Read Little Superman published by Creative Age Press Inc 1947 I suspect some shenanigans intrigue in the omission of the translator s name in the Penguin edition so I include it here Ernest Boyd As soon as I started reading this bk I found the central character insufferable He embodies everything that I detest hypocrisy social climbing spinelessness abusiveness fraudulence etc He is indeed a Servile Chauvinist Underling as Donson puts it I was about 13rd of the way thru the bk when I watched the movie learned that this was meant to be satire I suppose it shd ve been obvious to me that it was intended to be satire all along but it seemed entirely too realistic to really be caricature as the back cover of Man of Straw states Heinrich Mann brother of Thomas was imprisoned for his radical and outspoken views and spent a long exile from the country at which he aimed his bitter satire that s no laughing matter Mann was condemned in Nazi Germany for writing Un German works or some such but I don t think that the hypocrisy opportunistic cowardice that he so thoroughly portrays is intrinsically German It may ve reached a particular nationalistic fervor in Germany but it was hardly confined to there In fact Mann s parody of pper middle class Germany isn t so far off from the lower middle class Balti that I grew The Man They Wanted Me to Be up in I m reminded of a photographer that I once knew He incessantly ridiculed me for valuing anything other than money However once he started realizing that my willful rejection of the values that he represented was earning me some respect from others he tried to sleazep to me by asking me to pose for him as a photographer s model I refused Mann s novel is such a thorough look at the completely Literacy unscrupulous machinations of his main character that I can only conclude that Mann himself must ve been surrounded by such contemptible behavior Diederich is constantly betraying groveling ass kissing terrorizing wchever seems appropriate to his social position in relation to who he s dealing w Mann depicts thistterly brilliantly Diederich is constantly engaged in some sort of fraudulent dealings that he trembles at the thought of getting caught out at blusteringly camouflages نامه های عین القضات همدانی / جلد اول under cover of patriotic bullshit The library copy that I read has one sectionnderlined in ink that expresses Diederich s philosophy in the mouth of one of his cronies Die Plotter uite nicely Democracy is the philosophy of the half educated said the apothecary It has been defeated by science Some one shouted Hear Hear It was the druggist who wished to associate with him There will always be masters and men asserted Gottlieb Hornung for it is the same in nature It is the one great truth for each ofs must have a superior to fear and an inferior to frighten What would become of The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl us otherwise If every nonentity believes that he is somebody and that we are all eual Unhappy the nation whose traditional and honorable social forms are brokenp by the solvent of democracy and which allows the disintegrating standpoint of personality to get the Killing the Truth upper hand Two pages later the samenderliner highlighted part of this passage Diederich raised himself on his toes Gentlemen he shouted carried away on the tide of national emotion the Emperor William Monument shall be a mark of reverence for the noble grandfather whom we all I think I may say worship almost as a saint and also a pledge to the noble nephew our magnificent young Emperor that we shall ever remain as we are pure liberty loving truthful brave and true The At Any Cost underliner not thentertan emphasizes Diederich s claim of being pure liberty loving truthful brave and true w an exclamation mark next to it presumably bc these are all alities wch Diederich is completely lacking in Earlier I mention Diederich s philosophy but that s misleading In order to have a philosophy one probably has to have a mind capable of formulating a justified position to adhere to Diederich lacks even that he simply takes the most cowardly dishonest path of least resistance changes his political allegiances to kowtow to whoever he s most afraid of at the time In the East German film version a scene that exemplifies the preposterous bravuro posturing that Diederich his kind rely on for image building bullying is the duel The scene is also in the bk but I found it compelling in the movie It s common for men in Diederich s class to initiate duels w each other in order to simulate bravery Under the most ridiculous pretexts Sir You were looking at me that sort of thing men challenge each other as if their honor can bear no insult But as w cowards bullies the world over it s all Pretense They Know They They know they not taking any risks whatsoever As w generals who send soldiers to slaughter it s the soldiers who get senselessly killed while the generals safe elsewhere get the medals other social rewards These duels consist of nothing than 2 men heavily padded w one arm behind their back fighting w swords ntil one of them scratches the other on the face Even their eyes are heavily protected w goggles As soon as Diederich is scratched on the cheek he gets his scar that proves his bravery even though there s no risk of serious injury Diederich then Make Your Moment uses the scar as a badge of honor It s all completely ridiculous After Diederichnsuccessfully humiliatingly attempts to get Lieutenant von Brietzen to not leave Diederich s dishonored sister in the lurch he s walking on the streets Suddenly he noticed that the gardens were still full of perfume and twittering beneath the spring skies and it became clear to him that Nature itself whether she smiled or snarled was powerless before Authority the authority above Approaching the Guitar us which isite impregnable It was easy to threaten revolution but what about the Emperor
Monument Wulckow and Gausenfeld Whoever trampled others from nder foot must be prepared to be on that was the iron law of might After his attack of resistance Diederich again felt the secret thrill of the man who is trampled pon A cab came along from behind Herr van Brietzen and his trunk Before he knew what he was doing Diederich faced about ready to salute In one of the very rare moments where Diederich somewhat introspectively criticizes the worldview that he otherwise takes for granted Diederich sees his now dishonored sister Emma in a new light The lieutenant who had caused all this lost notably in comparison and so did the Power in whose name he had triumphed Diederich discovered that Power could sometimes present a common and vulgar appearance Power and everything that went with it success honour loyalty he looked at Emma and was forced to estion the value of what he had attained or was still striving for Guste and her money the monument the favour of the authorities Gausenfeld distinctions and high office Indeed Alas this critical introspection doesn t last long I noted earlier that these characteristics were hardly confined to Germans As Diederich bullies his employees he tells them But I forbid socialistic agitation In the future you can vote as I tell you or leave Diederich also said that he was determined to curb irreligion He would note every Sunday who went to church and who did not So long as the world is Last Whales unredeemed from sin there will be war and hatred envy and discord Therefore there must be one master This reminds me of Henry Ford There s an excellent documentary about Ford called Demon Rum in wch some important points about the ironies of Ford s moralism are highlighted particularly the way in wch his moralism helped create a subculture of thugs that he thensed to suppress The Art of War unions In the Wikipedia bio of Ford we find this The profit sharing was offered to employees who had worked at the company for six months or and importantly conducted their lives in a manner of which Ford s Social Department approved They frowned on heavy drinking gambling and what might today be called deadbeat dads The Social Departmentsed 50 investigators plus support staff to maintain employee standards a large percentage of workers were able to Introduction to Cinematography ualify for this profit sharing The Wikipedia entryalifies this by saying that Ford s incursion into his employees private lives was highly controversial and he soon backed off from the most intrusive aspects Be that as it may Ford s resemblance to Diederich is clear Making it even clearer is that Ford was an anti Semite who rc vd the Grand Cross of the German Eagle from Nazi Germany despite Der Untertan s having been written in 1914 about 19th century Germany it s very prescient about Nazi Germany In his speeches Hitler emphasized the nity of classes this despite his refinement of one of the most hierarchical structures the world has ever seen w himself of course as the supreme world dictator the LEADER der F hrer Only His Majesty Diederich answered He aroused the citizen from his slumbers his lofty example has made s what we are As he said this he struck himself on the chest His personality his The History of the Future uniue incomparable personality is so powerful that we can all creepp by it like the clinging ivy he shouted although this was not in the draft he had written In whatever His Majesty the Emperor decides for Nst the joint elevation of militarism and commercial values The Man of Straw is Diederich Hessling embodiment
William Monument Wulckow and Gausenfeld Whoever trampled others from nder foot must be prepared to be
Summary Der UntertanThink someone easy to love and adore think the exact opposite and you have Diederich Hessling DH anything you despise and loath will be prominent part of his character self centred phony corny crawling to the bigwigs and bullying the Sanzoku Ou - King of Bandits Vol. 9 underlings and convinced being part of an elite of a so called Herrenrasse master race later to become nazi ideologyNow imagine a 500 page biography of a person like that because in fact the entire plot of this novel is nothing else than telling DH s story there are no side tracks To make things worse none of the other protagonists in this novel is much likeable than DH himself perhaps with the exception of Agnes but she is only part of the first 70 pagesNot a book I would like to read fur sure well in 99 out of 100 cases this is the one out of 100 perhaps even the 1 out of 1 000How s thatWell first of all Heinrich Mann is a damn good writer Almost if not on par with Thomas Mann his younger brother and widely recognized as best German writer since JW Goethe Heinrich Mann might lack a tad of the effortless elegance in style of his younger brother he might be an inch less structured in plot development and his characters might be a smidge less meticulosly designed but his humor is lively he s not afraid to hint profanity where it may be found verynlike Thomas and his biggest virtue are perhaps the I call them slapstick action scenes no one at least no German writer is capable of writing a pub My First Glitter Book, Colors (Board book) uarrel there are a few in this book or a night at the opera in a VIP lounge Wagner s Lohengrin with such verve and intensity Those are almost stand alone short stories competing with the very best eg The Dead of James JoyceBesides being a superb writer Heinrich Mann he is also very empathic DH is a monster for sure but he is also very human and each of his character shortcomings are well known to most if not all ofs Every one of Bitva na Hackhamské pláni (Hraničářův učeň: První roky, us has reacted like DH would have on than one occassion so we feel embarrassed than once when reading this novel at lest I feltAnd finally Heinrich Mann is a man with a message Many ideology might have a worthy core but very soon turns to a simple game of power And not few people tend to be corruptnder any kind of ideology and tend to take personal advantage100 years after this novel has been published it is still accurate than anything which has been written in the last decade A searing indictment of Wilhelmine Germany The German title Der Untertan translates literally as The Subject and it certainly describes the anti hero of the piece Diederich Hessling who professes total nthinking loyalty to his sovereign Kaiser Wilhelm II Hessling worships Power above all things and if that power can be made to work toward his material advantage so much the better He relishes German military might bemoans democracy and wants women to concern themselves only with children kitchen and church parroting Wilhelm II s wife The Zeitgeist is summed p by one of the characters who tells Goodbye My Fancy us that the one great truth is that each ofs must have a superior whom we can fear and an inferior to frighten A must read for anyone interested in the Second Reich or Europe just prior to World War I Man of Straw also translated as The Loyal Subject is a razor sharp take down of the pper middle class buffoons who fervently supported Kaiser Wilhelm the same type of power worshipping nativists who later embraced the Third Reich The subject in estion is Diederich Hessling who spends his college years swilling beer with his frat brothers in their exclusive secret society the Neo Teutons ha and avoiding any type of intellectual pursuits while challenging anyone and everyone to duels of honor but not going through with those duels of course just issuing the challenges He worships the military but desperately tries to avoid service by pulling strings with his social connections to get a medical discharge by feigning minor health problems Weak bones A flat footIt s obviously a portrait of Wilhelm himself as Mann older brother of Thomas and How to Stop Your Grownup from Making Bad Decisions (Nina the Philosopher, uncle of Klaus describes Diederich as looking very much like the emperor even shaping his mustachepward in sharp right angles in imitation of the Kaiser But it s also a portrait that has The Vampires Bedside Companion universal application at times so accurately depicting certain modern American conservative warhawks and chickenhawks everyone from Donald Rumsfeld to Donald Trump but also their lackeys like Chris Christie and Ted Cruz that we begin to see Mann s brilliance in crafting this character these politicians like Diederich are not great men They are by and large average dolts The fact that Diederich looks speaks and acts like such national leaders Wilhelm specificallyndercuts their perceived Authority These Political Figures For These political figures for their pomp lofty rhetoric and gilded lives are no than ncouth half educated blowhards And on some
they know itMann is clear on the dangers of authoritarianism and the kind of people it attracts His portrait of Diederich might well describe any extreme right politician or supporter of this day Deiderich isn t too bright and is physically a coward but his wealth and status as the son of a industrial owner gives him both privilege and a superiority complex He lacks empathy and sees women merely as objects for his temporary pleasure or social status and so his marriage becomes a business deal and a poor one at that with a constant paranoid fear of blackmail hanging over his head as in most of his affairs He is a mamma s boy who talks bravely about the military and about wanting to duel those who dishonor him but who cringes at any possibility of confrontation His love of power causes him to worship anyone who wields it and to fall in line behind anyone who commands it without estion He follows the Church not because he believe in its values but because it gives him status and further scapegoats the Others who are not Christian In the case of Germany nder Wilhelm the Jews His wealth and status as a leader of industry are entirely inherited so he knows nothing about the business he owns As a result he takes out his anxiety and aggression on his workers who are brighter than him but lower in class so are nable to advance He fears them but his ego prevents him from acknowledging this fact This complex combination of physical weakness willful ignorance hyper nationalism capitalistic exploitation of the lower classes and worship of military power creates the loyal subject one who will be attracted to any powerful force Light Structures - Structures of Light upon which he can project his idealized andnachievable Self as a way to substitute for his own lack of will and inner fortitude He will follow anyone who advocates crushing or eliminating the weak or ndesirable not realizing that 1 these are his own flaws that his ego refuses to acknowledge within himself and 2 he is supporting the very power hungry authorities who will not think twice about crushing him as one of the weak His own insecurity and lack of self worth causes him to act against his own self interest but in the end because of his inherited wealth status and privilege he survives and even thrives safe in the bubble of his own foolish ignorance review of Heinrich Mann s Little Superman by tENTATIVELY a cONVENIENCE January 9 2012 I learned about this author in the course of research for my movie Robopaths I learned that his bks were burned by the nazis so I decided to read something by him to check out any movies that might ve been based on any bks by him This lead me to taking Little Superman out from the library as well as the movie The Kaiser s Lackey as well as to my buying a sed copy of the novel Man of Straw Lo Behold they re all the same thing As Andrew Donson Assistant Professor of History and German Scandinavian Studies the University of Massachusetts Amherst explains in the Interpreting The Kaiser s Lackey extra on the movie s DVD version The English title of this film is not a literal translation of the German one Der Untertan which is a difficult word to translate It literally means The Subject as in The Subject of the King but in current turn of the century discourse the Asimovs Science Fiction, July 2016 untertan has also an authoritarian connotation Various translators have rendered the title as The Patrioteer Little Superman Man of Straw The Loyal Subject An awkward but perhaps accurate translation of the title would be The Servile Chauvinist Underling The title of this film the same title as Heinrich Mann s 1914 novel on which it s based captures the main theme Diederich the story s central character is on the one hand a tyrant who lords over otherntertanen On the other hand he often finds himself in situations where he is the ntertan where others exercise their will over other hand he often finds himself in situations where he is the ntertan where others exercise their will over The essence and the humor of the film is that Diederich is happy in both situations The narrative of the film shows how the institutions that shape Diederich s life family school niversity brotherhood army workplace and government produce and regulate this authoritarian mentality As a sidenote for bibliophiles the Penguin edition 1984 that I have Man of Straw gives no credit to a translator yet it appears to be the exact same translation as the library edition that First published in 1918 Man of Straw is a sharp indictment of the Wilhelmine regime and a chilling warning agai. ,Level They Know ItMann Is
He good of the German people we will joyfully cooperate without distinction of creed and class Diederich s oratorical shouting is highly reminiscent of Hitler s Diederich is also reminiscent of the nazi SS officer responsible for transporting Jews to the death camps On the subject of Eichmann Hannah Arendt writes in her bk Eichmann in Jersulalem A Report on the Banality of Evil see my review of that here that What he fervently believed in p to the end was success the chief standard of good society as he knew it Typical was his last word on the subject of Hitler whom he and his comrade Sassen had agreed to shirr out of their story Hitler he said may have been wrong all down the line but one thing is beyond dispute the man was able to work his way Red Shoes for Lab Blues up from lance corporal in the German Army to F hrer of a people of almost eighty million His success alone proved to me that I should subordinate myself to this man His conscience was indeed set at rest when he saw the zeal and eagerness with which good society everywhere reacted as he did He did not need to close his ears to the voice of conscience as the judgment had it not because he had none but because his conscience spoke with a respectable voice with the voice of respectable society around him just as the nazis partially justified their genocide against the Jews Gypsies Homosexuals Political Opponents as a cleansing of the Volk the body of the Germany people so too is Diederich s behavior summedp nicely in this domestic scene As Diederich lived in fear of his master so Guste had to live in the fear of hers When they entered a room she knew that the right of precedence properly belonged to her husband The children in turn had to treat her with respect and M nne the dachshund had to obey every one At meals therefore the children and the dog had to keep Pearsons Comprehensive Medical Assisting uiet Guste s duty was to discern from the wrinklespon her husband s brow whether it was advisable to leave him Weshki-Bmaadzijig Ji-Noondmowaad undisturbed or to drive away his cares with chatter Certain dishes were prepared only for the master of the house and when he was in a good humour Diederich would throw a piece across the table and laughing heartily would watch to see who caught it Gretchen Guste or the dog His siesta was often troubled by gastronomical disturbances and Guste s duty then commanded her to put warm poultices on his stomach Groaning and terribly frightened hesed to say that he would make his will and appoint a trustee Guste would not be allowed to touch a penny I have worked for my sons not in order that you may amuse yourself after I am gone Guste objected that her own fortune was the foundation of everything but it availed her nothing Of course when Guste had a cold she did not expect that Diederich in his turn would nurse her Then she had to keep as far away from him as possible for Diederich was determined not to have any germs near him He would not go into the factory Touch Blue unless he had antiseptic tablets in his mouth and one night there was a great disturbance because the cook had come down with influenza and had a fever temperature Out of the house with the beastly thing at once Diederich commanded and when she had gone he wandered about the house for a long time spraying it with disinfecting fluids Yes as many ofs are taught Cleanliness is next to Godliness but what about those of Bitter Blood (The Morganville Vampires, us who are atheists Man of Straw is the best known novel of German author Heinrich Mann originally published in Germannder the title Der Untertan whatever that means I ll have to go look it Help, Its Stuck! up but it probably has nothing to do with the words Man of Straw because that seems to happen fairly often It has been translated into Englishnder the titles Man of Straw The Patrioteer and The Loyal Subject and obviously I got the Man of Straw copy Heinrich Mann was a German novelist who wrote works with strong social themes His first name was Luiz but I guess he didn t like that name and went by Heinrich I wouldn t know how to say Luiz anyway He criticized the growth of fascism often which forced him to flee for his life after the Nazis came to power in 1933 When he left Germany he first went to France and lived in Paris and Nice When I first read that I thought that the way things went during World War II fleeing to France probably wasn t all that safe but then I read that during the German occupation he escaped to Spain Portugal and then to America His brother was Thomas Mann also a writer I was wondering as I read about him if he had another brother it feels like he should have His father s name was Thomas Johann Heinrich Mann and his brother got the name Thomas he got the name Heinrich so it seems like they should have had another brother
to take the name Johann but I can t find oneI also read that the Nazis burnt Heinrichtake the name Johann but I can t find oneI also read that the Nazis burnt Heinrich s books as contrary to the German spirit during the infamous book burning of May 10 1933 which was instigated by the then Nazi propaganda minister Joseph Goebbels I m wondering how infamous it was because I didn t even know there was a book burning in 1933 but there are many things I don t know and have to go look p as I burning in 1933 but there are many things I don t know and have to go look p as I the book burning will be one of them But since my copy wasn t burnt I suppose I should talk about itWhen I finished the last page of Man of Straw and closed the book my first reaction was to celebrate maybe bake a cake throw a party that kind of thing I managed to control myself and make my strongest reaction to be go get another book which is better than a party any day I was so proud of myself because I made it to the last page and for a while it was very The Mermaids Mate (Isle of Feralon, uestionable that I would be able to spend that much time with the main character Diederich Hessling I can t stand this guy and I did not want to spend almost 300 pages of our lives together the first 100 were bad enough but the I always finish a book instinct in me was strong so I finished it Always finish a book except two I guess I should say As I ve said before how I feel about a book is always how I endp rating the book so things like how well it is written and such mean nothing to me Somewhere in the introduction to my copy it says Heinrich Mann s Man of Straw is one of the few outstanding political satires of German literatureI wonder if there s any character worse than Diederich in less outstanding political satires of German literature It is also the only book besides The Brothers Karamazov to get two entries in The Political Imagination in Literature which means nothing to me and the only thing saving that political imagination book from sounding extremely boring would be that it has the word literature in the title However there is to saving the book Man of Straw other than it s title which come to think of it I don t exactly Assad, or We Burn the Country understand I liked the book it was interesting at parts anyway I just hated Diederich If Mann wanted me to hate the character when he created him he certainly succeeded but he should have given me some character to love in his place I didn t dislike anyone else I just didn t care about them I am curious enough though now that I ve read the book to go lookp the emperor of the time Wilhelm II who before I read this I knew nothing about and now that I ve read it I only know that he was the Emperor of Germany One of many I would think So far my only feeling toward the guy is I feel sorry for him having people like Diederich obsessed with him and following him around Diederich is like an emperor stalker or maybe an early paparazzi without a cameraDiederich when he isn t being a big bully or a liar or a chauvinist oh he doesn t seem to like anybody but that emperor he s just running around acting plain crazy Here is his first meeting with his emperor Hurrah shouted Diederich for everyone was shouting and caught in a great surge of shouting people he was carried along to the Brandenburger Tor A few steps in front of him rode the Emperor Diederich could see his face its stony seriousness and flashing eyes but he was shouting so loudly that his sight was blurred An intoxication intense and nobler than that stimulated by beer raised his feet off the ground and carried him into the air He waved his hat high above all heads in enthusiastic madness in a heaven where our finest feelings move There on the horse rode Power through the gateway of triumphal entries with dazzling features but graven as in stone The Power which transcends s and whose hoofs we kiss the Power which is beyond the reach of hunger spite and mockeryNow I m already thinking the guy is crazy and we re not out of the first chapter yet then we have this happen Diederich looked like a man in a very dangerous state of fanaticism no kidding dirty and torn with wild eyes from his horse the Emperor gave him a piercing glance which went through him Diederich snatched his hat off his mouth was wide open but not a sound came from it As he came to a sudden stop he slipped and sat down violently in a puddle with his legs in the air splashed with muddy water Then the Emperor laughed The fellow was a monarchist a loyal subject The Emperor turned to his escort slapped his thigh and laughed From the depths of his puddle Diederich stared after him open mouthedNow it F the corrupt society in which he moves; his brutish progression through life forms the central theme of the bo.