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The Heart of Europe By J. P. Stern

The Heart of Europe
by J. P. Stern

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In this collection of essays, Central Europe is seen as a region with blurred edges, comprising mainly Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia. Concentrating on the era since 1900, it represents a mixture of literature, politics and religion.
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The Heart of Europe Summary

The Heart of Europe: Essays on Literature and Ideology by J. P. Stern

Central Europe, the venue of all these essays, is seen here as a region with blurred edges, comprising mainly Germany, Austria and Czechoslovakia - a region notorious for its national conflicts, but where reluctantly acknowledged family likenesses may one day prevail. The essays, most of them written over the last 25 years and revised, concentrate (though not exclusively) on the era since 1900. They represent a mixed bag of episodes from the literature, politics and philosophy of the region. Some were written to remind the reader that the heart of Europe has also been, and could once again become, the heart of darkness. Some are devoted to heroes of the resistance, others to philosophical fellow-travellers of one kind and another; some show how the revolutions of 1989 in the wake of defunct ideologies followed the same agenda in all the countries concerned; others again examine the relationship between literature, ideology and politics in the writings of Robert Musil, Jaroslav Hasek, Vaclav Havel and others. Since the author has tried to let each topic determine its own approach, the theory behind these essays is that there is here no theory - either "Marxist" or "Aryan", "critical" or "Postmodern", or any other. Throughout, the author has kept a close look at the language of his texts and its functions in different contexts, but that is, or should be, too obvious a procedure to merit the name of theory.

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Table of Contents

Literature and ideology; Bolzano's Bohemia; "words are also deeds"; on Prague German literature; the education of the master race, or history in Robert Musil's "Young Toerless"; the ideas of 1914 (Thomas Mann); war and the comic muse (on Hasek's "Good Soldier Sveik" and Heller's "Catch 22"); the rise and fall of random persons (on Spengler and Auerbach); Freud by a Freudian; inauthenticity - theory and practice (on Heidegger); Guenter Grass' uniqueness; the Matljary diary (Kafka);"The White Rose" (the Munich students' conspiracy of 1942-43); the gypsies; the man without ideology (on Johann Georg Elser); notes on the German army; Bitburg; in praise of integrity; the end of the Prague Spring; a crisis of identity; revising the German past?; the end of German communism; what is German?; Havel's castle; Canetti's later work; Marxism on stilts (on Ernst Bloch); Wittgenstein in context.

Additional information

The Heart of Europe: Essays on Literature and Ideology by J. P. Stern
J. P. Stern
Used - Very Good
John Wiley and Sons Ltd
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
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