The Study of Man: Germany's Post-Nazi Intellectual Climate
We are becoming familiar with the political contours of postwar Germany, or at any rate with the dominant outlook of the Federal Republic. Are we equally attentive to what goes on under the surface? Germany is once more becoming important to the remainder of Europe, and a glance at the scene requires no apology. Fortunately our own task has been eased by recent attempts on the part of representative German writers to strike a balance of their country’s recovery from the zero point of 1945. A number of such essays have been specially commissioned, grouped together, and published, under the title The German Spirit Between Yesterday and Today, by the editors of the Merkur, the latter being not merely a distinguished periodical, but itself a sort of prism reflecting the often idiosyncratic tendencies of German philosophers, writers, and critics. Here if anywhere, then, is the proper starting point for analysis.
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