Expressionism (literature)  

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"If Expressionism at the moment behaves in an ungainly, violent manner, its excuse lies in the prevailing conditions it finds


we ourselves have to become barbarians to save the future of humanity from mankind as it now is. As primitive man, driven by fear of nature, sought refuge within himself, so we too have to adopt flight from a 'civilization' which is out to devour our souls


[Expressionism is] a tocsin of alarm given out by all panic-stricken souls."

German snippets of the citation above:

Daß der Expressionismus zunächst mitunter ziemlich ungelrärdig, ja berserkerhaft verfahren muß, entschuldigt der Zustand, den er vorfindet


wir selber alle, um die Zukunft der Menschheit vor ihr zu retten, müssen Barbaren sein. Wie der Urmensch sich aus Furcht vor der Natur in sich verkriecht, so flüchten wir in uns vor einer „Zivilisation" zurück, die die Seele des Menschen verschlingt.


Zeichen des Alarms aller banger Seelen gibt der Expressionismus.

--Expressionismus (Hermann Bahr) (1916)

Related e



Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

In literature the novels of Franz Kafka are often described as expressionist. Expressionist poetry also flourished mainly in the German-speaking countries. The most influential expressionist poets were Georg Trakl, Georg Heym, Ernst Stadler, Gottfried Benn and August Stramm.


Two leading Expressionist journals published in Berlin were Der Sturm, published by Herwarth Walden starting in 1910, and Die Aktion, which first appeared in 1911 and was edited by Franz Pfemfert. Der Sturm published poetry and prose from contributors such as Peter Altenberg, Max Brod, Richard Dehmel, Alfred Döblin, Anatole France, Knut Hamsun, Arno Holz, Karl Kraus, Selma Lagerlöf, Adolf Loos, Heinrich Mann, Paul Scheerbart, and René Schickele, and writings, drawings, and prints by such artists as Kokoschka, Kandinsky, and members of Der blaue Reiter.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Expressionism (literature)" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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