“Die Problematik des Begriffes der Avantgarde.” Hardt, ed. G. B. Pickar and K. E. Webb (Munich: Fink, 1979), 8. In Reinhard Sorge's The Beggar, a play written in 1910 and performed some five years later, a discussion between various literati in the obligatory coffee-house turns upon a recent dramatic work which is regarded as trivial, typical of an age whose writers lack, ‘the intense confirmation from the Beyond’ and ‘the Spiritual’; the third critic puts forward the following categorical statement: ‘We are waiting for someone to interpret our destiny anew—this is a dramatist whom I would call truly great. For by calling up a conventional romantic or sublime topos (the heavens, the sun) only to thrust it down into the context of the all too mundane and earthly is to produce an anti-aesthetics: a reversal of conventional aesthetic values which “shocks the bourgeois,” frustrates his or her institutionally nurtured expectations and offends his or her sense of cultural propriety. It is worth noting for example that the dadaist manifestations and “happenings” which Bürger cites as typically avant-gardistic forms (through which art is “confronted” directly with life and with the shocked reactions of the audience) took as their precedent the expressionists' provocative and often shocking “literary cabarets,” in which their fantastic stories, dissonant poetry, and often grotesque one-act plays were read or performed. Ed. Last Updated on February 4, 2016, by eNotes Editorial. “Gleich einem Zug grau zerlumpter Strolche, / Bedrohlich schwankend wie betrunkne Särge.” Klabund, “Ironische Landschaft,” Lyrik des Expressionismus, 208. The “pathetic” artist has to convey his own dynamic impulse to his public, if ever the antithesis is to be resolved—and those whose resistance cannot be turned into cooperation through rhetorical persuasion must be destroyed so as not to endanger progress. As we shall see in chapter 4 (on expressionist melodrama), the hysteria and the hyperbole characteristic of the movement underline this expressivity. The definition which, because of its abstract character, could be interpreted in terms of traditional poetic theory, therewith not only yields a convenient summarizing “label,” but also illuminates certain aspects of the relationship between expressionism and the German literary heritage. In a similar way, with the examples from Lichtenstein above, the referent of the poem becomes a mere vehicle for the metaphor, so that the traditional rhetorical hierarchy between the two elements is overturned. Menschheitsdämmerung. Examples of this attitude would be the “Ich-” and “Stationendramen”, the doubling and splitting of characters throughout the texts of the movement. Clearly this position can no longer be upheld against the historical breakdown in discursive fictions of order, and such uncomplicated attitudes towards representation in the previous generation give way to a profound skepticism with regard to mimesis amongst the expressionists. ———. Lyrik des Expressionismus. ———. Manifeste und Dokumente, 132. Already a member? 1905-1933. The essence of Schillerian pathos is that the will successfully resists the emotions. A broad selection of these writings are collected in Anz and Stark (eds. 140-155. To argue, then, is not only to provide arguments for or against a thesis; it is, as Jean-Blaise Grize puts it, “a process that aims at exerting an influence on one’s opinion, attitude, even behaviour” (Grize 1990, 41, the translation is Amossy’s). Expressionismusdebatte. Goebbels had also written a drama Heinrich Kampfert and left parts of a religious play Judas Iscariot. This pause for grief and sympathy on the part of the reader fulfills, on some level, the emotional need of the poet to be recognized and validated in his mourning. Stuttgart: Kröner, 1976. The beggar, the woman, the doctor and the madman all represent aspects of the Unknown One's psyche, and they move before him on his journey of self-exploration. II: Stilistik (Halle a/S, 1911), p. 48. No matter how perfectly it may apply to a certain text, a work written by Goethe or one dating from the seventeenth century should not be regarded as expressionist. 11 Beneath the favour of the court in France, he says, art has suffered. Literatur und Kunst 1910-1923 of the Schiller-Nationalmuseum, Marbach a.N. To Damascus portrays the soul's struggle to find and transcend itself, the ‘characters’ being mere emanations from that soul, symbolising powers with whom the Unknown One is in combat. “Nebel.” Rpt. Manifeste und Dokumente, 124. 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