are drawn away at times by actual seducers. They share the universal feminine restlessness which characterises every modern nation, and which has its special manifestations in each country.

      Sometimes they are frankly for pleasure, and repelled by the gravity of a too strenuous husband or father. Sometimes they make pretence of desiring the life of intel- lect and culture which is not to be had among boors and animals. These types are needed for fiction, for upon them depends the tragedy or pathos, or, less often, the comedy of country life. The town-rake, too, is to be met with here and there, caught and converted at last by the delights of labour and the improvement of his very own soil.

      And in contrast, we have the hungry wrath of the landless man, the scum of the town, led into villainy by the mere fact of being dis- possessed of his inheritance of "Mother Earth. He smiles at times at the theoretical knowledge of the townsman in these matters and, like all practical men, is ready to back his own experience against mere book teaching. But his own practice is not mere rule of thumb ; it is based upon sound scientific principles.

      The frequent references to the " Machinist " as one of the indispensable employees on the farm indicate the common use of labour-saving appliances, and the necessary brain labour that accompanies them. There is a tone of equality between the Knecht labourer or Magd girl , the hirelings on the farm, and their employers, the Bauer and his wife, who differ scarcely at all in manner and dialect, and hence arise tragic situations. For the latter, especially if he rises to the posiiion of Grossknecht foreman , may ultimately attain to a Gut of his own, by way of marriage with his master's widow or daughter, or by dint of hard saving.

      The son of the peasant may, as we saw, become a professional writer, or a school- master, or priest, and can, if he pleases, make good use of his knowledge and understanding of country life in either profession. The to and fro of professionals between the farming and shop-keeping class, as well as the prospect, not too distant to be worth striving for, of the rise of the Knecht to be a Bauer, has something to say to that democratic note that surprises English observers, who begin by assuming that there is no democracy outside their own land.

      We need constantly to recall the fact that no man or woman in Ger- many belongs to the ranks of the uneducated. Finally the farmer may rise to the importance of becoming a member of the official class, or an Ahgeordneter Member of the Reichstag. The decay of the peasantry is, of course, most obvious in districts which have been filched from agriculture and given over to Grosseindustrie. The aesthete may lament over these as well as the social philosopher. But a more insidious enemy than industry is the luxury that accompanies it. The jaded capitalist in his hours of ease looks for relaxation in some beauty-spot far from town.

      And so the home of the peasant is invaded, his modest dwelling is bought up, pulled down and converted into a palatial hotel, where metropolitan tourists may lounge at their ease and enjoy the scenery with whose creation they have no other concern. These are the real tragedies of the soil from the world stand- point. Loss of beauty in a landscape is a ravage that Time seldom repairs, and when to this is added the loss of character due to the super-imposition of a luxurious class upon the simple aborigines, the mischief seems even less reparable.

      The genius of a nation, as of an individual, is, however, shewn not in idle laments, but in ils power to revive what is good in ancient and lapsed customs, renewing them in adaptability with the march of ineluctable events. Thus his ancient tree-worship is justified of the new gene- ration. The typical novel of peasant life which attained marvellous popularity in very short time belongs to North Germany. Gustav Frenssen's novel, Jorn Uhl, which begins with the remark, " In this book I will write of toil and trouble," gives the best serious view of the life of a peasant in its externals that can be imagined.

      We have the life-history of the hero, Jiirgen Jorn Uhl, from his cradle upwards. His mother dies in giving birth to a girl-child, leaving him to be at the mercy of a drunken ne'er-do-weel father and gambling, wasteful brothers. Jorn is saved for better things by the faithful servant, Wieten Penn. He gradually takes control of the ancestral farm, but in spite of all his efforts, things go from bad to worse, Klaus Uhl, his father, trusting to the inherited good fortune of his family, and not observing that his capital is being devoured by the riotous living of himself and his elder sons.

      There is another family of Grays, hereditary rivals of the Uhls, one of whom makes his fortune in America, while his father continues as a day-labourer on the Uhls' farm. The incentive to Fiete Fritz Cray is his love to Jorn's young sister, Elsabe Elsbe , but she makes an unfortunate marriage, and disappears for many years from the life of her brother. She dies in child-birth, leaving him a little son, but the hope has gone out of his life. He struggles on until the inevitable bankruptcy, which has long been staring him in the face.

      In the meantime, he has been educating himself in various ways, studying privately astronomy and engineering. He turns out to be a born engineer, and the rest of his life is spent in constructing canals and in similar pursuits. This brief outline gives little idea of the novel, the cumulative effect of which depends upon various striking episodical passages that have little connection with the main theme. Thus there is the episode of the girl whose inherent physical modesty struggles with her natural impulse towards a suitable husband.

      She is cured by catching sight of Jorn, bathing by night in a lonely tarn, unseen, as he supposes, as she drives home from a party with her lover. Then there is Telse Dierk, the sand- lass, who dwells in a lonely cottage so as to be saved from the man who has married her best friend, and afterwards discovered that Telse's passion for him and his for her is a life-long sentiment.

      And there is a pretty episode of love at first sight at a peasant dance. The upshot of all these incidents would appear to be that, according to Frenssen, the love affairs of the peasant are serious matters, and that chastity on both sides is not exceptional. He is incapable of drawing a real personage. He gives truly the externals and the intermittent emotions of the peasant, so far as can be guessed, but no single one of his heroes stands out as a rememberable type. The majority of novel-writers are at one in their admira- tion of the peasant class as a whole. Where they point out defects, it is not in the increase of luxury or the abandonment of pride in work, such as forms the burden of the complaint of our own would-be renovators of the country-side.

      It is rather the essential narrowness of outlook that is indeed in almost every country noted by observers as the prevailing fault of a peasantry which, with freedom from overlordship, is also without the stimulus and guidance that comes from dependence upon a superior social class.

      The Peasant plays which obtain in out-door or country- side theatres are artificial enough productions. Neither plays nor players are genuine of the soil. Yet by preserving the recollection of native costumes, dances and dialect, they form a useful link with the past, and prevent the entire oblitera- tion of the old order. The folk themselves, too, like to see the mirror held up to themselves on the stage, but the players are, as often as not, ordinary professionals who make a specialty of dialect pieces, just as Chevalier specialises in Cockney.

      The plays have less value as literature, and are less typical of genuine country life than our Hilden- borough or Grasmere plays. They deal with long-lost daughters, or estranged sons, in a sentimental style, or they are funny in a common or vulgar sense. Their raison d'etre is precisely that of a costume play in the ordinary theatre. There is an exception in the case of the Passion Plays, at Oberammergau, Brixlegg and other places, which are still played by peasants, though they come more and more under the control of professional management.

      Here, too, the actors keep up their dramatic interest by secular perform- ances of genuine folk-plays in the intervals between the periodic religious festivals. A certain number of them drift inevitably on to the professional stage, but a village com- munity which combines the interests of wood-carving and play-acting with cultivation of the soil would seem to have elements of permanent vitality.

      The Passion Play, and all connected with it, has been so exploited by foreigners in recent times that your cultivated native looks upon it with scorn. The many writers who make their home in Munich merely smile when the inquisi- tive traveller questions them about Oberammergau. There seems no reference to the peasant play in handbooks of literature, nor in the innumerable Heimatkunst stories and novels to which I have referred. Possibly their influence on the community is less than one would be inclined to suppose.

      Burte, Wiltfeber, der ewige Deutsche. Herzog, Die Burgkinder. Aram, Schloss Ewich. Frenssen Baltic Coast. Thoma Bavaria , Anzengruber Austria. Hauptmann Silesia , P. Kosegger Styria. Herzog Rhine , C. Viebig Eiffel. Fritz Router's Ut mine Stromtid set the fashion of a sort of apotheosis of the peasant class, which waa follow d by the above-named writers. Lure of the big town. Peter Camenzind, by H.

      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)
      Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition) Der Roman Buddenbrooks als Portrait der Wilhelminischen Gesellschaft (German Edition)

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