By Matthias Konzett
Because the demise of Thomas Bernhard in 1989, the literary attractiveness of this advanced and particular author has risen to the purpose that he's now considered as an incredible ecu determine. Bernhard emerged within the Sixties as certainly one of Austria's significant writers, difficult the recognition of such validated writers as Heinrich B?ll and G?nter Grass at the German literary scene. His idiosyncratic prose comprises a tragic-comic mixture of issues reminiscent of suicide, insanity, and isolation mixed with hugely satirical and histrionic invectives opposed to tradition, culture, and society. As a skillful impresario of public scandals by way of verbal attacks upon Austrian elite tradition, Bernhard additionally earned himself the epithet of ?bertreibungsk?nstler (artist of exaggeration). during this artwork of cultural and political provocation Bernhard continues to be unequalled to the current day. This quantity of essays presents contributions via famous critics that research the main salient elements of Bernhard's paintings, delivering insights into literary techniques and public subject matters that made Bernhard one in every of Europe's masters of contemporary prose and drama. Essays study Bernhard's advanced inventive sensibility, his influence on Austria's severe reminiscence, his relation to the legacy of Austrian Jewish tradition, his consultant worth as Austria's best literary export, and his cosmopolitanism and its value for the swiftly altering multicultural panorama of Europe.Matthias Konzett is affiliate professor of German at Yale collage. he's the writer of The Rhetoric of nationwide Dissent in Thomas Bernhard, Peter Handke, and Elfriede Jelinek (Camden condominium, 2000).
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Extra resources for A Companion to the Works of Thomas Bernhard (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture)
7 Steven Beller, Vienna and the Jews 1867–1938: A Cultural History (New York: Cambridge UP, 1993), 244. 8 Brigitte Hamann, Hitler’s Vienna: A Dictator’s Apprenticeship (Oxford: Oxford UP, 1999), 6, 80. 9 Robert Schindel, Gebürtig (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1992), 15. ” die INTRODUCTION: BERNHARD AND THE AUSTRIAN AVANT-GARDE 21 wiener gruppe: a moment of modernity 1954–1960, ed. Peter Weibel (Vienna: Bundesverlag, 1997), 17. 11 Thomas Bernhard, Holzfällen. Eine Erregung (Frankfurt: Suhrkamp, 1984). 12 Hans Carl Artmann, med ana schwoazzn dintn (Salzburg: Otto Müller, 1958).
THE ESTABLISHED OUTSIDER: BERNHARD 41 Whether it is the descendant of Austrian gentry and Nazi collaborators as in Auslöschung, or Jewish survivors and their children in Heldenplatz, they are inscribed with the same contempt and despair. Both in Auslöschung and Heldenplatz the death of important individuals in the protagonists’ lives precede the main plot. Professor Josef Schuster in Heldenplatz commits suicide and Murau’s parents die in an accident. However, Bernhard’s protagonists suffer their own gloom and misery independent of these deaths.
Considering these historical facts leading up to the 7 genocide, the Eichmann debate, and the Eichmann trial in the German-speaking media and world-wide as well as the renewed attention to Nazi atrocities in literature, it is not surprising for the Austrians and Germans of the war and postwar generations to be sickened by their country’s history. Bernhard’s vehement lashing out against Austria by 32 DAGMAR LORENZ no means lacks motivation. As Gerald L. ” Even though Bernhard and most of his age cohort did not have to deal with the same burden as the sons and daughters of Nazi leaders, the following observations apply also to them: The generation responsible for the crimes closed all discussion.
A Companion to the Works of Thomas Bernhard (Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture) by Matthias Konzett