Friday, 20 July 2018

Music in the Third Reich - Then and Now


 By A.V. Schärfenberg


A grim portrait of modem American music was presented in issue #120 of The New Order. How could it have been otherwise, given the Jews' domination of our culture? It was no coincidence that fine art in the U. S. was trashed at the same moment National Socialism triumphed in Germany. The kosher corrupters who scurried away from Europe beginning in 1933 were the same alleged 'artists who poisoned our musical life. We need only look around at the laughably deplorable state of modem American composition and performance to appreciate the magnitude of their disastrous impact.

Elsewhere, Aryan culture was suddenly freed from Jewish domination and blossomed into a late 2nd Millennium Renaissance. Naturally, the source of that Western revival was Adolf Hitler's Germany. It is nothing short of miraculous that during the brief twelve-year period of peace allowed the Third Reich, such an incredible burst of dynamically creative musical achievement took place. The spirit of Aryan genius could at last express its genuine instinct, uncoloured by the alien agendas of Jews hostile to everything German.

AN OPERATIC BATTLE

Generally regarded as the greatest symphonic composer of the 20th Century, Richard Strauss was urged by 'émigré' Jew impresarios to join them at New York's Metropolitan opera. They dangled lucrative performance fees to entice him, but he answered them indirectly by writing a public statement in support of the National Socialist Revolution, signing it in his own hand, 'Heil Hitler!' With the invention of the first sound tape recorder by Third Reich scientists, Strauss conducted performances of all his major symphonic works, recordings still prized as the best of their kind. During World War II, he composed a concert overture dedicated to the Japanese Royal House on the occasion of its 500th anniversary and to simultaneously commemorate the signing in 1940 of the Axis pact between Germany and Japan. His Metamorphoses, a tone-poem lament for the devastation wrought by the duped Allies on Germany, will forever serve as a deeply moving memorial to the worst tragedy in human history.

Strauss's contemporary, Hans Pfitzner, although not well-known outside of his homeland, was among the most important figures in neo-romantic music, and composed what many listeners consider his greatest works, a pair of symphonies in 1939 and 1940, respectively. Four years earlier, Pfitzner became the first 'Reich Cultural Senator'. The reputations of these two musical titans were so established in the world of art that not even the hysterical hatred of the Jews could destroy them, and their compositions are presently available to a larger audience than ever before, thanks to Aryan man's technological advances in audio reproduction.
What the Jews cannot destroy they poison!

Wilhelm Furtwängler the greatest orchestral director ever!

But what the Jews cannot destroy they poison. A case in point is perhaps the greatest orchestral director ever to take up the conductor's baton, Wilhelm Furtwängler. It would be untrue to suggest that he was a dedicated National Socialist. His life was music. Furtwängler was favourably inclined to our Idea, but he was too busy with his art for much of the outside world. As a musician who profoundly cherished traditional compositional values and no less deeply despised the cultural rot of the Weimar Republic, he often expressed his gratitude, both publicly and privately, to Hitler for kicking out the Schönbergs, Shaperos, et al, of the 1920's. Less than a year after the National Socialist Seizure of Power, however, Furtwängler found himself embroiled in an extra-musical controversy. He agreed to stage Matthias the Painter, by Paul Hindemith. Oblivious to and totally disinterested in both the story of the opera and the political identity of its composer, the innocent music director found his rehearsals being picketed by battalions of angry Stormtroopers.

It seems Hindemith, although Aryan, was a loudmouthed Communist and his Matthias the Painter a blatant propaganda piece urging its audience to take up arms against the government. "even if it had been elected"-- a transparent reference to the recent National Socialist electoral victories. Furtwängler dismissed the work's proletarian politics as so much out-dated flummery, especially in view of National Socialism's on-going popularity, but insisted the music was good. Performances would proceed as planned, he announced. In a short time, whatever artistic merits or demerits Hindemith's piece might have had were utterly eclipsed by a violent ideological storm gathering over the Berlin Opera House.

Assuming that the last of such Marxist drivel had been cleaned out after January 30th, 1933, the public in general and National Socialists in particular were outraged at news of the up-coming Red Opera. Meanwhile, scattered remnants of the country's enfeebled, dwindling Communists suddenly began to suck a reviving breath of life into their moribund movement and vowed to pack the opera house on opening night, just as they used to in the 20's. Even more so an he Communists, the Stormtroopers wanted Matthias the Painter to be staged, because they relished the opportunity of busting up the performance and exterminating the last of the Red vermin. Not without cause, the city police feared a serious ideological confrontation of the kind so common up until only a few years before. Indeed, it was to bring peace and order to public life that the voters had put Adolf Hitler in power. Even so. the National Socialist authorities were inclined to allow the performance, no matter what came to pass, if only out of respect for Furtwängler, who was, by then, an icon throughout the whole cultural world.

DR. GOEBBELS INTERVENES

Doubtless, Hindemith's music would have been heard, the old Reds would have had their last hurrah (better yet, the Stormtroopers would have beaten the be'jesus out of them all) and the controversy passed as a footnote in the history of the Third Reich. Instead. America's and England's Jew-dominated newspapers turned the premiere into a cause celebre of international proportions. With that, Dr. Josef Goebbels, as Reich Cultural Minister, decided to act. He addressed a long, polite letter to Furtwängler. The situation, he explained, had gotten out of hand. so much so that the enemies of National Socialism, to whom music was only as good as it was politically expedient, were using the impending performance for obvious, non-artistic purposes; namely, to incite hatred and violence against the new regime. Dr. Goebbels added that Hindemith belonged to a by-gone era when national greatness had been despised. The German people, after fourteen long years of difficult struggle, had overcome that shame Now was the time for art to extol the folk-genius of our Race, not down-grade it. He asked that the troublesome opera be shelved for the sake of present peace and future cultural development. But, if the conductor considered its music worthwhile, performance of an orchestral suite from Matthias the Painter could take place.

To the great disappointment of all, save the general opera-going public, Furtwängler responded with his own public letter, in which he heartily subscribed to each of Dr. Goebbels' objections, including his own observation, "There are moments when even art must make room for the good of something greater." Corning from such a fanatic musician, it was a deeply generous statement. With the cancellation of Hindemith's first and last chance at fame, the defunct Reds were disappointed because their own last chance for a big political demonstration evaporated, and the Stormtroopers were disappointed because they missed their chance to whup Germany's last Communists.

In all the hateful hullaballoo turned up by the Jews ever since, and whenever Hindemith's name is mentioned today, conveniently forgotten was the concert performance of Matthias the Painter, which did indeed take place in 1934, as Dr. Goebbels promised. The piece was even recorded in a Third Reich sound studio under Furtwängler's direction in 1934! That this concert version of musical highlights was not much performed thereafter only means that it failed to generate any lasting hold on concert-goers' imaginations, a failure which persists to this day, since it is not often heard, even though it is still touted as some kind of anti-Nazi masterpiece. Indeed, the opera which was supposed to have been too wonderful for the Nazis to appreciate or tolerate, was a huge flop when ostentatiously performed in New York. Since then, it has never again seen the light of day.

It turns out that Hindemith was not such an interesting composer after all, and the controversy surrounding his name had more to do with his obnoxious politics than his own music. Overlooked, too, is the fact that, despite his Red identity, he was allowed to compose, perform and even record in the Third Reich, hardly the tyrannical system the Jews would lead us to believe existed. Hindemith grabbed the U.S. Jews' offer of cash and fled with sheaves of his useless scores. Apparently, New York's kosher environment was less inspiring than that of evil old Nazi Germany, and his artificial reputation withered away into virtual oblivion. Happily, he lived long enough to see his life's work savaged by Jew critics in the 1950's, when they ridiculed him as 'hopelessly obsolete.' True to character, his one-time kosher benefactors eventually turned on their 'righteous Gentile.'

THE CRUCIFIXION OF AN ARYAN MUSICIAN

Only the newspaper Jews overseas manipulated by the Matthias the Painter situation to their advantage, portraying it to gullible goy readers as proof positive that great music was being suppressed by the Nazis, to whom Furtwängler had weakly capitulated. However, they, too, were soon disappointed when, sure he would defect following the Hindemith affair, they offered him (as they had offered Richard Strauss) large performance fees with the New York Philharmonic.

He turned them down and, after war came, was personally active in donating a great deal of concert time to soldiers and factory workers. Audiophiles for decades considered his greatest recorded achievement to have been a performance of Beethoven's 9th Symphony, the Choral, given in the presence of Adolf Hitler on the occasion of the Führer's 55th birthday, April 20th, 1944. Until the very end, Furtwängler was still giving public concerts in Berlin. His last Reich recording (the Cesar Franck Symphony in D minor) is the best performance ever made of that work. It took place in the cataclysmic days of January, 1945.

The Jews castigated Germany's 'Nazi dictatorship' for censorship, a lie, as cited above, when Hindemith was allowed to perform. But immediately after the war, German artists were prevented by the occupation forces from working. Only those who could suck up to the Allies by loudly proclaiming their anti-Nazi sentiments stood a chance of employing their craft. The very censorship the Jewized Allies falsely condemned in National Socialism they practised themselves when the chance came along. Among the proscribed was Wilhelm Furtwängler, even though he never held any post in the Reich government He was not a Party member, and had never even voted for a National Socialist candidate.

The occupation authorities promised he could resume his conducting career if he agreed to sign a public statement begging them for forgiveness for his past participation "in the criminal Hitler regime." He refused, declaring his life then, as always, had been entirely musical, not political, and he objected to the accusation that he had ever been part of anything 'criminal.' The ban against him was upheld and he had to subsist on the charity of friends.

The Jews and their Gentile dupes in uniform tried to show the Germans that their culture was better off under Allied occupation than with their own, elected, National Socialist government. Trouble was, with all the country's real artists dead, jailed or censored, there wasn't much culture to go around. Desperate to maintain their facade of democratic civilisation, they returned to Furtwängler with a watered-down version of the statement presented for his endorsement two years earlier. This time it read something to the effect that he publicly condemned 'totalitarianism' in all its forms, without mentioning National Socialism. He unhesitatingly signed the document and was allowed to resume his musical duties.

'DEMOCRACY, SMOCKRACY!'

Although Furtwängler's return to the podium was greeted with universal acclaim, his performances mostly lacked the greatness of his wartime and pre-war conducting. Many concerts he held were surprisingly disappointing. The old fire seemed to have died out in him. Only occasionally was it seen to flare to life. While a few appearances, such as his performance of the Choral Symphony, at the re-opening of the Bayreuth Festival, exemplified the full scope of his genius, more typical were his lacklustre renditions of Beethoven's and Bruckner's works, his long-time favourites. He had been a Wagner specialist, too, but his post-war recordings of Tristan and The Ring are indistinguishable from any average interpretations. Clearly, the maim was not inspired by post-war democracy. Yet, he was no different than artists of all kinds who reached heights of their greatness from 1933 to 1945. Immediately thereafter, Germany and the West fell into their steep decline toward cultural sterility and extinction from which they still have not pulled out.

Artists depend for their supreme achievement on high inspiration. The Third Reich was the most inspiring epoch in all of history, and its artists thereby felt their talents lifted by the greatness of the times. In the dismal, hypocritical world of the Allies sham 'victory,' there was only despair, not inspiration. This is no idle speculation. P roof may be found in the very audio legacy left by Furtwängler himself. His Third Reich recordings are today widely prized for their universal excellence. It is well-known among collectors that any Furtwängler performance dated before 1946 will be guaranteed for its high value, even if the technical quality is inferior by later standards, while his post-war recordings are largely shunned for their reputation as mediocre. Recording companies make sure that the date of a Furtwängler appearance is displayed prominently on the disccover -- if the performance occurred during the Reich. The dates of his post-war performances are virtually never printed, a sure sign to knowledgeable collectors that the concert was made under a democracy and consequently of relatively slight artistic merit.

Furtwängler's death in 1954 was followed by decades of commonplace conductors who consistently rendered the great music of the past in uniformly colourless renditions. Almost by chance, after decades of middling music directors, audiophiles rediscovered Furtwängler's old recordings almost by chance. For a generation oblivious to his art, his preserved performances came as nothing less than a revelation. Sharply contrasting the commonplace output of Leonard Bernstein, Seji Ozawa, Dean Dixon and other non-White non-entities from the 1960's to the present, his concerts were regarded as by far the best interpretations of great music on record. The international Furtwängler resurgence which began some twenty years ago not only continues today, but has broadened and intensified, Whenever another lost recording of his is discovered, it instantly shoots to die top of the best-seller lists.

THE RECASTING OF WILHELM FURTWÄNGLER

It was only a mailer of time, of course, before the Jews were alerted to the popular renaissance of this recalcitrant 'Nazi musician'. Banning his recordings or even making them quietly disappear by pressuring C.D. companies into discontinuing them would have lost the shrewd shysters new revenues generated by such sales. Instinctually unable to forego a financial profit, they took over the Furtwängler revival themselves.

In an irony typical only of unscrupulous Jews, the same clique who fulminated against him in the 1930's and banned him in the 1940's are peddling his recordings today. As tie most politicised creatures on the planet, however, they are not content with the vast revenues his C.D.'s net them. They must distort his memory to conform with their own perverse notions of political correctness. In justifying sales of his music and using their twisted image of him to propagandise their Gentile customers, the Great Masters of the Lie are now depicting Furtwängler as an anti-Nazi who secretly hated Hitler and stayed in Germany only to help save Jews from being gassed! While such a bald-faced misrepresentation would have flabbergasted the Allied Occupation authorities who banned him from performing, it is just one more piece of the deceitful chutzpah for which the Jews have long been infamous.

No one should then be surprised that the loudest spokesman on behalf of a de-Nazified Furtwängler is Hebrew Henry Fogel. He laments that this "righteous goy, oops, Gentile" was mistaken for a Fascist. The conductor actually loved Jews and risked his life to save them from Hitler, before whom Furtwängler gave his best performance on the Führer's birthday! Such demented 'logic' could only come from die profit-fevered brain of a crazed Jew. Now that his reputation has been sanitised in the mikvah of political correctness, we no longer need trouble our conscience when buying a Furtwängler recording. The past has been re-arranged to make things work for the Jews in the present. Such insidious duplicity recalls one of the brain-washing slogans concocted by Big Brother in George Orwell's prophetic novel, 1984: "Who controls the present, controls the past; who controls the past, controls the future."

But the revival of Aryan music under National Socialism spread through the 1930's and early 1940's beyond the borders of the Third Reich. Helga Rosswänge, Askel Schiotz and Thorsten Raif, who made their careers in Hitler's Germany, were, bar none, the greatest tenors Denmark ever produced, before and especially since the end of World War II. Years before the war, Belgium's greatest tenor, Marcel Wittrich, cut a recording of the concert aria "God Bless our Führer!", which topped the best-seller charts for most of the 1930's. Kirstin Flagstad, among the most important Wagnerian sopranos of the 20th Century, left the Metropolitan Opera, where her success in Die Valkyrie had been nothing short of stupendous, to join her husband in Norway. He was not only the country's leading conductor, but a high-ranking officer in the Nasional Samlung, the Norwegian National Socialist Movement. When a post-war return engagement at the Met was scheduled for her, Flagstad was prevented from performing by hysterical mobs of incensed New York Jews. They openly and successfully prevented a world-class artist from publicly performing for ideological reasons, the very thing for which they had so long falsely condemned the Nazis.

THE VENGEFUL GHOST OF WILLEM MENGELBERG
Mengelberg was dedicated heart and soul to Adolf Hitler.

 Like Furtwängler, Josef Willem Mengelberg's reputation was world-wide!

Furtwängler's only contemporary to approach and even perhaps surpass him on occasion was the Dutch conductor, Willem Mengelberg. His recordings, too, have witnessed a spectacular comeback, although in his case the Jews are far more uncomfortable. Henry Fogel cannot bring himself to utter a dispensatory word on his behalf. While Furtwängler was little more than emotionally or artistically sympathetic to National Socialism, Mengelberg was dedicated heart and soul to Adolf Hitler. we coined 1940's German invasion of Holland as his country's liberation from Jewish tyranny. Like Furtwängler, his reputation was world-wide and he would have been welcomed in the United States, where he could have lived out his life in safety. Instead, he publicly endorsed tie greatness of National Socialism at every occasion and performed all over the Reich. Even so, he was a vigorous champion of Dutch music and all of Holland's best modern composers owed their early success to him.

No less importantly, Mengelberg moulded the Amsterdam Concertgebouw Orchestra into what many regarded as the finest symphonic ensemble ever put together. The mans contributions to music are staggering and far exceed the limitations of this newspaper article to describe. Even so, he never joined any National Socialist organisation (Dutch or German), and did not work or he is war effort, save to perform concerts for troops on R&R., German as well as Dutch, and all the other Aryan nationalities who banded together under the Swastika to fight Soviet Communism. He was content to lend the weight of his legendary reputation to support National Socialism and did what he could for it with the thing he knew best -- conducting great music better than anyone else in the world!

For this harmless involvement in the Movement, Willem Mengelberg was sentenced to death in absentia (i.e., condemned without a hearing) by Holland's Allied-dominated supreme court after the war. Fleeing for his life, he found refuge in Spain. It is to Francisco Franco's eternal credit that he refused to turn over the proscribed musician to the Dutch authorities for extradition and execution. Broken in spirit and health, the maestro never again lifted his baton to call forth the incomparably magnificent sounds only he knew how to conjure from an orchestra. He died in exile six years later, condemned and despised by his own countrymen, but cherished and protected by beloved foreigners. The once supreme Amsterdam Concertgebouw he created declined under the mediocrity of more politically correct directors like bland Bernard Haitink, until the orchestra scarcely rated as a world-class organisation. Yet, his ghost is avenging itself on all these post-war no-accounts, who are rapidly being forgotten, while Mengelberg's recordings enjoy a resurgence of unprecedented popularity.

MUSIC'S DEBT TO FASCISM
Mascagni was also a dedicated follower of Benito Mussolini from the early days of the Duce's struggle.

Pietro Mascagni one of Western Civilisation's last great creators

A similar tragedy befell Pietro Mascagni. His Cavalleria Rusticana is one of the most often performed staples in the whole repertoire, and, with I Pagliacci, among the best-known operas in existence. Mascagni was also a dedicated follower of Benito Mussolini from the early days of the Duce's struggle. Through the 1920's and 30's and into the war, he held various posts in the Fascist cultural hierarchy and did much to promote the glory of Italian music. His long-time loyalty was proved during adversity, when he joined Mussolini (imprisoned by traitors in 1943, but rescued through the daring heroism of SS commandos) in the north.

With the catastrophic end of the war, Mascagni's name was posted on a death-list circulated by the same Communist partisans who murdered the Duce. Old and alone Italy's greatest living composer died of starvation and exposure to sub-zero temperatures while hiding from his would-be assassins in an unheated garret during the bitter winter of 1945. The death of one of Western Civilisation's last great creators was another legacy that belonged to the Allies' dishonourable triumph of brute force over culture. The legions of opera-lovers who continue, year after year, to applaud Cavalleria Rusticana are ignorant of the Fascist identity and deplorable fate of its composer.

They also applaud regular performances of music by Antonio Vivaldi, whose Seasons, particularly, has become an often-heard concert-piece. Recordings of the 18th Century Venetian's music sell in the millions, and it is recognized throughout the world as a pillar of Western art. Yet, were it not for the diligent research of a famous American Fascist working in Mussolini's Italy, Vivaldi's name and great achievements would be just as unknown today as it was before Ezra Pound made his discovery of the lost compositions. For this incomparable work of rescue, one of the greatest poets the U.S. ever produced was starved and tortured in a so-called 'tiger-cage' by his fellow countrymen after the war. His incarceration consisted of an unheated cell so tiny he could neither stand erect nor lay down full-length, a difficult ordeal even for a man younger than his 61 years. Do the Itzak Pearlmans of this world pay homage to the work of Ezra Pound, without whom they could not perform Vivaldi's music?
Victor de Sabata, a measure of the greatness of the Fascist era.

Fascist Italy also inspired some of the finest conductors of all time, and the best may have been Victor de Sabata.

Fascist Italy also inspired some of the finest conductors of all time, and the best may have been Victor de Sabata. Like Furtwängler and Mengelberg, recordings of his intelligent, dynamic interpretations, especially of Respighi, Beethoven and Puccini, are highly prized by collectors. As a measure of the greatness of the Fascist era in which he flourished, no Italian conductor since the liberal-Marxist take-over of 1945 has begun to approach de Sabata's achievements. Fascism inspired many extraordinary composers; among the greatest was Gian-Francesco Malipiero, who was also the most important musicologist of the 20th Century, largely because he restored the complete creative output of Claudio Monteverdi, the 16th Century founder of Italian opera. The huge, meticulous edition, nearly twenty years in the making, until its completion in 1942, is still sought after by musicians throughout the world as the most invaluable sourcebook of its kind. Malipiero's own 1936 opera, Julius Caesar, was based on Shakespeare's play and is a triumphant Fascist revival of the Roman origins common to all Western civilisations.

The racial-nationalist Finns, whose blue Swastika flag flew alongside Adolf Hitler's crusade against Soviet Russia, produced the most important composer in the history of their country and one of the finest of the 20th Century, Jean Sibelius. Another comrade-country, Latvia, enjoyed its golden age of composition from its independence in 1918 until its take-over by the Soviets in 1940, then again during the German liberation from 1941 to 1944. With the recent return of Latvian freedom, the splendid works of such composers as Janis Medich, who wrote during the 1930's and early 40's, are being heard with greater frequency by the outside world. Spanish Fascism lasted long after the post-war period with an equivalent endurance of great composition, as evidenced by the extraordinary guitar concertos by Joaquin Rodrigo in the 1950's.

THE UNMUSICAL ALLIES

Meanwhile, in the Allied countries, wracked with capitalist exploitation pitted against communist subversion, all the arts fell into decline. The lamentable condition of American music was examined in Issue #120. The situation was not quite as bad in England, but the country had nothing to look forward to under its increasingly Jew-dominated democracy of cultural sterility. Ralph Vaughn Williams, Arthur Bliss, Arnold Bax, Gustav Holst and their colleagues from the early part of the century were rapidly ageing with no one to match or exceed their monumental genius, save only Benjamin Britten, certainly the last English composer of any importance, who died in 1976. French musical creativity was sustained during the 1930's by one man, Florent Schmitt, a passionate Fascist, whose compositional greatness foreshadowed the Impressionists. Only his old age and status as France's greatest living composer saved him (barely!) from the post-war hangman's noose. His successor, Francis Poulenc, carried on the torch of great Gallic music. But since his death in 1963, the history of French musical composition is blank.

In the Soviet union, that Frankenstein monster of the Jews, their ludicrous efforts to mass-produce 'proletarian art' failed miserably. Having eviscerated Russian music in the 1920's, the Reds were at first alarmed by a strident nationalist style that suddenly burst forth in the work of Gentiles Serge Prokofiev, Rheinhold Gliere, Ipolatov Ivanov and Aram Katchaturian. These outstanding composers were allowed to proceed with their strongly folkish compositions, however, because the Soviet leaders knew that such art could be used to arouse patriotic fervour against the European fascists.

But after 1945, such ethnic sentiments, being no longer needed (indeed, they were dangerous to the Jews), were condemned. The same Russian composers who were honoured for writing 'patriotic' music when it was required to stir up national emotions against Hitler were denounced publicly and hounded personally as 'enemies of the Soviet people.' Some tried to please their masters by composing inoffensive music. those who could not were tossed into stinking Gulags. As in the allegedly 'democratic' societies of England, France and the U.S., serious musical composition died in the ex-USSR with Prokofiev in 1953.

The only bright spots in the musical world were those still illuminated by the sunlight of National Socialism. It is a heritage of which we who carry on in its name can be extraordinarily and justifiably proud. And when our souls are moved as we listen to a Third Reich recording of music heard and enjoyed by Adolf Hitler, we share a living, spiritual kinship with him others cannot understand. Despite the magnitude of the catastrophe that physically destroyed the Third Reich and its heroes, the music of that most glorious epoch survives for us to hear.

And it more than survives! The irrepressible force of its greatness is touching more listeners than ever before. The enduring triumph of the Reich's music represents a sacred sign, an assurance from God, that not far behind the echoing trumpets conducted by Furtwängler and Mengelberg marches just as invincibly our Movement!

Music Today


After we read the above article we realised how lucky we are today to enjoy the outstanding works of Rapping, Techno and the latest modern musical sounds, performed for us by talented and sensitive artists (photo). A gift to all of us, presented by wonderful record production companies who have managed to elevate our souls far beyond the horrendous music that was inflicted on the populations under the Fascist regimes. Thank God, modern democracy selects what we are allowed to hear, to see, to read and what we can say.

Tuesday, 17 July 2018

German culture and literature


DR. HANS FRIEDRICH BLUNCK
Honorary President of the Reich Chamber of Literature, Member of the Reich Culture Senate and of the Senate of the Academy of Literature

 At first glance it may seem strange that a poet and writer of fairy-tales has been chosen to write this article on German culture policy, when so wide a choice from among leading politicians was available. Perhaps, however, the selection was symbolic, because creative artists in Germany to-day are concerning themselves, as never before, with the rising and falling fortunes of their fellow-countrymen. Certainly that romantic age which consigned the writer to an isolated garret existence has gone for ever. If only in this respect, we, in Germany, have turned from the romantic period of Europe to the classic, when some of the great creative thinkers were also leading personalities in the State.

Another motive made me particularly happy to accept the invitation to co-operate in the writing of this book. I was born in Schleswig-Holstein, a country jealous of its Anglo-Saxon heritage, where we are all intensely aware of our relationships and where also, since the time of Storm and Kroger, we have been fully alive to the dual nature of the creative artist’s work. This duality, so frequently found in England, is probably a common inheritance.

Galsworthy, who was my friend during the last year of his life, always seemed to me to be the perfect example of a well-balanced individual, who possessed at the same time the attributes of a strong leader. He was an Anglo. Saxon of the type that we, in this Hanseatic land, appreciate and love – not only from personal sympathy, but also for old sake’s sake.

Occasionally I discussed with Galsworthy the part that writers could play in our restless Europe, and I still remember the tolerant smile with which he said that we writers would never be able to act and write as statesmen, because our ideals, conceptions and convictions must always be bound by some inward necessity. Perhaps, he said, our position may be, for this reason, particularly strong, and perhaps it may not be a bad thing for the people of our respective countries if, by using our imaginations, we can cover with some sort of nobility even the coldness and self-seeking prevailing in European politics.

In considering Germany’s present culture policy, a starting-point must not be made at the complacent and satisfied Europe which was commonly shown to the British and French reading publics before the German revolution. Instead, we must examine those terrible times through which our country passed, when it seemed impossible that it could ever rise again from defeat and hopelessness, especially the latter. A military collapse can never produce such bad effects as an injustice; the broken promise that lay between the Armistice and the Peace Treaty was probably that which most deeply hurt the feelings of our humanitarian population, and indeed still does. For long it seemed that all attempts to build up a new Reich were condemned to failure, and as if a death dance had begun which would end in the complete ruin of our thousand-year-old State. Let it not be forgotten that the Communists were on the point of securing the largest representation in the Reichstag and that all the restraints of the old order were breaking down. The middle classes, supporting a liberalism which they did not understand, and pervaded with the instinct of self-seeking and self-preservation, were apparently no longer in a position to offer any resistance. The currency, after one breakdown, was threatened with yet another collapse. Thousands of peasants were driven from their homesteads, which thus became the property of the mortgagees, and the workers – sick of unfulfilled promises – were definitely hostile to the bourgeoisie. Hundreds of pretentious developments in the sphere of the arts were hailed for a moment as substitutes for religion, only to disappear a few weeks later. Words and figures were bandied about, only to sink again into obscurity, like spooks which had strayed for a moment from the land of shadows. A small gang of alien immigrants from the east drew their profit from the sorrows of a whole nation, spreading like a blight over the country. The cradles stood empty, and everyone lived for the hour or the day because there seemed to be no future. Whatever sensibility or pride remained was destroyed by humiliations suffered through our foreign policy.

These were the conditions out of which National Socialism arose, and beneath its wing our “Wartburg Circle,” literature’s adventure against the forces of decay, was formed. The “Academy” remained firmly a left-wing institution, while the powers of progressive conservatism collected around Johst, Beumelburg, Münchhausen, Kolbenheyer, Grimm, Schäfer, and Vesper (the author of this article is, of course also a member of this group). The glowing poetry of certain younger men, amongst thern Anacker, Schumann, Böhme, Möller, Nierentz, Eggers Meusel, Brockmeier, Oppenberg and Helke formed an accompaniment to the political development of the times. Amongst the dramatists, I would specially mention Rehberg, Bethge, and Langenbeck.

There is no doubt that these groups were the first to awaken a response in the minds of the common people throughout the country. Post-war artistic achievement had no wide appeal, based, as it was, either on eroticism, or concerned with expressionism or cubism, and directed only towards a small public. The right-wing opposition, however, succeeded in winning the appreciation of the youth. Readers, turning away in disgust from the eternal psycho-analytical studies, found a young art flourishing in their midst, that reminded them of their national history, that made their country-side bloom again and whose subject matter was not limited to descriptions of city life. Here were poems, tales and essays for which the man in the street, almost unknown to himself, had had a secret longing. In short, the rift between writers and people, that had yawned wider and wider during the post-war years, started to close again. Here was a literature which – though not ignoring the old forms – was rooted in the countryside, was closely in touch with the feelings of the people but was also vitally connected with the political happenings which were then heralding a new era.

The culture policy of the State has shown clearly enough that the debt of gratitude to creative artists has not been forgotten.

Perhaps it should first be made clear what is meant by this expression “culture policy,” for misunderstandings arise only too easily in the babel of modern Europe.

It is the duty of the State to cultivate harmony between the political and private life of the people – neither more nor less. Therefore, without limiting, or acting against, the achievements of the individual, it seeks to promote the broad conception of “People’s Culture,” to encourage their inherent taste for decoration, for picturesque celebration and for their own ancient customs, and to direct these so that they conform to those “Christian ethics” which are valid throughout Europe. The German State also accepts it as a duty to discover those who are capable of speaking for the people, and who, every now and then, have tried to gain the light of day, only to be overshadowed by the acceptance, formerly so readily accorded, of foreign values. Those who wish to know something of this subject should read the book, The Tyranny of Greece over Germany, published by the Cambridge University Press. German history can reveal over and over again how the so-called educated classes kept their distance from the mass of the people, and attempted to form their own autocracy. The present Government, on the other hand, seeks to emphasise the connection between the old literature and the new, and the relationship of both to the people. This is not achieved by laying a compulsion of any sort upon the creative worker. The Government does reserve to itself, however, certain rights of choice and the right to issue recommendations. What other more fortunate nations accept as a matter of course, namely the possession of an art inherently national had still to grow up in Germany and to be assiduously cultivated.

This problem was solved in 1933 with comparative ease, largely thanks to the opposition of the “intellectuals” to the former regime, an opposition that had sprung up before the revolution.

Thanks are also due to the energetic preparation of the ground and to the intellectual values which the modern conceptions “Nationalism” and “Socialism” had been given in Germany since the pre-classic, the Sturm und Drang period, and since the time of Herder and the youthful Goethe.

Nothing, surely, could make a stronger appeal to the artist’s sense of justice than Herder’s conception of “Nationalism” – that is to say, the ordering of Europe in accordance with the self-governing rights of the nations, and the refusal to recognise any interference on the part of neighbouring States. I am well aware that the word “Nationalism” has a different meaning in every European country, and it is one of the Continent’s greatest misfortunes that this apparently universal expression creates nothing but misunderstanding and that we all mean something different when we use it. Nationalism in England means more or less the same as “Imperialism”; in France it means “Chauvinism”, while in Germany it means exactly the opposite, namely, the right of all nations, in the sense of Volkstümer, to develop along their own lines, within their borders. In Germany, in fact, it means nothing but an aspect of the old longing for freedom, the dream of a Europe in which the free nations live peacefully as neighbours.

Again, the religious sensibilities of the artist cannot be more profoundly stirred than by the conception of true Socialism, as the fittest expression of national solidarity. The rationalist, or Marxist, foundation of Socialism was overthrown because it was based on class warfare, but it was a Socialism grounded in religion that attained power in Germany with the arrival of National Socialism. I must go further: I must maintain that it did not only attain power, but it gave Europe the most perfect example of living Socialism extant, so far, of course, as this could be achieved by a people which disposed of no raw materials. It is hardly a matter for surprise that the artist, who ever inclines towards the essentials of faith and pity, eagerly embraced the theories of the new State, that he accepted Nationalism as self-government of the people, Socialism on religious grounds, and that at the same time he rejoiced exceedingly over the new and intimate relationship with all his countrymen, without the barrier of class prejudice that was the gift to him of the new State. I will not conceal that it was the younger writers of the new movement who passionately accepted the change, which was a difficult matter for those who had fought hard and long in the ranks of the opposition, and upon whose individualistic ideas the demands of the time placed hardships, which forced them for a space into loneliness. It may seem paradoxical, but I am quite sure that the new leaders of Germany are fully aware of the essential loneliness of the creative artist. All the same, however, German writers to-day know what happiness it means to stand before a crowded, youthful audience on a winter evening and to read to them ballads, stories or essays that meet with true appreciation. The writer who stands up and reads his works to a crowd of factory workers, and who sees the meaning of his words truly understood by them, realises enough to want to hold firmly to the relationship between writer and people, which seemed at one time to have been utterly lost.

Perhaps I have dwelt too long on the consideration of that background against which the astonishing change in Germany took place. I thought it necessary because so many of my English friends interest themselves in various details of the organisation of the Third Reich, but know little of the intellectual “behind the scenes” of the change; I might jestingly say that we, the third – or continental – Anglo-Saxon group, feel that we have a certain responsibility towards the Reich on behalf of our next of kin in the United Kingdom, and that we would so gladly restore the bridge that existed for five centuries between England and Germany, so perhaps my discursiveness may be pardoned. In compensation, I will answer more pointedly the questions – What were the practical measures taken in connection with culture policy in new Germany? and How was the close relationship between the State, the people and the artists – desired by National Socialism – achieved? For (and of this there can be no doubt) the relationship exists, even though the voice of complaint is now and again raised, and even though there are aspects of the achievement that could be improved. These things are unavoidable when sweeping changes take place. On the other hand, there is no organised opposition group, a fact that has led our neighbours (who cannot believe that it is really lacking) to suppose that it does indeed exist, but has been artificially suppressed. My friends, anyone who knows anything about the soul of a writer and about the courage of the creative worker, must surely also know that a real opposition cannot be suppressed, and must realise that the wonder of the German unity is that it is actually based upon true community of heart.

This miracle of which I speak is the more remarkable in that the economic situation of the artist was anything but rosy – as is probably always the case in times of revolution and change – during the first few months of the new regime. Adherence to it was, therefore, a sacrifice rather than an exploitation. It must be admitted at once that the State very soon took steps to ameliorate the initial difficulties, but such emergency assistance is not to the taste of the artist, who wishes to live by his work. Nevertheless, financial assistance given to artists during the first two years of National Socialism amounted to more than had been available for two decades before – a sign of how seriously the situation was taken. It was not long before the new theatre replaced the old organisation destroyed by the revolution, and before Kulturgemeinden (Culture Communities) were created which, even in the smallest German towns, invited writers to deliver lectures and readings, and made them the principal speakers at country gatherings. At the earliest possible moment attempts were made, through the organisation Kraft durch Freude (Strength through Joy), to bring to the ordinary workers their past and present heritage in literature, music and art. From the moment that National Socialism achieved power, it strove to make of the “proletarian” the “fellow-countryman,” equal heir with all to Germany’s intellectual kingdom. In 1936, no fewer than two million workers visited exhibitions and attended plays, and often lectures, organised in the factory buildings. Two literary “agencies” were set up, and helped in their own way: endless patience was expended in the reading of manuscripts, and it was recently announced that all the writings “hidden away in Germany’s old chests and cupboards” had now been examined as to their literary merit. Everything of value was handed to one or another of the great publishers, but in future it will be the task of the latter alone to make their selections.

Among the great organisations in modern Germany, there is scarcely one that has not concerned itself, either more or less, with the arts: they all possess literary departments. Successes have not everywhere been equal, but this was hardly to be expected during a period of four years of drastic change. However, good will has nowhere been lost, and we must realise that when we see excellent cheap reproductions of the classics and the best of the moderns being eagerly read in peasants’ houses, in the labour camps and in the barracks; our public buildings decorated by the work of living sculptors, and finally, the love of music being cultivated in villages as well as in city concert halls, then we must also see that work of much value is being done, which outbalances the occasional failures. This revolution, that outwardly forced political aims and social necessity so much into the foreground, and that found so many bitter words to utter against the “anti-social influence” of the arts, has, in spite of everything, greatly profited from the teachings of history. It is fully aware that artistic achievements alone are able to justify to posterity a change in the form of government. This new Government, composed as it is of members half of whom are men who originally intended to devote themselves to some creative work, knows, because of its inward religious convictions, the importance of artists as mediators. This government, rooted in opposition against rationalism, is well aware of the nameless longings of the people it governs, of their dreams that sway between heaven and earth, which can be explained and expressed only by the artist.

Perhaps more important than anything else that has been mentioned so far is the legislative attitude of the State towards the sphere of the arts. The position of the arts in the State was defined by the Chamber of Culture Law of October 1933, which represents something entirely new in Europe.

Probably the clearest description that I can give of this law is that it has given practical shape to the establishment of an artist’s guild or corporation.

The principle of the Corporate State, which has been applied to some of the changes made in Germany, has, for many decades past, been expressed in political writings. Other countries than Germany have concerned themselves with this idea: Literary Congresses in various countries have constantly urged that the relationship between the arts and the State should be defined, British and French delegates having been particularly insistent on this. No better solution has, however, as yet been found than to demand an unlimited “liberalism”-  whilst the corporate suggestion was consistently rejected.

The newer governments have sought another way out by reviving the idea of autonomic “Companies of Artists” such as existed in medieval times. The Chamber of Culture raises the groups of artists from the ranks of the people, and makes them self-governing. The duty of self-observation is also laid upon them. For the present the State has withdrawn various privileges, a withdrawal which certain individuals regard as limiting, and which they describe as “bureaucracy.” These privileges have been replaced by a Corporate Constitution, providing for several sub-Chambers, each of which is entrusted with the task of ordering the professional relations between its members and of assuming responsibility for their professional affairs. Each is invested with full legislative power. It should be mentioned that the activities of the Chamber are limited to German nationals, and that artists of foreign extraction are directed to set up their own organisations.

Altogether there are seven such sub-Chambers, those of Music, the Plastic Arts, Literature, Wireless, Press, Theatre and Cinematograph. They are united under the control of a central authority, whose decisions are binding upon all. A Reich minister stands at the head of the Chamber, and the individual sub-Chambers are mostly under the presidency of creative workers. For instance, the architect, Herr Hönig, was at the head of the Chamber of Plastic Arts and Richard Strauss was the former president of the Chamber of Music, which is now under the leadership of Peter Raabe. For two years I was privileged to be President of the Chamber of Literature, and I was succeeded by Hanns Johst, the famous dramatist and lyricist. Another writer, Rainer Schlösser, is at the head of the Theatre Chamber, but the Radio and Press are managed by experts in each subject, rather than by artists.

The decrees made by the Press Chamber have received more attention than those received by any other. There has been approval as well as disapproval. The latter is doubtless caused by certain hardships that are bound to be the result of any revolution: nevertheless we have through these prevented our revolution from assuming the proportions of the one in Spain, and I am convinced, however much the duress may irk the individual artist, that, even in this, we have pursued the right path. The great change in the press that has so served to stimulate and refresh us, is what I might call the” publicity” of subscribers and editors, which has completely swept away the influence formerly exerted by anonymous contributors of money, by certain economic circles and by interested denominational groups. The reconstruction is proceeding apace, and is based on the principle of the personal responsibility of the newspaper proprietor and his editors. Anyone acquainted with our press as it was towards the end of the parliamentary democracy must be well aware to what a degrading dependence upon industrial concerns it had sunk, and how many cliques – preserving touch with our foreign enemies – attempted to influence home policy in order to serve their private ends. All who lived through those times realise to-day how sane an effect the application of the principle of personal responsibility for word and deed has had.

I have nothing to hide or to extenuate, and I am perfectly aware that, at the inception of the revolution and for a short period afterwards, it was impossible to express a free opinion. This has rapidly changed. So long as attacks are not made on the State itself, and so long as nothing is published that could lead to a disturbance of the public peace, there is no ban placed upon the free expression of opinion. Do not let us always return to times that lie behind us, but when did the makers of any revolution permit any opposition propaganda to be published? Let us rather compare soberly the question of dependence and independence as it works out in Europe to-day, and, if we do so, we must admit that in the majority of countries around Germany (I forbear to mention names) where the press is still in the pay of economic groups and political parties, the freedom and security of an editor are far more severely restricted than in Germany. I think that in this respect (as in many others) the fact is not sufficiently appreciated abroad that a strong opposition is lacking not because it is suppressed in Germany, but because the conviction of opposition is also lacking.

The number of newspapers sold, which decreased between 1933 and 1934, has once more gone up, so that in many cases the original sale of the papers has been greatly increased. The attitude of the general reading public is most clearly indicated by their demand for those publications known to be free from any suspicion of outside influence, i.e., periodicals, magazines, etc. In 1935, their sales figures increased by 9 per cent. as compared with 1934, and a further increase of 15 per cent. is estimated to have taken place in 1936. These figures apply in connection with about 1,500 important magazines and periodicals. The Press Chamber, like the Chamber of Literature, dispenses a considerable relief fund, which expended over two million marks in 1934, and the same sum in 1936. An Act that came into force in April 1938 provides pension schemes for all editors of newspapers.

The Chamber of Music, apart from giving great support to the cultivation of music throughout the country, has issued regulations governing the fees paid to musicians. The International Congress for the Protection of Authors’ Rights, which recently met at Berlin, confirmed the fact that Germany had found the surest and quickest way of dealing with this distracting task. If we should now approach our neighbours with a legislative suggestion to make authors’ rights more secure internationally, we should do this not so as to snatch at a leading position for ourselves, but simply because, so far, we have in this respect gone further than any other country. What is probably the greatest proof of this statement is that unemployment amongst our German musicians, which amounted in 1934 to 50 per cent., is to-day insignificant. Every British visitor to Berlin, Munich or Hamburg knows that the repertoire of operas has been enlarged and that our opera houses are often “sold out” long before the dates of the performances, whilst – in 1932 – our actors and actresses frequently played before empty or half-empty houses.

The most difficult position in those earlier days was doubtless that occupied by the Chamber of Plastic Arts. The bourgeoisie that, perhaps without much taste, took pleasure in supporting the efforts of sculptors and painters, withdrew the greater part of its custom in this respect after the economic crisis of 1929, which led not only to the unemployment of the artisan, but also to that of the artist. The new Government felt itself compelled to set an example, and very soon no public building was planned without an artist having a share in its design.

The State has erected many buildings in the past few years, but the position is still very difficult. The new stratum which is to give private orders and commissions to the artist is forming very slowly. During the year 1935, the Chamber of Plastic Arts, apart from large sums expended on travelling, provided 800 old and young artists with holidays varying between fourteen days and four weeks in length. Further sums, reaching a very high total, were also spent in giving relief to artists who had fallen into poverty, and the Chamber instituted, or provided the stimulus for, between three and four hundred competitions offering valuable chances and prizes. The chief work in this connection is the provision of new facilities for exhibition and the training of a new class of would-be purchasers, a task which has met with very considerable success during the past couple of years. Europe’s finest exhibition building, the Haus der Deutschen Kunst, at Munich, was inaugurated by the Führer himself in 1937.

The Chamber for Wireless reports that the number of listeners increased from about 4,000,000 to 7,500,000 within the space of four years. I do not know whether this increase corresponds to those recorded in other countries. But I do know, from what I heard when I paid visits abroad, that the German programmes are popular outside the borders of the Reich, especially those broadcast by the Deutschlandsender and the short-wave transmitter, which are designed to keep our countrymen abroad in touch with the mother country.

There is little to say regarding the activities of the Cinematograph Chamber, under the first-rate managership of Professor Lehnich: the international prizes awarded to German films are sufficient witness of their effectiveness. The number of people who go to the cinemas has increased by 10 per cent. per annum since 1935.

The Chamber of Culture Law has probably been most effective in the domain of the Theatre and in that of literature. The theatres, which after 1928 grew emptier and ernptier, and which could attract a public only by producing the most sensational plays, were not in 1933 instantly able to win back their audiences. The continuous appeals of the new Government to the theatre-going public to encourage the arts, and the influence exerted by the theatre-goers’ organisations (which, for the first time, included the workers) little by little produced a change. The visitor to Berlin to-day is frequently surprised to find that all 40 theatres of the capital are playing to full houses, and that the theatre is actually in the midst of a great boom. The number of State or municipally owned theatres mounted from 155 to 178 between 1933 and 1936, and the number of people employed in theatres increased from 20,000 to 26,000. State subsidies to the theatre amounted to 12,000,000 marks a year, and were principally placed at the disposal of theatres with ancient traditions, which had fallen on evil days, but which nevertheless remained fully conscious of their local or classical importance. I have not space here to relate anything about the new plays that have been performed, or about the open-air theatre or the people’s theatre, which can accommodate up to about 5,000 persons. It would be better to hear an expert in these subjects, and still better if English people would make a trip through Germany and see for themselves what is being done.

Under the Chamber of Literature are organised not only writers, but also booksellers and libraries and everything that has to do with the production and distribution of books. When the Chamber of Culture Law was passed, the book trade had an ancient organisation of its own, and there was also an Authors’ Society of little importance, which concerned itself solely with financial matters, and which was becoming more and more an institution of the great cities alone. It is putting the situation in a nutshell when it is said that the movement of 1933 was nothing more nor less than a rising of the regional instinct against the exaggerated centralisation in the capital. It is certainly true that literature very plainly revealed that its support was for the healthy movement, rooted and grounded in the people and the country, against the circles of eastern emigrants and undesirable groups in the capital. In spite of the unrest of the times, a strong impetus has been given again to regional forces in literature.

Economic protection remains, of course, an important part of the Chamber’s work. The advisory bureau on legal matters has been re-established, and disputes between publishers and authors mostly yield to arbitration, both parties being members of the same Chamber.. Subsidies from the State, and privately offered contributions, make it possible to give assistance in cases of real distress, through the instrumentality of the Chamber.

All these, however, are means that were employed before, and they do not suffice for the work of the present Chamber. Soon after it came into existence and was provided with full power under the Chamber of Culture Law, it started to fight for the new rights of the arts. It has opened its own book trade school, at which hundreds of young people not only learn to know the literature of the Middle Ages, the Classical period and the Romantic movement, but learn also to form their own opinions regarding our present-day literature by discussing it with their fellows. Not only this, it has caused the 10,000 lending libraries of Germany, some of which catered for a very inferior taste, to increase their stock by about 33 per cent., in which they had to include the classics and some at least of the best modern writings selected from the literatures of all nations. The Chamber of Literature was also able in 1935 to offer a number of prizes, which were the result of private subscriptions and which represented a value of about 2,000,000 marks.

One of its best ideas has proved to be that Book Week, organised each autumn, in which everyone is asked to examine his books and to buy whatever he can afford to improve his library. Book-buying, which had markedly suffered, has, since 1934, increased each year by about 15 per cent. This is a large increase when it is considered that political books, which were heavily bought during the pre-revolutionary years, monthly lose in popularity, and that book-buyers are found more and more amongst the youth of the country, who are eager purchasers of the omnibus collections published by the Insel-Verlag, the Diederichs-Verlag and the Müller-Verlag.

The passing of the Chamber of Culture Law was followed up by the formation of a Reich Senate authorised to deal with Germany’s cultural problems. It is composed of the presidents of the various sub-Chambers and a number of the foremost young writers and artists. From amongst these, experts are chosen to see that the new law is properly applied, and from them the State seeks to forge the instrument by which the intellectual leadership of the people may be made to march side by side with the political.

This is the position after four years of ceaseless, breathless action. We know, of course, that changes which give specific rights to the company of artists, the effect of which can hardly be appreciated as yet, need a decade or two in which to develop. We are pleased that, during these vital years, we have laid the foundations for the new order. We know that we have made a great many mistakes, but it is surely better to achieve something, even if mistakes happen, than to sit with folded hands awaiting the fate that seems to threaten the whole Continent.

Germany’s revolution is not yet over: the smoothing of the paths, the rounding off, is just beginning. We know that every revolution produces a number of restless spirits who have to sow, as it were, their wild oats before they can adjust themselves to the new order of things. Our task is not over: it has only just begun. But we are pursuing a road that daily becomes clearer. We are in the midst of a time which is characterised by a will, surely everywhere perceptible, to create juster principles of religious brotherhood and freedom amongst the nations, a Weltanschauung by which the arts are no longer regarded as belonging exclusively to the intellectuals, but as instruments in the hands of an all-pervading Power that guides our human destinies.

I have often spoken about these things with my friends abroad, many of whom still seem to think that the writer should be lying in the sun when he is not puzzling his brains at his desk. How in the world, they say, can you, for instance, who have just read us your poems and fairy- tales, possibly occupy yourself with matters of State? What have they to do with you?

I have already told of Galsworthy, who felt differently about this, and who devoted a great part of his life and his writings to the service of his people. I believe that we, the peoples inhabiting countries whose shores are washed by the North Sea, hold similar views on these matters, and that we also understand the dual task which has been laid upon our shoulders. And if people go further, and ask me whether I approve the restraint that is used and the “Prussianising” of the arts, then I, poor innocent, merely shake my head over the wisdom to be found in this world. Does anyone really believe that we, with our solid peasant stock and honest bourgeoisie, would permit restraints to be placed upon us that we did not voluntarily accept as a means to bridge over the difficulties of the moment? Does anyone believe that we – who, after many a hard struggle, have just regained our national unity – would be content with the policy pursued by the new Reich if, in our hearts, we disapproved of it? Does anyone think that we artists are so unemotional and passionless that we would calmly tolerate circumstances we were unable to support with all our belief-belief in a better world and a new fulfilment of our God-ordained task?

We will not utter reproaches, though it is often a bitter thing to be misunderstood. We want nothing but to build up our own State without external interference, and in the way we think best both for our people and for the young art that is flourishing with us now. May people learn to leave us alone, if they cannot understand us, because we have no designs on them and only desire to complete in peace the great work we have undertaken. But where we find sincere friendship we return it with friendship, and we only ask our friends to be patient for a little while, if they cannot comprehend everything that happens in the Reich. Our people, since 1918, have been compelled to bear almost unendurable burdens – is it then surprising that they are longing for a newer and juster world? We have won through to inward and are now awaiting outward peace and justice. We artists are probably the most strongly desirous of peace, because we are building the new homes of the four arts, and believe we are building them well.

Does this sound arrogant? I do not think so. We should learn to be more tolerant not only of the old, but also of the young. It should be realised that the spirit permeating our continent is one that has many aspects, and that it is variously expressed in every nation. Let us also always remember that the nations are not really so far apart from each other as jealousy and unrest would have them believe, and let us hope that the feeling of European solidarity, which our thousand-year-old history has taught us to appreciate and in the development of which we Germans would like to take our share, may once more be awakened. We artists of the Reich are teaching this creed to the children of our people. But we still miss the outside response.