Karl Kraus

Apocalyptic Satirist: Culture and Catastrophe in Habsburg Vienna

Edward Timms

View Inside Price: $48.00


September 10, 1989
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ISBN: 9780300044836
Paper

A fascinating study of the life and work of Karl Kraus, the Austrian satirist whose critiques of the mass media, the military-industrial complex, and technology running out of control have earned him a following fifty years after his death. Drawing on unfamiliar sources, Edward Timms analyzes Kraus's involvement in fundamental ideological issues of his time, such as psychoanalysis, social morality, design and architecture, the role of the artist, Zionism, anti-semitism, and war, and shows that Kraus' political position—caught between traditional Habsburg loyalties and new democratic commitments—was far more complex than has previously been suspected.
 

"Dr. Timms' book is a major landmark in Kraus' studies, and an important contribution to our understanding of the culture of the early 20th century. It abounds in discoveries and insights."—W.E. Yeats, Times Literary Supplement

 

"Timm's lucid prose, his masterly organization of the voluminous  material he treats, his excellent translations of the documents he cites and his broad, readable portrayal of Viennese fin-de-siecle culture make this study accessible to the average reader and a pleasure for the literary professional. . . . An example of German studies at its best."—James Knowlton, European Studies Journal

 

"Timms successfully weaves a colorful, and thoroughly researched and documented, account of essential cultural currents in Habsburg Vienna around his central figure. Copious illustrations and photographs enhance a most enjoyable text, making this an ideal introduction to Kraus and his work."—Choice

"A significant contribution to the study of early 20th-century European culture as well as to Kraus scholarship and should thus appeal to generalist and specialist alike. Recommended."—Library Journal
 


 

 

 

 

 

 

  



  

   
 
 
  
 

 
 
 

  

 

"Dr. Timms' book is a major landmark in Kraus' studies, and an important contribution to our understanding of the culture of the early 20th century. It abounds in discoveries and insights."—W.E. Yeats, Times Literary Supplement 
 

"Timms' substantial book, the first of two volumes, gives the impression of having been turned over in the mind as a whole with great care. It is soundly constructed, with every consideration for the reader, and well executed."—Nicholas Jacobs, New Statesman

"Timms' book is the first definitive study of Kraus' work up to the end of the First World War."—Richard Calvocoressi, British Book News

"Rather than being a literary biography, Timms' excellent book is a survey of the thematic resonances of Kraus' work."—John Forrester, Books and Bookmen

"Timms' book strikes this reviewer as the most original, judicious and balanced account of Kraus' achievement down to the year 1918 which has as yet appeared in the English language."—Robert S. Wistrich, Jewish Quarterly

"Timms places Kraus's betes noires in a context that elevates both them and him. The result is one of the richest compendia we now have about the  culture of pre-1918 Austria."—William M Johnston, Modern Europe

"[A] handsomely produced and beautifully illustrated volume. . . . Timm's work displays a profound understanding of Austria inspired by a love for that country and its culture. . . . Timm's lucid prose, his masterly organization of the voluminous  material he treats, his excellent translations of the documents he cites and his broad, readable portrayal of Viennese fin-de-siecle culture make this study accessible to the average reader and a pleasure for the literary professional. . . . An example of German studies at its best."—James Knowlton, European Studies Journal


"[An] important, skillfully executed study."—George Avery, Philadelphia Inquirer

"A substantial and provocative study . . . [that] effectively places his life and work in the comprehensive cultural context of the declining decades of the Habsburg empire and makes one look forward to Timms' second volume, which will deal with the satirist's activities during the troublous years of the first Austrian republic. . . . Timms' book is replete with detail, and in addition to numerous passages rendered into English for the first time it includes well-chosen and well-placed illustrations."—Harry Zohn, World Literature Today

"Timms successfully weaves a colorful, and thoroughly researched and documented, account of essential cultural currents in Habsburg Vienna around his central figure. Copious illustrations and photographs enhance a most enjoyable text, making this an ideal introduction to Kraus and his work."—Choice

 "A major contribution to our knowledge not only of this extraordinary writer, but also of the social, cultural and political milieu which helped to form him. . . . The splendid narrative drive of this book can only whet the appetite for the second promised volume which will complete the story."—Michael Butler, Journal of European Studies


"A major contribution to Viennese studies."—Steven Beller, Historical Journal 

"His thoroughness leads to many fresh insights and some unpleasant truths. . . . A major achievement, the best comprehensive treatment to date and an indispensable guide to the satirist's work for the English-speaking reader."—Leo A. Lensing, German Quarterly

"Timms's is likely the most important book on Karl Kraus written to date in English. . . . a penetrating, comprehensive, and developmental analysis of the man and his oeuvre."—Jay F. Bodine, Modern Austrian Literature 

"This book is a mine of invaluable information and will be an indispensable reference work for many years to come."—Frank Field, English Historical Review

"An excellent addition to Kraus scholarship. . . . A well-written, interesting, informative, and thought-provoking study."—Lynda J. King, Monatshefte

"This monumental study . . . promises to become a milestone in Kraus scholarship."—Peter K. Jansen, Journal of Religion 

"Timms' biography . . . deals with Kraus' life and times up till the completion of his huge and extraordinary drama about the First World War. . . . Timms analyzes all this very impressively. . . . This is an excellent book, both as history and as literary criticism."—Robin Lenman, History

"[Kraus'] work, though surrounded by silence, remains of the first rank. . . . Edward Timms has breached that wall of silence with this historical study, and I cannot imagine a more appropriate time, or a better job. No study of the early part of this century—whether of literature, drama, or politics—will be adequate without consulting this work. . . . Superb."—Robert Lilienfeld, SubStance
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