Frankfurter Anthologie: Frances E. W. Harper: More Light!

Whether or not the demand for "More light" were, in fact, Goethe's last words, philological and more as the controversial – and probably not so important. Cr

Frankfurter Anthologie: Frances E. W. Harper: More Light!

Whether or not the demand for "More light" were, in fact, Goethe's last words, philological and more as the controversial – and probably not so important. Crucial is the impact of the alleged dying words, and in this respect, the poem by Frances Ellen Watkins Harper is one of the literary historically, the most revealing documents: on the one hand, because it is the poem an African-American author of the nineteenth century, whose reference to Goethe at first appears to be anything other than obvious; and on the other hand, because the German Transmission of Stephan Hermlin is an early testimony of the socialist literature, politics in Germany.

Frances Harper, 1825, the daughter of free parents in Baltimore born, left behind as the author of a diverse body of work, especially poetry, but also prose, and Essays contains. As a journalist, public speaker, and activist, she fought for the abolition of slavery and supported the activities of the "Underground Railroad". After the civil war and the end of slavery, they fought against the racial discrimination and for the rights of women. All of this made her a national celebrity and much-read author. A spiritual home, she found the Unitarians, a believer free, politically and socially progressive religious community. Your encounter with Goethe's work is probably in order: For the Unitarians, in particular, for the philosopher, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Goethe was the most important intellectual responsibility man. Harper is in a literary tradition that spans the Emerson-a student, and Walt Whitman to the American exiles Thomas Mann.

A revolving door to the world concurrency and America-criticism

published between personal perception and distanziertem comment-changing poem, the Original title of "Let the Light Enter", is in 1871, in a collection with the simple title of "Poems". And also simply your interpretation of the last words of Goethe is at first glance. Unlike many of his followers, the stylized the "light" in the sense of the enlightenment symbolism with knowledge, translated, and so the Dying to the seeker of truth, rejects Harper such a spanned interpretation explicitly: "the greater gifts of the spirit" have Goethe asked in his last breaths, not "thoughts deep", but literally "the sweet, sweet sun" and "a current of, for the dear earth light". Harper understands the Situation shortly before the death as an elemental state, as a return to the Simplest and most humane: The "Laurel", as a sign of worldly recognition, breaks "slowly in the dust". According to the poem ends with a Vanitas gesture ("when life's dreams/Dissolved, gone with the wind, like sea foam"), and the invocation of the "Saviour" as the Almighty founder of the light and the life.

change of scene to post-war Germany, in the Soviet occupation zone. In the newly founded publishing house of the people and the world in 1948, the Band appears to be "I, Too, am America. Seals of the American Negro“. The compilation and Transmission of the exclusively by African Americans and Afro-Americans have written poems come from Stephan Hermlin. To open the life-long effort, the German reading public, "a door to a literary cosmopolitanism" (Heinrich Detering), the anthology project, as well as the political enslavement of the literature, especially in the form of the America-criticism and anti-capitalism. The collection is understood as enlightenment against the impulse to "cleverly-written reading à la 'gone with The wind' and hypocritical Hollywood products," in which the "Negro" would be shown, irrespective of their "worst possible situation," in the society, primarily as the "obedient" and "weird" – so we read in the Preface.

Updated Date: 03 February 2021, 05:19

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