Britain and the Weimar Republic: The History of a Cultural Relationship (International Library of Twentieth Century History)

Britain and the Weimar Republic: The History of a Cultural Relationship (International Library of Twentieth Century History)

Colin Storer

Language: English

Pages: 256

ISBN: 1848851405

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Between the two world wars, Germany managed -- despite all the political upheavals it was experiencing -- to attract extremely large numbers of British travellers and tourists. During the Weimar period in particular, Germany attracted visitors from virtually every section of British society. In this book, Colin Storer moves beyond the traditional scholarly focus on figures such as Christopher Isherwood and John Maynard Keynes to provide the first broad comparative study of British intellectual attitudes towards Weimar Germany. Based on original research and using striking examples from intellectual life and literature it highlights the diversity of British attitudes, challenges received opinions on areas such as the ""inevitable collapse"" of the Republic, and seeks to establish why Weimar Germany was so appealing to such a variety of individuals.

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As time went on he and those like him ‘became conscious of the vastness of the experience they had missed’ and that he ‘felt […] a little less than a man’ as a consequence.38 Similarly, Isherwood was deeply affected by feelings of guilt at having missed the chance to fight. In his early semi-autobiographical novel The Memorial (1932), these feelings of guilt at having survived the war while other, better men have perished are ascribed to the character of the neurotic, homosexual war hero Edward.

REPUBLIC Thereafter, the garrison ‘developed its own shops and cafes and theatres and clubs in the wide and diversified community which made up the Greater Cologne’.41 These included a military store in the Höhenstrasse, a bookshop, an off-licence, and even ‘a bakery which specialised in scones, crumpets and white bread’.42 ‘The principal club in Cologne, with staff complete, was requisitioned as an officers’ club’;43 two of the city’s theatres were taken over by the British troops so that they.

Nightlife endorsed by British visitors to the city. Lieutenant Colonel Roddie wrote that ‘[i]n the countless “Lokals” […] danses macabres were nightly, hysterically and wantonly held’.9 These nightspots mirrored the modernity of the Weltstadt and not merely in their relaxed social attitudes and their tolerance of nudity and/or homosexuality. The bars, nightclubs and cabarets of Berlin in the 1920s were home to the latest dance sensations and avant-garde cabaret acts, as well as the new jazz tunes.

From prison ‘resolves to dedicate the rest of his life to expiation’.26 This ‘quest for a cause’27 leads him to work for the secret service in Belgium and Germany during the First World War and then into the role of a sort of guardian angel for a number of prominent international personages, who, if they exert their influence within their various countries, can help to forge a stable and prosperous postwar world to replace the chaos and instability that Buchan, as much as his fictional hero, saw.

British journalistic community, but Voigt seems to have been fairly good at travelling outside the capitals of the countries he visited in order to see for himself what was happening on the ground, so it seems more likely that his attention was engaged elsewhere. Indeed, during 1923 most of his time was taken up with observing and reporting on the occupation of the Ruhr and the response of the Reich Government in Berlin to these events.34 Voigt cannot therefore claim, as Price did, to be one of.

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