Culture and Inflation in Weimar Germany (Weimar and Now: - download pdf or read online
By Bernd Widdig
For lots of Germans the hyperinflation of 1922 to 1923 was once essentially the most decisive stories of the 20th century. In his unique and authoritative research, Bernd Widdig investigates the consequences of that inflation on German tradition through the Weimar Republic. He argues that inflation, with its dynamics of massification, devaluation, and the swift flow of cash, is an essential component of recent tradition and intensifies and condenses the event of modernity in a worrying method.
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Extra resources for Culture and Inflation in Weimar Germany (Weimar and Now: German Cultural Criticism)
In addition, their conscious yet not deterministic linking of economic and cultural dynamics provided me with both a tradition of cultural studies and a theoretical framework to which I can relate my own work. Thus, the present study attempts to move back and forth between the practices of “hunting” and “gathering” in the hope that the dialectical exchange between the two poles will bear some fruit. Both perspectives, therefore, inform this book. It responds, on the one hand, to an overarching theoretical discourse of modernity by presenting a general thesis about inﬂation and modern culture, a thesis that deﬁnes the way I conceptualize inﬂation as a cultural phenomenon.
Between 1618 and 1623 many German principalities suffered from a currency devaluation that had similar causes. Valuable silver and gold coins were melted and mixed with less valuable metals. Mint shops then produced masses of cheap coins of smaller denominations. France witnessed two currency devaluations during the eighteenth century. These are signiﬁcant because they were the ﬁrst to exhibit many characteristics of modern inﬂations. The ﬁrst of these devaluations is closely connected to John Law (1671–1729), the Scottish banker and ﬁnancial adviser to the French court.
Dürr has collected all kinds of cultural fragments and presents them in more than two thousand pages in his Obzönität und Gewalt: Der Mythos vom Zivilisationsprozeß to counter Elias’s teleological model and to argue that we are no more civilized today than a thousand years ago. ” At stake in the discussion were not only Dürr’s and Elias’s conﬂicting views on the process of civilization, but equally important were their very different methodologies and scholarly practices. Elias, “the hunter,” was, as a generalist, “symptomatically inattentive to detail, but extremely charismatic in his interest in grand themes and theories” (quoted in Lethen, “Kracauer’s Pendulum,” 37).
Culture and Inflation in Weimar Germany (Weimar and Now: German Cultural Criticism) by Bernd Widdig