Happy date of birth to kurt Tucholsky - the Weimar-era poet und satirist whose arbeiten has viel to teach united state today.

Du schaust: Kurt tucholsky satire darf alles


When things fragment, we look zum something solid kommen sie hold onto. Die ticker-tape of täglich disasters – a fire here, a shoot there, a pointless army adventure somewhere else – makes us fearful and afraid des the future. And so us look to ns past zum warnings missed, too as weisheit hidden. If we room really worried we may even anfang to check out poetry.

Kurt Tucholsky, ns Weimar-era poet und satirist born on january 9 an 1890, ist the man to rotate to an such times. Serving as a soldier bei the erste World War, he left his pistol leaning against a hut and walked far a pacifist. Bei 1919 the announced his life’s work: “I want finally zu pull the end all ns drawers of our German dresser to seen what zu sein to be found an them,” exactly ns darker sides of Weimar captured in the series Babylon berlin that returns bei 2020 zum a new season von flashing sequins, cabaret und murder.

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Described by writer Erich Kästner as “a brief fat berliner who tried to stop a catastrophe with a typewriter”, Tucholsky deshalb predicted ns ominous rise von the Nazis und another war in Europe, composing that “New cannons möchte come.”

There are echoes des the Weimar Republic bei our societies today. Rapid technical change was thought kommen sie corrupt the masses bei the form of radio, fixed media und talking movies that came von age in the 1920s, nur as social media ist thought to corrode our democracies now. Siegfried Kracauer, in influential critic rückseitig then, was caustic about the spread of unterhalten to employees gifted with leisure weil das the erste time, writing that: “No one could honestly say the a musical provides sense.”

But Tucholsky’s common-talk critique und cabaret das lied suited the era. His work was read out hinweisen political meetings, through one of his text comparing die German society Democrats (SPD) to “radishes, red on the outside und white on die inside”; it was also decidedly modern. Ns 1929 picture book he developed with artist john Heartfield, Deutschland, Deutschland by Alles, was a trailblazing attack on capitalism that prefigured popular music art, and later punk.

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Yet Tucholsky feel impotent. Die “Homeless Left” was the nennen given to him und others who were critical des both the spd - zum their teamwork with the military - and the German Communist splitterpartei (KPD) for their Bolshevik tendencies. Tucholsky felt that his fiery critiques, however they to win his opponents, constantly landed flat. Growing street violence und political and economic instability all added to the darkening mood.

In 1924 the moved kommen sie France, satirising xenophobia an a piece referred to as “The Foreigner:” “Everybody blieb behaves as if a an effective constituent von a fully unified tribe were coming zu us,” that wrote, “and not a miserable component of an anachronistic form of society. Und the much more powerless the natives are, ns greater die powers they believe the foreigner to possess.”

It's no surprised then the Tucholsky was annoyed über national maps. In “The Border,” from 1920, he rails against ns arbitrary lines that division people, composing that “neither borders or soldiers tun können separate men in the lang run if they do not want zu be preserved apart.” His city “The Trench” simply urges people to “Dump those flags!”

Just as bei our time, civilization living with the chaos of a failing economic system in Weimar Germany bathed an a dark nostalgia fuelled von dreams von a steady past. An “The Creed des the Bourgeoisie” (1928) Tucholsky transforms his fire on such dreams, like the view that “Under the kaiser everything was better” and “The entirety world is against Germany - out von envy.” Sound familiar?

“What kann sein satire do? Anything!” he as soon as wrote, but what would Tucholsky satirise today? His quick piece “In One Sentence” native 1925 gives us a clue. Bei it the writes that if “you lakers a einer who, through his chest thrown out, trumpets forth every word”; if you seen “a einer who is determined zu bring die full force von his personality zu bear on die most idiotic cause”; if you see “a einer who feels great only wie man he kann be impressive” the writes, then “you kann sein bet your life the this man is a nationalist.”

Therefore, in another time of rising nationalism, a time des fragments very much like his own, kurt Tucholsky’s works hold for us die following politics lesson: the things fall apart quickly wie you’re notfall looking; that “a country zu sein not just what that does - it is deshalb what it puts up with, what that tolerates.”

He has a life lesson for us too that uses whether she strolling through berlin or Baghdad, new York or Tehran; whether it’s sunny or cloudy; whether you’re holding bei umbrella or a warm hand - “Expect nothing. Today: that zu sein your life.”

Because zum Tucholsky, politics wollen always disappoint. However his satires also point to the possibility of a revolution-in-the-moment; a few des his sentences kann spin freundin out von your thoughts and days: “Relax. Let go of the steering wheel. Amble through ns world. The is dafür beautiful. Surrender kommen sie it, and it möchte surrender kommen sie you.”