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"Zuwachs unsrer existenz" : the quest for Being in J.M.R. Lenz O'Regan, Inge Brigitta 1991

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"ZUWACHS UNSRER EXISTENZ" THE QUEST FOR BEING IN J.M.R. LENZ By INGE BRIGITTA 0'REGAN M.A.,  The U n i v e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1980  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Germanic Studies)  We accept t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d standard.  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA October 1991 @  Inge B r i g i t t a 0'Regan, 1991  In  presenting this  degree at the  thesis  in  partial  University of  fulfilment  of  of  department  this or  thesis for by  his  requirements  British Columbia, I agree that the  freely available for reference and study. I further copying  the  her  representatives.  an advanced  Library shall make it  agree that permission for extensive  scholarly purposes may be  or  for  It  is  granted  by the  understood  that  head of copying  my or  publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.  Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  Date  DE-6 (2/88)  / /  O c J t ^ ^ - ^  ABSTRACT "Zuwachs unsrer E x i s t e n z " The Quest f o r Being i n J.M.R. Lenz 1  Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz (1751-1792), whose p l a y s have been acclaimed as the prototype of the modern drama of Brecht and Durrenmatt, i s a c o n t r o v e r s i a l f i g u r e who rose t o prominence on the German l i t e r a r y scene i n the e a r l y seventeen seventies. Among Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g s i s the i n f l u e n t i a l essay "Anmerkungen iibers Theater," i n which he i n t r o d u c e s h i s i n n o v a t i v e dramatic t h e o r i e s and d e s c r i b e s the independent p r o t a g o n i s t s he e n v i s i o n s f o r the German stage. In the same essay, he demands "Zuwachs unsrer E x i s t e n z " (a heightened awareness of existence) from contemporary drama. However, i n marked c o n t r a s t to the "Anmerkungen," the p r o t a g o n i s t s of h i s two most prominent p l a y s , Der Hofmeister (1774) and D i e Soldaten (1776), are s e l f - a l i e n a t e d , o n t o l o g i c a l l y insecure i n d i v i d u a l s who seem v i c t i m s of the s o c i o - p o l i t i c a l r e a l i t i e s of t h e i r times. Not s u r p r i s i n g l y , c r i t i c s a r e d i v i d e d i n t h e i r o p i n i o n as t o what the c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n Lenz's oeuvre s i g n i f y . Lenz was a student of Immanuel Kant's between 1768 and 1770, a time when the l a t t e r was formulating ideas that would f i n d t h e i r f u l l expression years l a t e r i n h i s c r i t i c a l p h i l o s o p h y . In 1770, Kant presented h i s i n a u g u r a l address "de mundi s e n s i b i l i s atque i n t e l l i g i b i l i s forma et p r i n c i p i i s " (On the Form and P r i n c i p l e s of the S e n s i b l e and I n t e l l i g i b l e World) to the assembled f a c u l t y and students of KCnigsberg Academy, among them J.M.R. Lenz. I t i s i n the i n a u g u r a l d i s s e r t a t i o n that Kant introduces h i s t h e s i s of the i n d i v i d u a l as an i n h a b i t a n t of two "worlds," the noumenal and the phenomenal, a c e n t r a l concept i n h i s f i r s t c r i t i q u e , K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft. which would be p u b l i s h e d i n 1781. T h i s study examines Lenz's thoughts as they s u r f a c e i n h i s t h e o r e t i c a l essays and h i s major p l a y s and puts forward the t h e s i s t h a t i t i s Kant's d i v i s i o n of the s e l f i n t o an i n t e l l i g i b l e and a s e n s i b l e realm which prompts Lenz's c a l l  iii f o r "Zuwachs unsrer E x i s t e n z . " Lenz's quest i s f u e l l e d , furthermore, by h i s acute awareness of the o n t o l o g i c a l i n s e c u r i t y of the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f , an awareness which seems to a n t i c i p a t e the thought of Kierkegaard. The o v e r r i d i n g purpose of t h i s t h e s i s i s , through a r e e v a l u a t i o n of Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l and dramatic works, to e l u c i d a t e t h i s eighteenth-century w r i t e r ' s quest f o r a u t h e n t i c being, a quest that he considered to be the i n d i v i d u a l ' s most urgent t a s k .  TABLE OF CONTENTS  CHAPTER  PAGE  Abstract  i i  Acknowledgements I.  II.  INTRODUCTION  1  a. Overview  3  b. Lenz C r i t i c i s m  5  THE PHILOSOPHICAL BACKGROUND  27  a. Kant's Two Worlds  27  b. Lenz and Kant  33  c. E x i s t e n t i a l Thought  40  I I I . THE DIVIDED SELF a. The T h e o r e t i c a l Essays  IV.  50 . 50  b. The Prose  56  c. The Drama  61  THE QUEST FOR FREEDOM  101  a. Free W i l l versus Determinism as a P h i l o s o p h i c a l Problem  101  b. The T h e o r e t i c a l Essays  109  c. The Drama  120  d. The A e s t h e t i c as a Mode of E x i s t e n c e  124  e. The E t h i c a l  "Point of View" of the  S u b j e c t i v e Thinker  133  V.  THE PARADOX OF EXISTENCE  149  VI.  CONCLUSION.  165  WORKS CONSULTED  174  Acknowledgements I would l i k e to thank the chairperson of my t h e s i s s u p e r v i s o r y committee, Professor Thomas Salumets, f o r h i s h e l p and sound counsel and the c o n s i d e r a b l e time and e f f o r t he spent on my b e h a l f . The suggestions and comments o f f e r e d by P r o f e s s o r s Edward Mornin and K a r l Zaenker, the other members o f the committee, are g r a t e f u l l y acknowledged. For continuous support and advice over the years I am indebted to P r o f e s s o r Michael B a t t s . I would a l s o l i k e t o take t h i s o p p o r t u n i t y to acknowledge the a s s i s t a n c e of P r o f e s s o r Peter Remnant of the U.B.C. Philosophy Department. A s p e c i a l thank you to my husband Edward and my three c h i l d r e n , Karen, Martina, and Rory f o r t h e i r love and understanding. The moral support given by May and Lynne Cannon i s a l s o appreciated. T h i s t h e s i s i s dedicated t o the memory of my parents G e r t r u d and Werner Frauenhoff. Vancouver, October 1991  1  CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION  Kant's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the i n d i v i d u a l as an i n h a b i t a n t of two  realms, the noumenal and the phenomenal, f i r s t  i n h i s inaugural dissertation, intelligibilis former student,  presented  "de mundi s e n s i b i l i s atque  forma et p r i n c i p i i s "  (1770), i s r e j e c t e d by h i s  the L i v o n i a n poet and dramatist,  Jakob Michael  Reinhold Lenz. I t i s worth n o t i n g that Lenz was not o n l y present on 21 August 1770, the day Kant gave h i s i n a u g u r a l address t o the KOnigsberg Academy, but that i t was Lenz who wrote and presented  a laudatory poem to Kant>on the o c c a s i o n  (Rosanow, 54). By the e a r l y seventeen seventies, Lenz asked that are more personal than Werther's r h e t o r i c a l , Mensch, d e r gepriesene  Halbgott?" His important  questions "Was i s t der  essay  "Uber  Gdtz von B e r l i c h i n g e n " opens with an account of human l i f e from b i r t h t o death: the p r e d i c t a b l e r o u t i n e o f day to day living,  the s o c i a l and f a m i l y r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and the f u t i l i t y  of i t a l l . Summing up the sad biography, Lenz c o n f r o n t s the reader w i t h the question,  "Aber h e i S t das g e l e b t ? h e i S t das  seine E x i s t e n z g e f u h l t , seine s e l b s t s t a n d i g e E x i s t e n z , den  2  Funken von Gott?"  (Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz. Werke und  S c h r i f t e n I, 37 8 ) A eighteenth-century  Lenz speaks to us from the d i s t a n c e of Germany, a time when the bourgeois  class  had y e t t o ascend to power. In the f o l l o w i n g century,  Kierkegaard  c o n s i d e r s the  q u e s t i o n of a u t h e n t i c human existence; he seems t o be echoing Lenz's summation of the human c o n d i t i o n when he notes: "To have been young, and then to grow o l d e r , and f i n a l l y t o d i e , i s a very mediocre form of human existence; t h i s merit belongs to every animal"  (Concluding U n s c i e n t i f i c P o s t s c r i p t . 311).  Yet r e g a r d l e s s of the d i f f e r e n c e s i n t h e i r s o c i o p o l i t i c a l environment and the h i s t o r i c a l r e a l i t i e s c o n f r o n t them, Lenz and Kierkegaard  that  o f f e r a d i a g n o s i s o f the  human c o n d i t i o n that p o i n t s to the p r o g r e s s i v e  fragmentation  and a l i e n a t i o n of the s e l f . I t i s not s u r p r i s i n g , t h e r e f o r e , that the quest  f o r a u t h e n t i c being permeates the work of both  writers.  Unless otherwise i n d i c a t e d , a l l subsequent r e f e r e n c e s t o Lenz's w r i t i n g s i n the body of t h i s t h e s i s w i l l be t o the two v o l s , of the T i t e l / H a u g e d i t i o n , p r e f a c e d w i t h (I) f o r the t h e o r e t i c a l essays and prose and (II) f o r the drama. 1  3  a. , Overview T h i s study t r i e s to account f o r the o f t e n diagnosed c o n t r a d i c t i o n s between L e n z s t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g s and h i s 1  major p l a y s . To that e f f e c t , the focus i s on the t h e o r e t i c a l essays and ideas put forward i n Der Hofmeister  (1774)  and Die Soldaten (1776), and to a l e s s e r degree Der neue Menoza (1774).2 his  on  i n a d d i t i o n , r e f e r e n c e i s made to  l e s s e r known p l a y s , h i s prose, and h i s correspondence. The  f o l l o w i n g i s a short d e s c r i p t i o n of the t o p i c s  addressed: Chapter I presents a review of the c r i t i c a l  l i t e r a t u r e to  date w i t h s p e c i a l emphasis on the s c h o l a r l y c o n t r i b u t i o n s of the past three decades. The p h i l o s o p h i c a l background  i s the focus of chapter I I .  Kant's two worlds, the i n t e l l i g i b l e and the s e n s i b l e ,  as  presented i n the inaugural d i s s e r t a t i o n , are c o n s i d e r e d  * Der neue Menoza was not w e l l r e c e i v e d by Lenz's contemporaries (I, 728). Lenz himself was c r i t i c a l of the p l a y ; he wrote to Sophie von La Roche i n J u l y 1775: "Menoza i s t e i n u b e r e i l t e s Stuck, an dem n i c h t s a l s d i e Idee schatzbar i s t " ( B r i e f e I, 115). And a c c o r d i n g t o Rosanow, Lenz claimed, "Der neue Menoza hat n i c h t s a l s dramatische E i n k l e i d u n g " (194).  4  in  (b); and f i n a l l y , a short overview of what c o n s t i t u t e s  existential  thought  Chapter  i s given i n s e c t i o n ( c ) .  I I I looks a t Lenz's treatment  dichotomy i n the t h e o r e t i c a l essays  of the mind/body  (a), the prose  (b), and  the p l a y s ( c ) . Lenz's guest f o r freedom i s the focus of chapter IV. I n the f i r s t  section  (a), a short h i s t o r i c a l overview of "free  w i l l versus determinism"  as a problem i n Western philosophy i s  g i v e n . I n s e c t i o n s (b) and (c), Lenz's understanding of freedom, i t s p l a c e i n human consciousness, and h i s d i a l e c t i c a l approach t o the problem of f r e e w i l l versus determinism  i n the  t h e o r e t i c a l essays and the p l a y s come under s c r u t i n y . The a e s t h e t i c as a mode of existence i s examined i n s e c t i o n (d), and i n (e) the e t h i c a l p o i n t of view of the s u b j e c t i v e t h i n k e r i s explored. Chapter V examines the s i g n i f i c a n c e of paradox i n Lenz's dramas. In the f i n a l chapter, the focus i s again on the e x i s t e n t i a l . q u e s t i o n s that Lenz poses, questions that defy l o g i c a l a n a l y s i s but are i m p l i c i t being.  i n h i s quest f o r a u t h e n t i c  b.  Lenz C r i t i c i s m  There are s e v e r a l dominant approaches to J.M.R. Lenz. There are the s t u d i e s which focus on s o c i a l c r i t i c i s m ; f o r example, the pressure exerted upon the i n d i v i d u a l by h i s socio-economic  status and the father/son c o n f l i c t .  i n f l u e n c e of the p h i l o s o p h i c a l thought Shaftesbury,  The  of L e i b n i z ,  and Rousseau and the r e l i g i o u s i m p l i c a t i o n s of  Lenz's thought  have a l s o been probed. Lenz's i n n o v a t i v e use of  language and gestures has r e c e i v e d much a t t e n t i o n . In a d d i t i o n , the a n t i - A r i s t o t e l i a n form and the r e a l i s m of h i s p l a y s have been acknowledged i n recent s t u d i e s . However, i t i s the discrepancy between the  dramatic  t h e o r i e s put forward i n Lenz's "Anmerkungen ubers Theater"  and  the c h a r a c t e r s i n h i s p l a y s which represents the main t h r u s t of Lenz s c h o l a r s h i p i n the past decade. In p a r t i c u l a r ,  the  f i g u r e of the independent p r o t a g o n i s t portrayed i n the "Anmerkungen" comes under c l o s e s c r u t i n y and i s c o n t r a s t e d w i t h the i n e f f e c t i v e and dependent c h a r a c t e r s that emerge from the pages of Lenz's major p l a y s . T h i s unsolved dualism, which manifests i t s e l f i n the d i s c r e p a n c y between ideas put forward i n the t h e o r e t i c a l essays on the one hand and the drama on the other, i s commonly  6  acknowledged. For example, Werner Preuss comments that only an i n t e r d i s c i p l i n a r y study can hope to address t h i s dualism i n Lenz's l i f e and work. He w r i t e s : Leben und Werk, das p o e t i s c h e und t h e o r e t i s c h e , von Jakob M. R. Lenz zeigen s i c h i n d i e s e r Weise bedeutsam und z e r r i s s e n . S i e erwecken Neugier nach ihrem Zusammenhang, von dem  j e t z t schon zu vermuten  i s t , daS es e i n antinomischer s e i , der  dem  erkannten, b i s zum Ende ungelosten Dualismus Rechnung t r a g t . D e u t l i c h i s t auch, daS nur eine f acheriibergreif ende Studie h i e r weiterfiihren kann. Zu befragen s i n d Theologie und P h i l o s o p h i e G e s e l l s c h a f t s w i s s e n s c h a f t , Padagogik und Literaturwissenschaft.  (1)  The aim of t h i s review i s to f a c i l i t a t e a thematic overview of the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e and to i n d i c a t e the p o i n t of departure which l e d me  to probe the p h i l o s o p h i c a l paradigm  of Lenz's oeuvre and examine the p o s s i b i l i t y of r e c o n c i l i n g ideas put forward i n the t h e o r e t i c a l essays with h i s dramatic writings. I would l i k e to begin by r e c o g n i z i n g two  important  c o n t r i b u t i o n s to the Lenz s c h o l a r s h i p of the past two Firstly,  decades.  there i s David P r i c e Benseler's 1971 d o c t o r a l t h e s i s  which i s the only indexed Lenz b i b l i o g r a p h y to date.  Secondly,  7  the  comprehensive account of recent Lenz c r i t i c i s m g i v e n i n  Hans-Gerd Winter's 1987 survey i s acknowledged. From the untimely death of J.M.R. Lenz i n the s p r i n g of 1792 t o the present, the r e c e p t i o n of h i s works has been mixed. There i s l i t t l e doubt that Lenz was w e l l r e c e i v e d by the Romantics: Brentano expresses h i s fondness f o r Der neue Menoza^ and T i e c k produces the f i r s t e d i t i o n of Lenz's oeuvre.4 The dramatist Georg Buchner takes an i n t e r e s t i n Lenz and attempts a p s y c h o l o g i c a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the w r i t e r i n h i s famous 1839 documentary n o v e l l a Lenz. H i s source i s Pastor Johann F r i e d r i c h O b e r l i n ' s account of Lenz's bout w i t h mental i l l n e s s d u r i n g the l a t t e r ' s v i s i t 1778.  to Waldersbach i n e a r l y  Buchner presents Lenz as an i n d i v i d u a l who s u f f e r s  e x i s t e n t i a l anast and l o n e l i n e s s , a c o n d i t i o n which, although commonly a s s o c i a t e d with twentieth-century man, i s the predominant mood of Buchner's Woyzeck. p u b l i s h e d i n 1886. Negative reviews of Lenz and h i s work, prompted perhaps by Goethe's o f t e n c i t e d Lenz p o r t r a i t i n book 14 of Dichtuna und Wahrheit  (X, 7-11), are not unusual i n the c r i t i c a l  3 Clemens Brentano, l e t t e r t o Achim von Arnau, February 1806, quoted i n Hinck, J.M.R. Lenz: Der neue , Menoza. 93 . T i e c k ' s e d i t i o n was p u b l i s h e d i n 1828 by G. Reimer i n B e r l i n (Huyssen, Drama des Sturm und Drana. 157). 4  8  l i t e r a t u r e of the second h a l f of the nineteenth century. Schmidt, f o r example, w r i t i n g i n 1878,  Erich  bases h i s Lenz  c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n on Goethe's unfavourable  comments:  Die H a l b n a r r h e i t , d i e Goethe dem e i n s t i g e n Freunde z u s c h r e i b t , aussert s i c h i n e i n e r dammerhaften U n s i c h e r h e i t und Unwahrheit des Denkens und Handelns, s t a r k e r P h a n t a s t e r e i und Ubertreibung. E r beliigt immer s i c h s e l b s t z u e r s t . (9) Lenz's s t a r i s i n the ascendant a t the t u r n of the century, when the N a t u r a l i s t s , i n f l u e n c e d by Max Halbe's  1892  l a u d a t o r y essay  100.  "Der Dramatiker  Reinhold Lenz. Zu seinem  Todestage," adopt him as t h e i r r o l e model. Halbe d e s c r i b e s the i n n o v a t i v e form of Lenz's plays as an o b j e c t i v e r e f l e c t i o n o f '4,  r e a l i t y and considers i t as a b l u e p r i n t f o r the "Charakterdrama" of the N a t u r a l i s t s  (568-82).  Yet i n the f i r s t decades of the present century,  critical  reviews o f Lenz and h i s work were o f t e n based on l i t t l e more than L a v a t e r ' s physiognomy.5 although sympathetic  For example, M.N.  to Lenz--writes  Rosanow--  i n 1909:  In h i s study. Phvsiocmomische Fraomente zur Beforderuna der Menschenkenntnis und der Menschenliebe. Lavater claims that a p e r s o n s , c h a r a c t e r can be read from h i s o r her f a c i a l expressions. 5  1  9  Seinem inneren Wesen h a f t e t d i e Unzuverlassigkeit  und  gleiche  Unbestandigkeit wie  seiner  aussern G e s t a l t an. Betrachten w i r d i e bekannten P o r t r a t s unseres D i c h t e r s : welch weiche, verschwommene, f a s t noch u n f e r t i g e L i n i e n Ziige!  (441).  While H.A. any  und  K o r f f claims  e t h i c a l component but  Natur i h r e s D i c h t e r s "  that Lenz's drama i s devoid of  consistent  "mit der g r i l l e n h a f t e n  (Geist der Goethezeit I, 246) , Hermann  Hettner goes a step f u r t h e r and dismisses Lenz as Goethes." These two Hettner (223  words, a t t r i b u t e d to the Duke of Weimar by  (184), are c i t e d and  f f ) . And  powers, "...  "Affe  endorsed by Leo B a l e t i n  1973!  K a r l Goedeke's summation of Lenz's c r e a t i v e i n dumpfem Drange verkam er, i n Entwiirfen  Skizzen b l i e b er stecken"  und  (774), simply r e f l e c t s the popular  Lenz p o r t r a i t of the time. Schmidt, K o r f f , Hettner, and Goedeke seem to share a b i a s against  a l l l i t e r a t u r e of the l a t e eighteenth  n i n e t e e n t h century that does not subscribe i d e a l s put  forward by Goethe and  and  to the  early classical  S c h i l l e r . Consequently,  l i t e r a r y c o n t r i b u t i o n s of w r i t e r s l i k e Lenz, H o l d e r l i n , K l e i s t are considered  and  to be somewhat i n f e r i o r .  Heinz Kindermann i s the f i r s t c r i t i c popular t h e s i s that Lenz was  to challenge  the  e i t h e r u n w i l l i n g or unable to  outgrow h i s Sturm und Drancr p e r i o d and incapable of f o l l o w i n g Goethe i n t o the realm of German c l a s s i c i s m . In h i s comprehensive study, J.M.R. Lenz und d i e deutsche Romantik (1925),  Kindermann argues that from the very beginning Lenz's  path was not (viii).  d e s t i n e d to l e a d to the gates of c l a s s i c i s m  I n h i s eyes, Lenz i s a precursor of the Romantic  movement i n Germany. In p a r t i c u l a r , Lenz's s c e p t i c a l a t t i t u d e towards reason as the predominant f o r c e i n human l i f e i s i n t e r p r e t e d as d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed to the philosophy of the Enlightenment and a k i n to the Weltanschauung of the Romantics. To support h i s hypothesis, Kindermann p o i n t s to the tensions between i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i e t y which are s i m i l a r i l y t r e a t e d by Lenz and the Romantics. Since Kindermann's primary concern i s to  e s t a b l i s h Lenz as a forerunner of the Romantics, he  c o n s i d e r s Lenz's p h i l o s o p h i c a l and l i t e r a r y a s s o c i a t i o n s ; f o r example, he examines the i n f l u e n c e that Shakespeare and Rousseau exerted on Lenz, and the l a t t e r ' s r e l a t i o n s h i p t o Goethe, Herder, and L e s s i n g . Gert M a t t e n k l o t t examines melancholy as a malaise p r e v a l e n t among the Sturmer und Dranger of the seventeen s e v e n t i e s i n h i s comprehensive 1 9 8 5 study Melancholie i n der Dramatik des Sturm und Drang. With regard to Der Hofmeister, he observes that melancholy i s the dominating mood of the p l a y  11  u n t i l the f i n a l scene, when Lenz makes a h a l f h e a r t e d attempt to commit h i m s e l f on a p o l i t i c a l and a e s t h e t i c l e v e l The  q u e s t i o n of genre i s the focus o f K.S.  (166-68).  Guthke's study  Geschichte und Poetik der deutschen Traaikomodie. According t o Guthke, a l t e r n a t i o n of t r a g i c s i t u a t i o n s and comic c h a r a c t e r s (58-64).  produces a t r a g i - c o m i c e f f e c t i n Lenz's p l a y s  C r i t i c a l o f Guthke's c l a s s i f i c a t i o n , R6n£ G i r a r d concedes the term tragi-comedy t o Die Soldaten he regards Der Hofmeister 288-89)  (Genese. 402-07); however,  as both comedy and tragedy  and Der neue Menoza as an experimental  (Genese.  tragi-comedy  (Genese. 318-20).In c o n c l u s i o n , G i r a r d p o i n t s to two major impulses  t h a t run p a r a l l e l i n Lenz's drama: the search f o r a  harmonious and r e a s s u r i n g world and the  critical  r e p r e s e n t a t i o n of the world as i t i s - - s e e n through the eyes of a caricaturist  (Genese. 421).  While Horst Glaser views Der Hofmeister  as a parody  (137), Hans Mayer simply c a t e g o r i z e s the p l a y as "eine bose Komodie"  (809). More r e c e n t l y , D i e t e r Liewerscheidt, who uses  the term "apokalyptische Farce"(144) t o d e s c r i b e Lenz's Der neue Menoza. wonders i f i t s s t r u c t u r e i s not an adequate r e f l e c t i o n o f the "grotesk-apokalyptische  Signatur" o f the  d e c l i n i n g n o b i l i t y of the eighteenth century furthermore,  (148). He claims,  that the p l a y r e v e a l s "den Hass des b u r g e r l i c h e n  Autors auf d i e h i s t o r i s c h i l b e r f a l l i g e A d e l s g e s e l l s c h a f t . . . ."  12  (150). Wolfgang Kayser i s another c r i t i c who p o i n t s t o t h e grotesque elements i n Lenz's work and acknowledges  caricature  feature o f Der neue Menoza (43-44).  as a c h a r a c t e r i s t i c  d e s c r i b e s the beggars' b a l l scene as a p o r t r a i t  Kayser  of a  d i s s o c i a t e d and estranged world, i n h a b i t e d by p u p p e t - l i k e characters  (45). The grotesque, as a common f e a t u r e i n  Sterne's T r i s t r a m Shandy and Lenz's Per Waldbruder. the  focus o f a study by L i l i a n F i i r s t . Comparing  satire  i n both n a r r a t i v e s , she acknowledges  c o n t r a s t , has a sharper edge to h i s s a t i r e ,  i s also  the use o f  that  "Lenz, by  a more b i t t e r  i n t u i t i o n o f the a b s u r d i t y o f l i f e and, above a l l , o f i t s t e r r i f y i n g p r o x i m i t y to the e x i s t e n t i a l waldbruder she w r i t e s ,  abyss" (20),. Of Der  "The sense of a c h a o t i c world and o f  man's t o t a l bewilderment i n i t assumes r e a l l y  frightening r  p r o p o r t i o n s here"  (19).  Bruce Duncan c l a s s s i f i e s both Der Hofmeister and D i e Soldaten as belonging to the genre of the "dark comedy" s i n c e , however n e g a t i v e l y ,  "dark comedy" s t i l l attempts t o f i n d a  r a i s o n d'§tre f o r the e x i s t i n g world order, an attempt that i s no longer p o s s i b l e w i t h i n the realm o f the grotesque (25). He d e s c r i b e s Lenz's characters as automata, as "mere c o n s t r u c t s without autonomy, t o t a l l y d e f i n e d by t h e i r  'Stande'"  (217).  The dark s i d e of Lenz's drama i s a l s o acknowledged by A l l a n Blunden who  i n t e r p r e t s Wenceslaus's c h a r a c t e r i n  Der Hofmeister as "surely s i n i s t e r i n h i s a b s u r d i t y , and not j u s t funny"  260).  ("Lenz, Language, and Love's Labour's L o s t , "  Helmut Arntzen's 1968  study, Die ernste Komodie. p o i n t s  to the a l i e n a t i o n that e x i s t s between the i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i e t y as the s t a r t i n g p o i n t of Sturm und Drang comedy  (85).  With r e g a r d to Lenz, Arntzen views the i s o l a t i o n of the i n d i v i d u a l as c e n t r a l to the c o n f l i c t i n Der Hofmeister  (89).  C o n t r a d i c t i o n and paradox are important c o n s i d e r a t i o n s i n John Osborne's study J.M.R. Lenz: The Renunciation of Heroism. He sees "the t o r t u r e d a l t e r n a t i o n between s e l f - a s s e r t i o n and self-doubt[as] a l s o acknowledges  c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of Lenz"  (23).  Helga Madland  c o n t r a d i c t i o n s as r e c u r r i n g phenomena i n  Lenz's drama and i n t e r p r e t s them as a r e s u l t of " . . . h i s v i s i o n of the autonomous i n d i v i d u a l based on a r a t i o n a l approach to problem s o l v i n g and h i s simultaneous r e c o g n i t i o n of man's dependency that  on nature" (Diss. 320).  She b e l i e v e s , furthermore,  " t h i s profoundly d i s t u r b i n g paradox w i t h which mankind i s  f o r c e d to contend creates a dilemma f o r Lenz which he i s unable to r e s o l v e and which i s r e f l e c t e d i n h i s two major dramas" (Diss. 320).  Michael B u t l e r ' s study,"Character and  Paradox i n Lenz's Der Hofmeister." views the p r e s e n t a t i o n of paradox as the p r i n c i p a l source of comic e f f e c t i n Lenz's  plays  (96). More importantly, he notes that paradox i s "deeply  r o o t e d i n the c h a r a c t e r s ' i d e n t i t i e s and p e r s i s t e n t l y r e f l e c t e d i n t h e i r words and a c t i o n s , i n the d i s c r e p a n c y between what they say and what they do, or more o f t e n between what they wish to do and what they a c t u a l l y achieve" (96). The m a j o r i t y of Lenz's c r i t i c s support the t h e s i s that his  works c o n s t i t u t e a break with the Enlightenment  and i t s  i d e a l i s t i c conception of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s freedom. For example, Huyssen w r i t e s : L a u f f e r s Seelenheirat mit der Bauerstochter L i s e ist  i n einer k o r p e r l i c h e n Verkruppelung  begrilndet,  die  s c h w e r l i c h durch i d y l l i s c h e s Landleben  oder  g e i s t i g e Werte wettgemacht werden kann. Ganz und gar u n i d e a l i s t i s c h e Entsagung  b l e i b t somit b e i d e r  Los, und damit widerlegt das Stuck den u n i v e r s a l e n Anspruch  der Aufklarung, F r e i h e i t  Selbstbestimmung  und  der menschlichen P e r s o n l i c h k e i t i n  der Vernunft begriinden und  gesellschaftlich  v e r w i r k l i c h e n zu konnen. (Drama des Sturm und Drana. 172-73) T h i s view i s not shared by Ottomar Rudolf, however, c o n s i d e r s Lenz l o y a l to Enlightenment consequently,  ideals  who  and,  i n t e r p r e t s the f i n a l scene i n Der Hofmeister as  15  a t a b l e a u which r e f l e c t s the harmonious world o r d e r propagated by the Enlightenment (162). It  i s worth noting that, as r e c e n t l y as 1980, Timothy  Pope views Lenz's drama as r e f l e c t i n g the optimism of Enlightenment philosophy. In h i s d o c t o r a l t h e s i s ,  entitled  "The Concept of A c t i o n i n J.M.R. Lenz," He w r i t e s : Lenz's f i r s t major drama: Der Hofmeister, b r i n g s the  idea of metanoia^ to bear on the f a l l i b l e  nature of human l i f e . The p l a y concerns not so much the  cause of the family tragedy: o s t e n s i b l y the  h i r i n g of a p r i v a t e tutor, as the way i n which that tragedy i s overcome by moral renewal and by the j o y of  b e l i e v i n g that the curse of the past i s  outweighed by the i n f i n i t e p o s s i b i l i t i e s of the future.  (Pope,  iii-iv)  Huyssen sees c o n t r a d i c t i o n s between Enlightenment ideology and sentiments and Lenz's r a d i c a l o p p o s i t i o n t o them  6 Pope gives the f o l l o w i n g d e f i n i t i o n of metanoia: "Freedom o f a c t i o n i s freedom to make mistakes and t o p r o f i t from those mistakes; t h i s , t o Lenz, i s the g o s p e l of C h r i s t . At the heart of i t i s the idea o f metanoia. which i s the new mentality, the l o f t i e r p e r s p e c t i v e that comes about through the performance of a c t i o n that i s f o l l o w e d by moral e v a l u a t i o n . Metanoia means not the p i e t i s t i c d w e l l i n g on past f a i l u r e s and past wrongdoing. ..but the sense of freedom to turn those f a i l u r e s to account" ( i i i ) .  16  as a c e n t r a l concern i n Der Hofmeister: he r e j e c t s , however, enemy o r a proponent of the Enlightenment ( " G e s e l l s c h a f t s g e s c h i c h t e und L i t e r a r i s c h e Form," 135). Huyssen's.position i s one that Madland f u l l y endorses. She writes,  "Lenz's theory of the drama and h i s p h i l o s o p h i c a l  p o s i t i o n a r e n e i t h e r an extension of the Enlightenment nor a complete r e j e c t i o n thereof"  (Diss. 321).  S e v e r a l s c h o l a r s i n t e r p r e t Lenz's w r i t i n g s as s t r e s s i n g the  s o c i a l context of the i n d i v i d u a l ,  f o r example, Guthke  (TracrikomSdie. 274-86), Schwarz ("Lenz und Shakespeare," 93), Glaser  (151), and Duncan (Diss. 217). However, Walter Hinderer  takes the p o s i t i o n that s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s serve as a mere backdrop to  i n Lenz's drama against which the i n d i v i d u a l ' s r i g h t  s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n i s asserted  ("Lenz: Der Hofmeister." 73).  T i t e l observes that Lenz's major concern, the summa summarum of h i s work and h i s l i f e ,  i s the r e a l i z a t i o n of the  i n d i v i d u a l ' s p o t e n t i a l f o r genius on the one hand, and h i s l i m i t e d and oppressed c o n d i t i o n on the other (Diss. 70).7 she i s a l s o one o f the f i r s t c r i t i c s to note that Lenz p r e s e n t s his  c h a r a c t e r s i n a sensual manner and that, consequently, h i s  c h a r a c t e r i z a t i o n i s as dependent  on non-verbal  communication  ' Here, T i t e l seems to echo Pascal's thoughts on the "grandeur" and the "misere" of the human c o n d i t i o n (Pensees de Pascal. 143; 145; 147).  1 7  methods such as mimicry and gestures as i t i s on the logos. Of Lenz's c h a r a c t e r s she remarks: Sie  sagen meist recht unbedeutende und  Dinge; aber s i e werden dabei i n i h r e r  alltagliche sinnlichen  Erscheinung lebendig: i n i h r e r A r t zu sprechen, s i c h zu geben, zu r e a g i e r e n , i n der G e s t i k der Bewegungen und dem (Diss.  Gestischen der  Sprache.  178)  As i t s a l l i t e r a t i v e t i t l e suggests, Blunden's study, "Lenz, Language, and Love's Labour's L o s t , " compares the language  of Shakespeare and Lenz. He notes that Lenz e x h i b i t s  an awareness of the s o c i a l and p s y c h o l o g i c a l f u n c t i o n of language  i n Der Hofmeister a k i n to Shakespeare's  use of  language  i n Love's Labour's Lost. He examines the r h e t o r i c a l  world that i s i n h a b i t e d by Wenzeslaus i n Der Hofmeister comes to the c o n c l u s i o n that a l l the schoolmaster's  and  responses  are "mechanically c o n d i t i o n e d by the r h e t o r i c of h i s bookish world"  (260). He a l s o observes that Lenz i s "a p r e - i n c a r n a t i o n  of W i t t g e n s t e i n " (257), but he does not e l a b o r a t e on t h i s important i n s i g h t . He does note, however, that paradox--that  language  "Shakespeare's  i s important f o r the very reason that  many people take i t to be too important--is one that Lenz makes f u l l y h i s own"  (273).  H d l l e r e r notes that "Sprechspharen" - which correspond t o the socio-economic  --language  registers-  s t a t u s o f an  i n d i v i d u a l , are donned as a d i s g u i s e by the c h a r a c t e r s i n Die Soldaten. To support h i s t h e s i s , he i d e n t i f i e s f i v e language  r e g i s t e r s f o r Mariane alone  (133).  different  In a d d i t i o n , he  notes that Lenz employs gestures as a technique t o continue the a c t i o n when language language  f a i l s and that, i n the process,  i t s e l f becomes "gestische Formulierung"  (139).  Walter  Hinck a l s o c o n s i d e r s gestures to be o f primary importance i n Der neue Menoza. He maintains that p r a c t i c a l l y e v e r y t h i n g that happens on stage can be gathered from e i t h e r the stage d i r e c t i o n s o r the gestures of the a c t o r s (Per neue Menoza, 9091). And i n a more recent study, Madland c r e d i t s Lenz with "a s c e p t i c a l a t t i t u d e toward  language  that resembles the  l i n g u i s t i c concerns of l a t e r generations of w r i t e r s " ("Gesture....Language Scepticism," 556) . M a t t e n k l o t t i d e n t i f i e s l i n g u i s t i c stereotypes i n Der Hofmeister  (144-46);  t h e i r e x i s t e n c e was denied by T i t e l i n her 1963 d i s s e r t a t i o n , "'Nachahmung der Natur' a l s P r i n z i p dramatischer Gestaltung bei  Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz"  (223-24).  Bruce K i e f f e r ' s Storm and S t r e s s of Language addresses common l i n g u i s t i c concerns of the p e r i o d . He claims that an i n v e s t i g a t i o n o f Sturm und Drang language p o i n t s t o "unity i n a p h i l o s o p h i c a l - a n t h r o p o l o g i c a l area o f thought, as opposed to  19  s o c i a l - p o l i t i c a l and l i t e r a r y - t e c h n i c a l areas"  (143). He  f u r t h e r notes that t h i s type of u n i t y has not been s u f f i c i e n t l y a p p r e c i a t e d i n the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e  (143).  With r e g a r d t o Der Hofmeister. he makes the o b s e r v a t i o n t h a t , as the p l o t develops, consequently,  language moves a g a i n s t reason and t h a t ,  the double happy ending of the f i n a l scene i s  d i s c r e d i t e d by i t s l i n g u i s t i c p l o t  (66).  Claus Lappe's s i g n i f i c a n t d i s c o v e r y that, g i v e n the time s t r u c t u r e o f P e r Hofmeister,  L a u f f e r cannot be c o n s i d e r e d the  n a t u r a l f a t h e r of Gustchen's c h i l d , p o i n t s not o n l y t o the r e l a t i v i t y o f time i n the drama, but seems to i n d i c a t e that the space continuum not only d i s r u p t s the time continuum but that i t takes precedence over i t . He w r i t e s : N i c h t a l s o ordnet das e i n h e i t l i c h e Z e i t p r i n z i p d i e P i s p a r a t h e i t der Raume zu iiberschaubaren Parallelentwicklungen,sondern das a e s t h e t i s c h e P r i n z i p der raumlichen K o n t r a s t i e r u n g  zersplittert  das z e i t l i c h e Kontinuum i n gegeneinander verschobene Phasen:der Raum dominiert d i e Z e i t , n i c h t umgekehrt.  ("Wer hat Gustchens Kind  gezeugt," 31) C r i t i c i s m which proceeds from a p h i l o s o p h i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e a s s o c i a t e s Lenz with s e v e r a l of the more important p h i l o s o p h i c a l minds of the eighteenth century. Thus,  Kindermann ventures that Lenz's essay, "Entwurf eines B r i e f e s an einen Freund, der auf der Akademie Theologie s t u d i e r t , " i l l u m i n a t e s the d i f f e r e n c e s between the p h i l o s o p h i c a l thought of Bayle and L e i b n i z  (338)  .  Norman R. D i f f e y examines the r e l a t i o n s h i p between Lenz and Rousseau and comes to the c o n c l u s i o n t h a t , although Lenz shares aspects of Rousseau's s o c i a l and c u l t u r a l t h i s does not prevent him from mocking  criticism,  Rousseau's  " s e n t i m e n t a l i t y " and "naive i d e a l " i n Der Hofmeister (203). The v a l i d i t y of Blunden's t h e s i s - - t h a t Lenz a p p l i e s the L e i b n i z i a n monadology to the s o c i a l sphere--depends on whether or not one agrees w i t h h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n that Lenz's use of the  term Standpunkt i n the "Anmerkungen" corresponds to the  L e i b n i z i a n "point de vue" of View,"  3-18)  .  8  Since the f i f t i e s , the  ("J. M. R. Lenz and L e i b n i z : A Point  c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e has  acknowledged  modernity of Lenz's drama. Lenz's p l a y s have been  compared  to the drama of Wedekind and Brecht, among others, and Horst G l a s e r d e s c r i b e s the dramatist as "einen unzeitgemassen I r r l a u f e r der Moderne"(149). Both Walter H o l l e r e r Volker Klotz  (238)  see Lenz's a n t i - A r i s t o t e l i a n  (147)  and  drama a t the  8 See chapter IV of t h i s study f o r a r e e v a l u a t i o n of Lenz's understanding of Standpunkt.  b e g i n n i n g of a chain o f B r e c h t and  o f development t h a t  leads  to the  theatre  D u r r e n m a t t . T h e i r v i e w i s s h a r e d by M a d l a n d  who  writes: The  existential,  psychological,  l i n g u i s t i c p r o b l e m s he w i t h the  novel  a n t i c i p a t e the  broaches,  theatre  o f Bilchner,  Kipphardt,  f o r example.  murder p l o t s , r e f l e c t i o n s as Durrenmatt  considers  and  (Diss.  322)  "Lenz o d e r  L e n z ' s o e u v r e as a  die  possible  notes that  castration,  common f e a t u r e s  i n the p l a y s  also claims  i n Lenz's p l a y s ,  that  the  of Lenz  seeds of  anticipate Brecht's  and discontent, social  (826) .  the  conclusion  i n Eighteenth  o f h i s 1970  i n b o t h Der  B e c k e t t and  dissertation,"Dark  C e n t u r y Germany: L e s s i n g H o f m e i s t e r and  a n a l o g o u s t o t h a t w h i c h we as  Heinar  suicide coexist with philosophical  (807). He  which s u r f a c e  detects  Wedekind,  more c o n t e m p o r a r y d r a m a t i s t s ,  a l t e r n a t i v e t o W e i m a r , c l a s s i c i s m and  At  together  B r e c h t and  Alternative,"  and  e p i s o d i c s t r u c t u r e o f h i s dramas,  Hans Mayer's i m p o r t a n t e s s a y ,  criticism  social,  Ionesco"  Die  and  Comedy  L e n z , " B r u c e Duncan  Soldaten.  "an  today a s s o c i a t e w i t h such  attitude writers  (217).  Modernity i n l i t e r a t u r e  i s perhaps best  characterized  t h e movement towards the d e s t r u c t i o n o f t r a d i t i o n a l  as  literary  forms. With regard to the drama, the t r a d i t i o n a l drama as p r e s c r i b e d i n A r i s t o t l e ' s P o e t i c s had to have a beginning, a middle,  and an end. Furthermore,  the s t r u c t u r e of the p l o t  had  to be r a t i o n a l , with each p a r t developing l o g i c a l l y from the p r e c e d i n g p a r t . But most importantly, the drama had to the three u n i t i e s : the u n i t y of time, p l a c e , and  observe  action.  Modern drama represents the v o i c e of a world i n which C h r i s t i a n r e l i g i o n and m o r a l i t y are i n the process of d i s s o l u t i o n . Thus the breakdown of the c l a s s i c a l  Aristotelian  form of the drama c o i n c i d e s with the l o s s of f a i t h i n those aspects of human existence that extend beyond the p h y s i c a l world. On stage, the anxiety that the l o s s of the metaphysical realm c r e a t e s i n the i n d i v i d u a l i s p o r t r a y e d by p r o t a g o n i s t s who  no longer have a f i x e d abode and are a l i e n a t e d from  world and The  the  themselves. term  "modern consciousness" i s o f t e n used as an  i n d i c a t o r to gauge the modernity  of a work of a r t or  l i t e r a t u r e . I t i s a term that i s d i f f i c u l t  to d e f i n e , however.  Perhaps L i o n e l T r i l l i n g comes c l o s e when he terms i t " d i s i n t e g r a t e d consciousness"  ( S i n c e r i t y and  Authenticity.  26) . He claims that the d i s s o c i a t e d nature of modern consciousness i n l i t e r a t u r e can be t r a c e d back to the e i g h t e e n t h century, to the dialogue between L u i and Moi i n  23  D i d e r o t ' s Le neveu de Rameau.^  Trilling  claims that on one  l e v e l the dialogue between the composer Rameau (moi) and h i s r a s c a l of a nephew ( l u i ) d e s c r i b e s the i n a u t h e n t i c mode of l i f e of an i n d i v i d u a l  ( l u i ) who,  forced i n t o r o l e - p l a y i n g by  s o c i e t y , becomes a l i e n a t e d from h i s s e l f grants t h a t on another  (30 f f ) . But he  l e v e l , by i n t r o d u c i n g the reader to a  s e l f t h a t i s confronted by the dichotomies existence--which  embrace good and e v i l ,  of i t s very  e t h i c s and a e s t h e t i c s ,  a u t h e n t i c i t y and i n a u t h e n t i c i t y - - D i d e r o t presents us w i t h a consciousness  that challenges the s e l f to embrace  seemingly  i r r e c o n c i l a b l e p o s i t i o n s (32-33). Diderot's dialogue, p u b l i s h e d i n Germany at the beginning of the n i n e t e e n t h century, p o i n t s to the gradual d i s p e r s i o n of the s e l f . In the twentieth century, Sigmund Freud's new therapy of p s y c h o - a n a l y s i s with i t s emphasis on the important the subconscious  r o l e that  plays i n the l i f e of the i n d i v i d u a l , and C a r l  Jung's d i s c o v e r y of the c o l l e c t i v e unconscious,  have r e s u l t e d  i n the r e a l i z a t i o n that there are, indeed, m u l t i p l e l a y e r s to the human psyche.  Le Neveu de Rameau. w r i t t e n between 1761 and 1774, was not p u b l i s h e d during Diderot's l i f e t i m e and reached Germany i n 1805 only with Goethe's t r a n s l a t i o n ( T r i l l i n g , 27). y  24  A review of c r i t i c a l  l i t e r a t u r e shows that modern  i s the  term most o f t e n used to d e s c r i b e the p l a y s of t h i s eighteenthcentury d r a m a t i s t . The N o n - A r i s t o t e l i a n form alone i s , of course, i n d i c a t i v e of the modernity of Lenz's drama. However, the renewed c r i t i c a l  i n t e r e s t i n Lenz over the past three  decades can be a t t r i b u t e d to the f a c t that t h i s eighteenthcentury w r i t e r ' s awareness of the f r a g i l i t y i s analogous to concerns  of human e x i s t e n c e  that modern and post-modern w r i t e r s  and p l a y w r i g h t s have v o i c e d . Thus t h i s study puts forward the t h e s i s t h a t Lenz's quest f o r "Zuwachs unsrer E x i s t e n z , " a guest  f o r a u t h e n t i c being, a n t i c i p a t e s the d i s s o c i a t i o n i n  modern consciousness which surfaces i n the a r t and l i t e r a t u r e of  the n i n e t e e n t h and twentieth c e n t u r i e s . Although Lenz's years at KCnigsberg  have earned Kant the  o c c a s i o n a l footnote i n most b i o g r a p h i c a l notes on Lenz, the i n f l u e n c e of Kant's philosophy on Lenz has r e c e i v e d only c u r s o r y a t t e n t i o n i n the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e to date. Hans Mayer r e p r e s e n t s one of the few exceptions to t h i s r u l e . Commenting on Lenz's understanding  of the interdependence of  beauty and t r u t h i n "Versuch iiber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral, " he remarks that Lenz appears t o him gekommener Kantianer  " e i n zu f r i l h  " (795-96).  Since Rudolf views Lenz as an eighteenth-century m o r a l i s t , h i s primary motive i s to examine h i s p o s i t i o n on  25  e t h i c s . To t h i s e f f e c t , he considers the i n f l u e n c e that Shaftesbury, Rousseau, and Kant had on Lenz  (52-66). I n  probing common p h i l o s o p h i c a l ideas that Kant and Lenz share, Rudolf p e r c e i v e s i n L e n z s a t t i t u d e a r e f l e c t i o n o f t h e 1  former's thoughts on a l t r u i s m  (174); he a l s o senses something  a k i n t o Kant's " c a t e g o r i c a l imperative" i n Lenz's essay, "Versuch uber das e r s t e Principium der Moral" (203, 233 f n . ) . Not s u r p r i s i n g l y , he sees Wenceslaus's Pflichtmenschentum" i n a p o s i t i v e l i g h t  "asketisches (168) . Preuss, whose  recent study S e l b s t k a s t r a t i o n oder Zeuauna neuer Kreatur c o n s i d e r s the problem of moral freedom i n Lenz's l i f e and work, concedes that Kant may have served as a model f o r both, 'der Geheime Rat' and Wenzeslaus i n Der Hofmeister, but maintains that Lenz intends an i m p l i c i t c r i t i c i s m o f K a n t i a n e t h i c s here (113, Anm. XX). The c o n t r a d i c t i o n s inherent i n Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l and dramatic w r i t i n g s were the point of departure f o r my r e s e a r c h . In a d d i t i o n , Lenz's e a r l y years i n Konigsberg and the i n t e l l e c t u a l stimulus he r e c e i v e d from being exposed t o Kant's, thought a t a formative stage of h i s development l e d me to probe the u n d e r l y i n g p h i l o s o p h i c a l paradigm of h i s work. With regard t o the impact of Kant's p r e - c r i t i c a l thought on Lenz, examining the r e l a t i o n s h i p between Kant and Lenz i s not only a p r e r e q u i s i t e f o r coming t o terms w i t h Lenz's  26  p o s i t i o n w i t h i n the l i t e r a r y and p h i l o s o p h i c a l spectrum of eighteenth-century  Germany, but c e n t r a l to an a p p r e c i a t i o n of  h i s w r i t i n g s . In f a c t , Kant must be considered  the  impetus  t h a t l e d to Lenz's awareness of the p o t e n t i a l l y t r a g i c consequences that an absolute aspects of human existence, has  separation between the  the i n t e l l i g i b l e and  two  the s e n s i b l e ,  f o r the i n d i v i d u a l . Most importantly,  the antinomies which s u r f a c e i n Lenz's  oeuvre p o i n t to the f a c t that he was  indeed searching  f o r an  a l t e r n a t i v e to the i d e a l i s m which c h a r a c t e r i z e d the drama of the Enlightenment. I t i s my  i n t e n t i o n to examine whether  Lenz's demand f o r "Zuwachs unsrer Existenz" u l t i m a t e l y him  leads  to adopt a m a t e r i a l i s t i c p o i n t of view, as suggested by  the m a j o r i t y of h i s c r i t i c s , or whether he i s , i n f a c t , moving towards the s o - c a l l e d " t h i r d " p o s i t i o n , a p o s i t i o n that seeks to r e c o n c i l e mind with body, consciousness with  reality.^  !0 i n h i s essay " E x i s t e n t i a l i s m , " Lukacs o b j e c t s to the p h i l o s o p h i c a l p o s i t i o n of e x i s t e n t i a l i s m , which he terms the " t h i r d " p o s i t i o n as not p l a u s i b l e , "since one e i t h e r b e l i e v e s that being i s independent of consciousness or that i t i s not. In the former case, one subscribes to materialism, i n the l a t t e r , to i d e a l i s m . Or t o put i t another way, the fundamental p r i n c i p l e of m a t e r i a l i s m i s the independence of being from consciousness; of idealism, the dependence of being on consciousness" (Marxism and Human L i b e r a t i o n , 245).  27  CHAPTER I I THE PHILOSOPHICAL BACKGROUND a.  Kant's Two Worlds  The s p l i t t i n g of human experience i n t o one's awareness and the world one i s aware of, leads to two separate realms of e x i s t e n c e : t h i n k i n g and f e e l i n g , the i n t e l l i g i b l e  and the  s e n s i b l e world. T h i s view of human consciousness had i t s o r i g i n i n Rene' Descartes  (1596-1650) ; h i s " c o g i t o , ergo sum"  not only p o i n t e d to thought as the u l t i m a t e proof of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s existence but confirmed that t h i n k i n g takes precedence  over being.  G o t t f r i e d Wilhelm von L e i b n i z  (1646-1716) claimed that  one c o u l d have o b j e c t i v e knowledge of the world, of  the observer  independent  (Letter to de Voider, June 30, 1704,  P h i l o s o o h i s c h e S c h r i f t e n V o l . I I , 270). However, h i s c l a i m was r e f u t e d by David Hume (1711-1776) who pronounced t h a t - - s i n c e " a l l our ideas are d e r i v e d from sense impressions"--we  can  have o b j e c t i v e knowledge of nothing (A T r e a t i s e o f Human Nature. Book I, Part 4). Thus r a t i o n a l i s m holds that a l l knowledge i s d e r i v e d from the e x e r c i s e of reason and that a d e s c r i p t i o n o f the world i s p o s s i b l e independent  of the view of the observer. Empiricism  28  Thus r a t i o n a l i s m holds that a l l knowledge i s d e r i v e d from the  e x e r c i s e of reason and that a d e s c r i p t i o n of the world i s  p o s s i b l e independent of the view of the observer. Empiricism claims, however, t h a t - - s i n c e ideas stem from sense i m p r e s s i o n s - - i t i s not p o s s i b l e to separate knowledge from the s u b j e c t i v e c o n d i t i o n of the observer. Immanuel Kant of  (1724-1804) taught the r a t i o n a l p h i l o s o p h y  L e i b n i z w h i c h - - b u i l t i n t o a system by C h r i s t i a n Wolff  (1679-1754)--had  become the orthodox metaphysics of the German  Enlightenment.H  However, sometime a f t e r 1770--the y e a r Kant  d e l i v e r e d h i s inaugural l e c t u r e e n t i t l e d "de mundi s e n s i b i l i s atque i n t e l l i g i b i l i s  forma et p r i n c i p i i s " ^ at the Konigsberg 1  Academy--his b e l i e f i n the a b i l i t y of reason "€o move w i t h i n the  metaphysical realm" was  shaken somewhat through h i s  11 The term "Enlightenment" has r e c e i v e d much c r i t i c a l a t t e n t i o n . Kant's o f t e n quoted r e p l y " s i c h aus der beinahe zur Natur gewordenen Unmundigkeit herauszuarbeiten" to the question: What i s Enlightenment? p o i n t s to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s confidence i n h i s r a t i o n a l f a c u l t i e s (Kant's Gesammelte S c h r i f t e n , AA, V o l . V I I I , 36). Kant's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s echoed by Adorno who w r i t e s , " S e i t j e hat d i e Aufklarung im umfassenden Sinn f o r t s c h r e i t e n d e n Denkens das Z i e l v e r f o l g t , von den Menschen d i e Furcht zu nehmen und s i e a l s Herren einzusetzen." Adorno f u r t h e r s t a t e s that the g o a l of the German Enlightenment was "die Entzauberung der Welt" ( D i a l e k t i k der Aufklarung. 19). A l l subsequent references to Kant's i n a u g u r a l d i s s e r t a t i o n w i l l be to i t s abbreviated t i t l e : "de mundi s e n s i b i l i s atque et i n t e l l i g i b i l i s . " L Z  acquaintance w i t h Hume's s c e p t i c i s m . In f a c t , he acknowledged that i t was Hume's s c e p t i c a l thought which f i r s t i n t e r r u p t e d his  dogmatic slumber and gave h i s philosophy a new d i r e c t i o n  (AA, V o l . XX, 36). In  h i s i n a u g u r a l l e c t u r e , Kant takes the p o s i t i o n that  n e i t h e r i n t e l l e c t nor s e n s i b i l i t y alone can p r o v i d e knowledge. The  f i r s t p r o v i d e s form without content, the second  without  form. Consequently,  content  he d i s t i n g u i s h e s between two  realms: an e m p i r i c a l realm which concerns  itself  with  phenomena and an i d e a l , non-empirical realm which d e a l s w i t h noumena. He w r i t e s : S i n n l i c h k e i t  i s t d i e Empfanglichkeit  eines Subjekts, durch d i e es mdglich i s t ,  daS s e i n  V o r s t e l l u n g s z u s t a n d von der Gegenwart i r g e n d e i n e s Objekts auf bestimmte Weise a f f i z i e r t  wird.  V e r s t a n d e s a u s s t a t t u n g (Vernunftausstattung)13 j _ t das Vermogen eines s  Subjekts, durch das es v o r z u s t e l l e n vermag, was, aufgrund s e i n e r Beschaffenheit, n i c h t i n s e i n e Sinne e i n d r i n g e n kann. Der Gegenstand der  13 Here, Kant has not, as y e t , made the d i s t i n c t i o n between Vernunft and Verstand, a d i s t i n c t i o n he i s t o make i n h i s f i r s t c r i t i q u e , K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft (1781) .  30  S i n n l i c h k e i t i s t s e n s i b e l ; was aber n i c h t s e n t h a i t , a l s was man durch d i e Verstandesausstattung erkennen kann, i s t i n t e l l i g i b e l . Das e r s t e r e hieS i n den Schulen der A l t e n das l e t z t e r e  P h a  N o u m e n o n .  e n o m e n o n , Die E r k e n n t n i s ,  s o f e r n s i e den Gesetzen der S i n n l i c h k e i t unterworfen i s t ,  i s t s i n n l i c h s o f e r n der  Verstandesausstattung, i n t e l l e k t u e l l oder rational.  ("de mundi s e n s i b i l i s  intelligibilis,"  II, 3  atque  S c h r i f t e n zur Metaphysik  und Loaik. 29) With t h i s e p i s t e m o l o g i c a l background,  Kant approaches the  two realms. According to Kant, d e s i r e f a l l s i n t o the domain of the e m p i r i c a l realm and i s the r e s u l t of e x t e r n a l causes. However, s i n c e moral a c t i o n involves a c e r t a i n independence of e x t e r n a l causes, moral concepts cannot be known by experience but o n l y by the i n t e l l e c t . Thus m o r a l i t y f a l l s w i t h i n the noumenal realm. Furthermore, s i n c e the two realms a r e c a r e f u l l y separated, i t f o l l o w s that moral concepts a r e only r e c o g n i z a b l e by the pure use of the i n t e l l e c t . In s e c t i o n I I , paragraph 7, Kant adds that, although i t may be e a s i e r to acknowledge geometry as belonging to the s e n s i b l e realm than to r e c o g n i z e metaphysics as belonging to the i n t e l l i g i b l e  realm, there are, nevertheless, r e c o g n i z a b l e s i g n s that p o i n t to t h e i r r e s p e c t i v e o r i g i n . He w r i t e s : Nichtsdestoweniger bewahrt jedoch eine jede d i e s e r Erkenntnisse das Zeichen i h r e r Herkunft, so, daS d i e e r s t e r e n , wie d e u t l i c h s i e auch s e i n mogen, i h r e s Ursprungs wegen s i n n l i c h heiSen, d i e l e t z t e r e n , mogen s i e auch noch so verworren s e i n , i n t e l l e k t u e l l b l e i b e n : d e r g l e i c h e n s i n d z. B. d i e m o r a l i s c h e n  Begriffe,  d i e n i c h t auf dem Wege der Erfahrung, sondern  durch  den r e i n e n Verstand s e l b e r erkannt werden. ( S c h r i f t e n zuf Metaphvsik  und Loaik. 37)  Since Kant considers e t h i c s as belonging to the noumenal sphere, h i s conception of moral freedom stands i n a b s o l u t e o p p o s i t i o n t o c a u s a l i t y which he regards as a p u r e l y mechanical r e a c t i o n to an e x t e r n a l s e n s i b l e s t i m u l u s . I t f o l l o w s that the s e l f as phenomenon i s determined  in a l l its  a c t i o n s , w h i l e as noumenon i t i s f r e e . What Kant c r e a t e s i s a d i v i d e d i n d i v i d u a l : one s i d e i s turned toward the phenomenal world of c a u s a t i o n , and the other faces the noumenal s i d e and the realm of reason. Consequently,  the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  empirical  s e l f i s i n v o l v e d i n the phenomenal world, while the i n t e l l i g i b l e s e l f i s l i v i n g i n the noumenal world of ideas, u n a f f e c t e d by the laws of the former. I t f o l l o w s that human  nature i s both determined  and free, determined  by the  n e c e s s i t y of the phenomenal aspects of existence, and f r e e i n i t s noumenal c a p a c i t y . Kant f u r t h e r argues that s i n c e there are two worlds, there are a l s o two p r i n c i p l e s of form and order: the order of o  the i n t e l l i g i b l e world i s God and that of the s e n s i b l e i s space and time 9.  ("de mundi s e n s i b l i s atque i n t e l l i g i b l e , " I I I ,  S c h r i f t e n zur Metaohvsik und Loaik, 3 9 ) . However, he  grants t h a t there e x i s t s an unsolved two f a c u l t i e s ,  "dissensus" between the  s i n c e the s e n s i b l e f a c u l t y i s s u b j e c t t o  c e r t a i n c o n d i t i o n s to which the i n t e l l i g i b l e  f a c u l t y i s not.  T h e r e f o r e , the concept of the i n d i v i d u a l presented i n the i n a u g u r a l d i s s e r t a t i o n i s that of a being based on a double o r i g i n who l i v e s i n two separate worlds. By submitting the phenomenal realm to the laws of c a u s a l i t y and exempting the noumenal realm from these  laws,  Kant p l a c e s m o r a l i t y outside the world of human experience, and thus o u t s i d e of nature. In a d d i t i o n , while the f i r s t c r i t i q u e , K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft  (1781), centers on Kant's  b e l i e f t h a t the pure use of the i n t e l l e c t  as a source of  metaphysical knowledge must be r u l e d out, i n the i n a u g u r a l d i s s e r t a t i o n he s t i l l h e l d that reason could provide metaphysical knowledge ("de mundi s e n s i b i l i s atque  i n t e l l i g i b i l i s , " II, 8  S c h r i f t e n zur Metaohvsik und Loaik,  37) . Kant was not s a t i s f i e d w i t h c e r t a i n s e c t i o n s o f the i n a u g u r a l d i s s e r t a t i o n , and i n an o f t e n quoted l e t t e r t o Marcus Herz of 21 February 1772, he d i s c l o s e d that he was w r i t i n g a new work which would provide the key t o the whole s e c r e t o f metaphysics. The short work was t o be e n t i t l e d "Die Grentzen der S i n n l i c h k e i t und der Vernunft" and would be ready for  p u b l i c a t i o n i n about three months (Briefwechsel. V o l . I .  Gesammelte S c h r i f t e n . AA X, 129). Nine years l a t e r the f i r s t of  the t h r e e volumes on the l i m i t s of s e n s i b i l i t y and reason  would be p u b l i s h e d as K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft (1781).  b.  In  Lenz and Kant  August 1768, Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz  (1751-1792)  and h i s younger brother C h r i s t i a n l e f t t h e i r n a t i v e Dorpat f o r the  Konigsberg Academy. Following the wishes o f t h e i r  father,  Jakob r e g i s t e r s f o r theology while C h r i s t i a n becomes a law. student. I t appears that C h r i s t i a n i s reading l o g i c and metaphysics w i t h Immanuel Kant  ( p o s t s c r i p t o f l e t t e r , dated 14  October 1769) . In the same l e t t e r , Jakob v o i c e s h i s  34  disappointment with some of the t h e o l o g i c a l c l a s s e s o f f e r e d at the Academy. He w r i t e s : Ich werde d i e s e s halbe Jahr, ausser den Philosophischen und andern C o l l e g i i s von t h e o l o g i c i s das Theticum bey D . L i l i e n t h a l und e i n Exegeticum iiber Ep. P a u l i an d i e Romer b e i D. Reccard horen. Die anderen t h e o l o g i s c h e n C o l l e g i a bedeuten  i n diesem halben Jahr n.icht v i e l .  Uberhaupt wenn man nebst e i n i g e n wenigen Professoren d i e Magister von Konigsberg nahme, wilrde d i e Akademie wenig oder gar n i c h t s werth seyn.  ( B r i e f e . I, 7, 13)  One can only speculate that i t may have been t h e ~ l a c k of enthusiasm  f o r the c l a s s e s of h i s theology p r o f e s s o r s that  prompted Lenz t o attend Kant's l e c t u r e s almost  exclusively  d u r i n g the y e a r s 17 69 and 1770. His academic p u r s u i t s a t Konigsberg are d e s c r i b e d by Johann F r i e d r i c h Reichardt, a contemporary  of Lenz and a f e l l o w student a t Konigsberg:  In den Jahren 1769 und 70 s t u d i e r t e i c h z u g l e i c h mit ihm, i n meiner V a t e r s t a d t K6nigsberg. Nur s e l t e n kam e r i n d i e Vorlesungen  einiger  Professoren; b a l d f a s t nur a u s s c h l i e S l i c h dann und wann i n d i e Vorlesungen unsers verehrungswiirdigen  35  Lehrers Kant.  ("Etwas uber den deutschen D i c h t e r  Jakob Michael Reinhold Lenz," 113) It  i s customary to d i v i d e Kant's philosophy i n t o a p r e -  critical  and a c r i t i c a l  p e r i o d . The i n a u g u r a l l e c t u r e of 1770  i s commonly considered to be Kant's l a s t p r e - c r i t i c a l work, and h i s l e t t e r to Marcus Herz of 21 February 1772 i s r e c o g n i z e d as the beginning of h i s c r i t i c a l  p e r i o d . Thus Lenz  was a student of Kant's when the l a t t e r was  f o r m u l a t i n g ideas  that would change the focus of h i s p h i l o s o p y and would  find  t h e i r f u l l expression i n h i s three c r i t i q u e s , the f i r s t of which would be p u b l i s h e d i n 1781 as K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft. That Kant's philosophy exerted a strong i n f l u e n c e on Lenz emerges from the f a c t that the former's p r e - c r i t i c a l  theories  on a e s t h e t i c s and metaphysics are r e f l e c t e d i n Lenz's w r i t i n g . For  example,  i n "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral"  Lenz echoes Kant's thoughts on the interdependence of a e s t h e t i c s and e t h i c s , f i r s t uber das Schdne und Erhabene"  laid  out i n Kant's  (1764). He w r i t e s :  "Beobachtungen "Sehen S i e  nun, dass d i e L i n i e n des wahren Sch6nen und des wahren Guten, im s t r e n g s t e n Verstande i n einem Punkte (I,  489).  In der  zusammenlaufen"  "Traume eines G e i s t e r s e h e r s , e r l a u t e r t durch Traume  Metaphysik"  (1766), Kant i s c r i t i c a l  of what he terms "die  S p i t z f i n d i g k e i t des Vernunfteln" and d e c l a r e s , empfinde, da b i n ich."14  "Wo i c h  Lenz follows i n Kant's f o o t s t e p s  when he confesses: "meine Empfindung fiihrt mich. . . r i c h t i g e r als  meine Schliisse"  (Briefe I, 2.4, 59). 15  As noted e a r l i e r , i t i s documented that Lenz presented Kant w i t h a laudatory poem on the o c c a s i o n of the l a t t e r ' s i n a u g u r a l address at the K6nigsberg Academy on 21 August 1770 (Rosanow, 54). In a d d i t i o n , there are i n d i c a t i o n s that Kant may have t r i e d to secure a post f o r Lenz i n Danzig. A l e t t e r of  the e l d e r Lenz to h i s sons s t a t e s ,  "Nachricht, so i c h  gehoret, dass Prof. Cant i h n nach Rehbinder i n Danzig recommendiret" his  ( B r i e f e , I, 8, 14). In the l e t t e r , he advises  son (Jakob?) not to accept the p o s i t i o n . The l e t t e r i s  dated E a s t e r 1771, and s h o r t l y a f t e r that date Lenz a b r u p t l y l e f t Konigsberg. Lenz was only eighteen when he f i r s t attended Kant's l e c t u r e s , y e t thoughts that surface i n h i s prose and drama suggest that the dissensus between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s s e n s i b l e and i n t e l l i g i b l e f a c u l t i e s provided the impetus which l e d to 14 Kant follows Rousseau's p a r o l e : "La sentiment est p l u s que l a r a i s o n . " By Kant's own admission, Rousseaus's i n f l u e n c e on him during t h i s time was not n e g l i g i b l e : "Rousseau hat mich zurecht gebracht" (AA XX, 44) . 15 According to Rosanow, Lenz was i n t r o d u c e d t o Rousseau by Kant (53).  37  Lenz's quest f o r authentic and meaningful e x i s t e n c e that permeates h i s work. Thus the p o t e n t i a l l y t r a g i c consequences of Kant's  absolute s e p a r a t i o n between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  i n t e l l i g i b l e and s e n s i b l e nature are r e f l e c t e d i n the s u f f e r i n g of the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f i n Lenz's work. In the t h e o r e t i c a l essays, Lenz's approach is dialectical,  to the  problem  as he a l t e r n a t e s between s u b j u g a t i n g one  f a c u l t y to the other. While h i s dramatic c h a r a c t e r s seem to c a p i t u l a t e i n the b a t t l e between t h e i r s e n s i b l e and i n t e l l i g i b l e f a c u l t i e s , Lenz s t r u g g l e s with Kant's p r e c r i t i c a l concept of the two d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed realms of phenomena and noumena i n h i s t h e o r e t i c a l essays. Recognizing the f r a g i l e and f i n i t e nature of human e x i s t e n c e , Lenz advocates  the quest f o r a u t h e n t i c e x i s t e n c e as the  foremost  task of the i n d i v i d u a l and as a means of coming t o terms w i t h the opposing claims of nature and consciousness. W i t h i n the Sturm und Drana. e x i s t e n t i a l  thinking,  t h i n k i n g which seeks to address the i n d i v i d u a l as a b e i n g that i s comprised e q u a l l y of r a t i o n a l and i r r a t i o n a l - ^ r e p r e s e n t s a challenge to the philosophy of the  faculties,  Enlightenment,  l b " i r r a t i o n a l " i s not used i n a p e j o r a t i v e sense here; i t simply r e f e r s to the n o n - r a t i o n a l s i d e of man's psyche, i . e . the emotions.  38  which advocated the primacy of r a t i o n a l thought. S c h o l a r s are d i v i d e d over whether the Sturm und Drana. as a l i t e r a r y  epoch,  r e p r e s e n t s a c o n t i n u a t i o n of the Enlightenment or whether the l i t e r a r y p r o d u c t i o n of the Sturmer und Dranaer breaks w i t h the r a t i o n a l p h i l o s o p h y of the Enlightenment. On the s i d e of those who  s u b s c r i b e to the l a t t e r theory i s Andreas Huyssen  who  writes: Was  d i e Sturmer und Dranger erfaSten, war d i e  A b s t r a k t h e i t und E i n s e i t i g k e i t eines f u r i n d i v i d u e l l menschliche P r a x i s b l i n d e n Rationalismus, der d i e a u f k l a r e r i s c h e T h e o r i e i n Deutschland bestimmte.  (Sturm und Drang,  57)  Luk'acs, w r i t i n g from a marxist. p e r s p e c t i v e , was  the  first  c r i t i c to c l a i m that the Sturm and Drana f i r m l y belonged to the  age of the Enlightenment  Werner Krauss i n s i s t e d , will,  (Huyssen, 28). More r e c e n t l y ,  "Sturm und Drang i s t , wenn man  so  d i e Vollendung der Aufklarung, i n keinem F a l l e aber eine  g e g e n a u f k l a r e r i s c h e Bewegung gewesen" (Krauss, 81). E x i s t e n t i a l t h i n k i n g surfaces during the Sturm und  Drana  i n Hamann and to a l e s s e r degree i n the w r i t i n g s of h i s p u p i l Herder. And although t h e i r l i t e r a r y and l i n g u i s t i c  theories  differ,  t h e i r essays on a e s t h e t i c s and language became the  credo of the young w r i t e r s of the Sturm und Drana.1 It must be acknowledged  7  that K&nigsberg and Kant  r e p r e s e n t e d a f o c a l point i n the i n t e l l e c t u a l development of Hamann, Herder, and Lenz.18  Both Herder and Lenz attended  Kant's l e c t u r e s on metaphysics, l o g i c , and moral p h i l o s o p h y . Hamann was never a student of Kant's but the two men knew each other w e l l and corresponded with each other on a r e g u l a r b a s i s (Hamann, Briefwechsel 4, 498). I t i s worth n o t i n g that i t was Hamann who v o i c e d the f i r s t strong d i s s e n t a g a i n s t Kant's K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft.19  I f one takes i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n  17 i n p a r t i c u l a r , Hamann's Sokratische Denkwurdiakeiten (1759) and h i s "Aesthetica i n nuce" i n Kreuzzuae des P h i l o l o a e n (1762); Herder's "Uber d i e neuere deutsche L i t e r a t u r " (1766-67), "Abhandlung uber den Ursprung der Sprache" (1770), and h i s "Shakespeare" essay (1773) . The l a t t e r was published i n the l e a f l e t , Von deutscher A r t und Kunst (1773) and i n c l u d e d Goethe's "Von deutscher Baukunst," which had been p u b l i s h e d independently a year e a r l i e r . 18 Hamann attended the Konigsberg Academy from 1746-52; he f i r s t read theology, then law, but l e f t i n November 1752 without a degree. Herder e n r o l l e d as a student o f theology i n 1762; he attended Kant's l e c t u r e s and became Hamann's f r i e n d . Lenz a r r i v e d i n Konigsberg i n August 1768, but although he r e g i s t e r e d f o r theology, he attended Kant's l e c t u r e s almost e x c l u s i v e l y i n the y e a r s 1769 and 1770. 1^ Hamann wrote a review of Kant's f i r s t i n J u l i 1781.  critique  40  Hamann's important  c o n t r i b u t i o n s to the l i n g u i s t i c and  l i t e r a r y tenets of the Sturm und Drana, one may w e l l argue that i t was Hamann who was the c a t a l y s t that prompted an e x i s t e n t i a l mode of t h i n k i n g to surface during the second h a l f of the e i g h t e e n t h century. The i n f l u e n c e of Hamann's e x i s t e n t i a l thought extends f a r beyond the eighteenth  century;  he i s acknowledged as the g r e a t e s t i n f l u e n c e on Kierkegaard, f o r example (Thomas, 54-56). However, the e x i s t e n t i a l questions Lenz r a i s e s have y e t to be f u l l y  c.  explored.  E x i s t e n t i a l thought  S i n c e the focus of t h i s t h e s i s i s the e x i s t e n t i a l  quest  that Lenz embarks on, a short e x p o s i t i o n of what c o n s t i t u t e s e x i s t e n t i a l t h i n k i n g seems a p p r o p r i a t e . E x i s t e n t i a l i s m has many faces and there are r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s of a l l major r e l i g i o n s as w e l l as a g n o s t i c s and a t h e i s t s who profess to be i t s proponents. However, notwithstanding  the d i f f e r e n c e s between them, there a r e  c e n t r a l concerns which u n i t e e x i s t e n t i a l i s t s . They a r e : (a)  a keen awareness of the human c o n d i t i o n , i . e . , the i n d i y i d u a l ' s f r a g i l e and f i n i t e p o s i t i o n i n the universe;  (b)  the s t r u g g l e f o r authentic being; and  41  (c)  a belief  i n the  freedom o f  choose h i s or her c o n v e n t i o n s and In the  nineteen  "existential" quite  aspects of  fifties  of  Jaspers,  Heidegger, S a r t r e ,  the  twentieth-century  among them. An  surfaces  e a r l y as  f o r example,  and  and  with  was as  Heidegger's  misleading, exclusive  philosophers  approach to  is reflected  of St. Augustine,  Dostojewski, Tolstoy,  such  the  as  most  life  i n subsequent  Pascal,  Unamuno, and  Nietzsche,  Ortega  y  others.  the  intelligible  the  focus  and  the  of h i s l a t e r  universe  it  existential  Camus, t o name o n l y  existential  In Kant's p r e - c r i t i c a l  In a d d i t i o n ,  the  thought i s the  w r i t e r s and  Socrates  i n the w r i t i n g s  among  term  I t w o u l d be  existential  influential  triggers  sixties,  Sartre's writings.  property  vast  and  i s commonly a s s o c i a t e d  to suggest that  Gasset,  social  c o n t e m p o r a r y drama " e x i s t e n t i a l "  however,  Kierkegaard,  of  work.  and  as  to  restrictions.  to l a b e l  Existentialism  centuries  regardless  c o u r s e , w i t h o u t e l a b o r a t i n g on the  philosophy  destiny  individual  s u f f e r e d from overexposure;  fashionable  a matter of  own  the  the  i n the  the  the  distinction  s e n s i b l e w o r l d , w h i c h was  "critical"  realization  and  thought,  philosophy,  t h a t m o r t a l man  alienation  individual--one  and  anxiety  o f the  between  t o become  i s already exists this  central  made.  alone i n a realization  concerns  of  e x i s t e n t i a l thought--is e l o q u e n t l y expressed by Kant i n h i s " T r o s t b r i e f an Frau Funk." He w r i t e s : So aber mengt s i c h der groSte Haufen der Menschen sehr b e g i e r i g i n das Gedrange d e r j e n i g e n , d i e auf der Briicke, d i e d i e Vorsehung liber einen T h e i l  des  Abgrundes der Ewigkeit geschlagen hat, und d i e w i r L e b e n  heiSen, gewissen Wasserblasen  nachlaufen  und s i c h keine Muhe nehmen auf d i e F a l l b r e t t e r Acht zu haben, d i e einen nach dem  andern neben ihnen i n  d i e T i e f e herabsinken lassen, deren  MaS  U n e n d l i c h k e i t i s t , und wovon s i e s e l b s t  endlich  m i t t e n i n ihrem ungestiimen Lauf verschlungen werden.  (Gesammelte S c h r i f t e n . AA,  Kant, i t i s true-, was  I I , 39)  not the f i r s t , p h i l o s o p h e r to be  aware of the e x i s t e n t i a l abyss that awaits man.  A century and  a h a l f e a r l i e r , B l a i s e Pascal had expressed the a n x i e t y he experienced upon contemplating the f i n i t e nature of h i s e x i s t e n c e on e a r t h : Quand j e considere l a p e t i t e dur£e de ma v i e , absorbee dans 1 6ternit£ pr£c6dant et s u i v a n t , l e 1  p e t i t espace que j e remplis et m§me que j e v o i s , abim£ dans l ' i n f i n i e immensity j  1  ignore et qui m'ignorent,  a mis?  des espaces  que  j e m ' e f f r a i e . . . Q u i m'y  (Pens£es de P a s c a l . 64) /  Yet although the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f seems dwarfed by the vastness of the u n i v e r s e , Pascal holds f i r m i n h i s b e l i e f that each i n d i v i d u a l i s c r e a t e d i n the image of God. And i t i s t h i s b e l i e f i n the d i v i n e nature of man, coupled with h i s f i n i t u d e , that prompts P a s c a l to ask, "Que deviendra done l'homme? Serat-il  £gal a Dieu ou aux betes? Quelle e f f r o y a b l e d i s t a n c e ! Que  serons nous done?" (Pens£es de Pascal, 153). In the eighteenth century the nature of human e x i s t e n c e was pondered by Goethe's Werther who asks the r h e t o r i c a l question,  "Was i s t der Mensch, der gepriesene Halbgott?"  Kierkegaard puts i t more p o i g n a n t l y when he w r i t e s a t the beginning of the nineteenth century: I s t i c k my f i n g e r s i n t o e x i s t e n c e - i t s m e l l s of nothing. Where am I? What i s t h i s t h i n g c a l l e d the world? What does t h i s word mean? Who i s i t that has l u r e d me i n t o the thing, and now leaves me there? Who am I?  (Repetition, 114)  I t i s the cosmic a l i e n a t i o n man f e e l s as a c r e a t u r e t h a t i s t h r u s t i n t o being, which g i v e s r i s e t o the a n x i e t y and dread diagnosed by K i e r k e g a a r d  20  and a p t l y d e s c r i b e d by Heidegger a  20 F o r an e x i s t e n t i a l i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the m o d a l i t i e s of human anxiety, see Kierkegaard's The Concept o f Dread.  44  century l a t e r . T h i s  anxiety i s echoed i n R i l k e ' s lament:  "Wie i s t es moglich zu leben, wenn doch d i e Elemente d i e s e s Lebens uns v o l l i g u n f a s s l i c h s i n d "  ( l e t t e r to L o t t e Hepner  dated 8 November 1915, B r i e f e . 510). The p h i l o s o p h i c a l problem of f r e e w i l l versus determinism i s a s u b j e c t that has d i v i d e d philosophers from the e a r l y Greeks to the present.22  A f i r m b e l i e f i n the freedom of the  w i l l l i e s a t the heart of e x i s t e n t i a l philosophy. For existentialists,  freedom i s not merely an a b s t r a c t concept. On  the c o n t r a r y , e x i s t e n t i a l t h i n k e r s consider human freedom as the q u a l i t y which sets the i n d i v i d u a l human being apart from other beings i n the universe. However, w h i l e freedom i s a potential for a l l ,  i t i s a r e a l i t y only f o r those who have the  courage t o l i v e t h e i r freedom, i n t h i s sense, freedom does not r e f e r to. changing the world around us, but t o transforming o u r s e l v e s . E x i s t e n t i a l freedom allows the i n d i v i d u a l to make c h o i c e s about h i s or her e x i s t e n c e . And although the p o s s i b i l i t y of authentic being i s always open to the i n d i v i d u a l , he or she i s not always aware o f t h i s p o t e n t i a l 21 Heidegger uses the term "Geworfenheit" t o d e s c r i b e the process by which the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f i s being 'thrown' i n t o existence. (Sein und Z e i t . 1927) 22 see chapter four of t h i s study f o r a b r i e f chronology o f the p h i l o s o p h i c a l problem o f f r e e w i l l versus determinism.  45  freedom. Not u n l i k e the man to  who  g a i n entrance to "the law"  spent h i s l i f e w a i t i n g i n v a i n  i n Kafka's parable,  "Vor  dem  Gesetz" o n l y to be t o l d before h i s death t h a t the entrance been kept open f o r him and no one e l s e 226),  the i n d i v i d u a l who  (Kafka, Der  had  Prozess.  waits at the t h r e s h o l d t h a t leads to  a u t h e n t i c being i s ignorant of the f a c t t h a t the key i s h i s alone. The danger of conforming impersonal  to the d i c t a t e s of the  "one," of s a c r i f i c i n g one's s e l f to others,  c o n s t i t u t e s a constant t h r e a t to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s quest f o r a u t h e n t i c being and i s a c e n t r a l concern i n Heidegger's S e i n und Z e i t understood who  (1927). The p e r i l of r e l i n q u i s h i n g one's s e l f i s a l s o by Kierkegaard, who  cautions that the  individual  abdicates h i s independence and opts f o r i n a u t h e n t i c being,  allows the impersonal Thus the quest  "one"  to c h a r t e r the course of h i s l i f e .  f o r self-knowledge,  d e s c r i b e d as "die  H o l l e n f a h r t der S e l b s t e r k a n n t n i s " as e a r l y as the e i g h t e e n t h century, c o n s t i t u t e s a mandatory f i r s t being  step towards a u t h e n t i c  (Hamann, Samtliche Werke I I , 164). The quest  f o r the s e l f i s , of course,  S o c r a t i c know t h y s e l f ! 2 3  m  i m p l i c i t i n the  the e a r l y seventeen-seventies i t  23 i n the Phaedrus, Socrates i s asked h i s o p i n i o n on a c u r r e n t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of a Greek myth. He responds that he does not have the time to t h i n k about such t h i n g s as he must f i r s t f o l l o w the Delphic o r a c l e ' s dictum,"know t h y s e l f ! " (229b-230a 2 ) .  was  Socrates who  became the philosopher par e x c e l l e n c e of the  c i r c l e t h a t gathered  around the actuary Salzmann i n  Strassburg--among them, Lenz and Goethe. The  latter  expresses  h i s enthusiasm f o r the Greek philosopher i n a l e t t e r to Herder i n the s p r i n g of 1772 admiration  (Goethes B r i e f e 1,57,  130),  Lenz's  2 4  f o r Socrates i s r e f l e c t e d not only i n the  d i a l e c t i c s of h i s prose, but i n the many r e f e r e n c e s to the p h i l o s o p h e r i n his.correspondence  and w r i t i n g s . ^  At the same time, Socrates was German Enlightenment and was philosophy. Socrates,  2  the patron s a i n t of the  hailed for his rational  In f a c t , F r e d e r i c k the Great claimed that  i n search of the t r u t h , would not accept  any  p r o p o s i t i o n s which were not s t r i c t l y r a t i o n a l . In h i s  crusade  a g a i n s t the P r u s s i a n king and Enlightenment philosophy, Hamann presented  the Greek philosopher as the sage who  showed h i s  Goethe writes that he i s now studying the l i f e and death of another hero, "den Sokrates, den P h i l o s o p h i s c h e n Heldengeist," who opposes "die Eroberungswuth a l l e r Lugen und L a s t e r besonders derer d i e keine scheinen wollen; oder vielmehr den g o t t l i c h e Beruf zum Lehrer der Menschen...." And he adds, "War i c h einen Tag und eine Nacht A l z i b i a d e s , und dann w o l l t i c h sterben." • 2 4  ^ Lenz addresses the actuary Salzmann as "Sokrates" and signs himself " A l c i b i a d e s " i n s e v e r a l of h i s l e t t e r s during 1772 (Letters I, 15, 29; 16, 29-30; 25, 60; and 26, 63). A l s o compare the homage Lenz pays to the p h i l o s o p h e r i n h i s essay, "Verteidigung des H e r m W. gegen d i e Wolken" (I, 437-38). 2  47  S o c r a t i c dictum "know t h y s e l f , " a c e n t r a l t e n e t i n Hamann's philosophy, becomes a f o c a l p o i n t i n Lenz's thought. 2 7  The und  emergence of e x i s t e n t i a l t h i n k i n g  Drang m a n i f e s t s i t s e l f i n the r e j e c t i o n o f a b s t r a c t  thought i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e o f the d a y . interpreted X.  d u r i n g t h e Sturm  28  While A r i s t o t l e had  t h e r a t i o n a l s e l f as t h e r e a l s e l f (Nic.  Ethics,  7, 305), e x i s t e n t i a l p h i l o s o p h y no l o n g e r a c c e p t s the  primacy o f a b s t r a c t thought over t h e emotions, but c o n s i d e r s the  i n d i v i d u a l as a b e i n g t h a t c o n s i s t s  equally of r a t i o n a l  and  i r r a t i o n a l elements--hence, the e x i s t e n t i a l i s t s ' concern  f o r t h e i n t e g r a t e d human b e i n g , what Hamann c a l l e d "den ganzen Menschen." I t f o l l o w s t h a t t h e canons of Enlightenment  27 I n a l e c t u r e e n t i t l e d "Paganism and C h r i s t i a n i t y i n Soren K i e r k e g a a r d , " Drachmann, one of K i e r k e g a a r d ' s e d i t o r s , put forward t h e t h e s i s t h a t i t was the l a t t e r ' s r e l a t i o n t o S o c r a t e s and the " s o c r a t i c " t h a t c o n s t i t u t e d t h e d e c i s i v e i n f l u e n c e on K i e r k e g a a r d ( S u b j e c t i v i t y and Paradox, 106) 28 Rousseau's p h i l o s o p h y w i t h i t s emphasis on the i r r a t i o n a l , i . e . t h e emotional n a t u r e of man, i s i n s t r u m e n t a l i n t h e r e j e c t i o n of a b s t r a c t thought i n t h e l i t e r a t u r e of the Sturm und Drang.  wisdom by acknowledging h i s ignorance (Sokratische Denkwurdiakeiten)26.it S o c r a t i c dictum philosophy,27  i s not s u r p r i s i n g , then, t h a t the  "know t h y s e l f , " a c e n t r a l tenet i n Hamann's  becomes a f o c a l p o i n t i n Lenz's  thought.  The emergence of e x i s t e n t i a l t h i n k i n g d u r i n g the Sturm und Drana manifests i t s e l f i n the r e j e c t i o n of a b s t r a c t thought  i n the l i t e r a t u r e of the day.28  while A r i s t o t l e had  i n t e r p r e t e d the r a t i o n a l s e l f as the r e a l s e l f  (Nic. E t h i c s ,  X. 7, 305), e x i s t e n t i a l philosophy no longer accepts the primacy  o f a b s t r a c t thought over the emotions, but c o n s i d e r s r  the i n d i v i d u a l as a being that c o n s i s t s e q u a l l y o f r a t i o n a l and i r r a t i o n a l elements--hence, the e x i s t e n t i a l i s t s '  concern  f o r the i n t e g r a t e d human being, what Hamann terms "den ganzen 26 According to James F l a h e r t y , Hamann's i n t e r e s t , i n Socrates was prompted by the J e s u i t s c h o l a r Rene de Rapin's r e s p e c t f u l treatment of the p h i l o s o p h e r i n a h i s t o r y o f philosophy which Hamann t r a n s l a t e d d u r i n g the time that he was employed as a p r i v a t e t u t o r i n the B a l t i c (Hamann's S o c r a t i c Memorabilia. 58). 27 i n a l e c t u r e e n t i t l e d "Paganism and C h r i s t i a n i t y i n Soren Kierkegaard," Drachmann, one of Kierkegaard's e d i t o r s , put forward the t h e s i s that i t was the l a t t e r ' s r e l a t i o n t o Socrates and the " s o c r a t i c " that c o n s t i t u t e d the d e c i s i v e i n f l u e n c e on Kierkegaard ( S u b j e c t i v i t y and Paradox. 106). 28 Rousseau's philosophy with i t s emphasis on the i r r a t i o n a l , i . e . the emotional nature of man, i s i n s t r u m e n t a l i n the r e j e c t i o n of a b s t r a c t thought i n the l i t e r a t u r e of the Sturm und Drana.  s  philosophy, which g l o r i f y man's r a t i o n a l and c o g n i t i v e powers w h i l e s u b j u g a t i n g h i s n o n - r a t i o n a l f a c u l t i e s , are no longer c o n s i d e r e d tenable by the generation of young w r i t e r s who b u r s t upon the l i t e r a r y scene i n the e a r l y  seventeen  seventies.29 E x i s t e n t i a l thought with i t s emphasis on the "whole man" 30 surfaces during the Sturm und Drang, and c h a l l e n g e s the c e n t r a l p l a c e which reason h e l d i n the p h i l o s o p h y of the Enlightenment. E x i s t e n t i a l i s m does not c o n s t i t u t e a formal system of p h i l o s o p h y which claims to have r a t i o n a l answers t o the mystery o f human existence, but i n s t e a d acknowledges the f r a g i l i t y and f i n i t e n e s s of the human c o n d i t i o n and presents the i n d i v i d u a l with the o p t i o n of choosing an a u t h e n t i c mode of  being. E x i s t e n t i a l thought  represents an attempt to come to  terms w i t h what authentic human existence demands of the  ^ Huyssen i n t e r p r e t s the Sturm und Drang as a c r i t i q u e o f the Enlightenment, a c r i t i q u e that i s not d i r e c t e d a g a i n s t reason i t s e l f but against a concept of man which i s based on reason alone. He w r i t e s , "... so r i c h t e t s i c h d i e K r i t i k der Sturmer und Dranger n i c h t gegen Vernunft p e r se, sondern nur gegen e i n e i n s e i t i g e s auf R a t i o a l l e i n gegrundetes Menschenbild. . . . (Drama des Sturm Wifl Dran,g, 48) . y  11  30 W i l l i a m B a r r e t t d e f i n e s e x i s t e n t i a l philosophy as an attempt "to grasp the image o f the whole man, even where t h i s i n v o l v e s b r i n g i n g to consciousness a l l that i s dark and questionable i n h i s existence" ( I r r a t i o n a l Man. 22).  49  individual following  and as s u c h i t i s always  contemporary,  e x c e r p t o f a l e t t e r Hamann w r o t e  demonstrates.  The l e t t e r was w r i t t e n  as t h e  to Jacobi  i n 1784:  To be, o r n o t t o be? T h a t i s t h e q u e s t i o n - Seyn ist  f r e y l i c h d a s E i n und A l l e s  jedes Dings.  das  To Ov  ein  Ideal der reinen Vernunft verwandelt,  der a l t e n Metaphysik h a t s i c h l e i d e r ! i n  Seyn und N i c h t s e y n v o n i h r n i c h t kann.  Aber  (Briefwechsel.  deSen  ausgemacht werden  5, 271)  Above a l l , i t i s t h e e x i s t e n t i a l v o i c e o f Hamann, a v o i c e finds  its full  r e s o n a n c e i n t h e w r i t i n g s o f J.M.R. L e n z ,  represents a powerful challenge to the r a t i o n a l p r o p a g a t e d by t h e German E n l i g h t e n m e n t .  thought  that which  CHAPTER I I I THE DIVIDED SELF  a.  The T h e o r e t i c a l  Essays  A c r i t i c a l look at J.M.R. Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l essays w r i t t e n between 1770  and,1776 r e v e a l s that the dissensus between the  i n d i v i d u a l ' s s e n s i b l e and i n t e l l i g i b l e f a c u l t i e s i s a concern that Lenz addresses again and again. In h i s essay, ilber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral"  "Versuch  (1772/73), w r i t t e n f o r  and presented to the Strassburg Sozietat.31 Lenz c o n s i d e r s the i n d i v i d u a l as a being that i s both s p i r i t and matter.  He  begins by acknowledging that human beings are, indeed, "zusammengesetzte Wesen," beings composed of a s t r a n g e l y mixed substance: Wir s i n d einmal zusammengesetzte Wesen und  eine  unendliche Reihe von B e g r i f f e n aus einem ersten, e i n z i g e n B e g r i f f h e r z u l e i t e n , w i r d  uns  v i e l l e i c h t e r s t dann m6glich s e i n , wenn unsre  Some of the so c a l l e d Sturmer und Dranaer were members of the "Societe de p h i l o s o p h i e et de b e l l e s l e t t r e s , " a weekly T i s c h a e s e l l s c h a f t . that centered around the actuary Johann D a n i e l Salzmann i n S t r a s s b u r g ; Herder, Goethe, J u n g - S t i l l i n g , Lerse, Wagner, and Lenz were a l l members of t h i s group at one time or another.  i h r e r Natur nach einfache Seele von d i e s e r wunderlich zusammengesetzten Masse M a t e r i e getrennt (1,484)  ist  He f u r t h e r claims that there are those who conceive of man as a being that i s e i t h e r  pure s p i r i t  or  pure matter:  "Ich weiss wohl, dass gewisse Psychologen uns gern iiberreden mochten, w i r waren entweder ganz G e i s t , oder ganz M a t e r i e " (I, 486).  As a case i n p o i n t he c i t e s Newton's attempt a t a  p u r e l y r a t i o n a l and mechanical i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the world, an attempt that u l t i m a t e l y f a i l e d  (I, 468).  He claims,  furthermore, that reason i s s e v e r e l y handicapped i n i t s assessment of human nature (I, 485)  and expresses a growing  s c e p t i c i s m about the a b i l i t y of reason t o move w i t h i n the realm of metaphysics i n a l e t t e r to the actuary Salzmann ( B r i e f e I, 25,  62).  While he acknowledges  that God's d i r e c t  i n t e r v e n t i o n i n the l i v e s of the a p o s t l e s and s a i n t s  falls  w i t h i n the sphere of metaphysics, he claims that reason (Vernunft) i s unable to provide a s a t i s f a c t o r y e x p l a n a t i o n f o r t h i s i n t e r v e n t i o n and adds that, i n any case, reason would regard w i t h s u s p i c i o n any phenomenon, "welches n i c h t d i e dazu e r f o r d e r l i c h e n Kennzeichen b e i s i c h hat" ( B r i e f e I, 25, The l e t t e r i s dated October 1772,  62) .  and i t i s worth n o t i n g that  Lenz dismisses as questionable the a b i l i t y of reason to p r o v i d e metaphysical knowledge a t a time when Kant seemed to  52  hold  firm  i n hisbelief  t h a t reason had the a b i l i t y  w i t h i n t h e m e t a p h y s i c a l realm.32  j  n  t h e same l e t t e r ,  employs t h e I c a r u s myth t o make t h e p o i n t unable t o e s t a b l i s h of  i t s priority  t o move  t h a t mind  Lenz  (Geist) i s  o v e r n a t u r e w i t h i n t h e domain  the l a t t e r : Zusammen mogen s i c h d i e F i t t i g e h a l t e n , und im T h a i ruhen,  des G e i s t e s  ehe s i e , wenn s i e  d e r Sonne zu nahe kommen, i n z e r l a s s e n e m Wachs h e r u n t e r t r C p f e i n und den armen G e i s t , w e l c h e r a u f dem Lande so s i c h e r und l u s t i g e i n h e r gehen konnen, aus d e r L u f t herab w i r f t ! In  i n d a s Meer  62)  t h e c o n c l u s i o n o f " V e r s u c h u b e r das e r s t e  d e r M o r a l " Lenz  Principium  r e i t e r a t e s h i s p o s i t i o n that a l l aspects of  human l i f e a r e b a s e d wir  (Briefe 1,25,  hatte  on a d o u b l e o r i g i n :  s i n d Hermaphroditen,  "Kurz meine  g e d o p p e l t e T i e r e sowohl  Herren  i n unserm  Wesen, a l s i n u n s e r n K e n n t n i s s e n und den P r i n z i p i e n d e r s e l b e n " (I,  486) . He t h e n p r o c e e d s  and  the quest  to identify  the quest  f o r happiness  f o r p e r f e c t i o n as b a s i c human p u r s u i t s ,  which  32 As p r e v i o u s l y s t a t e d , i n "de mundi s e n s i b i l i s a t q u e i n t e l l i g i b i l i s " (1770), Kant s t i l l h o l d s t h a t r e a s o n can t r a n s c e n d t h e v e i l of appearances and p r o v i d e m e t a p h y s i c a l knowledge o f r e a l i t y .  can only be r e a l i z e d , however, through the f u l l i n t e g r a t i o n of man's f a c u l t i e s  (I, 4 9 3 - 9 4 ) .  In "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral," Lenz addresses the dangers that i n v a r i a b l y r e s u l t from an i n d i v i d u a l ' s devotion to a p a r t i a l s e l f . 3 3  AS an example, he  c i t e s the p l i g h t of a seducer who, completely absorbed i n h i s sensual p u r s u i t s , remains ignorant of h i s n o n - s e n s i b l e nature and consequently experiences nothing but h i s s e n s u a l i t y (I, 493) . Lenz demands that any attempt to operate from a p a r t i a l i d e n t i t y i s to be abandoned. In a d d i t i o n , he a t t r i b u t e s the preoccupation with a p a r t i a l and d i m i n i s h e d s e l f to ignorance of the s e l f  (I, 4 9 3 ) . He concedes,  however,  that n o t h i n g i s more d i f f i c u l t to g a i n than self-knowledge (I,  489).  In c o n t r a s t to the d i a l e c t i c a l approach he takes i n "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral," Lenz opts f o r a somewhat d i f f e r e n t s t r a t e g y i n h i s essay "Vom Baum der E r k e n n t n i s Guten und Bosen" (1771/72).34  He begins by  33 T h i s one-sidedness a p p l i e s t o the t u t o r i n Der Hofmeister. to the s o l d i e r s i n D i e Soldaten. and t o Z e r b i n i n "Zerbin oder d i e neuere P h i l o s o p h i e . " 34 F i r s t p u b l i s h e d i n 1780 as "Philosophische Vorlesungen f u r empfindsame Seelen" (Rosanow, 475-76). In Rosanow as "Meine Lebensregeln," 548-55; T i t e l I, 501-09 {Supplements o n l y ) ; B l e i IV, 31-78.  54  examining  the value  conclusion the  that  sexual  marital state  concupiscence  erotic Liebe  gratification  (Blei  (erotic  bonds o f m a r r i a g e itemized  o f human s e x u a l i t y a n d comes t o t h e  IV, 5 6 ) .  desire)  (Blei  rules to alert  that  But he c a u t i o n s  i s only  acceptable  enhances  that within the  IV, 62-63) . I n a d d i t i o n , Lenz readers to the f i r s t  d e s i r e t o e n a b l e them t o a v o i d  here,  provides  symptoms o f  "die Verirrungen der  ( B l e i IV, 6 2 - 6 3 ) .  und d e r Z a r t l i c h k e i t "  tone o f a m o r a l i s t ,  i s a gift  L e n z assumes t h e  a n d seems t o u p h o l d t h e s c h o l a s t i c  a p p r o a c h t o t h e mind/body d i c h o t o m y b y e n d o r s i n g t h e m o r t i f i c a t i o n of the flesh, zu k a s t e i e n  "Uberhaupt i s t ' s  und zu k r e u z i g e n ,  b i l d e n k6nne...."  gut das F l e i s c h  damit d e r G e i s t wachsen u n d s i c h  ( B l e i IV, 6 3 ) .  Lenz a l s o  anticipates  W e n c e s l a u s ' s sermon i n Der H o f m e i s t e r . a s c i t e d b y L a u f f e r : "So  miisse u n s e r G e i s t auch d u r c h a l l e r l e i  Ertdtung  Kreuz und L e i d e n und  d e r S i n n l i c h k e i t f u r d e n Himmel z u b e r e i t e t  werden"  (II,V.ix, 90). The  above seems.to d e c i d e t h e argument i n f a v o u r  individual's this  intelligible  faculties,  b u t t h e supplements t o  e s s a y c a r r y a somewhat d i f f e r e n t message. Here, h e  a c k n o w l e d g e s c o n c u p i s c e n c e a s God's most p e r f e c t g i f t the  of the  basis  f o r t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s happiness  t h a t Adam a n d E v e ' s s e x u a l  ( I , 501.)  and as  and argues  awakening, a l t h o u g h c o n t r a r y t o  God's commandments, provided the impetus  the i n d i v i d u a l needed  i n order t o evolve as a moral being (I, 502-503).35 In  "Stimmen des L a i e n , " Lenz claims that only p r o h i b i t i o n  causes s i n , s i n c e i t i s impossible t o s i n without a d e s i r e f o r p r o h i b i t e d p l e a s u r e s . To support h i s t h e s i s he r e l a t e s the s t o r y o f the C h r i s t i a n v i r g i n s who d i e d d u r i n g the sack o f Rome. He o b j e c t s to St. Augustine's view that those v i r g i n s who in  escaped by drowning  themselves i n the T i b e r should be h e l d  l e s s e r esteem than t h e i r s i s t e r s who s u f f e r e d rape a t the  hands o f t h e i r captors. Lenz holds that, on the c o n t r a r y , the v i r g i n s who chose death by drowning  should be s i n g l e d out f o r  p r a i s e , s i n c e they d i d not t r u s t themselves not t o be tempted by t h e i r c a p t o r s . Lenz's p o s i t i o n here i s based on the gospel of  St. Matthew (I, 559).36 In  h i s attempt  to come t o terms with the concept o f human  s e x u a l i t y , Lenz assumes a m o r a l i s t i c tone, but a t the same time he does acknowledge the l i m i t a t i o n s of reason, i . e . i t s 35 see a l s o B l e i IV, 88-90, den G e i s t l i c h e n zugeeignet."  "Meynungen eines L a i e n ,  36 Matthew 18: 8-9: And i f your hand o r your foot causes you t o s i n , cut i t o f f and throw i t away; i t i s b e t t e r f o r you t o enter l i f e maimed o r lame than with two hands o r two feet t o be thrown i n t o the e t e r n a l f i r e . And i f your eye causes you t o s i n , p l u c k i t out and throw i t away; i t i s b e t t e r t o enter l i f e w i t h one eye than w i t h two eyes t o be thrown i n t o the h e l l o f fire.  inability  t o have absolute mastery  over the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  s e n s i b l e nature. Thus he considers human beings i n t h e i r totality,  as beings which are rooted i n both worlds: the  s e n s i b l e and the i n t e l l i g i b l e .  b.  The Prose  The mind/body dissonance i s a l s o a r e c u r r i n g theme i n Lenz's prose. In "Zerbin oder d i e neuere P h i l o s o p h i e " (1776), the reader i s introduced t o young Zerbin, a M a a i s t e r of philosophy, w e l l versed i n the e t h i c s of the so c a l l e d  "neuere  P h i l o s o p h i e . " Although p a s s i o n a t e l y i n love with Marie, a young servant g i r l ,  he contemplates  a marriage of convenience  w i t h h i s l a n d l o r d ' s daughter. Consequently, life  he d i v i d e s h i s  i n t o two spheres: a sensual and a r a t i o n a l . T h i s c a r e f u l  d i v i s i o n extends t o h i s academic p u r s u i t s , s i n c e i t i s noted that  " e i n Kollegium uber d i e Moral" and "eins uber das Jus  naturae" are e q u a l l y favoured by him ( B l e i , V, 97) .37 N f; 0  s u r p r i s i n g l y , i t takes a l l h i s ingenuity t o maintain a p r e c a r i o u s balance between h i s passionate love f o r Marie and  ' See Kant's "Untersuchungen uber d i e D e u t l i c h k e i t der Grundsatze der n a t u r l i c h e n Theologie und der Moral" (1764) . J  57  his  d u t i f u l courtship  o f H o r t e n s i e . However, he  r a t i o n a l i z e h i s b e h a v i o u r as Der  Trieb  tries  to  follows:  i s t a l i e n Menschen gemein; e r i s t e i n  Naturgesetz. Die Gesellschaft  kann m i c h v o n  den  P f l i c h t e n des N a t u r g e s e t z e s n i c h t  lossagen, a l s  wenn d i e s e  Pflichten  den g e s e l l s c h a f t l i c h e n  entgegenstehen....  Liebe hat i h r e eigene  i h r e e i g e n e n Zwecke, i h r e e i g e n e n  Sphare,  Pflichten,  d i e von denen d e r Ehe himmelweit u n t e r s c h i e d e n sind. Zerbin  (Blei V,  manages t o c a r r y  96-97)  on w i t h b o t h r e l a t i o n s h i p s  until  bears a s t i l l b o r n c h i l d , i s subsequently charged  with  manslaughter  realize  dividing  and p u t  one's l i f e  t o d e a t h . O n l y t h e n does he  i n t o a r a t i o n a l and a s e n s u a l r e a l m  o n l y u n t e n a b l e but u n e t h i c a l . only option  left  noumenon and In of  "Das  Lenz's  platonic  t o him.  The  Tagebuch"  (1774),38  and  suicide  an a u t o b i o g r a p h i c a l  and a c c u s e s  a  reader. account  i s torn  fate of  "Grausames S c h i c k s a l  i s not  into  on t h e a t t e n t i v e  the poet  that  seems t h e  of d i v i d i n g Z e r b i n  Fibich,  erotic desire  w i t h h i s mind and s e n s e s ,  it  irony  a phenomenon i s n o t l o s t  p a s s i o n f o r Cleophe love  I n t h e end,  Marie  between  juggling  s p i e l s t du  38 O r i g i n a l l y w r i t t e n i n e i t h e r E n g l i s h o r I t a l i a n , was n o t i n t e n d e d f o r p u b l i c a t i o n ( I , 629-32) .  immer B a l l mit unserm armen Kopf und Sinnen"  (I, 2 4 2 ) .  Kindermann d e s c r i b e s the d i a r y as "die Geschichte e i n e r pathologischen Leidenschaft"  (194) and c o n s i d e r s the s t r u g g l e  between l o v e and e r o t i c d e s i r e as i t s most important  theme. He  comments: Der Kampf des P r i n z i p s der Liebe mit dem der Begierde  ...wird...hier uberhaupt zum dominierenden  Faktor a l l e s Geschehens.... Dabei wird Liebe und Begierde mit P f l i c h t und Neigung i d e n t i f i z i e r t . (195)  Although  the f i r s t p a r t of Kindermann's a n a l y s i s i s to the  p o i n t , h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of Lenz's understanding w i t h i n the framework of the Kantian " c a t e g o r i c a l  of duty imperative"  should be approached with some c a u t i o n . For although the " s o l l e n " and "wollen" aspects of Kant's e t h i c s a r e e s t a b l i s h e d by 1774, the f i r s t  the " c a t e g o r i c a l imperative" as such i s s t a t e d f o r time i n Metaohvsik der Sitt.en  (1797).  "Moralische Bekehrung eines Poeten" (1775), "Das  3 9  a sequel t o  Tagebuch," examines the poet's r e l a t i o n s h i p with two  39 I t i s , of course, r e f e r r e d t o i n the f i r s t c r i t i q u e , K r i t i k der r e i n e n Vernunft (1781), and i n Grundleauna zur Metaohvsik der S i t t e n (1785)  women.  4U  The f i r s t  i s "C," a f l i r t  and seductress,  the focus o f h i s e r o t i c phantasies,  who becomes  while the second,  C o r n e l i a , symbolizes true f r i e n d s h i p and p l a t o n i c love.41 In the f i r s t monologue, there i s an ongoing s t r u g g l e between the poet's devotion  to C o r n e l i a and h i s obsession  w i t h "C," as  love and d e s i r e are s t i l l d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed. In the second monologue, the s c a l e s seem to be t i p p e d i n favour  o f the  former as C o r n e l i a , addressed as "himmlische Freundin" (I,  265) and "Werkzeug der G o t t h e i t "  (I, 266),  d e l i v e r the poet from h i s e r o t i c phantasies. continues,  i s asked t o  As the  struggle  he concedes that only the thought o f C o r n e l i a ' s  love can b r i n g peace t o h i s " d i s s o c i a t e d " f a c u l t i e s : Du Du - ach der grosse Gedanke, s i e l i e b t mich, schenkt a l i e n meinen dissonierenden Ordnung und Ruhe wieder....  (I, 266)  However, i n the f o u r t h monologue he grants defenceless  Kraften  that reason i s  i n the face of a f u l l onslaught of the emotions,  "denn i c h kann f u r meine Vernunft n i c h t stehen, wenn mein Herz das Ubergewicht bekommt" (I, 269). F i n a l l y , a s y n t h e s i s seems  40 W r i t t e n between the end of A p r i l and the end of J u l y 1775, i t was published f o r the f i r s t time by Weinhold, Goethe Jahrbuch X (1889), 46-70 (I, 635). T i t e l notes that the cipher "C" stands f o r Cleophe F i b i c h , while C o r n e l i a i s Goethe's m a r r i e d s i s t e r , C o r n e l i a Schlosser (I, 635). 4 1  60  to have been achieved  as the poet exclaims:  mich v e r n u n f t i g l i e b e n l e h r t , Du e r s t e - "  "0 Du e r s t e d i e  (I, 270).  However, a t  t h i s p o i n t a t h i r d woman appears on the scene who, i n turn, becomes the object of h i s e r o t i c p h a n t a s i e s .  42  In the end, he  contemplates s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n as the only means of,coming t o terms w i t h h i s f a t e : "Cornelia i c h fuhle der e i n z i g e Rat s e i n Los  i n der Welt zu tragen  heraussetzt, s i c h ansieht"  i s t daS man s i c h ganz aus s i c h  s i c h f u r einen fremden und andern Menschen a l s (I, 280).  I t appears that Lenz has come f u l l c i r c l e here. While i n the essay "Versuch iiber das e r s t e Principium der Moral" (1772/73) he seems confident that s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n leads t o a s y n t h e s i s between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n t e l l i g i b l e and s e n s i b l e nature, i n "Moralische  Bekehrung eines Poeten"  (1775) s e l f -  a l i e n a t i o n appears to be the only means of escaping the r e l e n t l e s s struggle.between one's d i s s o c i a t e d f a c u l t i e s .  ^ The r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h a t h i r d woman may represent Lenz's hapless passion f o r H e n r i e t t e von Waldner which he r e f e r s t o i n Der Waldbruder (I, 640) . 4  c.  The Drama  Der  Hofmeister  As i n the the t h e o r e t i c a l essays, the c o n f l i c t between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n t e l l i g i b l e  and s e n s i b l e nature emerges as a  major theme i n Lenz's two best known p l a y s : Der  Hofmeister  (1774) and Die Soldaten (1776). The c h a r a c t e r s who  inhabit  Lenz's dramatic world s u f f e r the consequences of not being a b l e to come to terms with t h e i r double i n h e r i t a n c e , and s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n not only bears witness to Lenz's  their  consistent  treatment of the mind/body dichotomy, but emphasizes the thematic u n i t y of h i s work. In Der Hofmeister. the problem i s i n t r o d u c e d i n the opening monologue w i t h L a u f f e r ' s a s s e r t i o n , that he i s i l l - s u i t e d  to become a parson because he i s  p h y s i c a l l y too w e l l endowed ( I I , I . i ,  11). Forced by the  c o n d i t i o n s of h i s employment to forego the company of the o p p o s i t e sex, he has no choice but to suppress h i s e r o t i c d e s i r e s . The subjugation of L a u f f e r ' s s e n s u a l i t y hastens h i s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n which i s d e s c r i b e d as f o l l o w s : " I l est 1 ' i n c a r n a t i o n de l ' i n d i v i d u ali£n£ qui n'a meme pas-conscience de son a l i e n a t i o n "  (Girard, Genese. 233). In c o n t r a s t to  G i r a r d , I would l i k e to suggest that, s i n c e L a u f f e r r e f e r s to his of  s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n on s e v e r a l occasions, he must be conscious i t . For example, he pleads with Wenzeslaus, "Lassen S i e  mich e r s t zu mir s e l b e r kommen" ( I I , I I I . i i ,  51). U n f o r t u n a t e l y  62  for  L a u f f e r , Wenzeslaus  instead,  t h a t he i n t e n d s  self-alienation: Ihr 61).  ignores  h i s p l e a and g i v e s  t o do h i s b e s t  "Ich w i l l  notice,  to f u r t h e r the  Euch n a c h m e i n e r Hand z i e h e n ,  e u c h s e l b e r n i c h t mehr w i e d e r kennen  sollt"  "Euer Gnaden s e t z e n  rhetoric  progressing. serves  (II,I.iii,  earlier  m i c h auSer m i c h , " i s n o t  but suggests that  daS  (II,IIl.iv,  W e n z e s l a u s ' s comment i n d i c a t e s t h a t L a u f f e r ' s  aside,  tutor's  simple  the t u t o r ' s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n i s  14).  Furthermore, Wenzeslaus's  to remind the reader that  threat  the t u t o r ' s chances f o r s e l f -  r e a l i z a t i o n have n o t i m p r o v e d u n d e r t h e s c h o o l m a s t e r ' s tutelage. The  tutor's progressive  throughout the p l a y  (II,I.iii,  p e r h a p s t h e most t e l l i n g  Wenzeslaus  the  II.ii,  the t u t o r ' s general  8 0 ) . Not  "Vielleicht  long a f t e r  reincarnated  konnt i c h i t z t  this  61),  Ill.iv,  On  t o t geschlagen hatte"  incident,  Lauffer  a c c o m p l i and  (II,V.iii,  that Lauffer  reincarnation  but  prompts  voices  Wenzeslaus,  w i e d e r a n f a n g e n zu l e b e n u n d  words i n d i c a t e t o M a t t e n k l o t t  on  Wenzeslaus  as h i s mentor  W e n z e s l a u s w i e d e r g e b o r e n werden"  hope f o r a s p i r i t u a l  51;  countenance  h i s s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n as a f a i t  hope o f b e i n g  i s commented  c a s t r a t i o n has t a k e n p l a c e .  t o r e m a r k : " A l s ob e r jemand  (II,V.iii, announces  14;  comment i s made by  immediately a f t e r L a u f f e r ' s t h i s occasion,  self-alienation  (156),  zum  82). While these shares Wenzeslaus's  one may  conclude  t h a t L a u f f e r ' s comment suggests, i n f a c t , that he  has  s a c r i f i c e d h i s i d e n t i t y as an independent s e l f . The  tutor's >  words a l s o a n t i c i p a t e Wenceslaus's sermon, which he  summarizes  as f o l l o w s : und  "so musse unser G e i s t auch durch a l l e r l e i  Leiden und  ErtStung der S i n n l i c h k e i t f u r den  z u b e r e i t e t werden" ( I I , V . i v ,  Kreuz  Himmel  90).  In Der Hofmeister. Lenz puts forward the t h e s i s that subjugation  of one's sensual  L a u f f e r ' s path takes him  the  nature leads to s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n .  from s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n to an attempt at  s e l f - a n n i h i l a t i o n . In the opening scene, the audience i s presented w i t h a man  who  does not h e s i t a t e to don  s e r v i l i t y i n order to f u r t h e r h i s i n t e r e s t s , and progresses i t becomes evident be someone he  as the drama  that r o l e - p l a y i n g , p r e t e n d i n g to  i s not, has become second nature to him.  example, he p l a y s the lackey to the Major's wife, Gustchen's J u l i e t , a d i s c i p l e to Wenzeslaus, and  between h i s s e l f and  is,  Romeo to  oscillating  the r o l e s he assumes. In a d d i t i o n ,  the  (German: runner, messenger) a t t e s t s to the •  s e r v i l e p o s i t i o n he occupies i n the von (II,I.i,  For  a l o v e r to  L i s e . In f a c t , L a u f f e r i s presented as c o n s t a n t l y  name L a u f f e r  a mask of  Berg household  11). What emerges from L a u f f e r ' s opening monologue  firstly,  the t u t o r ' s u n r e a l i s t i c p e r c e p t i o n  secondly, h i s constant posturing,  of h i m s e l f  i.e., his willingness  to  assume another i d e n t i t y on the spur of the moment. In f a c t ,  and  63  that  Lauffer's  comment s u g g e s t s ,  sacrificed his words a l s o as und  "so  L e i d e n und  zubereitet  independent s e l f .  musse u n s e r G e i s t Ertotung der  werden"  I n Der subjugation  o f one's s e n s u a l  p a t h t a k e s him  i n order to  someone he  nature leads  example, he  plays  opening scene, does n o t  In  name L a u f f e r  is,  firstly,  secondly,  the  hesitate  t o don  as  to the Major's w i f e ,  r o l e s he  the  oscillating the  the  o p e n i n g monologue of himself  i.e., his willingness  spur of  to  Berg household  tutor's u n r e a l i s t i c perception  assume a n o t h e r i d e n t i t y on  to  For  a lover  constantly  What emerges from L a u f f e r ' s  h i s constant posturing,  drama  Romeo t o  (German: r u n n e r , messenger) a t t e s t s t o  the  the  assumes. I n a d d i t i o n ,  o c c u p i e s i n t h e von  at  a mask o f  role-playing, pretending  i s p r e s e n t e d as  the  attempt  audience i s  a d i s c i p l e t o W e n z e s l a u s , and  and  s e r v i l e p o s i t i o n he 11).  that  the  to s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n .  become s e c o n d n a t u r e t o him.  lackey  fact, Lauffer  between h i s s e l f  (II,I.i,  has  the  Gustchen's J u l i e t ,  thesis that  f u r t h e r h i s i n t e r e s t s , and  i s not,  Kreuz  Himmel  from s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n t o an  I n the who  summarizes  90).  p r o g r e s s e s i t becomes e v i d e n t  Lise.  tutor's  auch durch a l l e r l e i  H o f m e i s t e r . Lenz p u t s forward the  p r e s e n t e d w i t h a man  be  has  The  S i n n l i c h k e i t f u r den  (II,V.iv,  self-annihilation.  servility  an  he  a n t i c i p a t e W e n c e s l a u s ' s sermon, w h i c h he  follows:  Lauffer's  i d e n t i t y as  i n fact, that  the  moment. I n  to  fact,  and  Lenz's stage d i r e c t i o n s at the end of- L a u f f e r ' s s o l i l o q u y , "Geht dem Geheimen Rat und dem Major mit v i e l f r e u n d l i c h e n Scharrfilssen v o r b e i , " r e v e a l the " f a l s e s e l f " the t u t o r presents to the world. Here " f a l s e s e l f " must be i n t e r p r e t e d i n the sense that Pascal understands i t : Nous ne nous contentons pas de l a v i e que nous avons en nous et en notre propre e t r e : nous .voulons v i v r e dans 1'id£e des autres d'une v i e imaginaire, et nous nous efforgons pour c e l a de p a r a i t r e . Nous t r a v a i l l o n s incessamment a e m b e l l i r et conserver notre e t r e imaginaire, et n£gligeons l e v e r i t a b l e . (Pens^es de P a s c a l . 88-89) As the p l o t develops,  there i s every i n d i c a t i o n t h a t  L a u f f e r ' s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n i s p r o g r e s s i n g . In the t h i r d scene of the f i r s t a c t , he i s presented  i n h i s r o l e as fop to the  Majorin, a r o l e he abandons temporarily, when he t r i e s to take p a r t i n a c o n v e r s a t i o n between the M a j o r i n and Count Wermuth. Unfortunately,  t h i s "aus der R o l l e f a l l e n " i s not a p p r e c i a t e d  by h i s employer, and he i s t o l d i n no u n c e r t a i n terms that h i s servant s t a t u s does not e n t i t l e him to converse w i t h higher up on the s o c i a l r e g i s t e r  (II,I.iii,  people  15). Thus s c o l d e d  and h u m i l i a t e d , L a u f f e r r e t r e a t s once more i n t o h i s lackey role.  Again, i t i s r o l e - p l a y i n g that introduces  the i n t i m a t e  encounter between the t u t o r and h i s charge. As t h e i r language r e v e a l s and i n contrast' to t h e i r r o l e models, Romeo and J u l i e t , L a u f f e r and Gustchen are u n c e r t a i n of t h e i r f e e l i n g s for  each other. The d e s c r i p t i o n of L a u f f e r ' s absentminded and  i n a p p r o p r i a t e r e a c t i o n to Gustchen's l a c o n i c "Ich dachte, du l i e b t e s t mich" c l e a r l y i n d i c a t e s that there i s no s t r o n g emotional bond between the two. In a d d i t i o n , L a u f f e r ' s body language speaks f o r i t s e l f : L a u f f e r : s t i i t z t s i c h mit der andern Hand auf ihrem Bett, indem s i e f o r t f a h r t seine eine Hand von Z e i t zu Z e i t an die Lippen zu bringen:  LaS mich  denken... B l e i b t nachsinnend s i t z e n . ( I l , l l . v , 41) The  discrepancy  between thought and f e e l i n g , reason and  sentiment, i s revealed by t h e i r short v e r b a l exchange. Lauffer's directions  "LaS mich denken..," followed by the stage ( B l e i b t nachsinnend s i t z e n ) , not only i m p l i e s  that  he has abandoned h i s r o l e " i n der beschriebenen Pantomine" (ll,II.v,  41) but suggests that he i s an absent-minded  i n d i v i d u a l who p r e f e r s a b s t r a c t thought to a c t i o n . L a u f f e r ' s anxious remark, "Es konnte mir gehen wie Abelard,"  i n response  to Gustchen's " g o t t l i c h e r Romeo" p o i n t s to the impending sexual  intimacy  of the two and foreshadows the t u t o r ' s  66  eventual f a t e .  Finally,  4 3  "LSuffer l a u f f t  the short a l l i t e r a t i v e phrase,  f o r t " announces h i s imminent f l i g h t from the  von Berg household  ( I I , I I . v , 41).  Upon h i s a r r i v a l at the v i l l a g e schoolmaster's house, the t u t o r i n t r o d u c e s himself as Mandel. I t i s noteworthy  that he  adopts the name Mandel at the p r e c i s e moment that he i s about to  s t a r t a new l i f e .  The q u e s t i o n i s : what does the name  Mandel s i g n i f y ? To M a t t e n k l o t t , who sees the almond t r e e as a symbol f o r the i m i t a t i o n of C h r i s t , h i s death and r e s u r r e c t i o n , the t u t o r ' s choice of the name Mandel suggests that he shares Wenceslaus's  hope f o r a s p i r i t u a l r e b i r t h . He  writes: Einmal a l s S i n n b i l d des Opfers C h r i s t i , das Tod ;  und Auferstehung i n einem bedeutet, i s t der Mandelbaum zum andern Symbol von C h r i s t i Nachfolge. Seine B i t t e r k e i t i s t d i e Verheissung s e i n e r SiiSe und b e f a i l t L a u f f e r nach s e i n e r Tat auch Todesfurcht, so hat er doch wie der Schulmeister Hoffnung auf seine g e i s t i g e Wiedergeburt.  (155-56)  Abelard, a medieval s c h o l a s t i c and p r i v a t e t u t o r , f e l l i n love with h i s charge H e l o i s e and s e c r e t l y married her; he was subsequently c a s t r a t e d by members of her f a m i l y . Rousseau's novel, La n o u v e l l e H e l o i s e a l s o describes a tutor/student r e l a t i o n s h i p . 4 3  67  Mattenklott's  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n f a i l s t o take i n t o c o n s i d e r a t i o n ,  however, that the t u t o r , whom the schoolmaster acknowledges as his  " s p i r i t u a l " son, wants t o be r e i n c a r n a t e d not as himself  but  as Wenzeslaus! One can only conclude, t h e r e f o r e , that the  s a c r i f i c e o f h i s s e l f i s the p r i c e the t u t o r pays f o r t h i s " s p i r i t u a l " reincarnation  ( I I , V . i i i , 82).  In a d d i t i o n , the choice of the name Mandel i s h a r d l y a c c i d e n t a l . In view of the f a c t that the almond blooms twice a y e a r and bears both sweet and b i t t e r f r u i t ,  the t u t o r ' s new  name may be read as a symbol f o r the dichotomy that e x i s t s between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s i n t e l l i g i b l e and s e n s i b l e  faculties.  A p o i n t i n favour of t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n i s Wenzeslaus's a s s e r t i o n that the name Mandelblute would be even b e t t e r s u i t e d t o the t u t o r . He comments "Sie heiSen unrecht Mandel; S i e s o l l t e n Mandelblute heiSen; denn S i e s i n d j a weiS und r o t wie Mandelblute"  (II,III.ii,  52). While the white and r e d  c o l o u r symbolism suggests t o Mattenklott Gottes und d i e Dornenkrone C h r i s t i "  "das b l u t i g e Lamm  (154), I would l i k e t o  propose that i n the schoolmaster's vocabulary the term "Herren weiss und r o t " - - w i t h which he addresses the t u t o r on s e v e r a l occasions--refers  t o the i n v o l u n t a r y b l u s h i n g o f the young i n  the presence of the opposite  sex. For example, white and r e d  are the c o l o u r s of L i s e ' s complexion during her amorous t e t e a - t e t e w i t h the t u t o r  (II,V.x,  93). In a d d i t i o n , there i s  Wenceslaus's  a s s e r t i o n that he would not dare look upon a  woman i n the same manner as " i h r Herren weiS und r o t " (ll,lll.ii,  54) . Since white and red are the c o l o u r s  a s s o c i a t e d w i t h y o u t h f u l b l u s h i n g and sexual a r o u s a l i n Lenz's other p l a y s , we may t u t o r ' s youth and  i n t e r p r e t them here as a symbol virility.  f o r the  4 4  As noted e a r l i e r , the time f o r the name change from L a u f f e r to Mandel i s important, f o r the t u t o r changes h i s name to Mandel a f t e r h i s f l i g h t from the von Bergs. T h i s seems to suggest that the t u t o r , no longer f o r c e d to suppress h i s s e n s i b l e nature, can now realization.  take a f i r s t  Furthermore, Wenzeslaus's  step towards  self-  suggestion that  Mandelbliite would be b e t t e r s u i t e d than Mandel as name f o r the t u t o r seems to i n d i c a t e that there i s s t i l l hope f o r h i s s e l f realization. 5 4  However, c o n s i d e r i n g the asexual propagation  of some s p e c i e s of almond (Encyclopedia B r i t a n n i c a . I, 659),  For example, i n Die Freunde machen den Philosoohen (1776) : "Strephon (uber und uber r o t ) " ( I I , I . v , 292); i n Der Enalander (1776): "Robert: I c h war jung, i c h war schon! o schon! schon! i c h war zum Fressen, sagten s i e - S i e wurden r o t , wenn s i e mit mir sprachen, s i e s t o t t e r t e n , s i e stammelten, s i e z i t t e r t e n . . . ." (H,V.v, 351). 4  4  45 "The almond i s the f i r s t t r e e to awake t o l i f e i n w i n t e r " and "the almond f l o w e r i n g i s a symbol of hope" ( D i c t i o n a r y of Mythology F o l k l o r e and Symbols. 71) .  69  the  name Mandel  seems t o p o i n t  as a symbol to the fact  f o r both f e r t i l i t y that  the t u t o r ' s  and  sterility  future i s at best  doubtful. Not  surprisingly,  the t u t o r ' s attempt  h i m s e l f a s an i n d e p e n d e n t s e l f  to establish  i s t h w a r t e d by W e n z e s l a u s  who  c o n s i d e r s h i m h i s d i s c i p l e and t h r e a t e n s t o f o s t e r h i s s e l f alienation  ( I I , I I . i i i , 61). The t u t o r ' s d i s c i p l e s h i p  an a b r u p t end, however, w i t h W e n z e s l a u s * s  comes t o  r e a c t i o n to h i s  self-castration. In  o r d e r t o a r r i v e a t a motive f o r Wenzeslaus's  r e a c t i o n to the tutor's c a s t r a t i o n , Wenzeslaus's is  p s y c h o l o g i c a l make-up  a second look at seems w a r r a n t e d . The r e a d e r  i n t r o d u c e d t o t h e s c h o o l m a s t e r as he i s s i t s  drawing s t r a i g h t  l i n e s on a p i e c e o f p a p e r  a t h i s desk  (II,III.ii,  first  i n d i c a t i o n t h a t he s u b s c r i b e s t o an o r d e r l y  life.  I t further transpires  from W e n z e s l a u s ' s  s p e e c h t h a t h i s l i f e i s d i s c i p l i n e d and w e l l (II,III.ii, life der  light.  He comments,  neben s e i n e r S c h u l a r b e i t lebt  MaSigkeit"  51), a  approach t o  longwinded  first  regulated  58). R u d o l f i n t e r p r e t s t h e s c h o o l m a s t e r ' s s p a r t a n  i n a positive  innehat,  absurd  a u c h das Amt d e s D o r f p r e d i g e r s  das e i n f a c h e Leben,  kennt d i e K a r d i n a l t u g e n d  (172). To him, W e n z e s l a u s ' s  seems n o t o n l y  "Dieser Schulmeister,  laudable, but r e v e a l s  ascetic  "die Kluft  life  style  zwischen  einem  70  'asketischen  Pflichtmenschentum' von Kant b e e i n f l u S t und  ' v e r b i l d e t e n ' Menschen wie L a u f f e r "  dem  (168) .  As noted i n the review of the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e , i s another s c h o l a r who  compares Wenzeslaus's pedantic  a s c e t i c l i f e s t y l e to Kant's w e l l documented d a i l y  Preuss  and  routine  (44). However, Preuss does not b e l i e v e that i t i s Lenz's i n t e n t to p o r t r a y e i t h e r Kant or Wenzeslaus i n a p o s i t i v e l i g h t . He  writes: Wie  der Philosoph  i s t Wenzeslaus e i n Pedant,  selbstgenugsam l e b t : "Aufstehn, Schreiben,  der  Kaffeetrinken,  K o l l e g i e n l e s e n , Essen, Spazierengehn,  a l l e s hat seine bestimmte Z e i t " so H e i n r i c h Heine den Tagesplan des  beschreibt  Philosophen.  (44)  To Rosanow, Wenzeslaus seems a goodnatured and l i k e a b l e f e l l o w . In a d d i t i o n , he considers him philosopher  something of an armchair  (202). However, i t i s d i f f i c u l t  schoolmaster's constant  to see  the  p h i l o s o p h i z i n g and m o r a l i z i n g i n a  p o s i t i v e l i g h t , s i n c e h i s lengthy v e r b a l outpourings,  freely  s p r i n k l e d with L a t i n , prompt L a u f f e r ' s fear that he w i l l l e c t u r e d to death.  be  ( I I , I I I . i v , 61). In a d d i t i o n , Lenz i s  f a i r l y c o n s i s t e n t i n h i s negative  p o r t r a y a l of  philosophers,  p r o f e s s i o n a l or otherwise; among the most prominent P i r z e l i n Die Soldaten;  are:  Z i e r a u i n Der neue Menoza; and  i n Z e r b i n oder d i e neuere  Philosophie.  Zerbin  71  Furthermore, Wenzeslaus's a d d i c t i o n t o tobacco (II,III.iv,  58-59) can only be i n t e r p r e t e d as a s e r i o u s  c h a r a c t e r flaw s i n c e smoking i s , according to Lenz, c o n t r a r y to his  the concept of C h r i s t i a n freedom, s i n c e i t enslaves man t o senses and renders him incapable of great and noble deeds  (Rosanow, 553).  As Preuss notes, the j u s t i f i c a t i o n Wenzeslaus  o f f e r s f o r h i s p i p e smoking would c e r t a i n l y have been of i n t e r e s t t o Freud  (45).  For although the schoolmaster b e l i e v e s  that h i s constant smoking wards o f f "bose Begierden," h i s comments r e v e a l that h i s p i p e smoking i s , i n f a c t , a s u b s t i t u t e f o r sexual g r a t i f i c a t i o n : Ich  habe geraucht, a l s i c h kaum von meiner  Mutter Brust entwohnt war; d i e Warze mit dem Pfeifenmundstuck verwechselt. He he he! Das  i s t gut wider d i e bose L u f t und wider d i e  bosen Begierden e b e n f a l l s .  (II,III.iv,  58)  A f u r t h e r i n d i c a t i o n that there i s something amiss i n Wenzeslaus's c h a r a c t e r i s given i n the shooting i n c i d e n t i n I V . i i i . L a u f f e r has j u s t been shot and i s i n urgent need of medical a t t e n t i o n , but the schoolmaster, more concerned w i t h his  c i v i l r i g h t s than with L a u f f e r ' s wound, has t o be asked  r e p e a t e d l y to f e t c h the surgeon  (II,IV.iii,  66).  The schoolmaster's absurd and i n a p p r o p r i a t e r e a c t i o n t o L a u f f e r ' s s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n a l s o deserves f u r t h e r a t t e n t i o n .  Following  L a u f f e r ' s o r d e a l , Wenzeslaus  congratulations.  offers his  But while he acknowledges  L a u f f e r as h i s  s p i r i t u a l son, he ignores h i s p h y s i c a l and mental s u f f e r i n g . I t i s c l e a r from the schoolmaster's r e a c t i o n that h i s concern i s not w i t h the v i c t i m but w i t h the i d e o l o g i c a l aspects of the c a s t r a t i o n . One can only assume that h i s p u r e l y r a t i o n a l response to the tragedy prevents him from responding w i t h the appropriate  compassion to the t u t o r ' s s u f f e r i n g . Since c a r i t a s  i s the noblest may  of a l l C h r i s t i a n v i r t u e s i n Lenz's eyes, one  conclude that the d e s c r i p t i o n of the schoolmaster's l a c k  of compassion f o r h i s d i s c i p l e c o n s t i t u t e s Lenz's most s e r i o u s c r i t i c i s m of  Wenzeslaus.46  The t u t o r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n of a p a i n t i n g that a l l e g e d l y d i s t r a c t e d him from Wenzeslaus's Sunday sermon i s another i n d i c a t i o n that h i s d i s c i p l e s h i p i s nearing i t s end. The p a i n t i n g , which d e p i c t s St. Mark and St. Matthew, i s d e s c r i b e d as f o l l o w s :  46 see Lenz's comments on St. Paul's l e t t e r s t o the C o r i n t h i a n s (Cor: 13:14): "Wenn i h r mit Menschen- und Engelzungen redt, und konnt weissagen, und l a s s e t euren L e i b brennen - und habt d e r L i e b e n i c h t , so s e i d i h r tonendes Erz und klingende Schellen, a l l e s i s t euch unnutz, denn i h r werdet g e r i c h t e t werden und s e i d schon j e t z t g e r i c h t e t vor Gott, n i c h t nach dem, was i h r getraumt habt, sondern was i h r gehandelt habt b e i L e i b e s Leben, es s e i gut oder bose" (I, 509).  Ich muss bekennen, es hing e i n Gemalde dort, das mich ganz z e r s t r e u t hat. Der mit  einem Gesicht,  das um  E v a n g e l i s t Markus  k e i n Haar menschlicher  aussah a l s der Lowe, der b e i ihm  saS,  und  der  Engel' beim Evangelisten Matthaus eher e i n e r g e f l u g e l t e n Schlange a h n l i c h sah. How  i s one  (II,V.ix,  90)  to i n t e r p r e t t h i s unusual d e s c r i p t i o n of  the  e v a n g e l i s t s ? Madland sees aspects of the grotesque i n L a u f f e r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n of the p a i n t i n g . She The  writes:  faces L a u f f e r describes are Lenzen's  "Fratzengesichter,"  which here are not  l i m i t e d to  the temporal world but have been extended to i n c l u d e aspects of the d i v i n e . The  d i s t o r t e d faces  of the s a i n t and the angel become c h i l l i n g l y t h r e a t e n i n g : not even the d i v i n e , a t r a d i t i o n a l anchor and source of s e c u r i t y , can be depended on any  longer.  Whether one not,  (Diss.  228)  disagrees with Madland's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n or  one ^has to admit that the d e s c r i p t i o n of the p a i n t i n g i s  extraordinary:  the face of St. Mark i s d e s c r i b e d as no more  human than that of the l i o n . Since t h i s i s an unusual p o r t r a y a l of the s a i n t , one  can only assume that Lenz uses a  symbolic r e p r e s e n t a t i o n here. Together, the winged l i o n as a symbol f o r S a i n t Mark (Penguin D i c t i o n a r y of S a i n t s . 226). and  74  the a n i m a l - l i k e features of the s a i n t may suggest a union of the seemingly d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed f o r c e s of s p i r i t and nature and, as such, they could point to a p o s s i b l e r e s o l u t i o n of the dissensus  that e x i s t s between the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  i n t e l l i g i b l e and s e n s i b l e nature. Furthermore, i f one i s w i l l i n g t o accept the serpent  i n the Garden of Eden as a  symbol f o r e v i l , one could venture  that a winged  serpent  p o i n t s not only to the n a t u r e / s p i r i t dichotomy, but t o the c o i n c i d e n t i a of good and e v i l . Therefore,  one may conclude  that L a u f f e r ' s d e s c r i p t i o n of the p a i n t i n g p o i n t s to the c o i n c i d e n t i a oppositorum. serpent  47  In a d d i t i o n , s i n c e angel and  represent the opposing forces of good and e v i l ,  a .  c r e a t u r e that seems to be serpent and angel, a t once, c a l l s to mind the F a l l : God's p r o h i b i t i o n to eat from the t r e e of knowledge. Eve being tempted by the serpent forbidden f r u i t ,  to eat of the  and Adam and Eve's subsequent e x p u l s i o n from  the Garden of Eden by the Cherub with the flaming sword. As a d i r e c t r e s u l t of the F a l l , both s p i r i t u a l and p h y s i c a l death were t r a n s m i t t e d to the e n t i r e human race through Adam (Rom 5, 12-14).  T h i s term i s f i r s t used by John de Cusa t o d e s c r i b e the coincidence of a l l opposites i n God. See a l s o Hamann's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f t h i s concept (Samtliche Werke I I , 189-193). 4 7  75  Lenz's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the F a l l he  s t a t e s t h a t he  does n o t  the  s i n o f Adam and  (I,  550),  and  Eve was  secondly,  concupiscence  itself  he  but  p r e c i p i t a t e d Adam and  must be  sensuality  imparted claims  s i n , i . e . , that  t o t h e whole human r a c e  t h a t i t was  only i t s hasty  not  consummation t h a t  i s s u e w i t h the b e l i e f  to r e c t i f y  considered  believe i n original  Firstly,  Eve's e x p u l s i o n from p a r a d i s e  In a d d i t i o n , Lenz takes Christ's mission  is different.  the F a l l .  (I,  that i t  as God's p l a n t o awaken t h e  conscious  towards e t h i c a l interpretation Das  and  of t h e i r  e x i s t e n c e and  of the F a l l warrants f u l l h e i S t e r muSte e s s e n und  Baume m i t  einen Garten  um  propels  s i c h gatten. den  der  dem  them unusual  Daher  itzt  er  Befehl:  sinnliche  mochte s e i n e K r a f t e anzuwenden und S i e d a z u zu b r i n g e n ,  t o make  Baum...so s e t z t '  GenuS  s e t z t e s i e i n e i n g e w i s s e s Vergniigen, 48. s e i n e E x i s t e n z ganz f i i h l t und  of  quotation:  r e i z e n d e m Obst h i n , m i t  esset. Sie versuchten's,  Fall  feeling  autonomous a c t i o n . L e n z ' s r a t h e r  s e t z t e Gott  was  In h i s view, the  i n humans. S e n s u a l i t y , i n i t s t u r n , s e r v e s  human b e i n g s  501).  gem  # #  da  man  etwas haben  tatig  zu  sein.  muSten s i e n o t w e n d i g  48 I n h i s a c c o u n t o f t h e F a l l , Hamann c l a i m s t h a t t h e s e x u a l a w a k e n i n g o f Adam and Eve was prompted by t h e s e n s u a l b e a u t y o f t h e g a r d e n ; he a l s o comments on t h e i r n e e d f o r f o o d ( S a m t l i c h e Werke I, 1 6 ) .  aus wo  dem  P a r a d i e s h e r a u s i n e i n e Wiiste,  d e r Erdboden v e r s c h l o s s e n war  durch  i n eine S t r a f e i h r e r Lusternheit  und  der draus entstehenden  ein  Verbot  S i n c e Lenz regards  prospects  Gottes....  concupiscence  a t autonomous and  young c o u n t r y  girl.  i n Lise,  ethical  C o n s i d e r i n g the  for  a marriage  does not man is  may  W e n z e s l a u s , who  admonishes him  fact  but  regarded  55-56)  as  not  not  the  to r e t u r n to  the  soul.  t h a t they are e n t e r i n g i n t o a  full  the f a c t  However, wife.  sterile  would a d e s i r a b l e y o u n g g i r l answer i s s i m p l e :  i m p l i c a t i o n s of marrying  extreme y o u t h . t h a t she  That  she  attends  a  disciple's  t o become h u s b a n d and  w i t h a c a s t r a t e ? The  because of her  non  extremely  o r d e a l and  suspects h i s  t o save h i s i m m o r t a l  w e l l ask: why  realize  r e v e a l e d by  IV,  selfhood, Lauffer's  from h i s s e l f - i n f l i c t e d  L a u f f e r r a n d L i s e are determined  one  (Blei  eine  he d i s c o v e r s h i s sudden p a s s i o n f o r L i s e ,  " f l e s h p o t s o f Egypt"  union,  durch  self-castration.  Lauffer recovers long afterwards  die  as t h e c o n d i t i o n s i n e qua  f o r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n must be  doubtful after his  interest  Wollust,  geweckt wurde, zu v e r w a n d e l n war  besondere Weisheit  arriving  erst  i h r e Bemuhungen w i e d e r muSte g e o f f n e t  werden. D i e s e s  for  und  is still  an a  Sunday s c h o o l  opt  Lise impotent child,  77  (Kinderlehre) on a r e g u l a r b a s i s (II,V.x, 93). d e s c r i b e d as innocence p e r s o n i f i e d  (II,V.x,  She i s a l s o  93).  Yet although L i s e i s only a s l i p of a g i r l ,  there i s an  e r o t i c aura about her. For example, her s e d u c t i v e and c a r e l e s s way of a r r a n g i n g her h a i r i s commented on by Wenzeslaus ( I I , V . i x , 92)  and L a u f f e r (II,V.x, 93).  In a d d i t i o n , there i s  every i n d i c a t i o n that she i s very much aware of the opposite sex. She blushes e a s i l y  (II,V.x, 93)  and when asked about her  experiences w i t h men, she f r e e l y admits to having had s e v e r a l beaus. By her own admission  she has a preference f o r c l e r i c s  and academics, but t h i s does not stop her from being fond of the s o l d i e r s i n t h e i r c o l o u r f u l coats. I r r e s i s t i b l e , to  L i s e , would be a combination  according  of the two: c l e r i c s dressed i n  the c o l o u r f u l coats of the s o l d i e r s . She enthuses:  "ganz  gewiS, wenn d i e g e i s t l i c h e n Herren i n so bunten Rocken gingen wie d i e Soldaten, das ware zum Sterben" not be without  I t would  irony i f Lenz intended the c a s u a l remark of a  naive young g i r l intelligible  (II,V.x, 94).  to p o i n t to the dichotomy between the  (the c l e r i c s ) and the sensible' (the s o l d i e r s ) and  the f i n i t e nature of human existence. In s p i t e of the t u t o r ' s handicap,  L i s e i s determined t o  marry him, and not even the prospect of a c h i l d l e s s  marriage  p e r t u r b s her. On the contrary, c h i l d r e n represent only an a d d i t i o n a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y to her. She exclaims:  78  Damit war  mir auch wohl grofi gedient,  wenn i c h noch  Kinder dazu bekame. Mein V a t e r hat Enten und genug, d i e i c h a l l e Tage f u t t e r n muS; k i n d e r obenein f u t t e r n mtiSte. Not  s u r p r i s i n g l y , L i s e i s described  as  Hiihner  wenn i c h noch  (II,V.x,  97)  "einfaltig"  (II,V.x.,  93); her advocacy of a c h i l d l e s s marriage i s naive indeed. even though she  i s s u s c e p t i b l e to the sensual  promise of  And  the  s o l d i e r s ' c o l o u r f u l uniforms, L i s e i s much too young to understand the  f u l l i m p l i c a t i o n s of her d e c i s i o n to  sacrifice  her s e n s u a l i t y on the a l t a r of a s t e r i l e marriage. In e s t a b l i s h i n g the a e s t h e t i c , the e t h i c a l , and  the  r e l i g i o u s as stages i n human development, Kierkegaard makes the  f o l l o w i n g d i s t i n c t i o n between the a e s t h e t i c and  e t h i c a l consciousness: "The which he  a e s t h e t i c a l i n a man  the  i s that  by  i s immediately what he i s ; the e t h i c a l i s that  whereby he becomes what he becomes" (Either/Or I I , 150).If were to apply Kierkegaard's d i s t i n c t i o n between the and  the e t h i c a l , one  the p l e a s u r a b l e  aesthetic  could argue that young L i s e i s s t i l l at  the a e s t h e t i c stage of her for  one  l i f e . C h i l d that she  moments of  i s , she  lives  life.  But what of the t u t o r , a grown man  who  i n the past  seemed  tormented by the demands of the f l e s h ? His r h e t o r i c a l question,  "Und  i s t ' s denn n o t i g zum  t i e r i s c h e Triebe s t i l l t "  Gluck der Ehe,  ( l l , V . x , 96),  daS  man  seems to i n d i c a t e that  h i s p r i o r i t i e s have changed. He assures L i s e , that h i s love f o r her i s independent d i s a b i l i t y he may emasculated  have (II,V.ix, 9 5 ) .  on any  furthermore,  physical  Considering Lauffer's  s t a t e , Wenzeslaus's r e l u c t a n t b l e s s i n g ,  "So  k r i e c h t denn zusammen meinetwegen; w e i l doch H e i r a t e n besser i s t a l s Brunst l e i d e n , " i s not only superfluous but h i g h l y ironic  (II,V.x, 97).  The b i b l i c a l text the schoolmaster  to reads: "But i f they cannot e x e r c i s e s e l f c o n t r o l ,  refers  they  should marry. For i t i s b e t t e r to marry than to be aflame with p a s s i o n " ( I Cor: 8 - 9 ) .  Surely, a c a s t r a t e aflame with p a s s i o n  i s a c o n t r a d i c t i o n i n terms! Der Hofmeister concludes with a f a m i l y reunion. However, the comment that the p l a y i s concerned with "the d i s r u p t i o n and u l t i m a t e re-establishment of the f a m i l i a l u n i t " 87)  (Harris,  i s i n a p p r o p r i a t e , s i n c e i t does not account f o r the  t u t o r ' s absence from the f i n a l scene. I t i s a l s o d i f f i c u l t to agree w i t h Mann's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n that  "the t u t o r ' s prospects  b r i g h t e n " at the end of the play ( 2 5 4 ) ,  s i n c e L a u f f e r i s not  only absent but there i s no r e f e r e n c e to e i t h e r h i s c a s t r a t i o n or h i s impending  marriage to L i s e .  While the end of the p l a y i s d e s c r i b e d as c o n f i d e n t and o p t i m i s t i c " by Pope ( 2 4 5 ) , of  the negative aspects  the ending are noted by Mayer ( 8 2 3 ) , G i r a r d  (Diss.,256),  and Preuss  (54),  "spiritually  (280),  Madland  among o t h e r s . However, i f one  80  reads Rudolf's comments, one i s l e f t with the impression that the  t u t o r has, indeed, ceased to e x i s t , s i n c e he does not even  note L a u f f e r ' s absence from the f i n a l scene. Rudolf w r i t e s : Jede handelnde  Person der l e t z t e n Szene i s t durch  eine moralische 'Reinigung' gegangen, hat eine 'Wiedergeburt  1  erfahren; d i e v o l l i g n e g a t i v e n  Charaktere, d i e M a j o r i n und Pastor L a u f f e r t r e t e n am SchluS n i c h t mehr auf.  (174)  I t i s tempting to speculate on the s i g n i f i c a n c e of L a u f f e r ' s absence  from the f i n a l scene, and a step by step review of  L a u f f e r ' s progress may Step 1:  shed some l i g h t  The t u t o r i s forced by s o c i e t y to l e a d a celibate  Step 2  on the matter:  life.  The suppression of h i s concupiscence begins the process of s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n .  Step 3  The t u t o r ' s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n i s manifested through h i s r o l e p l a y i n g . For example, i t i s as Lauffer/Romeo  that he  seduces G u s t c h e n / J u l i e t . Step 4  His  subsequent  escape from the von Berg  household i s a f l i g h t  from an untenable  position. Step 5  The t u t o r ' s attempt at s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n and moral autonomy, i n d i c a t e d by h i s  adoption of the name Mandel. i s thwarted by Wenzeslaus, Step 6  the v i l l a g e schoolmaster.  Prompted by g u i l t and despair, the t u t o r a c t i v e l y moves a g a i n s t the s e l f ; consequently, h i s s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n must be i n t e r p r e t e d as an attempt a t self-annihilation.  Step 7  Through the a c t i v e s a c r i f i c e of h i s . s e x u a l i t y , the t u t o r has f o r f e i t e d h i s existence as an a u t h e n t i c s e l f . Thus h i s subsequent union with L i s e i s s t e r i l e i n the p h y s i c a l and the moral sense.  Step 8  The t u t o r ' s absence  from the f i n a l  scene  i s another i n d i c a t i o n that he i s no longer simply a l i e n a t e d from h i s s e l f but has ceased to e x i s t as an independent  self.  In the t u t o r ' s opening s o l i l o q u y , we are presented with a man who--forced by s o c i e t y to suppress h i s a u t h e n t i c s e l f - adopts a f a l s e s e l f . This f l i g h t from the s e l f renders him fragmented and a l i e n a t e d . However, when he makes h i s f i n a l appearance  ( V . i x ) , h i s a l i e n a t i o n i s no longer induced by  s o c i e t y but s e l f - i n f l i c t e d . In the end, the t u t o r ' s c a s t r a t i o n  82  amounts t o nothing l e s s than an a n n i h i l a t i o n of the s e l f , and h i s absence from the l a s t scene suggests that he has ceased, to f u n c t i o n as an independent s e l f . There are, however, i n d i c a t i o n s that f o r a while the t u t o r was a s p i r i n g towards a synthesis  of h i s  dissociated  f a c u l t i e s . For example, upon h i s a r r i v a l at Wenzeslaus's school he not only has changed h i s name to Mandel. but he voices  a desperate p l e a f o r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n ( I I , I I I . i i , 51).  U n f o r t u n a t e l y Wenzeslaus, who subscribes  to the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n  of the sensual as e v i l and of the s p i r i t u a l as good Genese.. 273), recreate  (Girard,  ignores the t u t o r ' s p l e a and threatens to  him i n h i s own image. Wenzeslaus's p o s i t i o n ,  that  s e n s u a l i t y i s the enemy which has to be subjugated, not only r e f l e c t s the orthodox teaching  of the C h r i s t i a n churches, but  stands d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed to Lenz's b e l i e f that i s o l a t i o n or e x c l u s i o n of any of our f a c u l t i e s leads to onesidedness and u l t i m a t e l y t o s i n , a s t a t e which i s born out of the ignorance of the s e l f . As one of many examples, he c i t e s the case of a seducer who experiences nothing but h i s s e n s u a l i t y and consequently remains ignorant  of h i s other f a c u l t i e s ( B l e i IV,  13). Again, Lenz's p o r t r a y a l of the seducer a n t i c i p a t e s the d e s c r i p t i o n of the seducer i n Kierkegaard's  Either/Or.  With regard to the motive f o r the t u t o r ' s  self-  c a s t r a t i o n , the time of the a c t u a l a c t i s of c r u c i a l  importance. The c a s t r a t i o n , which i s prompted by remorse and despair,  f o l l o w s almost immediately upon h i s encounter w i t h  the o l d woman who i s holding Gustchen's c h i l d . In V . i i i , L a u f f e r ' s next scene, the c a s t r a t i o n i s a f a i t accompli. I t i s worth n o t i n g that Wenzeslaus e s t a b l i s h e s a connection  between  the two i n c i d e n t s with h i s comment that the t u t o r has been repeatedly  i l l s i n c e the day the o l d woman came t o see him: Dafi Gott! was g i b t ' s schon wieder, daS I h r mich von der A r b e i t abrufen l a s s t ? S e i d Ihr schon wieder schwach? Ich glaube, das a l t e Weib war eine Hexe- S e i t der Z e i t habt I h r keine gesunde Stunde mehr.  ( I I , V . i i i , 80)  In h i s essay, "Wer hat Gustchens Kind gezeugt," Claus Lappe maintains that the c h r o n o l o g i c a l data given i n the  play-  -L£uffer's c l a i m that he has not seen Gustchen s i n c e he l e f t the c a s t l e a year e a r l i e r , and the f a c t that Gustchen has l i v e d w i t h the o l d woman f o r a f u l l year--support h i s t h e s i s t h a t L a u f f e r cannot be considered  as the b i o l o g i c a l f a t h e r o f  Gustchen's c h i l d . In a d d i t i o n , Lappe regards L a u f f e r ' s r e a c t i o n t o the c h i l d as a f u r t h e r i n d i c a t i o n t h a t . h i s p a t e r n i t y i s questionable.  However, the t u t o r ' s immediate  r e a c t i o n t o the c h i l d seems t o suggest otherwise. Gebt es mir auf den Arm - 0 mein Herz!DaS  i c h ' s an mein Herz drucken kann - Du  gehst mir auf, furchtbares R a t s e l !  (Nimmt  das Kind auf den Arm und t r i t t damit v o r den Spiegel) Wie? d i e s waren n i c h t meine Zuge?  ( F a l l t i n Ohnmacht; das Kind  an zu s c h r e i e n ) .  fangt  ( I l , V . i , 77)  We do not know what causes L a u f f e r t o f a i n t s Does he recognize  the newborn as h i s and f a i n t , or does he, as Lappe  suggests, f a i n t because the features of the c h i l d are not h i s ? As L a u f f e r ' s monologue r e v e a l s , he does recognize the c h i l d as h i s i n i t i a l l y .  I t seems reasonable to assume that  L a u f f e r would only acknowledge h i s c h i l d , i f he r e c o g n i z e d i t as such. I f we presume, however, i n agreement w i t h Lappe, that the t u t o r r e a l i z e s h i s mistake the moment he looks i n t o the mirror,  there are questions  that need to be answered. For  example, why does he f a i n t at the p r e c i s e moment he looks at the r e f l e c t i o n i n the mirror, and more importantly, he c a s t r a t e himself  s h o r t l y afterwards,  why does  c i t i n g remorse and  d e s p a i r as the motives f o r h i s c a s t r a t i o n ? I t i s i r r e l e v a n t whether i t i s , i n f a c t , L a u f f e r ' s  child,  s i n c e h i s subsequent s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n i n d i c a t e s beyond any doubt that he b e l i e v e d  the c h i l d to be h i s and acted  a c c o r d i n g l y . Consequently, there i s only a motive f o r h i s c a s t r a t i o n as long as he does recognize  the c h i l d .as h i s . For  why, indeed, would L a u f f e r c a s t r a t e himself  f o r the sake of a  stranger's the  c h i l d ? W h i l e Lappe d e m o n s t r a t e s beyond any doubt  d i s u n i t y o f t i m e i n Der H o f m e i s t e r . h i s c o n c l u s i o n  L a u f f e r ' s p a t e r n i t y i s a myth, a l t h o u g h p e r f e c t l y  that  logical,  t a k e s away t h e m o t i v e f o r t h e t u t o r ' s s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n and i s , therefore, Yet  difficult  to support.  i f we do a c c e p t  t h e t u t o r ' s p a t e r n i t y , we a r e f a c e d  w i t h t h e dilemma o f h a v i n g t o a c c o u n t that  i s described  (II,V.xii,  as b o t h f e m a l e  (II,V.i,  was a f u l l  b e l o n g t o t h e genus homo s a p i e n s .  child  77) and male  L e n z employs t h i s  t w e l v e months, i t c a n n o t I t seems p o s s i b l e ,  "neue K r e a t u r "  (Preuss,  d e u s / d e a ex machina. t o s u g g e s t t h a t o n l y of  'mythical"  101). Furthermore, s i n c e t h e g e s t a t i o n p e r i o d f o r  t h i s asexual creature  that  fora  t h e human r a c e  however,  52), as  beings born  outside  a r e exempt from s u f f e r i n g . One may  interpret,  therefore,  i n D e r H o f m e i s t e r L e n z employs t h e  relativity  o f time as a d r a m a t i c t o o l t o i n d i c a t e t h a t  only  being  w h i c h h a s a g e s t a t i o n p e r i o d o f t w e l v e months, i . e . , a  being  that  suffering  c a n n o t p o s s i b l y be human, w o u l d be exempt f r o m t h e that  t h e s t r u g g l e between t h e o p p o s i n g  mind and body i n f l i c t other and  words, a u t h e n t i c  being  one's d o u b l e  forces of  upon t h e i n d i v i d u a l human b e i n g . human e x i s t e n c e  i s inseparable  d e p e n d e n t on, r e c o n c i l i n g one's " d i s s o c i a t e d "  Therefore,  a  In from,  faculties.  human means h a v i n g t o come t o t e r m s w i t h  inheritance.  86  The  t u t o r i n Der Hofmeister  i s i n i t i a l l y coerced by  s o c i e t y i n t o suppressing h i s s e x u a l i t y , but with h i s s e l f immolation his  he a c t i v e l y undertakes  the s a c r i f i c e h i m s e l f . With  c a s t r a t i o n , he has committed an a c t of s e l f - a n n i h i l a t i o n  and s a c r i f i c e d h i s p o t e n t i a l as a moral s e l f . Furthermore, i f one  c o n s i d e r s concupiscence  as a source of m o r a l i t y , an  i n d i v i d u a l who does not embrace h i s o r her s e x u a l i t y must be considered impotent  i n the e t h i c a l as w e l l as the p h y s i c a l  sense. Since the t u t o r c i t e s remorse and d e s p a i r as m o t i v a t i n g forces for his act ( I I , V . i i i ,  81), the s a c r i f i c e of h i s  s e x u a l i t y suggests that he recognizes the need to be punished for to  h i s past e r o t i c deeds. The t u t o r ' s s a c r i f i c e best r e s o l v e h i s c o n f l i c t and i s a l s o a f i t t i n g  the o r i g i n a l crime of impregnating c a s t r a t i o n ensures  serves  retribution for  Gustchen, s i n c e h i s  that i t cannot happen again.  In the Concept of Dread. Kierkegaard w r i t e s t h a t there i s a moment of choice, a moment when the s e l f chooses being o r non-being. L a u f f e r ' s p o s i t i o n at the i n s t a n t he r e c o g n i z e s h i s c h i l d c o u l d be described as such a moment. At that moment i n time, he does have the o p t i o n of acknowledging h i s c h i l d b e f o r e the world and, thus, of r e g a i n i n g h i s moral autonomy, but he f a i n t s i n s t e a d . And immediately consciousness,  after regaining  he c a s t r a t e s h i m s e l f . As a r e s u l t o f h i s s e l f -  87  c a s t r a t i o n he becomes both p h y s i c a l l y and m o r a l l y impotent. I t i s worth n o t i n g that Kierkegaard's d e s c r i p t i o n of the i n d i v i d u a l who  l e t s the c r u c i a l moment of c h o i c e pass seems to  be a p p l i c a b l e to L a u f f e r ' s s i t u a t i o n . Kierkegaard w r i t e s : He whose eye chances to look down i n t o the yawning  1  abyss becomes d i z z y . . . . Thus, dread i s the dizzyness of freedom which occurs when the would p o s i t the s y n t h e s i s : and freedom,  spirit  then gazes  down i n t o i t s own p o s s i b i l i t y , g r a s p i n g at f i n i t e n e s s to s u s t a i n i t s e l f . In t h i s d i z z y n e s s , freedom succumbs.... That very i n s t a n t e v e r y t h i n g i s changed, and when freedom  rises  again, i t sees that i t i s g u i l t y . Between these two instances l i e s the leap...freedom swoons...the  fall  i n t o s i n always occurs i n impotence. (Concept of Dread.  55)  Contrary to L a u f f e r , P r i n c e Tandi i n Der neue Menoza chooses being when faced w i t h the d e c i s i o n between b e i n g and non-being. He r e l a t e s an i n c i d e n t where, through no f a u l t of his  own,  he was put i n an untenable p o s i t i o n from which  he  escaped by t a k i n g a leap i n t o the unknown: S t e l l e n S i e s i c h eine T i e f e vor, d i e feucht und n e b l i g t a l l e Kreaturen aus meinem G e s i c h t e entzog. Ich  sah i n d i e s e r f u r c h t e r l i c h - b l a u e r i F e m e n i c h t s  88  a l s mich s e l b s t , und  d i e Bewegung d i e i c h machte,  zu springen. i c h sprangHere, L e n z - - l i k e Kierkegaard  (II, I . i , 109)  a f t e r him--uses the "abyss" as a  metaphor f o r coming face to face with the  self.  I t i s tempting to i n t e r p r e t the t u t o r ' s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n , his flight  from the s e l f , and h i s subsequent c a s t r a t i o n i n the  l i g h t of the t h e o r i e s of a twentieth-century Ronald D. L a i n g . For Laing, an i n d i v i d u a l who s e l f i s mad.  psychologist, f l e e s from the  He grants, however, that t h i s type of madness i s  a common phenomenon, since we  are a l l s p l i t o f f from our  a u t h e n t i c s e l v e s . Forced i n t o r o l e - p l a y i n g by others t  o u r s e l v e s , we and Others,  are put i n t o an untenable p o s i t i o n (Laing, S e l f  107). According  to Laing, when the s e l f  a " f a l s e s e l f " - - w h i c h he d e f i n e s as "one way o n e s e l f " and as a way  f u r t h e r maintains  i n d i v i d u a l , who  of not  constructs being  of " l i v i n g i n a u t h e n t i c a l l y " (The  S e l f . 1 0 0 ) - - i t puts i t s e l f He  or  Divided  into a false e x i s t e n t i a l p o s i t i o n .  that i t i s only common sense that  an  i s put i n t o a f a l s e e x i s t e n t i a l p o s i t i o n ,  would attempt to a n n i h i l a t e himself. While f o r Kierkegaard estrangement from the s e l f and of d e s p a i r  from God  the  c o n s t i t u t e s the depths  (Concept of Dread), f o r Laing, being i n that  p o s i t i o n i s madness.  4y  He w r i t e s :  I t has always been recognized that i f you  split  Being down the middle, i f you i n s i s t on grabbing t h i s without that, i f you c l i n g to the good without the bad, denying the one f o r the other, what happens i s that the d i s s o c i a t e d e v i l evil  impulse,  now  i n a double sense, r e t u r n s to permeate and  possess the good and turn i t i n t o  itself.  ( P o l i t i c s of Experience. 63) Laing's p o s i t i o n here seems to echo Lenz's thoughts. For Lenz r e f e r s more than once to the need to i n c o r p o r a t e one's e v i l i n o r d e r to become an authentic s e l f , but he does so most e m p h a t i c a l l y i n the f o l l o w i n g excerpt of a short prose fragment. Eine Seele ohne starken T r i e b zum L a s t e r i s t n i c h t wert,  fromm und gut zu s e i n .  Ihre Gute i s t F e d e r l o s i g k e i t  [sic] ihre  Bescheidenheit N i e d e r t r a c h t i g k e i t , Frommigkeit  ihre  Furcht vor den Folgen boser  Handlungen auf s i c h , n i c h t auf andere. E i n Bosewicht  i s t a l l e z e i t von e i n e r  gewissen  49 For a comparison between Kierkegaard's concept of s i n and Laing's i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of madness, c o n s u l t Sugarman s S i n and Madness. 1  Konsistenz und  GroSe, e i n Guter i s t n i c h t s ,  wenn ers n i c h t aus einem Bosewicht geworden i s t . Dagegen i s t d i e GroSe eines  solchen  Guten auch zur GroSe des Bosen, wie  tausend  zu zehn. Der ohnmachtige Gute i s t zero. ( B l e i IV, The  284)  n e c e s s i t y to incorporate one's e v i l i s a l s o  acknowledged by Hamann who Ohne d i e F r e i h e i t V e r d i e n s t  writes: b 6 s e ,und  zu seyn f i n d t  ohne d i e F r e y h e i t  zu seyn keine Zurechnung e i n i g e r s e l b s t keine und  E r k e n n t n i S  B d s e n  kein g u t  S c h u 1 d, d e s  ja  G u t e n  statt.  (Samtliche Werke III-, 3 8 )  5 0  In Der Hofmeister. Lenz's concern i s f o r the i n d i v i d u a l who,  f o r c e d by the c o n d i t i o n s of h i s employment to suppress  h i s s e x u a l i t y , becomes a l i e n a t e d from h i s a u t h e n t i c  self  and  chooses to c a s t r a t e himself. L a u f f e r ' s f a t e suggests, furthermore, that adhering to a p a r t i a l s e l f u l t i m a t e l y to the a n n i h i l a t i o n of the  self.  50 The n e c e s s i t y to incorporate one's dark s i d e i s a r e c u r r i n g theme i n German l i t e r a t u r e : i t i s a cemtral concern i n Goethe's Faust, the focus of Nietzsche's A l s o sorach Zarathrusta. and a major theme i n Hermann Hesse's novels.  leads  91  Die Soldaten In  Der Hofmeister the quest f o r the s e l f i s the task s i n e  qua non that the p r o t a g o n i s t i s asked to f u l f i l l .  A measure of  the importance of t h i s t h e s i s f o r Lenz i s that he adopts i t , w i t h only minor changes,  f o r the p l o t of h i s next p l a y . As i n  Der Hofmeister. the interdependence of concupiscence and e t h i c a l autonomy i s the p h i l o s o p h i c a l paradigm superimposed  that i s  on Die Soldaten.  Again, i t i s the subjugation of s e x u a l i t y , brought  about  by a p r o h i b i t i o n to marry while i n the m i l i t a r y s e r v i c e , which has a d e v a s t a t i n g e f f e c t on the l i v e s of the s o l d i e r s and the c i v i l i a n p o p u l a t i o n of a small French g a r r i s o n town. In I.iii,  Mariane,  a l o c a l merchant's daughter,  i s i n v i t e d to the  t h e a t r e by Desportes, a young o f f i c e r and nobleman. I r o n i c a l l y , the two p l a y s he has s e l e c t e d , La  chercheuse  d ' e s p r i t and Le d^serteur, prove to be p r o p h e t i c . 1 5  Although i n love with S t o l z i u s , a c l o t h merchant from Armentieres, Mariane  i s f l a t t e r e d by the a t t e n t i o n s of the  young nobleman ( I I , I . v i , 197). But as t h e i r r e l a t i o n s h i p  The t i t l e of the f i r s t p l a y foreshadows Mariane's u n s u c c e s s f u l quest f o r happiness, w h i l e the second p o i n t s to Desportes's imminent d e s e r t i o n . b i  92  develops, Mariane a f f e c t s  strange a i r s and graces that do not  go u n n o t i c e d . In f a c t , her strange behaviour prompts a f r i e n d to remark, "Ich weiss n i c h t , wie du b i s t , M a r i a n e l " (II,II.iii, indication  208). T h i s statement i s , i n f a c t , the  first  that Mariane has embarked on a course of s e l f -  alienation. Lenz's p o r t r a y a l of Desportes i s not f l a t t e r i n g . On leave from the army under f a l s e pretences ( I I , I . i i i , disguises himself i n c i v i l i a n clothes Described as " f a l s e " (II,III.vii,  (II,I.iii,  185), he  (II,I.iii,  185) and  187).  deceitful  221), he honours n e i t h e r h i s debt to Mariane's  f a t h e r , nor the promesse de mariaae he has g i v e n to her (II,III.iii,  16). And i n an e f f o r t to r i d h i m s e l f of Mariane,  he encourages one of h i s servants to dishonour her  (Il,V.iii,  240). Not u n l i k e the seducer i n "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral," Desportes i s single-minded i n h i s p u r s u i t of e r o t i c conquests and has no concern f o r the consequences  of h i s immoral  conduct.  Although Mariane's f a t h e r shows concern f o r h i s daughter, he cannot h e l p being f l a t t e r e d by the a t t e n t i o n the young o f f i c e r pays to her. I t i s both i r o n i c and t r a g i c that o l d Wesener i n t e r p r e t s the f i r s t  l i n e of a poem which Desportes  has sent to h i s daughter as an i n d i c a t i o n of the young  nobleman's honest i n t e n t i o n s towards her. The poem reads: Du hochster Gegenstand von meinen r e i n e n Trieben52 Ich bet d i c h an,  i c h w i l l d i c h ewig l i e b e n .  Weil d i e Versicherung  von meiner L i e b und  Treu  Du a l l e r s c h o n s t e s L i c h t mit jedem Mprgen neu. , (II,I.vi,  196)  What the poem does r e v e a l i s that Desportes, a member of the n o b i l i t y ,  manipulates language to c a j o l e Mariane i n t o  b e l i e v i n g that h i s a f f e c t i o n s f o r her are genuine. Mariane, i n her turn, i s duly impressed by what she p e r c e i v e s Deportes's f a c i l i t y with words and t r i e s r a t h e r  as  unsuccessfully  to mimic h i s language.53 Among Desportes' f e l l o w o f f i c e r s , Hauptmann P i r z e l i s perhaps the most humane character of a poor l o t . However, l i k e the schoolmaster i n Der Hofmeister. P i r z e l i s an armchair philosopher  whose lengthy pseudo-philosophical  not a p p r e c i a t e d "Der  by h i s f e l l o w s o l d i e r s . The  p h i l o s o p h i e r t mich zu Tode" ( I I , I I I . i v ,  discourses  chaplain's 217)  not  aside, only  sums up h i s o p i n i o n of P i r z e l , but c a l l s to mind L a u f f e r ' s  52 T h i s l i n e seems to suggest that Desportes upon Mariane as a sex o b j e c t . 53 g 214-15).  e e  Mariane's l e t t e r to S t o l z i u s  looks  (II,III.iii,  are  94  fearful  "der wird mich noch zu Tode meistern"  Wenzeslaus's constant  philosophizing  i n response to  (II,III.iv,  61).  U n l i k e h i s comrades, however, P i r z e l i s not a t t r a c t e d to the o p p o s i t e  sex. On the contrary, he considers women to be  at  the l e v e l of sheep and as such unworthy of h i s a t t e n t i o n s ( I I , I I I . i v , 217).  He makes only two  appearances and both times  he advocates " t h i n k i n g " as a c u r e - a l l f o r human i l l s (II,II.ii, chaplain,  200  and I l l . i v ,  217).  When Eisenhardt,  the army  expresses h i s concern that too much " t h i n k i n g "  i n t e r f e r e w i t h P i r z e l ' s competence as a s o l d i e r , counters:  "Ganz und  (II,Ill.iv,  may  Pirzel  gar n i c h t , das geht so mechanisch"  217).  There i s something d i s t i n c t l y comical  about the f i g u r e of  P i r z e l . T h i s i s e q u a l l y true of the other a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r s i n Lenz's p l a y s ;  f o r example, Wenzeslaus i n Der Hofmeister  both Z i e r a u and Magister Beza i n Die Soldaten. considers  the behaviour of a l l four  If  characters,^  and  one  4  Kierkegaard's d e s c r i p t i o n of a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r s seems appropriate.  He  writes:  Such an a b s t r a c t thinker, one who  neglects  to take  i n t o account the r e l a t i o n s h i p between h i s a b s t r a c t thought and h i s own  existence as an i n d i v i d u a l ,  54 L a u f f e r ' s absent-minded behaviour i s s t r e s s e d i n the second a c t (11,11.v, 40-41).  not  c a r e f u l to c l a r i f y t h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p t o h i m s e l f , ° makes a comical impression upon the mind even i f he i s ever so d i s t i n g u i s h e d , because he i s i n process of ceasing to be a human being...Such an a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r i s a duplex being: a f a n t a s t i c c r e a t u r e who moves i n the pure being of a b s t r a c t thought, the other hand, a sometimes p i t i f u l  and on  professorial  f i g u r e which the former d e p o s i t s , about as when [ s i c ] one sets down a walking  stick.  ( P o s t s c r i p t , 268) Since P i r z e l ' s preoccupation with a b s t r a c t t h i n k i n g renders him incapable of authentic human e x i s t e n c e and moral a c t i o n , he has become an automaton. With regard to h i s f e l l o w soldiers,  P r i z e l informs the reader that they, too, perform  t h e i r d u t i e s a u t o m a t i c a l l y , s i n c e t h e i r a t t e n t i o n i s focussed on the young women of the town. ( 1 1 , 1 1 1 . i v , 217). Thus a ones i d e d mode of l i f e , whether i t be the absent-mindedness of an a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r l i k e P i r z e l or the s o l d i e r ' s unabashed sexual ouvertures to the young women i n town, supports Lenz's t h e s i s that i t i s impossible to evolve i n t o an e t h i c a l s e l f u n l e s s one  l i v e s and acts i n accordance  with one's f u l l y i n t e g r a t e d  faculties. The  s o l d i e r s f a v o u r i t e entertainment--besides  their  v i s i t s t o the comedy and a preoccupation w i t h the opposite  s e x - - i s the taunting and r i d i c u l e of humble people. F o r example, there i s something s i n i s t e r i n the manner that Haudy and h i s f e l l o w o f f i c e r s h u m i l i a t e S t o l z i u s i n scenes I I . i and I I . i i . The i n c i d e n t where the o f f i c e r s t e r r i f y an e l d e r l y Jew i s another occasion where they d i s p l a y a complete l a c k o f moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y ( I I . i ) . F i n a l l y , Rammler, i n a drunken stupor, (Il,IV.ii,  230).  there i s the scene where  r i d i c u l e s an o l d woman  In a l l three i n c i d e n t s , the o f f i c e r s '  conduct  i s g r a t u i t o u s l y c r u e l by any moral standard. But w h i l e the o f f i c e r s i n f l i c t s u f f e r i n g upon others,  they themselves a r e  v i c t i m s o f a s o c i e t y which demands c e l i b a c y as a c o n d i t i o n of s e r v i c e . Consequently, they a r e put i n t o an untenable p o s i t i o n . They look f o r female companionship'to the daughters of the l o c a l burghers, but these l i a i s o n s o f t e n prove t o be d i s a s t r o u s f o r the young women, since the o f f i c e r s have no i n t e n t i o n of marrying t h e i r unsuspecting paramours and o f t e n leave them t o an u n c e r t a i n f u t u r e . For instance,  Mariane s 1  f a t e i s s e a l e d a f t e r Desportes abandons her.  I d e n t i f i e d only  as  244) and "die  "das u n g l u c k l i c h e  Weibsperson"  Schlachtopfer"  ( H , V . i v , 243),  (II,V.v,  she i s mistaken f o r a common  p r o s t i t u t e by her own f a t h e r . Given the f a c t that Desportes and h i s f e l l o w o f f i c e r s are responsible  f o r Mariane's t r a g i c f a t e , i t i s s u r p r i s i n g ,  indeed, that Pope d i v i d e s the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the unhappy  97  ending of the p l a y e q u a l l y between s o c i e t y on the one and Mariane and her  hand,  f a t h e r on the other; however, he does not  a t t a c h any blame to Desportes or h i s f e l l o w o f f i c e r s .  He  writes: In Die Soldaten.  the p a i n f u l and  saddening  consequences of e r r i n g a c t i o n are b a r e l y overcome. But  though blame f o r the d i s a s t e r i s l a i d at  s o c i e t y ' s door, i t i s again the i n d i v i d u a l that i s morally  r e s p o n s i b l e . Since i t i s Marie's  and Wesener's a c t i o n s that are at f a u l t , there i s the p o s s i b i l i t y of t h e i r l e a r n i n g from the consequences and metanoia.  father"  hopeful (254)  some degree of  (iv)  Mann's impression genuinely  experiencing  that  "Mariane's f u t u r e appears  a f t e r her bittersweet  reunion w i t h  must a l s o be r e j e c t e d , s i n c e the stage  d i r e c t i o n s at the end of the scene destroy reader may  her  any  illusion  the  have that a "happy ending" i s s t i l l a p o s s i b i l i t y :  "Beide w&lzen  [my  i t a l i c s ] s i c h halb t o t auf der Erde.  Menge Leute versammlen s i c h um (II,V.iv, 2 4 3 ) .  Not  s i e und  Eine  tragen s i e f o r t "  only are Mariane and her f a t h e r r o l l i n g  around on the ground, but they are c a r r i e d away by  an  anonymous crowd. In a d d i t i o n , the verb "walzen" does not suggest the d i g n i t y of upright human posture but  i s more o f t e n  98  a s s o c i a t e d with the movement of animals; the f a c t that i t i s used here may  w e l l suggest that Mariane i s no  longer  f u n c t i o n i n g as an independent s e l f . I t i s important to note the s i m i l a r i t y i n the  structure  of the p l o t i n the two plays under d i s c u s s i o n . In Der Hofmeister. the t u t o r ' s s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n i s i n i t i a l l y induced by s o c i e t y ; however, i n the end he must assume r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r h i s constant  p o s t u r i n g and h i s  self-  c a s t r a t i o n . Although Mariane, the s a c r i f i c a l lamb of Soldaten,  seems to be the innocent  Die  v i c t i m of a government  p o l i c y which attempts to r e g u l a t e human s e x u a l i t y , she,  too,  i s accountable f o r her f a t e . Young and p l a y f u l , she i s a t t r a c t e d to the g l i t t e r and  the s o c i a l p r i v i l e g e s of  the  n o b i l i t y . Desportes seduces her with f r i v o l o u s j e w e l l e r y , flowery  r h e t o r i c , and v i s i t s to the l o c a l t h e a t r e . The  p l a y s an important part i n Desportes' seduction Not  s u r p r i s i n g l y , the army c h a p l a i n claims  theatre  of Mariane.  that the  seductions  that take p l a c e on the l o c a l stage serve as a b l u e p r i n t f o r the o f f i c e r ' s u n e t h i c a l conduct  ( I I , I . i v , 193).  The p o i n t i s  a l s o made that Mariane i s the younger daughter of a Galanteriewarenhandler. a man  who  deals i n f r i v o l i t i e s  and  v a n i t i e s . Thus there i s every i n d i c a t i o n that a e s t h e t i c s e t h i c s stand d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed i n Die  Soldaten.  and  99  In  f a c t , to the very l a s t Mariane  a e s t h e t i c mode of l i f e , life  i s a t t r a c t e d to an  to the d i v e r s i o n s and the glamour the  s t y l e of the p r i v i l e g e d few has to o f f e r . Homeless and  reduced t o begging i n the s t r e e t s , Mariane the extravagances  of the l i f e  s t i l l yearns f o r  she has become accustomed t o :  0 h a t t i c h nur einen Tropfen von dem Wein, den i c h so o f t aus dem  Fenster geworfen - womit i c h  mir i n der H i t z e d i e HSnde wusch - (Kontortionen.) 0 das qualt--nun e i n Bettelmensch--(Sieht das Stuck Brod an) Ich kann's n i c h t essen Gott weiS es.  Besser verhungern.  (Wirft das Stuck Brod h i n  und r a f f t s i c h auf) Ich w i l l kriechen, so weit i c h komme, und f a l l (II,V.ii, Thus Mariane to  i c h urn, desto besser.  239).  i s portrayed as an aesthete, as someone who  the v e r y end f o r the p l e a s u r a b l e moments of l i f e  242). I t f o l l o w s that Mariane--not Der Hofmeister who  lives  (II,V.iv,  u n l i k e the t u t o r i n  enters f o o l h a r d i l y i n t o a s t e r i l e union  w i t h a n a i v e country g i r l - - h a s l i t t l e hope of g a i n i n g i n s i g h t i n t o her s u f f e r i n g . Thus she, too, f o r f e i t s her p o t e n t i a l as an autonomous and e t h i c a l In  self.  the "Anmerkungen ilbers Theater" Lenz advances the  concept of an autonomous and e t h i c a l i n d i v i d u a l who  comes to  terms w i t h h i s double i n h e r i t a n c e and acts out of h i s f u l l y  100  integrated f a c u i t i e s . H o w e v e r ,  i n the p l a y s , the quest f o r  a u t h e n t i c and e t h i c a l s e l f h o o d i s countered  not o n l y by  adverse s o c i a l c o n d i t i o n s , but by the f r a g i l i t y o f human nature. Thus the quest i n Lenz's question,  f o r authentic being,  a quest  implicit  "Aber h e i S t das gelebt? h e i S t das seine  E x i s t e n z g e f u h l t , seine s e l b s t s t a n d i g e E x i s t e n z , den Funken von Gott?"  (I,  378), seems a l l but impossible to f u l f i l l .  Lenz p o r t r a y s the human face of existence by p r e s e n t i n g h i s p r o t a g o n i s t s and t h e i r s t r u g g l e f o r a u t h e n t i c i t y and s e l f r e a l i z a t i o n . While the s t r u g g l e i s presented f a s h i o n i n the t h e o r e t i c a l  w r i t i n g s and prose, the  p r o t a g o n i s t s of Der Hofmeister f a i l i n t h e i r quest  in a dialectical  and Die Soldaten u l t i m a t e l y  f o r the s e l f and, thus, the concept of the  a u t h e n t i c and e t h i c a l s e l f i s presented  ex neaativo  i n the  drama.  55 Huyssen notes that the Sturm und Drana advances a p a r t i c u l a r human face of existence, "die I n d i v i d u a l i t a t des e i n z e l n e n Menschen, seine S i n n l i c h k e i t , d i e T o t a l i t a t von Herz und Kopf, von Vernunft, Phantasie und Gefiihl" (Drama des Sturm und Drana. 56).  CHAPTER IV THE QUEST FOR FREEDOM  a.  Free W i l l versus Determinism as a P h i l o s o p h i c a l  Problem  The quest f o r the s e l f , i m p l i c i t i n Lenz's demand f o r "Zuwachs an E x i s t e n z , " i s c l o s e l y l i n k e d to the p o t e n t i a l freedom of the i n d i v i d u a l , since authentic and e t h i c a l e x i s t e n c e i s o n l y a possibility,  i f the i n d i v i d u a l i s f r e e to choose such an  e x i s t e n c e . Lenz spent much energy t r y i n g to come to terms w i t h the problem of free w i l l versus determinism, and Preuss goes so f a r as t o suggest that Lenz's search f o r a s y n t h e s i s between the concept of human freedom and God's constant i n t e r a c t i o n i s a c e n t r a l concern i n the t h e o r e t i c a l essays. He writes: Denn diesen Widerspruch zwischen der f u r d i e Theodicee notwendigen Monadenhaftigkeit oder F r e i h e i t des Menschen und der fortwahrenden Wirksamkeit Gottes zu v e r m i t t e l n , b i l d e t das z e n t r a l e Anliegen der gesamten t h e o r e t i s c h e n Anstrengung von Lenz.  (Preuss, 14)  One may not f u l l y agree with.the above i n t e r p r e t a t i o n , but there i s l i t t l e doubt that the question of the  102  individual's and  i s central  considers the  freedom  features prominently i n Lenz's  thought  to h i s concept of e t h i c s . N a t u r a l l y ,  the p o s s i b i l i t y  question that arises  when one  o f human b e i n g s h a v i n g a f r e e i s precisely  the question that  will, Lenz  a d d r e s s e s ; namely, how c a n t h e i n d i v i d u a l have a f r e e w i l l i f all  h i s o r h e r a c t i o n s a r e f o r e s e e n by a n o m n i p o t e n t  o m n i s c i e n t God? B e f o r e e x a m i n i n g subject,  thoughts  development  determinism  o f the problem  t h e e a r l y Greeks,  of free w i l l  the b e l i e f  fate  Consequently, the  only a p p l i e d to the p o l i t i c a l  s p h e r e . The  s c h o o l of Pythagoras advocated both  f r e e d o m and  d e t e r m i n i s m s i n c e t h e i r t h e o r y o f "metempsychosis" t h a t an i n d i v i d u a l ' s  in  versus  i n an u n a l t e r a b l e  t o the concept of f r e e w i l l .  c o n c e p t o f freedom pre-Socratic  the -  i n t h e West.56  s t o o d opposed  life.  on t h e  i t seems a p p r o p r i a t e t o c o n s i d e r b r i e f l y  historical  For  Lenz's  and  I t i s worth  former l i f e  implied  influences h i s or her present  n o t i n g , h e r e , t h a t Lenz  expresses a b e l i e f  t h e t r a n s m i g r a t i o n o f s o u l s i n "Vom Baum d e r E r k e n n t n i s  G u t e n und B6sen"  (Blei  IV, 4 8 ) .  3° I am i n d e b t e d t o t h e New C a t h o l i c E n c y c l o p e d i a f o r t h e f o l l o w i n g account o f the problem'of f r e e w i l l v e r s u s determinism; i n t h i s s e c t i o n , a l l subsequent r e f e r e n c e s , w h i c h c o n s i s t o f page numbers o n l y , a r e t o t h i s work ( V I , 89-106).  103  With the onset of the c l a s s i c a l Greek p e r i o d , however, the concept of freedom was no longer used w i t h i n the p o l i t i c a l context o n l y . Socrates was one of the f i r s t p h i l o s o p h e r s to s t a t e the need f o r i n d i v i d u a l and s u b j e c t i v e freedom. F o r Socrates, and,  "know t h y s e l f ! " was the f i r s t human r e s p o n s i b i l i t y  consequently,  the autonomy of the s e l f was more important  than e x t e r n a l a u t h o r i t y (Plato, Phaedrus, 229b 1 - 230a 2 ) . The great homage p a i d to Socrates during the Sturm und Drana and the many r e f e r e n c e s to the Greek p h i l o s o p h e r i n the w r i t i n g s of both Hamann and Lenz are acknowledged here, and w i l l be addressed l a t e r i n the study.57 D i v i n e providence and human freedom were e q u a l l y upheld w i t h i n the Jewish r e l i g i o n . Deuteronomy s t a t e s that human beings have "the a b i l i t y t o choose between good and e v i l , " w h i l e Josephus claims that the Sadducees, i n order t o p r o t e c t the i n d i v i d u a l ' s freedom, denied God's involvement actions  i n their  (94) .  With the a r r i v a l of C h r i s t i a n i t y and i t s b e l i e f i n the metaphysical aspects of human existence, the i n f l u e n c e of p r e d e s t i n a t i o n on human a c t i o n was reexamined. The G n o s t i c s r e j e c t e d human r e s p o n s i b i l i t y , while the Manichaeens renounced  57 see chapters V and V I .  the p o s s i b i l i t y of human freedom. The d i f f i c u l t y of coming to terms w i t h the concept of f r e e w i l l i s expressed by S t . Augustine, who d e s c r i b e s the two d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed p o s i t i o n s of h i s contemporaries as f o l l o w s :  "some so defend  the grace of God that they deny man's f r e e w i l l , and others so defend man's f r e e w i l l that they deny the grace of God"  (94).  He maintains, furthermore, that the " d i v i n e precepts of the Old  and New Testaments  would be worthless without freedom"  (94) . The d i s t i n c t i o n that man i s free "with r e s p e c t t o f i n i t e goods" but "determined to the i n f i n i t e good" was made by S t . Thomas Aquinas. He argued that an i n d i v i d u a l would not be f r e e to a c t i f he encountered an i n f i n i t e good, but c o u l d "accept or r e f u s e a f i n i t e good" (90). Another important for  consideration  St. Thomas Aquinas was that, since God i s o u t s i d e of time,  the past, the present, and the future are always present to him. Human beings, on the other hand, e x i s t only i n time. Consequently, human choice and God's foreknowledge  can be  r e c o n c i l e d (90). With r e g a r d to God's foreknowledge,  Lenz takes a s i m i l a r  p o s i t i o n as S a i n t Thomas Aquinas when he w r i t e s : Ob er aber vorherwissend s e i n kann, i s t eine ganz u b e r f l i i s s s i g e Frage, da i n Gott keine Z e i t stattfinden soil,  da b e i ihm a l l e s Gegenwartigkeit  105  i s t , und der B e g r i f f von Z e i t nur von Menschen erfunden i s t , urn i n unsern Verstand L i c h t und Ordnung zu bringen. Following disagreed of Trent the F a l l ,  ( B l e i IV, 24)  the Reformation, C a t h o l i c s and P r o t e s t a n t s  sharply over the d o c t r i n e of f r e e w i l l . The C o u n c i l confirmed that man l o s t h i s o r i g i n a l innocence w i t h but i t pronounced that  "the w i l l ,  although weakened,  remained f r e e " and that, under the i n f l u e n c e of grace, " i t c o u l d consent o r d i s s e n t " (95). Among Protestant  theologians,  both M a r t i n Luther and John  C a l v i n r e j e c t e d the d o c t r i n e of freedom of the w i l l . Luther h e l d that human beings a r e predestined  But while  not to c o n t r o l  t h e i r own f a t e , C a l v i n declared that the i n d i v i d u a l cannot perform a good a c t unless he i s prompted by God t o do so. In the seventeenth and eighteenth  centuries voices for a  d e t e r m i n i s t i c i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the universe Hobbes who claimed  i n c l u d e d Thomas  that to conceive of a human being as a f r e e  s u b j e c t was "as absurd as to imagine a round quadrangle" (90). Spinoza saw human beings as being s t r i c t l y  determined i n a l l  t h e i r a c t i o n s , while the w r i t i n g s of Descartes and Hume "contain elements of both determinism and freedom" (91). Leibniz believed i n free w i l l ,  and f o r him freedom was  not only a question of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s being  f r e e of e x t e r n a l  f o r c e s , but i t implied the i n t e g r a t i o n of the e x t e r n a l world  106  i n t o the i n t e r i o r i t y of the monad. Therefore,  i n the  L e i b n i z i a n monadology freedom does not exclude moral determination  but embraces i t . I t seems as i f Lenz comes c l o s e  to the L e i b n i z i a n concept of freedom when he notes that God's omniscience and  the i n d i v i d u a l ' s moral freedom are  n e c e s s a r i l y c o n t r a d i c t o r y concepts ( B l e i IV, While B l a i s e Pascal claimed  not  23-24).  that freedom c o u l d not  known by the i n d i v i d u a l unless he had  be  "a s u b j e c t i v e r e l i g i o u s  experience," Malbranche pronounced that  " r e l i g i o n and  were only meaningful as long as the i n d i v i d u a l was  morality  f r e e " (91) .  As shown i n chapter I I , i n Kant's p h i l o s o p h i c a l thought the two  separate realms of human existence,  the noumenal  and  the phenomenal, make i t p o s s i b l e f o r the i n d i v i d u a l to act f r e e l y as a noumenon but not as a phenomenon. In Hegel's p h i l o s o p h i c a l system reason and  freedom  develop i n a l o g i c a l fashion. Since a l l r e a l i t y i s of  the  spirit  ( G e i s t i a e s ) , the world c o n s t i t u t e s the w i l l of  the  spirit  (Geist) which, i n i t s ' turn, manifests i t s e l f "Hiermit  as  absolute  freedom. Hegel claimed:  i s t der G e i s t a l s  absolute  F r e i h e i t vorhanden;...und a l l e R e a l i t a t i s t nur  G e i s t i g e s ; d i e Welt i s t ihm s c h l e c h t h i n s e i n W i l l e n , d i e s e r i s t allgemeiner 450).  Willen"  und  (Phanomenoloaie des G e i s t e s I I ,  Hegel f u r t h e r h e l d that each concept i s developed i n  response to c o n t r a d i c t i o n s developed by the concept that  107  preceded i t ;  thus, the moral i n d i v i d u a l i s m of the eighteenth  century i s the r e s u l t of a l o g i c a l p r o g r e s s i o n from the p u r s u i t o f pleasure to the concept  of the Romantic i d e a l of  "die schone Seele," to the concept  of duty i m p l i c i t i n Kant's  " c a t e g o r i c a l imperative"  (Phanomenoloaie des G e i s t e s I I ,  484 f ) . Arthur Schopenhauer granted the existence of f r e e w i l l i n r e t r o s p e c t only and claimed that a human being cannot f u t u r e a c t s . Thus, human beings only think  foresee  they a r e f r e e (Die  Welt a l s W i l l e und V o r s t e l l u n a , 650) . The  concept  of free w i l l i s a c e n t r a l tenet of  e x i s t e n t i a l i s t thought. For Kierkegaard--who c r i t i c i z e d Hegel's a b s t r a c t and u n i v e r s a l concepts  because they c o u l d not  stand f o r i n d i v i d u a l e x i s t e n c e — f r e e w i l l i s at the centre o f human e x i s t e n c e , and h i s d o c t r i n e of the primacy of the w i l l suggests,  furthermore,  that human beings choose f o r themselves  one mode o f e x i s t e n c e r a t h e r than another ( E i t h e r / O r ) . K a r l Jaspers h e l d that each i n d i v i d u a l i s a "unique being who goes beyond what he already i s and l o c a t e s h i s new s t a t e o  of being i n the process of e x e r c i s i n g h i s freedom" (91). M a r t i n Heidegger claimed that, given c e r t a i n l i m i t s ,  "man can  be r e s p o n s i b l e f o r h i s d e s t i n y by f r e e l y choosing h i s possibilities"  (91). For Jean-Paul  S a r t r e , freedom i s a  " d i s t i n c t i v e " human c h a r a c t e r i s t i c , and the essence of freedom  108  c o n s i s t s i n the act of choosing one's s e l f  (91). But f o r  S a r t r e as f o r Heidegger, there i s the constant danger of becoming someone other than we are. Therefore,  existential  freedom--which i s an absolute c h o i c e - - i s o f t e n a q u e s t i o n of s a y i n g "no"  (91).  E x i s t e n t i a l i s m holds that i t i s more important  to  e x e r c i s e one's free w i l l than to go along w i t h the o p i n i o n s of others and become f a l s e to one's s e l f . Thus the e x i s t e n t i a l i n d i v i d u a l i s a free subject who  r e s i s t s any attempt to  transform him i n t o anything o b j e c t i v e . I t f o l l o w s , t h a t freedom i s not l i m i t e d by other people or t h i n g s , but by  the  e x e r c i s e of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s autonomous c h o i c e . Thus i t i s the i n d i v i d u a l ' s task to separate himself from these o b j e c t i v e circumstances  and become an autonomous s e l f .  While e x i s t e n t i a l i s t s a f f i r m the concept m a t e r i a l i s t s deny i f .  of f r e e w i l l ,  In "Materialism and R e v o l u t i o n , " S a r t r e  wrote t h a t m a t e r i a l i s m "eliminated s u b j e c t i v i t y by the world and man  reducing  i n i t to a system of o b j e c t s l i n k e d  by u n i v e r s a l r e l a t i o n s h i p s "  together  ( E x i s t e n t i a l i s m versus Marxism,  87). In defense of e x i s t e n t i a l i s m , i t has been argued that "the supreme merit of. e x i s t e n t i a l i s m " i s " i t s c a p a c i t y to e x p l a i n and safeguard man's freedom," s i n c e i t "does not s u b j e c t men  to determinism  which robs them of f r e e c h o i c e and  109  moral r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r t h e i r deeds" Marxism,  ( E x i s t e n t i a l i s m versus  329).  b.  The T h e o r e t i c a l Essays  There i s l i t t l e doubt that the t h e s i s that the i n d i v i d u a l ' s f r e e w i l l i s a p r e r e q u i s i t e f o r e t h i c a l autonomy i s an important c o n s i d e r a t i o n  f o r Lenz, s i n c e he addresses i t  i n s e v e r a l of h i s t h e o r e t i c a l essays. In "Entwurf eines B r i e f e s an einen Freund, der auf der Akademie T h e o l o g i e studiert"  (1772), he introduces the t o p i c by d i s t i n g u i s h i n g  between "moral" and "metaphysical" freedom. He w r i t e s : Metaphysische F r e i h e i t ware, wenn e i n e n d l i c h e s oder geschaffenes Wesen auSer den ewigen und n o t wendigen Gesetzen denken und handeln kdnnte, d i e der Schopfer denkenden und handelnden Wesen v o r geschrieben.  ( B l e i IV, 22)  Here, Lenz claims that metaphysical freedom cannot p o s s i b l y be a human a t t r i b u t e , s i n c e f i n i t e human beings cannot a c t o u t s i d e the laws of nature. In a d d i t i o n , Lenz's p o s i t i o n seems to c o n t r a d i c t Kant's b e l i e f that freedom belongs to the  110  metaphysical moral  r e a l m . ^ ° Lenz p r o c e e d s  t o examine t h e c o n c e p t o f  f r e e d o m w h i c h he d e f i n e s a s : D i e S t a r k e , d i e w i r anwenden konnen, den der Natur  n a c h den  jedesmaligen E r f o r d e r n i s s e n  u n s r e r b e s s e r n E r k e n n t n i s und zu w i d e r s t e h e n . freier,  Wir  unserer  Situation  konnen a l s o m o r a l i s c h immer  immer w i l l k u r l i c h e r werden.  (Blei  L e n z c l a i m s t h a t — s i n c e God e x i s t s o u t s i d e o f t i m e t h e r e i s no c o n f l i c t and  between t h e c o n c e p t s  the m o r a l freedom of the Da  and  23)  space--  o f a n o m n i s c i e n t God  d i e e r i n uns  da e r a l l e d i e G e s e t z e  n a c h denen d i e s e K r a f t vermindern  IV,  individual:  G o t t a l s o d i e K r a f t kennt,  g e l e g t hat,  Trieben  durchschaut,  s i c h vermehren  oder  kann, da e r d i e W i r k u n g e n und  Folgen  d e r s e l b e n z u g l e i c h m i t d i e s e n ewig n o t w e n d i g e n Gesetzen  auf einmal u b e r s i e h t - s o kann e r  . a l l w i s s e n d s e i n ohne u n s e r e r m o r a l i s c h e n Eintrag  zu tun.  ( B l e i IV,  Freiheit  23-24)  58 Kant w r i t e s i n t h e K r i t i k d e r r e i n e n V e r n u n f t (1781): "Es g i b t e i n U b e r s i n n l i c h e s ' i n uns' (Freiheit), 'uber uns' ( G o t t ) , 'nach uns' ( U n s t e r b l i c h k e i t ) ( I I I , 346). K a n t f u r t h e r a r g u e s t h a t , s i n c e man i s one o f t h e " E r s c h e i n u n g e n d e r S i n n e s w e l t , " he must have a n e m p i r i c a l c h a r a c t e r and t h a t c o n s e q u e n t l y w i t h r e g a r d t o h i s e m p i r i c a l c h a r a c t e r , t h e r e i s no f r e e d o m ( I I I , 37273) b u t t h a t w i t h r e g a r d t o h i s i n t e l l i g i b l e c h a r a c t e r , man's a c t i o n s a r e b r o u g h t about by p u r e r e a s o n and a s s u c h he a c t s f r e e l y ( I I I , 374 f ) .  *  .  111  In Meinunaen eines Laien. human freedom i s again i n t e r p r e t e d as being i n accordance  with God's grace. Lenz  w r i t e s : "Ja f f e i s i n d wir, aber f r e i vor Gott, wie  Kinder  unter den Augen i h r e s l i e b r e i c h e n Vaters f r e i scherzen spi'elen durfen"  ( B l e i IV, 131) . And  i n "Uber d i e Natur unsers  G e i s t e s , " he introduces the problem of f r e e w i l l determinism  und  versus  as f o l l o w s : Jemehr i c h i n mir s e l b s t forsche und uber mich nachdenke, destomehr f i n d e i c h Grunde zu z w e i f e l n , ob i c h auch w i r k l i c h e i n s e l b s t s t a n d i g e s , von niemand abhangendes [ s i c ] Wesen s e i , wie i c h doch den brennenden Wunsch i n mir f i i h l e .  (I, 572)  With an anxiety that i s best d e s c r i b e d as e x i s t e n t i a l , Lenz proceeds to ask the r h e t o r i c a l question, nur e i n B a l l der Umstande? i c h -?"  "Wie  derm, i c h  (I, 572) . However, he  then  acknowledges a d r i v e i n the human psyche which p r o p e l s the i n d i v i d u a l towards freedom: D i e s e r S t o l z - was  i s t er? wo wurzelt er?  S o l l t e er n i c h t e i n Wink von der Natur der menschlichen Substanz, ein  Seele s e i n , dass s i e eine  d i e n i c h t s e l b s t s t a n d i g geboren,  aber  Bestreben e i n T r i e b i n i h r s e i , s i c h zur  Selbststandigkeit hinaufzuarbeiten, s i c h g l e i c h sam von d i e s e r groSen Masse der ineinander  (  112  hangenden  [ s i c ] Schopfung  s i c h bestehendes In i d e n t i f y i n g freedom  abzusondern  Wesen auszumachen.  a strong desire  und e i n f u r (I,  f o r independence  i n human n a t u r e , L e n z f i r m l y r e n o u n c e s  subscribe to  " m e c h a n i s t i c " model o f t h e u n i v e r s e t o deny t h i s Konnen d i e H e l v e t i u s s e und a l l e L e u t e  and  a deterministic  c o n c e p t i o n o f t h e w o r l d and c h a l l e n g e s t h o s e t h a t a  573)  striving:  d i e so t i e f  i n d i e E i n f l u s s e d e r uns umgebenden N a t u r  gedrungen  sind,  das das  aus  s i c h s e l b s t d i e s e s Gefiihl ableugnen  i h n e n gemacht h a t was s i e geworden s i n d ?  ( I , 573) Concupiscence and  occupies a ' c e n t r a l p l a c e i n Lenz's  i s , furthermore,  will.  In fact,  closely  linked to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s  free  Lenz e s t a b l i s h e s c o n c u p i s c e n c e a s t h e s t i m u l u s  ( d i e T r i e b f e d e r ) f o r a l l human a c t i o n suggests  ethics  ( I , 501-502). He a l s o  t h a t God awakened Adam and E v e ' s  o r d e r t o m o t i v a t e them t o a c t w i t h m o r a l a c c o m p l i s h t h i s ? A c c o r d i n g t o Lenz,  concupiscence i n autonomy. How d i d God  i t was t h e c o n f l i c t  between God's p r o h i b i t i o n and t h e i r c o n c u p i s c e n c e p r o p e l l e d Adam and Eve t o a c t f r e e l y :  that  113  Es war d i e s der e r s t e StoS gleichsam, den Gott  f r e i e n  Wesen gab, d i e h a n d e 1 n  s o l l t e n : denn dem T i e r kann i c h keine Handlung zuschreiben, eine Handlung aus I n s t i n k t i s t immer noch e i n Leiden. Es war d i e s Verbot d i e vis centrifuga  d i e Gott dem menschlichen  Wesen  eindriickte, da d i e Konkupiszenz gleichsam s e i n e centripeta  vis  war, und nur b e i dem S t r e i t d i e s e r  beiden entgegen-wirkenden K r a f t e konnte s i c h s e i n e  F r e i h e i t  im  seine Selbstwirksamkeit, seine  H a n d e l  n,  V e l l e i t a t  auSern. (I, 502) In h i s essay  "Meine wahre Psychologie," which holds the  b a s i c t e n e t s of h i s thought,  Lenz c a r e f u l l y d i s t i n g u i s h e s  between an i n v o l u n t a r y p h y s i c a l sensory system and a v o l u n t a r y Empfindunasvermocren. I t i s important to note at t h i s p o i n t t h a t , a c c o r d i n g to Lenz, the l a t t e r r e s i d e s i n the body and enables the i n d i v i d u a l to choose f r e e l y between good and e v i l ( B l e i IV, 29). Lenz f u r t h e r claims that the w i l l and concupiscence  a r e i d e n t i c a l as he r e f e r s the reader t o an  e a r l i e r essay of h i s which had examined the p l a c e of concupiscence  i n human nature:  114  Die begehrenden K r a f t e zusammengenommen haben den  S i t z im U n t e r l e i b e v o r z i i g l i c h und i n dem  Samen und heiSen der W i l l e . . . . ( s i e h e meine Abhandlung vom Baum der Erkenntnis Bosen und der Konkupiszenz). In the f o l l o w i n g century,  des Guten und  ( B l e i IV, 30)  Schopenhauer would c l a i m that the  sexual urge i s the "focus of the w i l l " and that,  consequently,  the w i l l r e v e a l s i t s e l f as the " i n - i t s e l f " of our phenomenal being  (See h i s essay, "Uber d i e F r e i h e i t des W i l l e n s "  i n Uber  d i e Grundleauna der Moral). Lenz's treatment of the w i l l as part of the s e n s i b l e r a t h e r than the i n t e l l i g i b l e realm a l s o c a l l s to mind Hamann's c l a i m that reason was made to have an e r o t i c component, "Da unsere Vernunft vom Saamen des g o t t l i c h e n Worts geschwangert werden s o l l t e "  (Samtliche Werke I, 52). And i n response t o  Kant's d i v i s i o n of man i n t o an i n t e l l i g i b l e and a s e n s i b l e realm, Hamann declared,  "Und meine grobe E i n b i l d u n g s k r a f t i s t  niemals im Stande gewesen, s i c h einen s c h o p f e r i s c h e n ohne g e n i t a l i a v o r z u s t e l l e n " Hamann, employs sexual  (Briefwechsel  Geist  2, 415). Lenz,  like  imagery to c l a r i f y h i s p o s i t i o n . For  example, i n Meinunaen eines Laien Lenz w r i t e s ,  "Wer aus Gott  geboren i s t , der t u t n i c h t Siinde, denn s e i n Same b l e i b e t b e i  ihm"  ( B l e i IV, 177).59  And i n h i s essay, "Vom Baum der  E r k e n n t n i s Guten und Bdsen" he maintains: ... da der Same der Menschen e i g e n t l i c h das V e h i k e l i h r e r G e i s t e r i s t und d i e Sammlung d i e s e r G e i s t e r von der Vernunft, dem Funken, dem Hauch den d i e G o t t h e i t i n uns gelegt, r e g i e r t , das Wesen unsers Genius oder innern Menschen ausmacht.... ( B l e i IV, 33) Lenz shares Hamann's admiration f o r Socrates and the s o c r a t i c . The q u e s t i o n i s , t o what extent was he i n f l u e n c e d by Hamann? During h i s years i n KSnigsberg, Lenz would have had access t o Hamann's S o k r a t i s c h e Denkwurdiakeiten eines Philoloaen  (1759)  and Kreuzzucre  (1762). According to Rosanow, Lenz  corresponded w i t h Hamann p r i o r t o h i s departure from Riga; Rosanow a l s o suggests that the two men may have met i n Kdnigsberg  (55 and 463/464,  f n 11 and 12). There are a l s o  numerous r e f e r e n c e s to Lenz i n Hamann's l e t t e r s . 6 0  i t is  worth n o t i n g that Hamann a t t r i b u t e d Lenz' s "Anmerkungen iibers  59 see a l s o 1 John, 1:9: No one born o f God commits s i n ; f o r God's nature abides i n him, and he cannot s i n because he i s born of God. See Briefwechsel 4: 122, 123f, 126, 131, 132, 138, 141, 164, 167, 204, 250, 257, 324, 333, 424; V o l . 5: 140, 169, 171; V o l 7: 9. Hamann a l s o notes that Lenz wrote t o him (Briefwechsel 4, 131). 6 0  116  Theater"  t o Goethe  and t h a t he t h o u g h t h i g h l y o f L e n z .  He  wrote: Er  [Goethe] h a t e i n e n L i e f l a n d e r ,  Lenz  i n StraSburg  j e t z o H o f m e i s t e r , zum N e b e n b u l e r s e i n e r  Laufbahn,  den V e r f . des H o f m e i s t e r s u. neuen Menoza, l e t z t e n i c h a u c h n o c h n i c h t kenne. nicht  ( B r i e f w e c h s e l 3,  most p a r t ,  literar.  Geschm. r e i c h e n .  122)  t h r e e d e c a d e s , Lenz s c h o l a r s h i p h a s ,  interpreted  the p o i n t  f o r the  of view p r e s e n t e d i n Lenz's  p r o s e and drama as t h o r o u g h l y d e t e r m i n i s t i c . Not then,  Ihnen  auch, daS d i e Stiicke d i e s e r A r t t i e f e r a l s  d e r ganze B e r l i n ,  In the past  Diinkt  welchen  surprisingly,  t h e o p e n i n g p a r a g r a p h o f h i s "Gotz v o n B e r l i c h i n g e n " i s  o f t e n quoted i n support of t h i s  thesis:  W i r werden g e b o r e n - u n s e r e E l t e r n geben B r o t und K l e i d  uns  - unsere Lehrer driicken i n  u n s e r H i r n Worte,  Sprachen, W i s s e n s c h a f t e n -  i r g e n d e i n a r t i g e s Madchen d r i l c k t  i n u n s e r Herz  den Wunsch, es e i g e n zu b e s i t z e n ,  es i n u n s e r e  Arme a l s u n s e r E i g e n t u m zu s c h l i e S e n , nicht  wenn  sich  gar e i n t i e r i s c h Bedilrfnis mit h i n e i n m i s c h t  es e n t s t e h t e i n e Liicke i n d e r R e p u b l i k , wo h i n e i n p a s s e n - u n s e r e Freunde, Verwandte,  wir Gonner  -  117  setzen an und stoSen uns g l u c k l i c h h i n e i n - wir drehen uns eine Z e i t l a n g i n diesem P l a t z herum, wie d i e andern Rader, und  stossen und  treiben -  b i s wir, wenn's noch so o r d e n t l i c h geht, abgestumpft s i n d und  z u l e t z t wieder einem neuem  Rade P l a t z machen milssen - das i s t , meine ohne Ruhm zu melden unsere Biographie und was  Herren!  -  b l e i b t nun der Mensch noch  anders a l s eine v o r z i i g l i c h k u n s t l i c h e k l e i n e Maschine, die i n d i e groSe Maschine, d i e w i r Welt, Weltbegebenheiten, W e l t l a u f t e [ s i c ] nennen, besser oder schlimmer h i n e i n p a S t . (I,  378)  Granted t h i s passage describes a determined u n i v e r s e ; however, i n the next paragraph Lenz renounces such a mode of - l i f e as an existence unworthy of human beings and p o i n t s to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s p o t e n t i a l f o r authentic and autonomous being: Kein Wunder, das d i e Philosophen  so p h i l o s o p h i e r e n ,  wenn d i e Menschen so leben. Aber h e i S t das HeiSt das seine Existenz g e f i i h l t ,  gelebt?  seine  s e l b s t s t a n d i g e Existenz, den Funken von Gott? er muS  i n was  Besserm stekken,  Lebens; denn e i n B a l l anderer  der Reiz  des  zu s e i n , i s t e i n  Ha,  118  t r a u r i g e r niederdruckender Gedanke, eine ewige S k l a v e r e i , eine nur k i i n s t l i c h e r e , eine v e r n u n f t i g e aber eben um d e s s e n t w i l l e n desto elendere T i e r s c h a f t . . (I, 378) Heightened consciousness of e x i s t e n c e and  self-  r e a l i z a t i o n are what Lenz demands from l i t e r a t u r e . In the words of Roy Pascal,"Lenz f o r d e r t von der Poesie 'Zuwachs an Existenz'"  (Wacker, Sturm und Drana. 64). Indeed, Lenz i s  c r i t i c a l of contemporary  French drama because  i t leaves the  audience with nothing more than the p l e a s a n t f e e l i n g a good b o t t l e of champagne produces  (I,'380). Instead, he p r a i s e s the  Promethean spark of Goethe's G6tz von B e r l i c h i n a e n : Wo  i s t der  l e b e n d i g e  i n Gesinnungen, Taten und  Eindruck, der s i c h  H a n d l u n g e n  hernach einmischt, der prometheische s i c h so unvermerkt hineingestohlen, daS  Funken der  i n unsere i n n e r s t e Seele er, wenn wir i h n n i c h t  ganzliches S t i l l i e g e n i n s i c h selbst  durch  wieder  verglimmen lassen, unser ganzes Leben b e s e l i g t . . . . (I,  380)  Freedom and m o r a l i t y are c l o s e l y l i n k e d i n Lenz's thoughts. In the opening paragraph of "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der Moral," Lenz gives the f o l l o w i n g d e f i n i t i o n of m o r a l i t y . M o r a l i t y , he assures the reader, i s the d i s c i p l i n e  119  that teaches the i n d i v i d u a l to use h i s f r e e w i l l i n a manner o conducive to f u l f i l l i n g h i s human p o t e n t i a l : Da d i e Moral d i e Lehre von der Bestimmung des Menschen und von dem rechten Gebrauch seines f r e i e n W i l l e n s um diese Bestimmung zu e r r e i c h e n ist,  so sehen w i r k l a r , dass s i e d i e Zeichnung  zu dem ganzen Gemalde unsers Lebens e n t h a l t . . . . (I, 483) In the f i r s t supplement of "Vom Baum der Erkenntnis und  Bosen," he a s c e r t a i n s that God intended  man t o be a f r e e  agent, a l i t t l e c r e a t o r who follows i n h i s f o o t s t e p s , er s o l l t e auch  Guten  "...aber  f r e i , e i n k l e i n e r Schopfer, der G o t t h e i t  n a c h h a n d e l n "  ( B l e i IV, 7 1 ) .  In Meinunaen eines Laien  6 1  (1775), Lenz elaborates  on what  he conceives to be the p r i n c i p l e of o r i g i n a l sin--namely, human nature  ( B l e i IV, 92). He f u r t h e r claims  that only when  the aims of nature and those of a f r e e l y a c t i n g i n d i v i d u a l c o i n c i d e , do they l e a d to p e r f e c t u n i t y : "Die Natur hat i h r e Zwecke, der wahrhaftig  f r e i e Mensch d i e s e i n i g e n , und d i e  61 With t h i s d e f i n i t i o n , Lenz comes c l o s e t o the L e i b n i z i a n concept of the a r t i s t who follows i n the c r e a t o r ' s f o o t s t e p s . See A l l a n Blunden's important essay, "J.M.R. Lenz and L e i b n i z : A point of view."  120  V e r e i n i g u n g d i e s e r Zwecke g i b t das vollkommenste Ganze"  (Blei  IV, 9 2 ) . According to M a r t i n i , the focus of Lenz's dramatic  theory  i n the "Anmerkungen" i s the d r a m a t i z a t i o n of the modern "Selbstbewusstsein des zu s e i n e r v o l l e n i n d i v i d u e l l e n  Freiheit  gelangten I c h . " T h i s s e l f i s f u r t h e r d e s c r i b e d as " e i n Ich, das aus s e i n e r eigenen Entscheidung und  und Verantwortung  handeln  aus seinem eigenen k r i t i s c h e n Denken und Gewissen fragen  und u r t e i l e n w i l l " Lenz'  ("Die E i n h e i t der Konzeption  i n J.M.R.  'Anmerkungen ilbers Theater, ' " 262) .  c.  The Drama  In marked c o n t r a s t t o the independent c h a r a c t e r s d e s c r i b e d i n the "Anmerkungen," the p r o t a g o n i s t s i n Lenz's p l a y s appear to be impotent determined  and despondent i n h a b i t a n t s of a  u n i v e r s e . I n d i v i d u a l freedom i s a t best a t o p i c f o r  academic s p e c u l a t i o n , but has no place i n the day to day l i f e of Lenz's dramatic addressed  c h a r a c t e r s . The question that remains to be  i s : does the dissonance between Lenz's  dramatic  t h e o r i e s and h i s drama suggest nothing more than the dichotomy that e x i s t s between h i s v i s i o n of an i d e a l world and the s o c i o - p o l i t i c a l r e a l i t i e s of eighteenth-century  Germany?  121  If  one  s t a r t s from t h e p r e m i s e t h a t  dependence d i s p l a y e d Die  Soldaten  incapable  are  by  the  o f a c t i n g as autonomous and  I n Der  Hofmeister,  Geheime Rat  and  philosophizing  routine  h a v e no  the n a t u r e of  since his  One  may  application in his l i f e .  the  one  could,  noumenon. As  w e l l ask, i n Per  financial  celibacy is  Both indulge  forced  position.  f o r the  in  former i s not  I f one  apply  the  s u c h , he  impotent,  w o u l d be  extend beyond h i s the  immediate  other  hand,  could  actions.  what d e g r e e o f  Hofmeister enjoys.  r e s t r a i n t s , he  were t o  perhaps, c o n s i d e r  the phenomenon, on  duration  and  der  concepts  Lauffer' i s e s s e n t i a l l y a servant to  malaise.  serves- to demonstrate t h a t a b s t r a c t  determined i n a l l h i s  protagonist  Pue  their  latter's  i n f l u e n c e does n o t  be  individuals, i t  the  s p h e r e , W e n z e s l a u s as but  r e n d e r s them  about human freedom; however, t h e  Kantian categories, as  that  and  freedom i s t h e b a n n e r u n d e r w h i c h  Wenzeslaus are u n i t e d .  concrete  councillor  Hofmeister  ethical  t o v e n t u r e much b e y o n d h i s t h e o r i e s ,  daily  not  i n Der  symptomatic o f a m e n t a l i t y  seems w a r r a n t e d t o e x p l o r e  able  characters  t h e p a s s i v i t y and •  freedom, i f any, As  the  h i s name s u g g e s t s ,  i n t h e von  Berg household.  i s condemned t o  involuntary  o f h i s employment. I n f a c t ,  Lauffer  t o s u p p r e s s h i s s e x u a l i t y i n exchange f o r h i s Thus a l i e n a t e d , he  w i t h h i s c h a r g e G u s t c h e n . As  enters  into a sexual  a r e s u l t of t h i s  relationship  liaison,  he  is  122  forced  to  flee  from the h o u s e h o l d and  Wenzeslaus,  the  recruit  as  him  s c h o o l m a s t e r , who  his disciple.  circumstantial after  village  seek r e f u g e promptly  castrates himself a f t e r w a r d s and  to L a u f f e r ' s when he  despite  child.  recognizes  the p r o s p e c t  Lauffer  the  child  as h i s .  of a s t e r i l e  critics,  credibility, his  and  is left  ethical  self.  t u t o r who  of view of  prominent p l a c e  individual's  struggle  drama c a n n o t be a biological  action.  the  an are  final  the  title, not  analysis i t i s one  to p r i v a t e t u t o r i n g  the may  from  that concupiscence plays  For  in  the  m o r a l autonomy i n L e n z ' s  L e n z , c o n c u p i s c e n c e i s more t h a n  guarantees the  s u r v i v a l o f homo  i t i s t h e p r e r e q u i s i t e f o r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n and the  been  tutor?  function that  Considering  with  an  has  independent s e l f ,  f o r freedom and  ignored.  i r o n y of  Privaterziehuna.  i n the  what a d v a n t a g e s t h e r e  point  sapiens:  Since  lacks  c e a s e d t o e x i s t as  Perhaps t h e  l o s e s h i s i d e n t i t y as  w e l l ask  The  explored.  happy  w i t h the u n e a s y f e e l i n g t h a t  H o f m e i s t e r oder V o r t e i l e der  sufficiently  the  one  s e l f - c a s t r a t i o n , L a u f f e r has  authentic Der  and  Shortly  union,  ending of  puzzled  is  promptly  However, t h e  w h i c h has  to  drowned h e r s e l f  L a u f f e r m a r r i e s a young p e a s a n t g i r l . the p l a y ,  tries  I n the meantime, t h e r e  e v i d e n c e t h a t G u s t c h e n has  giving birth  with  c e n t r a l place  that  concupiscence  moral holds  123  i n Lenz's thoughts on e t h i c s , the important p l a c e which B l a i s e P a s c a l a t t r i b u t e s t o concupiscence i s worth n o t i n g . He w r i t e s : Grandeur de 1'homme dans s a concupiscence meme, d'en a v o i r su t i r e un reglement a d m i r a b l e , e t d'en a v o i r f a i t un t a b l e a u de l a c h a r i t y . L e s r a i s o n s des e f f e t s marquent l a grandeur de 1'homme, d ' a v o i r t i r ^ de l a concupiscence un s i b e l o r d r e . (Pens£es de P a s c a l , 138) I n Lenz's p l a y s , c h a r a c t e r s who suppress o r abuse t h e i r s e x u a l i t y a r e unable t o f u n c t i o n as autonomous s e l v e s and seem condemned t o a l i f e o f p a s s i v i t y and moral l a s s i t u d e . T h i s i s t r u e o f L a u f f e r i n Der H o f m e i s t e r , who w i t h t h e s e l f - i n f l i c t e d d e s t r u c t i o n o f h i s g e n i t a l i a - - w h i c h , a c c o r d i n g t o Lenz a r e t h e s e a t o f t h e human w i l l  ( B l e i IV, 30)--has s a c r i f i c e d h i s  p o t e n t i a l as an a u t h e n t i c and e t h i c a l s e l f . I t f o l l o w s t h a t , i f one acknowledges concupiscence as b e i n g i d e n t i c a l w i t h t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s f r e e w i l l , concupiscence becomes t h e source o f human e t h i c s . Thus t h e i n d i v i d u a l who s a c r i f i c e s o r abuses h i s c o n c u p i s c e n c e i s no longer capable o f e t h i c a l a c t i o n s . One c o u l d i n t e r p r e t , t h e r e f o r e , i n t h e f i n a l scene o f Der H o f m e i s t e r , L a u f f e r i s absent because he i s impotent i n t h e p h y s i c a l as w e l l as i n the moral sense and thus no l o n g e r c a p a b l e o f f u n c t i o n i n g as an autonomous s e l f .  124  The o f f i c e r s i n Die Soldaten share a s i m i l a r Coerced i n t o g i v i n g up t h e i r r i g h t to marry, they themselves  fate. find  i n an untenable p o s i t i o n . In order to escape  the  burden of enforced c e l i b a c y , they court the daughters of the l o c a l b o u r g e o i s i e without, however, t a k i n g r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the consequences of t h e i r a c t i o n s . Furthermore,  s i n c e they are  incapable of moral a c t i o n s , they are no longer autonomous i n d i v i d u a l s but reduced to mere automata.^2  d.  The A e s t h e t i c as a Mode of E x i s t e n c e  Lenz makes the d i s t i n c t i o n between the a e s t h e t i c and the e t h i c a l as modes of human existence i n both prose and drama. Since Kierkegaard, the prototype of the i n d i v i d u a l who e x c l u s i v e l y f o r the p l e a s u r a b l e moments of l i f e  lives  i s the seducer  whose compulsive e r o t i c p u r s u i t s provide a case study of an aesthete's d e s p a i r i n "The Diary of the Seducer" It  (Either/Or).  seems an e x t r a o r d i n a r y coincidence that Lenz, more than  ^2 As p o i n t e d out i n chapters I I I and IV, t h e r e are many i n s t a n c e s where the a e s t h e t i c i s c o n t r a s t e d w i t h the e t h i c a l i n Lenz's p l a y s . Again, the treatment of the a e s t h e t i c and the e t h i c a l as stages i n human l i f e - d e s c r i b e d by Kierkegaard h a l f a century later--seems to be a n t i c i p a t e d by Lenz.  125  h a l f a century Don  Juan who  before Kierkegaard, chooses the example of a  f e e l s nothing  except h i s s e n s u a l i t y , to  demonstrate the point that adhering to a p a r t i a l i d e n t i t y r e s u l t s i n ignorance of the s e l f which, i n i t s turn, leads  to  an u n e t h i c a l mode of l i f e . 6 3 Lenz w r i t e s : Ich w i l l aber versuchen, Ihnen d i e ganze Schwiirigkeit mit zween Worten zu heben. Aus u n r i c h t i g e n s e l b s  t.  Der  K e n n t n i s  d e r  s e i n e r  W o l l i i s t l i n g  fiihlt  b l o S seine S i n n l i c h k e i t . Er wiirde e r s c h r o c k l i c h bose werden, wenn man  ihm  und  zu erkennen gabe,  daS  l e b e n d i g  a n s c h a u e n d  er hohere Fahigkeiten habe, deren Gefuhl  unendlich  mehr b e l u s t i g e n wurde.  Whether i t be the amorous p u r s u i t s of a Don c e r e b r a l s e l f - a b s o r p t i o n of philosophers, one-sided approach to l i f e , s e l f . An  (I,  inn  493)  Juan or  the  a purely aesthetic,  constitutes a f l i g h t  from the  i n d i c a t i o n of the importance of t h i s r e a l i z a t i o n f o r  Lenz i s the f a c t that the a e s t h e t i c as a theme s u r f a c e s  in a l l  of h i s major p l a y s . 63 i f one examines the extent of Hamann's i n f l u e n c e on Kierkegaard (See fn 72) and considers the f a c t that the former's ideas are r e f l e c t e d i n Lenz's w r i t i n g s , one may venture that i t i s Hamann's e x i s t e n t i a l thought which s u r f a c e s i n the w r i t i n g of both Lenz and Kierkegaard.  In Der neue Menoza, Prince Tandi complains,  "Das  bloSe  GenieSen s c h e i n t mir recht d i e Krankheit, an der d i e Europaer arbeiten"  (II,II.vi,  130), and Baccalaureus  Z i e r a u , whose very  name i d e n t i f i e s him as an aesthete, u n w i t t i n g l y s t r e s s e s the a e s t h e t i c aspects of h i s a b s t r a c t way exclaims,  of l i f e when he  "Die echte Vernunft l e h r t uns g l i i c k l i c h s e i n ,  Pfad mit Blumen bestreuen"  (II,II.vi,  131).  unsern  In responding  to  Z i e r a u , P r i n c e Tandi chooses words which c l e a r l y i n d i c a t e that the s p e c t r e of death i s p a r t of the a e s t h e t i c garden, d i e Blumen welken und sterben"  (II,II.vi,  Z i e r a u ' s o f f hand remark: "So p f l i l c k t man  "Aber  131). However, neue," i n d i c a t e s  that the s i g n i f i c a n c e of Prince Tandi's comment i s l o s t on (II,II.vi, The  him  131).  a e s t h e t i c i s confronted with the s p e c t r e of  more than once i n Der neue Menoza. On one occasion,  death Wilhelmine  i s i n an unhappy frame of mind because she has reason to b e l i e v e t h a t P r i n c e Tandi, her f i a n c e , i s her b r o t h e r . Baccalaureus  Z i e r a u a r r i v e s on the scene to take her to a  masked b a l l . His motivation i s - - i n hi's own " e i n k l e i n Divertissement"  words--to provide  ( I I , I V . i , 166). Wilhelmine  responds  to h i s i n v i t a t i o n by p o i n t i n g to her embroidery, which d e p i c t s Hymen e x t i n g u i s h i n g h i s t o r c h , and exclaiming,  " h i e r i s t mein  D i v e r t i s s e m e n t . " Lenz makes an e x i s t e n t i a l statement  here  by  contrasting  t h e image o f d e a t h w i t h t h e p u r s u i t  o f empty  diversions. A p u r e l y a e s t h e t i c approach question of e t h i c s academic the  i n Der  since  Der  i s a d v o c a t e d by M a g i s t e r Beza,  i t i s not c o n t r a r y to n a t u r a l (II,III.xi,  Enalander  law and  (1777), Lenz  c o n t r a s t s the  the p u r s u i t  and  o f p l e a s u r e and empty  t h u s r e n d e r him r e c e p t i v e t o an  marriage w i t h L o r d Hamilton's p l e a d s w i t h Robert  be happy o n l y i f he  Robert,  rather As he  Robert  an  diversions  Italian  arranged  daughter back i n England.  i s "vernunftig"  (II,V.i,  c h o i c e of Armida  He  was  that  339),  t h a n go a l o n g w i t h h i s f a t h e r ' s w i s h e s , lies  to  The  t o come t o h i s s e n s e s and a s s u r e s h i m  he w i l l  suicide.  therefore  by h i s f a t h e r  c u r e R o b e r t ' s p a s s i o n a t e l o v e f o r Armida,  princess,  be  of death.  a y o u n g E n g l i s h nobleman, i s e n c o u r a g e d  f a t h e r hopes t h a t  to  aesthetic  s u r r e n d e r t o t h e charms o f a l a d y o f t h e demi-monde.  will  second  161-62).  a s p e c t s o f human e x i s t e n c e w i t h the r e a l i t y Hot,  the  a m a r r i a g e between s i b l i n g s w o u l d n o t  a c c e p t a b l e t o God In  d i s m i s s e s the  neue Menoza. He goes so f a r as t o s u g g e s t  Prince that  immoral  to l i f e which  but  commits  d y i n g , he makes i t q u i t e c l e a r t h a t h i s an e t h i c a l  decision:  ...so v i e l Augen haben nach m i r g e f u n k e l t ! so Busen n a c h m i r s i c h ausgedehnt!  i c h h a t t e so  viel viel  128  V e r g n u g e n haben.kflnnen - n e i n ,  das i s t n i c h t  d a n k b a r . . . S i e wurden r o t , wenn s i e m i t m i r sprachen,  s i e s t o t t e r t e n , s i e stammelten, s i e  zitterten  - nur eine,  das  priest's and  himself  exclaims:  L i k e Robert L'Etranaer  his for,  to the w i l l  t h e memory o f A r m i d a  o f God. I n r e s p o n s e t o t h e Armida's p o r t r a i t  "Armida! A r m i d a . . - B e h a l t e t  i n Der E n a l a n d e r . M e u r s a u l t  afterlife.  euren  him i n h i s c e l l The p r i e s t  novel  h i s death.  and u r g e s h i m t o p r e p a r e f o r  s u g g e s t s t o h i m t h a t he s h o u l d  look  a n d s e e k s o l a c e i n , t h e f a c e o f C h r i s t , w h i c h many have  seen r e f l e c t e d  on t h e s t o n e  walls of the p r i s o n i n t h e i r  hour. Meursault  counters  during h i s long  imprisonment was t h e s u n - l i t  his  to h i s l i p s  i n Camus'  faces a s i m i l a r d e c i s i o n s h o r t l y before  visits  bedside.  (II, V . i , 3 5 3 ) .  Himmel f a r euch"  A priest  and f o r e g o  l e c t u r e , Robert presses  i n dying  - und  i s summoned t o R o b e r t ' s  He admonishes R o b e r t t o r e p e n t surrender  i c h , nur eine  (II, V . i , 351)  war mein Lohn!  W i t h d e a t h imminent, a p r i e s t  and  sagte  girl.  Despite  well-rehearsed Meursault  Meursault's  homilies,  f a c e he w i s h e d f o r face of Marie,  lack of interest  the p r i e s t  in his  does n o t g i v e up. As  becomes more and more i r r i t a t e d  anger gets priest's  that the only  last  by t h e p r i e s t , h i s  t h e b e t t e r o f h i m and he s h o u t s t h a t a l l t h e  certainties  " a r e n o t w o r t h one s t r a n d o f a woman's  hair"  (Camus, 151).In the end, alone and r e c o n c i l e d to h i s  past and present, Meursault  faces h i s death with a c e r t a i n  amount of e x h i l a r a t i o n . Kierkegaard  claims that only i n the face of death,  does  the i n d i v i d u a l become s u b j e c t i v e and make an e t h i c a l commitment to himself, the e x i s t i n g s u b j e c t . In h i s Concluding  U n s c i e n t i f i c P o s t s c r i p t he w r i t e s : We wish to know how a man's. conception of death w i l l transform a man's e n t i r e l i f e . . . T h e q u e s t i o n must be r a i s e d of the p o s s i b i l i t y of f i n d i n g an e t h i c a l expression f o r the s i g n i f i c a n c e of death... And  furthermore,  i t i s evident that when the  subject thinks h i s own death,  t h i s i s a deed. For  a man i n general, f o r an absent-minded i n d i v i d u a l l i k e S o l d i n or a systematic philosopher, to t h i n k death i n general i s indeed no a c t or deed; i t i s only a something i n general, and what such a something i n general r e a l l y i s , i s at bottom a very difficult  t h i n g to say. But i f the task of l i f e i s  to become s u b j e c t i v e , then the thought of death i s not,  f o r the i n d i v i d u a l subject, something i n  general, but v e r i l y a deed. For the development of the subject c o n s i s t s p r e c i s e l y i n h i s a c t i v e  130  i n t e r p e n e t r a t i o n of himself by r e f l e c t i o n concerning h i s own e x i s t e n c e . . . .  (150-51)  Strephon, the hapless philosopher of Die Freunde machen den Philosophen  has by h i s own admission become what other  people  see i n him ( I I , V . i , 323). In a s u i c i d a l mood, Strephon laments the l o s s of h i s s e l f and a t t r i b u t e s i t to h i s v a n i t y : Der Mensch i s t so geneigt, s i c h s e l b e r zu betrugen; hat er Verstand genug, s i c h vor s e i n e r E i g e n l i e b e zu bewahren, so kommen tausend andere und v e r e i n i g e n i h r e K r a f t e , seine e n t s c h l a f e n e E i g e n l i e b e zu erwecken, um den S e l b s t b e t r u g unerhort  zumachen. - Also e i n Philosoph?  n i c h t s weiter?  - Und  ( I I , I V . i i i , 319)  Strephon loads h i s p i s t o l to make an end to what he c o n s i d e r s a wasted l i f e . A philosopher, he describes h i s chosen p r o f e s s i o n as "beobachtende U n t a t i g k e i t " and r e g r e t s t h a t h i s v a n i t y and self-importance have l e d him to l i v e an i n a u t h e n t i c existence: Ein  Mensch, der a l i e n Rechten der Menschheit  entsagt, um s i c h b e i andern i n e i n t o r i c h t e s Ansehen zu setzen. So e i n e r war i c h f r e i l i c h , Mezzotinto,  wie jeder Mensch g e m das wird, wofur  andere i h n h a l t e n . Seraphine  hat meine E i t e l k e i t  zuerst iiberwunden und mich uberzeugt,  daS e i n  b l o S e r Beobachter nur e i n h a l b e r Mensch s e i . ( I I , V . i , 322-23) However, as Strephon prepares f o r what he p e r c e i v e s to be h i s f i n a l hour, he acknowledges that h i s death i s the f i r s t deed of h i s l i f e : wurdig, (II,V.i,  good  "Dieser Tod i s t des wahren Philosophen  d i e s e r Tod i s t d i e e r s t e gute Handlung meines Lebens" 323).  A r e f l e c t i v e aesthete, Strephon has spent h i s e n t i r e as " e i n h a l b e r Mensch" ( I I , V i , 323).  life  Preoccupied w i t h a b s t r a c t  t h i n k i n g and d i s t r a c t e d by the constant demands of h i s f r i e n d s , he has become a stranger to h i s own  self.  For  Strephon i t i s the sudden encounter w i t h death that leads him to  examine h i s past l i f e and r e a l i z e i t s f u t i l i t y . In  Die Soldaten. the aesthetes are d i v i d e d i n t o  two  groups: the aesthetes proper and the r e f l e c t i v e a e s t h e t e s . The former are i n the majority; they are the s o l d i e r s who the l o c a l g i r l s ,  seduce  frequent the theatre, and daydream w h i l e on  duty. The l a t t e r spend t h e i r time preoccupied with a b s t r a c t t h i n k i n g . Among the r e f l e c t i v e aesthetes i s Hauptmann P i r z e l , an armchair philosopher, whose demeanour epitomizes the s p e c u l a t i v e t h i n k e r ' s detachment from l i f e . He claims, furthermore, that the u n e t h i c a l conduct of the s o l d i e r s can be a t t r i b u t e d to t h e i r r e l u c t a n c e to engage i n t h i n k i n g ,  "Wie i c h  Ihnen d i e Ehre und das Vergnugen hatte zu sagen Herr P f a r r e r ! das  macht Weil d i e Leute n i c h t denken" ( I I , I I . i i ,  199-200).  In Der Hofmeister. the a e s t h e t i c as a mode o f existence i s somewhat l e s s pronounced. However, L a u f f e r ' s constant r o l e - p l a y i n g p o i n t s  and Gustchen's  to the a e s t h e t i c a t t i t u d e they  share. And although they adopt the r o l e s of the immortal l o v e r s Romeo and J u l i e t , t h e i r love remains a figment of t h e i r imagination. Furthermore, the constant p o s t u r i n g  of L a u f f e r  and Count Wermuth--the l a t t e r ' s name a t t e s t s to the f a c t that he subscribes  t o a somewhat decadent l i f e - s t y l e - - m a y be  i n t e r p r e t e d as the m u l t i p l e p e r s p e c t i v e s  that c h a r a c t e r i z e the  aesthete's p o i n t of view. Thus, while i n the t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g and prose the s t r u g g l e between the a e s t h e t i c and the e t h i c a l i s presented d i a l e c t i c a l l y , Lenz's dramatic characters, i n i t i a l l y u l t i m a t e l y succumb to the aesthete's p e r s p e c t i v e  court and  on r e a l i t y .  In the end, i t i s t h e i r s i n g u l a r passion that renders them incapable of e t h i c a l commitment and u l t i m a t e l y r e s u l t s i n despair  and r e s i g n a t i o n .  e.  The E t h i c a l "Point of View" of the S u b j e c t i v e  Thinker  D i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed t o t h e a e s t h e t i c mode o f l i f e stands t h e e t h i c a l . I n "Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m d e r M o r a l , " Lenz makes the p o i n t t h a t e t h i c s determines our whole  life  s i n c e i t l e a d s us t o make the r i g h t use o f our f r e e w i l l so t h a t we may f u l f i l l our human p o t e n t i a l . He w r i t e s : Da d i e M o r a l d i e Lehre von d e r Bestimmung des Menschen und von dem r e c h t e n Gebrauch s e i n e s f r e i e n W i l l e n s um d i e s e Bestimmung zu e r r e i c h e n i s t , so sehen w i r k l a r , daS s i e d i e Zeichnung zu dem ganzen Gemalde unsers Lebens e n t h a l t , w e l c h e r w i r , jenachdem s i c h b e i r e i f e r e m A l t e r und  fruchtbaren  Umstanden unsere F a h i g k e i t e n e n t w i c k e l n , S c h a t t e n und K o l o r i t geben.  Licht  (1,483)  But a l t h o u g h Lenz acknowledges t h e importance o f e t h i c s i n human e x i s t e n c e , he q u e s t i o n s whether an o b j e c t i v e and u n i v e r s a l e t h i c a l i d e a l o r code i s p o s s i b l e f o r a l l times, f o r a l l p e o p l e , and under a l l circumstances ( I , 538) and comes t o the f o l l o w i n g c o n c l u s i o n : J e d e r Mensch b r i n g t s e i n MaS von B e g i e r d e n und K r a f t e n , seine Harmonie und Ubereinstimmung von B e g i e r d e n und K r a f t e n , s e i n M o r a l s y s t e m m i t s i c h auf d i e Welt, und nach MaSgabe des Gebrauchs den  134  er von denselben macht, erhohet und v e r b e s s e r t dasselbe u n a u f h o r l i c h . Wir werden a l l e geboren, und  das Bessere und  s e l b e r ab.  (I,  gut  Schlimmere unserer  Handlungen und unseres Zustandes hangt von uns  sich  lediglich  550).  There i s l i t t l e doubt that the above passage negates c l a i m that an o b j e c t i v e system of e t h i c s i s p o s s i b l e . it  considers  e t h i c s as the s u b j e c t i v e concern of  the  Instead,  the  i n d i v i d u a l . As T i t e l p o i n t s out, Lenz's p o s i t i o n i s q u i t e h e r e t i c a l and contrary to the teachings church on o r i g i n a l s i n (I, 702).  of the C h r i s t i a n  In h i s essay Stimmen  des  L a i e n . Lenz describes o r i g i n a l s i n as o n t o l o g i c a l a n x i e t y .  He  notes: ...daS es gewisse S i t u a t i o n e n unseres Lebens g i b t , wo uns  a l l e s f u r uns v e r l o r e n zu s e i n s c h e i n t , wo so gar n i c h t s mehr dilnken, wo  U n b e s t i m m t h e i t , Menschheit, i c h mochte das aufs hochste fiihlen.  das  wir  wir unsere ganze t r a u r i g e Los  der  i h r e Erbsilnde nennen,  (I, 569)  .  Thus Lenz i s not i n t e r e s t e d i n proposing a u n i v e r s a l system of e t h i c s . . On the contrary, he s t r e s s e s again and that he i s n e i t h e r a philosopher  nor a m o r a l i s t and does not  i n t e n d h i s w r i t i n g s to be d i d a c t i c (I, 384, cautions,  furthermore, that any  again  385,  i n d i v i d u a l who  386). has  a  He  135  "moralischen Endzweck" would n e c e s s a r i l y d i s q u a l i f y h i m s e l f from b e i n g a poet of  (I, 386).  The q u e s t i o n i s , what does he ask  the poet? The answer i s given by Lenz h i m s e l f : Wo b l e i b t aber da der D i c h t e r ? . . . GroSe Philosophen mogen diese Herren immer s e i n , groSe allgemeine Menschenkenntnis,  Gesetze der menschlichen Seele  Kenntnis, aber wo b l e i b t d i e v  i n d i v i d u e l l e ? For are  (I,  341)  Lenz, s u b j e c t i v i t y and inwardness and not o b j e c t i v i t y  the primary c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a poet. And he goes even  f u r t h e r when he assures the reader that "der hOchste eines D i c h t e r s f u r d i e Ewigkeit i s t e i n edles Herz"  Vorzug (387). In  the  "Anmerkungen ubers Theater" he advocates s u b j e c t i v i t y as  the  most d e s i r a b l e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a true poet when he  w r i t e s : "Ich sage, der D i c h t e r malt das ganze Stuck auf seinen eigenen Charakter" (I, 352).  In a d d i t i o n , he urges poets to be  more c r i t i c a l and a s c r i b e s the o b j e c t i v i t y of  contemporary  w r i t e r s t o nothing more than a l a c k of s u b j e c t i v i t y individual  and  initiative: In der Tat i s t keine F e r t i g k e i t i n unsern U r t e i l e n nirgends mehr a n z u t r e f f e n und man mit  dem  beschdnigt das  saubern Namen der U n p a r t e i l i c h k e i t , da  man  es doch v i e l wahrer Unvermogen nennen s o l l t e . . . . Die  Ubereilung im U r t e i l e n i s t im Grunde n i c h t s a l s  die  F a u l h e i t im U r t e i l e n , man u b e r l a S t das  Geschafte andern und denn s t o t t e r t man nach. (I, 402). He a l s o maintains that the i n d i v i d u a l crosses over from the a e s t h e t i c to the e t h i c a l stage, when no longer s i l e n t , he chooses h i m s e l f , h i s r o l e i n the world, a b i l i t i e s . 64  i  n  to the best of h i s  "fjber Gotz von B e r l i c h i n g e n , " Lenz f u r t h e r  c o n s i d e r s the a e s t h e t i c and the e t h i c a l as stages i n the development of the i n d i v i d u a l  self:  ...denn meine Herren S i e s i n d j e t z t Manner - und • i c h h o f f i c h habe n i c h t mehr n o t i g , Ihnen den Ausspruch des Apostels P a u l i zuzurufen: A l s i c h e i n Kind war t a t i c h wie e i n Kind, a l s i c h aber e i n Mann ward, l e g t i c h das Kindische ab. Wenn jeder i n s e i n e R o l l e ganz e i n d r i n g t und a l l e s draus macht was draus zu machen ist--denken S i e meine Herren! welch eine Idee! welch e i n G o t t e r s p i e l !  (I,  382)  Again, he uses the stage as a metaphor and claims that human beings a r e only s i l e n t i n h a b i t a n t s of the world they are c a l l e d upon to p l a y t h e i r r o l e s and f u l f i l l human p o t e n t i a l to the best of t h e i r  °4 "Uberhaupt, m. H., muS man r e d e n zu konnen" (I, 456).  ability:  h a n d e l n  um  until their  Wir s i n d a l l e , meine Herren! i n gewissem Verstand noch stumme Personen auf dem groSen Theater der Welt b i s es den Direkteurs g e f a l l e n w i r d uns eine R o l l e zu geben. Welche s i e aber auch s e i , so. mussen wir  uns doch a l l e b e r e i t h a l t e n i n d e r s e l b e n zu  handeln, und jenachdem wir besser oder schlimmer, schwacher oder s t a r k e r handeln, jenachdem haben w i r hernach besser oder schlimmer gespielt,. jenachdem verbessern wir auch unser a u S e r l i c h e s und i n n e r l i c h e s Gluck. For  (I, 381)  Lenz, s u b j e c t i v i t y extends to a l l aspects of human  e x i s t e n c e , even to r e l i g i o u s f a i t h . For, he argues, s i n c e f a i t h i s s u b j e c t i v e , i t i s the task of the i n d i v i d u a l to l i v e his  faith: der  Gerechte wird und muss seines Glaubens  Merken S i e wohl, seines  leben.  [my i t a l i c s ] - - denn nach  Massgabe s e i n e r I n d i v i d u a l i t a t hat jeder seinen i n d i v i d u e l l e n Glauben.  (I, 565)  Lenz claims, furthermore, that the more s u b j e c t i v e the i n d i v i d u a l becomes, the more of a v i r t u o s o he becomes i n h i s f a i t h and the more autonomous i n h i s a c t i o n s : Das g i b t denn hernach d i e V i r t u o s e n , d i e es i n d i e s e r , jener I n d i v i d u a l i t a t weit gebracht haben, und i h r e r Ernte so unbekummert genieSen konnen,  138  mag  d i e Welt s i e nun mit Dreck oder Blumen  bewerfen, s i e auf- und n i e d e r z e r r e n , d i e Lange und (I, 565)  d i e B r e i t e , s i e - i c h weiS n i c h t was? I t i s evident not only from h i s endorsement  of  s u b j e c t i v i t y i n the "Anmerkungen iibers Theater" but from the s u b j e c t i v e approach he advocates i n h i s other w r i t i n g s ,  that  the concepts of e t h i c s and s u b j e c t i v i t y are interdependent i n Lenz's thought. Most importantly, s u b j e c t i v i t y i s c l o s e l y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h Standpunkt and Gesichtspunkt. terms he uses f r e q u e n t l y i n both h i s t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g and h i s correspondence. How  i s one to i n t e r p r e t Lenz's use of the term  Standpunkt i n the f o l l o w i n g , o f t e n c i t e d passage from the "Anmerkungen ubers Theater?": Der wahre D i c h t e r verbindet n i c h t i n s e i n e r E i n b i l d u n g s k r a f t , wie es ihm g e f a l l t , was d i e Herren d i e schone Natur zu nennen b e l i e b e n ,  was  aber mit i h r e r E r l a u b n i s n i c h t s a l s d i e v e r f e h l t e Natur i s t . Er nimmt Standpunkt--und so verbinden.  (1,33  dann muss er  6-37)  F i r s t l y , what are the e t h i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of h i s understanding of the terms Standpunkt and Gesichtspunkt? Since the term Standpunkt nehmen i s c e n t r a l to an a p p r e c i a t i o n of Lenz's concept of e t h i c s , a short review of the c r i t i c a l  139  l i t e r a t u r e which concerns i t s e l f w i t h the term Standpunkt i n Lenz seems a p p r o p r i a t e . L e i d h e r b e g i n s h i s essay, "The Dream of I d e n t i t y : Lenz and the problem of Standpunkt, conception  " by s u g g e s t i n g  "that Lenz's  of the term Standpunkt nehmen r e l a t e s t o the i s s u e  w i t h w h i c h the "Anmerkungen iibers Theater" begin--namely, weakness o f n a t i o n a l i d e n t i t y i n l a t e  "the  eighteenth-century  Germany" ( 3 8 8 ) . He g r a n t s , however, t h a t "here and i n s e v e r a l o t h e r l o c a t i o n s Lenz g i v e s the word an a d d i t i o n a l burden of meaning t h a t he never e x p l i c i t l y d e f i n e s "  (387).  Leidner,  then, uses the f o l l o w i n g Lenz quote: "So griindet s i c h a l l unsere S e l b s t s t a n d i g k e i t a l l unsere E x i s t e n z auf d i e Menge...." t o s u b s t a n t i a t e h i s c l a i m t h a t : Lenz does not c o n c e i v e of i n d i v i d u a l autonomy as v i a b l e a g a i n s t an i n f i n i t e l y open ground of freedom: as h o r r i b l e as i t i s t o be a cog i n a machine, the o p p o s i t e  extreme "the autonomous  b e i n g , dependent on no one" i s c l e a r l y an i m p o s s i b i l i t y . As he s t a t e s above,  "the  foundation  of our autonomy i s the c o l l e c t i v i t y . " (Leidner,  391)  However, i t i s d i f f i c u l t t o a t t r i b u t e the statement, "the foundation  of our autonomy i s the c o l l e c t i v i t y , "  t o Lenz,  s i n c e the complete sentence t h a t L e i d n e r r e f e r s t o i n d i c a t e s .  t h a t Menae can h a r d l y be t r a n s l a t e d as " c o l l e c t i v i t y " h e r e . Lenz w r i t e s : So grilndet s i c h a l l unsere S e l b s t s t a n d i g k e i t a l l unsere E x i s t e n z auf d i e Menge den Umfang d i e Wahrheit u n s r e r G e f u h l e und E r f a h r u n g e n , und auf d i e S t a r k e m i t der w i r s i e a u s g e h a l t e n , das h e i S t ilber s i e gedacht haben oder welches e i n e r l e i uns i h r e r (I,  b e w u S t  g e w o r d e n  ist,  s i n d .  575)  E d i t h Braemer was one o f t h e f i r s t t o comment on Lenz's use o f t h i s term, a r g u i n g i n 1959 t h a t t h e term Standpunkt i s emblematic o f a s o c i a l development i n the e i g h t e e n t h c e n t u r y t h a t saw a " Standpunkt-Einnehmen  gegeniiber den  g e s e l l s c h a f t l i c h e n Fragen" of t h e b o u r g e o i s c l a s s i n a positive light  (64-65).  T i t e l c o n s i d e r s t h e term Standpunkt  nehmen--in t h e sense t h a t Lenz uses i t - - a s "den S t a n d o r t des M a l e r s , v o n dem aus s i c h ihm e i n Gegenstand i n bestimmter Weise d a r b i e t e t . . . , " and as such i t s i g n i f i e s " n i c h t mehr und n i c h t weniger a l s e i n e G a r a n t i e f u r objektgemaSe D a r s t e l l u n g " ( D i s s . 1 5 ) . T i t e l emphasizes, moreover, t h a t t h e term bears no r e l a t i o n s h i p t o t h e L e i b n i z i a n p o i n t de vue. She w r i t e s , "mit dem 'point de vue' der L e i b n i z s c h e n Monade ... .hat d i e V o r s t e l l u n g n i c h t s zu t u n . . . . "  (footnote 337, I , 6 5 3 ) .  Fritz  M a r t i n i i n t e r p r e t s Lenz's use of t h e term Standpunkt nehmen as  141  exercising  selective  creativity  Blunden suggests that technical  (1970). And  Standpunkt  and G e s i c h t s p u n k t a r e  of view,"  i s implicit" 3-18).  I n h i s 1980  "quasi-  adopt the r i g h t  ("J. M.  doctoral dissertation, nehmen i m p l i e s  'standpoint,'  o f h i s o b j e c t and adopt  of view"  ( 1 7 4 ) . The  objective  point  Standpunkt  nehmen?  1  A  its  Pope c l a i m s that,  [my  q u e s t i o n i s : does Lenz  that  i n order "to  italics]  own  i n the point  s u g g e s t an  o f v i e w when he makes u s e o f t h e t e r m  t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g and h i s p e r s o n a l  c o r r e s p o n d e n c e seem t o s u g g e s t t h a t Gesichtspunkt  t h e terms S t a n d p u n k t  and  a r e i n t e r c h a n g e a b l e and synonomous w i t h t a k i n g  position.  In a l e t t e r  to Lavater of 8 A p r i l ,  e x p r e s s e s h i s a p p r e c i a t i o n of L a v a t e r ' s Standpunkt  f o l l o w i n g words,  " D i c h , d e i n e n Standpunkt,  W i r k u n g s k r e i s n a c h Wurden erkenne und  deinen  ausmesse"  ( B r i e f e I, 42).  -> F o r t h e p r e c e d i n g r e v i e w o f t h e s c h o l a r l y c o n t r i b u t i o n s w h i c h examine L e n z ' s u s e o f t h e terms S t a n d p u n k t and G e s i c h t s p u n k t . I am i n d e b t e d t o A l a n Leidner. b  point  t h e p o e t must p u t h i m s e l f  position  Lenz s  R. Lenz and L e i b n i z :  6 5  Lenz's use o f Standpunkt  Lenz  essay,•  terms i n w h i c h t h e w o r l d - v i e w o f t h e L e i b n i z i a n  Monadologie  subjective  i n h i s 1978  a  1775, i n the  In the  "Anmerkungen iibers Theater" Lenz notes that,  since  the a n c i e n t Greeks looked upon the world as wholly determined and b e l i e v e d t h e i r f a t e to be c o n t r o l l e d by the Gods, f e a r of the Gods and not admiration  f o r the hero was  emotion to be aroused i n the s p e c t a t o r s u b j e c t i v i t y or f r e e w i l l was  the primary  (I, 358).  Consequently,  not an o p t i o n f o r e i t h e r a c t o r s  or s p e c t a t o r s of the Greek drama. However, the dramatic characters  that Lenz envisions  f o r the German stage of h i s  are not puppets that are moved mechanically device or f o r c e , but human beings who  by an  day  external  "selbststandig  und  unveranderlich  d i e ganze grosse Maschine s e l b s t drehen, ohne  die Gottheiten  i n den Wolken anders n o t i g zu haben, a l s wenn  s i e w o l l e n zu Zuschauern"  (I, 343).  Lenz grants  that  this  r e q u i r e s Gesichtspunkt. a p o i n t of view, which the  ancient  Greeks c o u l d not p o s s i b l y have had.  aber  He w r i t e s ,  "Ha  f r e i l i c h dazu gehort Gesichtspunkt, B l i c k der G o t t h e i t i n d i e Welt, den  d i e A l t e n n i c h t haben konnten, und wir  Schande n i c h t haben wollen"  (I, 343).  zu unserer  While Lenz excuses the  ancient Greeks f o r not having a point of view, he accuses h i s contemporaries of not t a k i n g a p o s i t i o n . Therefore,  when Lenz s t a t e s that the true poet  n i c h t i n s e i n e r E i n b i l d u n g s k r a f t , wie Standpunkt--und dann m u B (1,337),  one may  e r  so  "verbindet  es ihm g e f a l l t . Er nimmt verbinden"  i n t e r p r e t t h i s to mean that once the poet or  143  dramatist takes an autonomous p o s i t i o n v i s a v i s a c e r t a i n i s s u e , he no longer proceeds a r b i t r a r i l y but commits h i m s e l f to a s p e c i f i c course of a c t i o n . Furthermore, i f one  examines  Lenz's use of the word Standpunkt i n "Uber d i e Natur unsers G e i s t e s , " one may  conclude that the term Standpunkt nehmen .  r e f e r s to t a k i n g a moral p o s i t i o n . For " s i c h i n einen Standpunkt s t e l l e n " i s the term used to d e s c r i b e the p o s i t i o n that Jesus C h r i s t took i n choosing death on the c r o s s . He writes: Seine Gefiihle milssen unaussprechlich gewesen s e i n , er hatte s i c h i n einen Standpunkt  [my  i t a l i c s ] g e s t e l l t das Elend e i n e r ganzen Welt auf s i c h zu konzentrieren ....Er handelte--er veranderte seine Lage.  (I, 57 6)  I t i s worth noting that Lenz d e s c r i b e s C h r i s t ' s d e t e r m i n a t i o n to take upon himself the s i n s of the world i n the f o l l o w i n g manner: "Er handelte--er veranderte seine Lage." These words suggests s t r o n g l y that Lenz sees the death of C h r i s t as brought about by the Saviour's f r e e choice and a c t i o n . Furthermore, he venerates C h r i s t f o r m a i n t a i n i n g h i s S e l b s t a n d i a k e i t i n the face of death,  f o r standing alone i n  the face of a d v e r s i t y : Da seine S e l b s t s t a n d i g k e i t [ s i c ] zu behalten,  im  Tode s e l b s t der nun a l l e s mit Schimpf b e s c h l i e s s t  mit der h e i t e r s t e n Gegenwirkung zu r u f e n : Es i s t v o l l b r a c h t - - u n d so r e t t e i c h meinen G e i s t i n deine Hande.  (I, 577)  A passage from the same essay, quoted  i n part e a r l i e r ,  a t t e s t s t o the f a c t that Lenz uses the term S e l b s t a n d i a k e i f to express the thought that an i n d i v i d u a l ' s autonomy i s dependent on the extent of h i s self-awareness, h i s s u b j e c t i v i t y : So griindet s i c h a l l unsere S e l b s t s t a n d i g k e i t [ s i c ] a l l unsre Existenz auf d i e Menge den Umfang d i e Wahrheit  unsrer Gefiihle und Erfahrungen, und  d i e Starke mit der wir s i e ausgehalten, das  auf heiSt  uber s i e gedacht haben oder welches e i n e r l e i i s t , uns i h r e r (I,  b e w u S t  g e w o r d e n  s i n d .  575)  He argues, furthermore, that there i s a c l o s e r e l a t i o n s h i p between S e l b s t a n d i a k e i t and handeln. and that the former depends on the l a t t e r . Therefore, an i n d i v i d u a l become t r u l y independent  only by taking a c t i o n and  can  thereby  changing h i s circumstances, h i s r e l a t i o n s h i p s , and h i s emotions,  according to h i s own  free w i l l . Lenz a l s o maintains  t h a t , w h i l e t h i n k i n g leaves things as they are, a c t i o n leads the i n d i v i d u a l to change h i s circumstances. He notes: Unsere Unabhangigkeit im  H a n d e l n  z e i g t s i c h aber noch mehr  a l s im Denken, denn beim Denken  145  nehm i c h meine Lage mein V e r h a l t n i s und G e f i i h l e wie s i e s i n d , beim Handeln aber verandere i c h s i e w i e  e s m i r  g e f a l l t .  ( I , 575)  The i m p o r t a n t p l a c e t h a t autonomous and moral a c t i o n o c c u p i e s i n Lenz's thought i s c e n t r a l t o h i s concept o f e t h i c s . I n Versuch uber das e r s t e P r i n c i p i u m der M o r a l , Lenz emphasizes t h a t o n l y when we a c t do we e x p e r i e n c e our e x i s t e n c e , our a b i l i t i e s , our s e l f t o the f u l l e s t : Rousseau i s t f u r den Zustand der Ruhe, oder der k l e i n s t m o g l i c h e n Bewegung. A l l e i n s o l l t e  dieser  Zustand einem Wesen wohl der angemessenste  sein,  welches i n s i c h e i n e n G r u n d t r i e b zu e i n e r immer hdheren Vervollkommung,  zu e i n e r immer w e i t e r n  E n t w i c k e l u n g s e i n e r F a h i g k e i t e n s p u r t ? N e i n ! Der hochste Zustand der Bewegung i s t unserm I c h der angemessenste,  das h e i S t d e r j e n i g e Zustand, Wo  unsere auSern Umstande unsere R e l a t i o n e n und S i t u a t i o n e n so zusammenlaufen,  daS w i r das g r o S t -  m o g l i c h s t e F e l d v o r uns haben, unsere Vollkommenheit zu erh6hen zu b e f o r d e r n und andern empfindbar zu machen, w e i l w i r uns a l s d e n n das g r o S t m o g l i c h e Vergniigen v e r s p r e c h e n konnen,  welches  146  e i g e n t l i c h b e i a l i e n Menschen i n der ganzen Welt i n dem  groSten G e f i l h l u n s e r e r E x i s t e n z , u n s e r e r ( I , 492-93)  F a h i g k e i t e n , unsers S e l b s t b e s t e h t . Lenz emphasizes, furthermore, f i r s t s t e p i n the h i e r a r c h y of  t h a t i t i s man--as the  "freihandelnden,  s e l b s t s t a n d i g e n Geschopfe[n]"--who bears w i t n e s s t o the e x i s t e n c e of an e t e r n a l and autonomous Being and, a t the same time, f e e l s w i t h i n h i m s e l f a s t r o n g d r i v e t o emulate the f r e e a c t i o n s o f t h i s e t e r n a l Being: Wir s i n d , m. H.,  oder w o l l e n wenigstens s e i n , d i e  e r s t e Sprosse auf der  freihandelnden  s e l b s t s t a n d i g e n Geschopfe, und da w i r e i n e Welt h i e da um uns sehen, d i e der Beweis e i n e s u n e n d l i c h , f r e i h a n d e l n d e n Wesens i s t , so i s t der e r s t e T r i e b , den w i r i n uns f u h l e n , d i e Begierde  's ihm  nachzutun; da aber d i e Welt k e i n e Brukken h a t ,  und  w i r schon mit den Dingen, d i e da s i n d , begnugen mussen, f u h l e n w i r wenigstens Zuwachs u n s r e r Existenz....  (I,  333)  I t i s Lenz's c a l l f o r "Zuwachs an E x i s t e n z " - - a demand f o r a heightened  awareness of b e i n g - - t h a t leaps from the pages of  h i s essays. T h i s quest f o r a u t h e n t i c being becomes the i n d i v i d u a l ' s most important t a s k , f o r being takes precedence over e v e r y t h i n g . A c c o r d i n g to Lenz, the r e v e l a t i o n of the  divine will,  i d e n t i c a l with  i n d i v i d u a l with  rules  self (Blei a  that enable  and,  thus,  experience  IV,  171).  Loss  f a t e too  terrible  t h e n a t u r a l law, him  a heightened  awareness o f on  t h e o t h e r hand, i s  d i e s e n R e g e l n i s t Abweichung  die  Aufhebung v o n u n s e r e r  ist  e i n e h a r t e Rede! wer IV,  das  Finale  E x i s t e n z . Weh mag  t h i n k e r s . On  philosophy another an  as  mir!  inflated  ego  171)  one  d e s i r e and the  319).  And  as n o t e d  impotent.  Soldaten. reflective  In  of h i s d i s c i p l e .  of  erotic  I n P e r neue Menoza. t h e Beza,  morally d e f i c i e n t .  p l a c e s a b s t r a c t thought  two  are  And  Lenz p r e s e n t s us w i t h Hauptmann P i r z e l , a e s t h e t e , who  i t is  l a c k s compassion .for  Z i e r a u and M a g i s t e r  i n e f f e c t i v e and  in  a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r s are  whose sermons f o c u s on t h e e v i l  academics, Baccalaureus p o r t r a y e d as  earlier,  In Per H o f m e i s t e r .  t h e v i r t u e s o f c e l i b a c y , who  suffering  302).  a r g u e s t h a t p h i l o s o p h e r s a r e b l i n d e d by  L e n z ' s t h r e e m a j o r p l a y s , a c a d e m i c s and  W e n z e s l a u s , a man  of  o c c a s i o n , he d e s c r i b e s a b s t r a c t  (II,IV.ii,  p o r t r a y e d as m o r a l l y  das  d i e hdren.  "beobachtende U n t a t i g k e i t " ( I I , I I . i i i ,  i n s t a n c e , he  von  derselben  L i k e h i s c o n t e m p o r a r y Hamann, Lenz i s c r i t i c a l abstract  being  to contemplate f o r Lenz:  u n s e r e r wahren E x i s t e n z , und  (Blei  the  to r e a l i z e h i s authentic  of a u t h e n t i c being,  Abweichung von  •  provides  i n Pie  the above  148  e v e r y t h i n g and, Lenz p r e s e n t s  thus  distracted,  becomes an automaton. Hence,  a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r s and p h i l o s o p h e r s  as  dependent  i n d i v i d u a l s whose l a c k of m o r a l autonomy condemns them t o remain impotent  s p e c t a t o r s of  I n summing up,  Lenz r e n o u n c e s t h e p r i m a c y o f  C a r t e s i a n c o a i t o by p o s i t i n g realm.  But  life.  the  free w i l l  the  w i t h i n the s e n s i b l e  Lenz a l s o r e j e c t s m a t e r i a l i s m . T h e r e f o r e ,  o n t o l o g i c a l p o s i t i o n must be  recognized  as one  that  his gives  p r e c e d e n c e t o e x i s t e n c e w h i l e a t t h e same t i m e a c k n o w l e d g i n g the will  freedom o f t h e w i l l . Most i m p o r t a n t l y , w i t h i n the s e n s i b l e sphere,  r a t i o n a l philosophy  o f man  faculties,  nature  existence.  no  but  i t s belief rejects  the  i n the  Kant's  i n t o a f r e e noumenon and.a d e t e r m i n e d  phenomenon. Thus, i n L e n z ' s thought t h e and  the  only challenges  o f the E n l i g h t e n m e n t and  p r i m a c y o f man's i n t e l l i g i b l e division  Lenz not  by p o s i t i n g  longer represent  separable  individual's aspects  free w i l l  o f human  149  CHAPTER V THE PARADOX OF EXISTENCE  In h i s Concluding U n s c i e n t i f i c P o s t s c r i p t , Kierkegaard  writes:  The s u b j e c t i v e t h i n k e r has a form, a form f o r h i s communication w i t h other men, and t h i s form c o n s t i t u t e s h i s s t y l e . I t must be as m a n i f o l d as the o p p o s i t e s he h o l d s i n c o m b i n a t i o n . The systematic  eins,  zwei, d r e i  i s an a b s t r a c t form,  and must t h e r e f o r e f a i l when a p p l i e d t o the concrete.  I n the same degree t h a t t h e  subjective thinker himself i s concrete, w i l l become c o n c r e t e l y d i a l e c t i c a l  h i s form H i s form  must f i r s t and l a s t r e l a t e i t s e l f t o e x i s t e n c e . (319) Kierkegaard  h i m s e l f chose a d i a l e c t i c a l s t y l e t o convey h i s  e x i s t e n t i a l t r u t h s and he more o f t e n than not employs paradox t o commmunicate h i s r e l i g i o u s i n s i g h t s . The s t y l e of Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l essays c o u l d c e r t a i n l y be c a l l e d " c o n c r e t e l y " d i a l e c t i c a l . T h i s i s e s p e c i a l l y t r u e of his  i m p o r t a n t essay, "Anmerkungen ilbers Theater, " which he  150  d e s c r i b e s as "rhapsodienweis"  (I, 3 2 9 ) .  bb  Arguments a r e n o t  p r e s e n t e d i n a l o g i c a l o r d e r but i n an e p i s o d i c f a s h i o n as Lenz proceeds by e l u c i d a t i n g a c e r t a i n p o i n t and then q u i c k l y moving on t o c o n s i d e r another, o f t e n u n r e l a t e d , t o p i c . Lenz's p r o s e s t a n d s i n marked c o n t r a s t t o t h e f o r m a l d i s c o u r s e s f a v o u r e d by Enlightenment w r i t e r s , b u t language f u l f i l l s i t s f u n c t i o n o f communicating h i s n o n - l i n e a r mode o f t h i n k i n g i n a l u c i d manner. W i t h r e g a r d t o t h e drama, Lenz c o n t r a s t s h i s own d r a m a t i c p r a c t i c e w i t h t h a t o f t h e c l a s s i c a l A r i s t o t e l i a n drama i n a s i n g l e p a r a g r a p h e n t i t l e d "Theorie der Dramata." He w r i t e s : Es g i b t z w e i e r l e i A r t Garten, e i n e d i e man beim e r s t e n B l i c k ganz u b e r s i e h t , d i e andere da man nach und nach wie i n d e r Natur von e i n e r Abwechselung zur andern f o r t g e h t . So g i b t es auch zwei Dramata, meine L i e b e n , das e i n e s t e l l t a l l e s a u f e i n m a l und aneinanderhangend v o r und i s t darum l e i c h t e r zu  66 i t i s worth n o t i n g that Hamann d e s c r i b e s h i s " A e s t h e t i c a i n nuce" as "Eine PJiapsodie i n K a b b a l i s t i s c h e r Prose" (Samtliche Werke I I , 195). In the endnotes of the work, Hamann j u s t i f i e s h i s d e s c r i p t i o n by c i t i n g L e i b n i z who wrote:"...man hat d i e Kabbala oder Zeichenkunst n i c h t nur i n den hebraischen Sprachgeheimnissen, sondern auch bey e i n e r jeden Sprache, n i c h t zwar i n gewissen buchstablichen Deuteleyen, sondern im rechten Verstand und Gebrauch der Worte zu suchen" (Samtliche Werke I I , 408) .  151  ubersehen, b e i dem a b k l e t t e r n wie nun  andern muS  man  auf-  und  i n der Natur. Wenn  d i e Rauhigkeit  der Muhe n i c h t lohnt, so i s t das  Drama schlecht, s i n d aber d i e Sachen d i e man und  sieht  hort wohl der Muhe wert seine Phantasei e i n  wenig anzustrengen, dem  D i c h t e r im Gang s e i n e r  v o r g e s t e l l t e n Begebenheiten nachzufolgen, so nennt man  das Drama gut.  (I,  466)  Here, Lenz d i s t i n g u i s h e s between the t r a d i t i o n a l form of the drama, where each part i s a l o g i c a l p r o g r e s s i o n  from the  p a r t that precedes i t , and  dramatic  w r i t i n g . While he grants  the open form of h i s own  that the former i s easy to f o l l o w .and  t h e r e f o r e e a s i e r to i n t e r p r e t , i n the l a t t e r ,  i t becomes the  spectator's  task to use h i s c r e a t i v i t y to i n t e g r a t e scenes,  characters,  p l o t and subplots. One  may  i n t e r p r e t , i n order  f o l l o w i n the poet's footsteps, the reader must be  to  conscious  of h i s v o i c e . I t i s not unusual f o r s c h o l a r s to comment on the presence of paradox and  c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n Lenz's writings.67  For  example, B u t l e r acknowledges that the presence of paradox i n Der  Hofmeister i s "deeply rooted i n the c h a r a c t e r s '  See chapter I. b /  the review of the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e i n  identities  152  and p e r s i s t e n t l y - r e f l e c t e d i n t h e i r words and a c t i o n s , t h a t is,  i n the d i s c r e p a n c y  between what they say and what they do"  (96). The  o r i g i n of the word "paradox" goes back t o the Greek  words p a r a and doxos. While para t r a n s l a t e s  i n t o "beyond,  the  1  etymology of doxos. i n i t s t u r n , can be t r a c e d t o the Greek verb dokein  (to t h i n k )  Dictionary);  (Webster's T h i r d New  thus, one c o u l d h y p o t h e s i z e  International'  t h a t the word  "paradox" suggests an a c t i v i t y or a s t a t e t h a t i s , i n f a c t , unthinkable. in  l i g h t of the above d e f i n i t i o n , I would l i k e to  r e c o n s i d e r the case of P i r z e l i n Die S o l d a t e n . who  Pirzel, a  man  p l a c e s thought above e x i s t e n c e , a t t r i b u t e s a l l human  f r a i l t i e s t o the i n d i v i d u a l ' s r e l u c t a n c e t o engage i n thinking.  I t seems p a r a d o x i c a l indeed t h a t Lenz would choose  P i r z e l - - a c h a r a c t e r whose language deserves t o be d i s m i s s e d empty r h e t o r i c  as  ( H o l l e r e r , 137)--to advocate what i s  e s s e n t i a l l y an e x i s t e n t i a l p o s i t i o n . There i s ' l i t t l e  doubt,  however, t h a t P i r z e l t r i e s to f i n d an answer t o the r h e t o r i c a l question,  "Was  i s t der Mensch?" He engages i n a somewhat  confused monologue which at f i r s t glance b e a r s  little  r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the q u e s t i o n under s c r u t i n y : Denken, denken, was  der Mensch i s t , das i s t j a  meine Rede. (Fasst i h n an d i e Hand) Sehen S i e ,  153  das  i s t Ihre Hand, aber was i s t das, Haut,  Knochen, Erde,  ( k l o p f t ihm auf den Puis) da, da  s t e c k t es, das i s t nur d i e Scheide,  da s t e c k t der  Degen d r e i n , im B l u t , im B l u t - (Sieht s i c h p l o t z l i c h herum, w e i l Larm w i r d ) . (II,II.ii, The  199-200)  f a c t that i t i s P i r z e l , who e a r l i e r had proclaimed  the importance of " t h i n k i n g " as the cure a l l f o r human i l l s , who endorses the primacy of existence i s i r o n i c . F o r P i r z e l ' s c h a r a c t e r embodies the absent-minded mode of l i f e that Lenz a s s o c i a t e s with academics and a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r s 185);  ( B l e i IV,  so absent-minded i s he, i n f a c t , that he admits t o doing  e v e r y t h i n g mechanically  (II,iii.iv,  2 1 7 ) . He i s a man who  c o n s i d e r s existence only i n an o b j e c t i v e manner and as such i t does not r e l a t e i n any meaningful way to himself, the e x i s t i n g s u b j e c t . Therefore,  i t i s ironical,  indeed,  that Lenz would  use the v o i c e of an a b s t r a c t t h i n k e r to make an e x i s t e n t i a l statement, a statement which i s p a r a d o x i c a l s i n c e i t t r i e s t o communicate an e x i s t e n t i a l t r u t h which cannot be  expressed  through language. I f one considers the i m p l i c a t i o n s of P i r z e l ' s speech, i t i s impossible to deny that h i s words do, in  f a c t , acknowledge the primacy of e x i s t e n c e . A f t e r a l l , what  i s man, i f not a creature of f l e s h and blood whose bones w i l l be covered by dust one day?  The  presence o f paradox i n the drama a l s o a t t e s t s t o t h e  d i f f i c u l t y o f communicating i n a meaningful manner w i t h i n t h e l i m i t a t i o n s o f time and p l a c e , a d i f f i c u l t y t h a t i s diagnosed by Hamann and acknowledged by W i t t g e n s t e i n  i n our c e n t u r y .  Both Hamann and W i t t g e n s t e i n express t h e thought t h a t people have t r o u b l e communicating w i t h each o t h e r and t h a t "the speaker h i m s e l f may have t r o u b l e i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g h i s own words due t o t h e v a r i a b l e s o f space and time"  (German, 9 7 ) .  For b o t h w r i t e r s , t h e r e s u l t o f t h i s d i s c o v e r y i s a c h o i c e o f s t y l e t h a t does not l i m i t i t s e l f t o l o g i c a l and c o n s i s t e n t arguments b u t expresses i t s e l f i n seemingly unconnected paradoxical reflections  (German, 142). That t h e s i m i l a r i t y i n  s t y l e between W i t t g e n s t e i n and Hamann i s more than a coincidence  i s r e v e a l e d by German who c l a i m s  "Wittgenstein's  that,  Philosophical Investigations i s heavily  dependent upon K i e r k e g a a r d ' s Stages on L i f e ' s Way, which, i n i t s t u r n , defends a good d e a l of i t s methodology upon t h e w r i t i n g o f Hamann" ( 9 7 ) . I t has a l s o been p u t forward t h a t " K i e r k e g a a r d ' s use o f the category of paradox i n t h e broader  155  sense as the category f o r a l l r e l i g i o u s a s s e r t i o n s can s a f e l y be s a i d t o d e r i v e from Hamann" (Thomas, 104).68  The  dichotomy  between speech and gesture i n L e n z s dramas i s noted by 1  Madland who  comments that  "Lenz  ...uses gesture to c o n t r a d i c t  d i a l o g u e , r e s u l t i n g i n a c o n f l i c t between the g e s t u r a l and n a r r a t i v e systems of communication, r e l i a b i l i t y of language" One  which a g a i n q u e s t i o n s the  ("Language S c e p t i c i s m i n Lenz," 556).  c o u l d venture that the o n t o l o g i c a l i n s e c u r i t y of the  c h a r a c t e r s i s r e f l e c t e d i n the ambiguity of t h e i r speech which p o i n t s to the ambiguity of human existence, which, i n turn, i s m u l t i f a c e t e d and not a c c e s s i b l e through reason alone. I t i s , t h e r e f o r e , no coincidence that the language of Lenz's r a t i o n a l c h a r a c t e r s i s as ambiguous as the speech of t h e i r rational  less  colleagues.  Blunden, who  compares the language of Lenz's dramatic  c h a r a c t e r s w i t h those of the characters i n Shakespeare's Love's Labour's Lost, d e s c r i b e s t h e i r speech as mere r h e t o r i c to  fill  the v o i d , as v e r b a l games that people p l a y :  68 Thomas c i t e s the f o l l o w i n g references to Hamann i n Kierkegaard's w r i t i n g s as proof of Haitian's profound i n f l u e n c e on Kierkegaard: E i t h e r / O r I; Fear and Trembling, motto a f t e r t i t l e page; R e p e t i t i o n . 34f; Stages upon L i f e ' s Wav. 100, 111, 122, 138, 146, 187; Concept of Dread. 85, 145n; Fragments. 42 f; Concluding U n s c i e n t i f i c P o s t s c r i p t . 223f, 258n, 495: J o u r n a l s . 121, 141, 196, 404, 659 ( S u b j e c t i v i t y and Paradox. 56).  156  The use of r h e t o r i c to f i l l  the v o i d l e f t by  impoverished being; the. b e l i e f that v e r b a l games p r o v i d e a true index of f e e l i n g s . . . - - a l l  these  t h i n g s are presented and c r i t i c i z e d i n Love's Labour's Lost, and a l l these t h i n g s a r e r e p e a t e d l y explored, i n a r e a l i s t i c s o c i a l context, i n Lenz's important dramas. Shakespeare's that language  paradox--  i s important f o r the very reason that  many people take i t to be too i m p o r t a n t - - i s one that Lenz makes f u l l y h i s own. Lenz uses the medium of language  (273)  to unmask the comforting  r o u t i n e s o f d a i l y l i f e and i n t r i c a t e s e l f - d e c e p t i o n s that a r e safeguards a g a i n s t the v o i d that threatens the i n d i v i d u a l . And i n h i s essay,  "Verteidigung des Herrn Wieland gegen d i e  Wolken," Lenz a p t l y d e s c r i b e s the t h r e s h o l d of the v o i d that threatens the i n d i v i d u a l . He w r i t e s : Wer kann das namenlose, angstige Gefuhl, f u r welches w i r doch immer nur Zerstreuungen v e r g e b l i c h aufsuchen,  dunkel genug ausmalen, das a l l e  unsere  F i b e r n t f i d l i c h durchschauert, wenn wir, b e i Erschopfung unseres inneren Sinnes, das ganze I r d i s c h e und S t e r b l i c h e unserer Substanz werden....  (I,  446)  inne  157  Only i n extreme s i t u a t i o n s , when the i n d i v i d u a l has no other o p t i o n but to face the s e l f , does r h e t o r i c c o l l a p s e and language r e a l i z e i t s task of standing i n t r u t h v i s a v i s e x i s t e n c e . Yet although n e i t h e r L a u f f e r nor Mariane Wesener reach t h i s stage, and t h e i r quest  f o r a u t h e n t i c being  remains  e l u s i v e t o the end, i t i s nevertheless the e x i s t e n t i a l  task  the i n d i v i d u a l i s asked to f u l f i l l . When language no longer d i s c l o s e s aspects o f the s e l f t o others, the s e l f becomes h e r m e t i c a l l y sealed. From a p s y c h o l o g i c a l p e r s p e c t i v e , such a d e n i a l of the s e l f may have d i s a s t r o u s consequences f o r the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f . R. D. Laing claims t h a t the i n d i v i d u a l who cannot r e v e a l h i s s e l f to others through words, gestures, or a c t s , may t u r n i n d e s p a i r to other modes of s e l f - d i s c l o s u r e i n " t r y i n g to overcome that haunting or  i s o l a t i o n and l o n e l i n e s s of one who f e e l s h i s ' r e a l '  'true' s e l f has never been d i s c l o s e d or confirmed by  others"  ( S e l f and Others.  112). Laing f u r t h e r maintains  that  only: when a man's words, gestures, a c t s , d i s c l o s e h i s r e a l i n t e n t i o n s , one says they are genuine and not c o u n t e r f e i t as c o i n i s genuine and not c o u n t e r f e i t . His frown of d i s a p p r o v a l , h i s word of encouragement, h i s smile of pleasure, are the true and genuine currency of h i m s e l f .  158  ( S e l f and Others.  112)  However, when language and g e s t u r e s do not r e l a t e t o one's e x i s t e n c e , they no l o n g e r communicate a s p e c t s of one's s e l f t o o t h e r s . Nowhere i s t h i s demonstrated  more e f f e c t i v e l y and more  e c o n o m i c a l l y than i n I I , 3 of Die S o l d a t e n i n the few words t h a t express J u n g f e r Z i p f e r s a a t ' s confused r e a c t i o n t o Mariane Wesener's s t r a n g e comportment: "Ich weiss n i c h t wie du b i s t Marianel"  (II,II.iii,  208). Mariane's r e l a t i o n s h i p t o the  w r i t t e n word i s p r o b l e m a t i c as w e l l , s i n c e the words she puts to  paper seem d e v o i d of meaning. I n f a c t , one can gauge the  e x t e n t of her s e l f - a l i e n a t i o n by her manner of speech. As assumes the' r o l e of Desportes'  she  " g o t t l i c h e d e m o i s e l l e , " she  a f f e c t s a s t y l e t h a t mimics the language of the n o b i l i t y . Consequently,  h e r language has no r e l a t i o n s h i p t o her, the  e x i s t i n g ^ s u b j e c t . I n l i g h t of Mariane's p r o g r e s s i v e s e l f a l i e n a t i o n , W a l t e r H i n d e r e r ' s comment "im Sinne der  Lenzschen  A n t h r o p o l o g i c bedeutet t o t a l e Anpassung t o t a l e n E x i s t e n z v e r l u s t , " i s t o the p o i n t (Hinck, Die Deutsche KomSdie. 76). As noted e a r l i e r , Lenz's dramatic c h a r a c t e r s do not have a sense of s e l f , a sense of i d e n t i t y ; i n s h o r t , they l a c k a Standpunkt.69  To compensate f o r t h e i r l a c k of i d e n t i t y ,  69 C o n s u l t chapter IV, f o r a r e e v a l u a t i o n of u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the term Standpunkt.  Lenz's  they  159  c r e a t e new  i d e n t i t i e s f o r themselves by engaging i n r o l e -  p l a y i n g . I n s t e a d of embarking on a quest f o r s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n , they shun the s e l f and assume a f a l s e i d e n t i t y , which more o f t e n than not corresponds t o the image o t h e r p e o p l e have of them. I n D i e Freunde machen den P h i l o s o p h e n . Strephon p u t s i t t h i s way: halten"  "wie j e d e r Mensch g e m  das w i r d , wofur andere i h n  ( I I , V . i , 3 2 2 - 2 3 ) . Strephon's opening speech i n the  f i r s t a c t of Die Freunde machen den P h i l o s o p h e n , " I c h b i n a l i e n a l l e s geworden - und b i n am Ende n i c h t s , " sums up b e s t the  l a c k of Standpunkt t h a t Lenz's c h a r a c t e r s d i s p l a y  2 8 1 ) . I t must be acknowledged,  (II,I.i,  here, t h a t the c h a m e l e o n - l i k e  i d e n t i t y which Lenz r e v e a l s i n h i s l e t t e r s seems t o c o r r e s p o n d to  the p o s t u r i n g of h i s dramatic c h a r a c t e r s . As Blunden  comments, "Lenz f e e l s h i m s e l f to be a d i f f e r e n t p e r s o n i n each epistolary relationship" 13);  ("A Case of E l u s i v e I d e n t i t y , "  112-  "he changed, he adapted, he p o s t u r e d ; and i n h i s  p e r e n n i a l s e l f - i r o n y he took r e f u g e from the need t o e s t a b l i s h his  identity"  (125).  W h i l e t h e r e i s no need t o comment f u r t h e r on the s o c i a l f u n c t i o n of Lenz's d r a m a t i c l a n g u a g e - - i t has been documented i n the c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e 0 - - i t s p s y c h o l o g i c a l f u n c t i o n has 7  0 See c h a p t e r I .  160  r e c e i v e d only, marginal a t t e n t i o n . Blunden i s one c r i t i c s who  p o i n t to Lenz's awareness of the  of  the  psychological  f u n c t i o n of language. For example, he notes that Wenzeslaus i s portrayed  as  "a man  r h e t o r i c a l world" 258).  On  imprisoned w i t h i n the confines of h i s  ("Lenz, Language, and Love's Labour's Lost,"  the whole, one  observation.  own  cannot but agree w i t h Blunden's  However, there are times when, d e s p i t e  c a r e f u l l y constructed  the  r h e t o r i c that i s h i s trade mark,  Wenzeslaus u n w i t t i n g l y d i s c l o s e s aspects of h i s s e l f which d i f f e r markedly from the p i c t u r e of the a s c e t i c and c e l i b a t e v i l l a g e schoolmaster he presents  to the world. For example,  when he s u r p r i s e s L a u f f e r k i s s i n g ' L i s e , he c i t e s part of a passage from V a l e r i u s Maximus which r e l a t e s the s t o r y of a s l a v e who  r e c e i v e d the death penalty because he had k i s s e d h i s  master's daughter. At the end of the cautionary  tale  the  schoolmaster asks L a u f f e r : "Riecht Ihr das? Schmeckt Ihr das?" (II,V.x,  95).  Wenzeslaus's comment i s r e v e a l i n g . By choosing  words which make s p e c i f i c reference  to the senses,  d i s c l o s e s that behind the r h e t o r i c hides a man and blood who  i s no stranger  he  made of  to the temptations of the  That there i s another s i d e to Wenzeslaus's character suggested by the account he gives of h i s cure f o r  flesh flesh.  i s also  suppressing  e r o t i c d e s i r e : "Ich habe geraucht, a.ls i c h kaum von meiner Mutter Brust  entwohnt; d i e Warze mit dem  Pfeifenmundstuck  161  v e r w e c h s e l t . He words r e v e a l  he he!"  (II,Ill.iv,  58).  The  t h a t he has n o t come t o terms w i t h h i s  concupiscence despite concentrated e f f o r t s life.  Again,  i t i s language  U s i n g modern p s y c h o l o g i c a l  to lead a  celibate  which i n d i c a t e s h i s f r a g m e n t a t i o n . t e r m i n o l o g y one  i n Wenzeslaus's case, the subconscious persona  schoolmaster's  could venture  i s s u p p r e s s e d and  t a k e s o v e r b u t t h e shadow b r e a k s  through.  There  that, the are  many i n s t a n c e s - - a s B r u c e Duncan among o t h e r s notes--when language (Diss.  becomes d e t a c h e d  from c h a r a c t e r i n L e n z ' s  185-86). However, t h e l i n g u i s t i c  character  can a l s o d i s c l o s e  unconscious  and  thoughts  mask donned by  and  feelings  that  t h e r e f o r e hidden. Lenz's  language  not  s e r v e s t o shroud but t o l a y bare the psyche Thus i t i s l e f t  a are only  of a c h a r a c t e r .  to the i n g e n u i t y of the reader to u n r a v e l the  t h r e a d t h a t L e n z so c a r e f u l l y of  drama  t i m e and p l a c e . U l t i m a t e l y ,  s p i n s t h r o u g h numerous changes i t i s this ability  the reader i n e x p l o r i n g the psychology p e o p l e * p l a y and,  to  involve  of the language  t h u s , t a k e an a c t i v e p a r t  games  i n the  i n t e r p r e t a t i o n o f t h e drama t h a t d i s t i n g u i s h e s L e n z as  a  modern d r a m a t i s t . One  could venture that  drama r e f l e c t s  of paradox  i n Lenz's  t h e enigma o f human e x i s t e n c e i n t i m e .  highly probable, therefore, "Existential  the presence  reality  that Kierkegaard's i n s i g h t  i s incommunicable,  and  the  It is that,  subjective  162  t h i n k e r f i n d s h i s r e a l i t y i n h i s own e t h i c a l e x i s t e n c e " have been pronounced by Lenz. E q u a l l y , W i t t g e n s t e i n ' s  could  final  words i n the T r a c t a t u s : "Wovon man n i c h t sprechen kann, daruber muS man schweigen"  ( S c h r i f t e n . 83 ), which express h i s  b e l i e f i n the unspeakable mystery of human e x i s t e n c e , would have been f u l l y endorsed by Lenz. What both Kierkegaard and W i t t g e n s t e i n acknowledge i s a mystery which i s not communicable through the logos. Yet, the f a c t that words ^cannot express the enigma of human existence does not imply that l i f e  i s meaningless. On the contrary, the f a i l u r e of  language to express t h i s mystery acknowledges the f a c t that there a r e aspects of our existence that are hidden from us. More r e c e n t l y , t h i s view has been endorsed by S h e r i f f . As p a r t of h i s argument against the v a l i d i t y of d e c o n s t r u c t i o n i s t l i t e r a r y theory, he presents the f o l l o w i n g p o i n t of view: My b e l i e f that human values and choices and language and r e a l i t y are interdependent  i s what  makes me c r i t i c a l of a theory that can only  treat  form. Saussure i n s p i r e d h i s f o l l o w e r s to survey m e t i c u l o u s l y the i s l a n d of l i n g u i s t i c s i g n s ; whatever they looked at,, l i t e r a t u r e , philosophy,  c r i t i c i s m , or  they found only formal s i g n r e l a t i o n s .  Others such as Heidegger, Gadamer, and Wittgenstein,  chose r a t h e r to survey  the boundary  163  of the ocean; they saw l i t e r a t u r e as a m a n i f e s t a t i o n of that about human experience which cannot be put i n t o words. (The Fate of Meaning.  141)  I t goes without saying that l i t e r a t u r e i s not devoid of "meaning," i . e . that l i t e r a t u r e goes beyond  form and s i g n s and  d e a l s w i t h substances. However, i n some q u a r t e r s to r a i s e q u e s t i o n of "meaning" i s no longer f a s h i o n a b l e . In words: " A f t e r Jonathan C u l l e r D e r r i d a , how  can one r a i s e  the  Sheriff's  and Roland Barthes and Jacques  the overwhelming  q u e s t i o n of the  meaning of a t e x t ? " ( x i i ) The presence of paradox which c h a r a c t e r i z e s Lenz's dramatic w r i t i n g s r e f l e c t s the f r a g i l i t y and the mystery of human e x i s t e n c e . I t i s the f u n c t i o n of paradox to confront the unspeakable mystery and to bear witness to the f a c t  that  e x i s t e n t i a l r e a l i t y cannot be communicated adequately through the  logos w i t h i n the l i m i t a t i o n s  of time and space. Thus the  c o n c l u s i o n John S h e r i f f draws from r e a d i n g Heidegger, Gadamer, and W i t t g e n s t e i n i s equally a p p l i c a b l e to Lenz. Yet  i t i s the d i s t i n c t i v e voice of Jakob M i c h a e l Reinhold  Lenz, the poet and dramatist, that speaks to us from the pages of h i s work. In other words, there i s a presence, there i s the v o i c e of the poet who urges the reader to embark on h i s own quest f o r a u t h e n t i c being when he demands "Zuwachs an  Existenz"  from l i t e r a t u r e .  And  s i n c e n e i t h e r poet nor  reader  operate i n a vacuum but b r i n g themselves, the e x i s t i n g i n d i v i d u a l s , to the text, one may reading,  venture to add  that i n  the reader reads h i s s e l f i n t o the t e x t .  T i t e l ' s observation  Therefore,  that "die M o r a l i t a t e i n e r Dichtung i s t  n i c h t e i n durch s i e zu demonstrierendes Lehrsystem, sondern das p e r s d n l i c h e describes  Sein des D i c h t e r s s e l b s t " (I, 669),  the reader's c o n t r i b u t i o n to the l i t e r a r y  also text.  CHAPTER V I CONCLUSION  Lenz s t r u g g l e s t o f i n d an answer t o t h e q u e s t i o n t h a t K i e r k e g a a r d asks h i m s e l f h a l f a c e n t u r y l a t e r :  "But what,  then, i s t h i s s e l f o f mine?" ( E i t h e r / O r . I I , 180). F o r K i e r k e g a a r d , i t i s t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s freedom, and freedom i s the  will  the  c e n t e r o f t h e s e l f and not the i n t e l l e c t as A r i s t o t l e had  held  According to Kierkegaard, i t i s the w i l l that i s a t  ( N i c . E t h i c s . X.7, 3 0 5 ) .  7 1  Lenz i d e n t i f i e s t h e f r e e w i l l as a human p o t e n t i a l w h i c h l i e s dormant u n t i l i t i s acknowledged by t h e i n d i v i d u a l . Only i f t h e i n d i v i d u a l becomes s u b j e c t i v e , does he r e a l i z e h i s p o t e n t i a l f o r freedom and e t h i c a l autonomy.  72  However, i f he  f a i l s t o acknowledge h i s freedom, he remains enmeshed i n t h e  I t i s worth n o t i n g t h a t W i t t g e n s t e i n e x p r e s s e s a s i m i l a r thought when he w r i t e s i n t h e Taaebucher. "Ware der W i l l e n i c h t , so gabe es auch n i c h t jenes Zentrum d e r Welt, das w i r das I c h nennen und das d e r T r a g e r d e r E t h i k i s t " ( S c h r i f t e n . 172). 7 1  A g a i n , autonomy i s not understood as r a t i o n a l autonomy, h e r e , but as t h e autonomy o f t h e e t h i c a l l y e x i s t i n g i n d i v i d u a l , i n t h e sense t h a t K i e r k e g a a r d uses the term. 7 2  r o u t i n e of h i s d a i l y l i f e and the p u r s u i t of aimless diversions. ^ 7  As the "Anmerkungen ubers Theater" show, Lenz i s a " s u b j e c t i v e " t h i n k e r i n the Kierkegaardian sense of the word.  74  For Lenz s u b j e c t i v i t y does not mean being  concerned  e x c l u s i v e l y with one's thoughts or f e e l i n g s , but having one's own  being as one's primary concern. And although Lenz  admits  t h a t nothing i s as d i f f i c u l t as g e t t i n g to know one's s e l f , "da aber n i c h t s so schwer i s t , lernen"  a l s s i c h s e l b s t ganz kennen zu  (I, 489), knowledge of the s e l f remains the key to  a u t h e n t i c being. As the review of l i t e r a t u r e shows, Lenz's drama has been acknowledged as the a l t e r n a t i v e to the c l a s s i c a l drama of Goethe and S c h i l l e r , 5 as the prototype of the p l a y s of 7  Buchner and the N a t u r a l i s t s , and more r e c e n t l y , as the p r e c u r s o r of such modern playwrights as Brecht, Durrenmatt, ^ See the account of the monotonous r o u t i n e of d a i l y l i f e given i n the opening paragraph of Lenz's "Uber Gotz von B e r l i c h i n g e n " : "Wir werden geboren-u n s e r e . E l t e r n geben uns Brot und K l e i d . . . . " (I, 378). 7  i n Kierkegaard's e t h i c s , t o become s u b j e c t i v e i s the i n d i v i d u a l ' s foremost task; i t i s the duty t o "become h i m s e l f . " Thus the " r e a l subject i s the e t h i c a l l y e x i s t i n g subject" (Concluding U n s c i e n t i f i c 7 4  Postscript,  281).  .  ^ See Hans Mayer's essay, A l t e r n a t i v e " ( T i t e l I I , 795). 7  "Lenz oder d i e  and  Ionesco. However, w h i l e the modernity of Lenz's drama i s  u n d i s p u t e d , a word of c a u t i o n seems a p p r o p r i a t e  t o those  who  r e a d i n t o Lenz's drama an o v e r t u r e towards a m a t e r i a l i s t i c i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of l i f e . There i s no doubt t h a t Lenz d i s t a n c e s himself  from the i d e a l i s m of the Englightenment by p o s i t i n g  the w i l l w i t h i n the s e n s i b l e realm. However, i n c l a i m i n g freedom of the w i l l as a p r e r e q u i s i t e f o r a u t h e n t i c  and  e t h i c a l e x i s t e n c e , Lenz a l s o r e f u t e s one of the c e n t r a l canons of m a t e r i a l i s m .  Hence, Lenz's p h i l o s o p h i c a l p o s i t i o n i s t h a t  he r e j e c t s both a b s o l u t e  i d e a l i s m and  materialism.  For the e x i s t e n t i a l i s t , to e x e r t one's f r e e w i l l and  to  commit o n e s e l f to one's s e l f f o r b e t t e r or worse i s the e t h i c a l imperative.  I t i s the freedom to become p r o g r e s s i v e l y  more s u b j e c t i v e , and as a f r e e s u b j e c t the i n d i v i d u a l must r e s i s t every attempt to t r a n s f o r m him i n t o something obj e c t i v e . Notwithstanding  h i s e r s t w h i l e e f f o r t s to e f f e c t a  rapprochement between e x i s t e n t i a l i s m and marxism, S a r t r e presents  e x t e n s i v e arguments against  " M a t e r i a l i s m and R e v o l u t i o n . "  marxism i n h i s essay,  He w r i t e s :  I t seems as though i t s f i r s t s t e p i s t o deny the e x i s t e n c e of God  and transcendent  finality;  the second, to reduce the a c t i o n of mind t o t h a t of m a t t e r ; the t h i r d , t o e l i m i n a t e s u b j e c t i v i t y by  168  r e d u c i n g the w o r l d and man  i n i t , to a system of  o b j e c t s l i n k e d t o g e t h e r by u n i v e r s a l ( E x i s t e n t i a l i s m v e r s u s Marxism.  relationships.  87).  W h i l e s u b j e c t i v i t y , which s t a r t s from the premise t h a t the  i n d i v i d u a l has  a free w i l l ,  i s c e n t r a l to e x i s t e n t i a l  thought, i t i s c l e a r l y renounced by the proponents of m a t e r i a l i s m . As noted e a r l i e r , Lenz h i m s e l f c r i t i c i z e s m a t e r i a l i s t p o s i t i o n and subjective  challenges m a t e r i a l i s t s  s t r i v i n g f o r independent and  the  to deny  the  e t h i c a l existence  w i t h i n human n a t u r e : S o l l t e es n i c h t e i n Wink von  der Natur  menschlichen Seele s e i n , daS  s i e e i n e Substanz d i e  nicht selbststandig  geboren, aber e i n B e s t r e b e n e i n  T r i e b i n i h r s e i s i c h zur  Selbststandigkeit  h i n a u f z u a r b e i t e n , s i c h g l e i c h s a m von Masse der  der  dieser  groSen  i n einander hangenden Schopfung  abzusondern, das  s i c h mit d e r s e l b e n nur  v e r e i n i g t , a l s es mit  soweit  ihrer Selbststandigkeit  sich  v e r t r a g e n kann....Konnen d i e H e l v e t i u s s e und Leute d i e so t i e f i n d i e E i n f l u s s e  der  uns  umgebenden Natur gedrungen s i n d , s i c h s e l b s t G e f i i h l ableugnen das s i e geworden s i n d ?  das  aus  (I,  573)  alle  dieses  ihnen gemacht hat  was  Lenz f u r t h e r claims that moral autonomy expresses i t s e l f i n independent  a c t i o n s which separate the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f  from  the masses of machine-like c r e a t u r e s : So sondert s i e [die Seele] s i c h aus machinenhaftwirkenden  dem  Haufen der Geschopfe  ab und  w i r d s e l b s t Schopfer, mischt s i c h i n d i e Welt  nur  i n so f e r n a l s s i e es zu i h r e r A b s i c h t d i e n l i c h e r a c h t e t , j e groSer i h r e Starke, desto groSer i h r e f r e i w i l l i g e Teilnehmung,  ihre  vernaltnismaSige Einmischung, i h r nachmaliger Schopfungs(I,  und Wirkungskreis.  575)  Thus, when Lenz w r i t e s to Sophie von La Roche i n J u l y "Wer  nur eines jeden Menschen Gesichtspunkt f i n d e n  1775,  kdnnte;  seinen moralischen Thermometer; s e i n Eigenes; s e i n Nachgemachtes, " s e i n Herz, " one may 7b  interpret, morality i s  not conceived of as an o b j e c t i v e concept, but as the s u b j e c t i v e p o i n t of view of the i n d i v i d u a l s e l f . I t f o l l o w s ,  76 "Nachgemachtes" may be i n t e r p r e t e d , here, as 'molded a f t e r something.' Lenz uses the term to express h i s view that the poet follows i n the f o o t s t e p s of the c r e a t o r and thus becomes a c r e a t o r h i m s e l f . A l s o see Blunden's a r t i c l e , "J.M.R. Lenz and L e i b n i z : A Point of View," f o r a d i s c u s s i o n of Lenz's views on "the poet as the c r e a t o r , " a popular concept during the Sturm und Drana.  170  that an i n d i v i d u a l ' s point of view i s e t h i c a l only i f i t i s s u b j e c t i v e . For while the a e s t h e t i c has m u l t i p l e  perspectives,  the e t h i c a l has only one, a s u b j e c t i v e p o i n t of v i e w .  7 7  We  may i n t e r p r e t , therefore, Lenz's understanding of the terms Standpunkt and Gesichtspunkt t r a n s l a t e s i n t o the p o s i t i o n the ethically existing self  takes.  Blunden's assessment that the term "point o f view" i s understood by Lenz as a r e s t r i c t i o n , as something that i s predetermined by an i n d i v i d u a l ' s environment o r s o c i a l conditions, Der  i s therefore debatable, even though L a u f f e r i n  Hofmeister and Mariane i n Die Soldaten  seem to s u b s c r i b e  to Blunden's p o i n t of view (Sorachkunst. 1-15). As noted e a r l i e r , Blunden r i g h t l y p o i n t s out that thoughts expressed i n Lenz's t h e o r e t i c a l w r i t i n g s are i n f l u e n c e d by the r a t i o n a l philosophy  of L e i b n i z ; however, h i s argument that Lenz's terms  Standpunkt and Gesichtspunkt correspond t o the L e i b n i z i a n "point de vue" i s v a l i d only i f one accepts h i s reading of Lenz's concept of the s e l f as analogous to that o f the L e i b n i z i a n monad.  '' Hamann b e l i e v e d that an i n d i v i d u a l ' s present p o i n t of_view i s always the most powerful i n f l u e n c e upon h i s experience; he grants, furthermore, that i n previous works he had made claims that he no longer remembered from h i s present Standpunkt (Briefwechsel 6, 338).  171  I n t h e i r quest f o r a u t h e n t i c b e i n g , Lenz and K i e r k e g a a r d f o l l o w i n Hamann's f o o t s t e p s , of whom i t has been s a i d t h a t h i s "importance  l i e s i n t h e f i e l d of p h i l o s o p h y , " and t h a t  " h i s g r e a t e s t achievement i n t h i s area i s t h e manner i n which he surmounts t h e d i f f i c u l t y posed by t h e s u b j e c t - o b j e c t dualism"  (O'Flaherty, S o c r a t i c M e m o r a b i l i a , 4 5 ) . W h i l e t h e  s t r i k i n g s i m i l a r i t i e s between Hamann's thought and K i e r k e g a a r d ' s p h i l o s o p h y have been acknowledged by t h e c r i t i c a l l i t e r a t u r e , i d e a s common t o the w r i t i n g s o f K i e r k e g a a r d and Lenz have y e t t o be accounted  for.  7 8  Hamann, Lenz, and K i e r k e g a a r d a r e s u b j e c t i v e t h i n k e r s who advocate  t h e quest f o r t h e s e l f as t h e i n d i v i d u a l ' s t a s k s i n e  qua non. I n a d d i t i o n , they share a common a d m i r a t i o n f o r S o c r a t e s and t h e s o c r a t i c . Therefore, i t i s h a r d l y c o i n c i d e n t a l t h a t the q u e s t i o n o f a u t h e n t i c b e i n g i s a c e n t r a l concern f o r a l l t h r e e w r i t e r s . More i m p o r t a n t l y , , a l l  three  t r i e d t o f o l l o w i n t h e f o o t s t e p s of t h e i r i d o l S o c r a t e s and l i v e s u b j e c t i v e l y . F o r i n s t a n c e , i t i s documented t h a t both Hamann and K i e r k e g a a r d made p e r s o n a l s a c r i f i c e s t o l i v e an  A l t h o u g h a f u l l comparison between Lenz's e x i s t e n t i a l thinking--as i t surfaces i n h i s t h e o r e t i c a l and d r a m a t i c w r i t i n g s - - a n d Kierkegaard's p h i l o s o p h y i s beyond t h e scope o f t h i s study, t h e r e i s every i n d i c a t i o n t o suggest t h a t both w r i t e r s a r e g r e a t l y i n d e b t e d t o Hamann. / a  172  a u t h e n t i c and s u b j e c t i v e e x i s t e n c e .  7 9  i  n  Lenz's case, h i s  prose and l e t t e r s bear witness to h i s great admiration f o r Socrates, 80 he,  a n  too, was  d  h i s correspondence  shows, furthermore,  that  prepared to s u f f e r the consequences of f o l l o w i n g  i n the f o o t s t e p s of the Greek p h i l o s o p h e r . He wrote to Herder i n August  1775: Ach so lange ausgeschlosseh, unstet, einsam und u n r u h v o l l ! Den ausgestreckten Armen grauer a l l ' meinen l i e b e n Geschwistern  While  Eltern,  e n t r i s s e n , meinen  e d e l s t e n Freunden e i n Rathsel...Das  h a t t e i c h um  Sokrates v e r d i e n t .  124)  ( B r i e f e I, 64,  f o r David Hume the s e l f c o n s i s t s of l i t t l e more  than a p a s s i v e bundle of sense impressions, L e n z - - l i k e Hamann before and Kierkegaard^! a f t e r h i m - - t r i e d to strengthen the e t h i c a l autonomy of the s e l f i n the face of the world. Lenz's call  f o r "Zuwachs unsrer E x i s t e n z " i s a demand f o r heightened  Hamann opted f o r a common-law marriage d e s p i t e the moral code of h i s times, while Kierkegaard chose not to marry h i s f i a n c e e , Regine Olsen, i n order to f o l l o w i n the f o o t s t e p s of h i s i d o l Socrates and d e d i c a t e h i s l i f e to making things more ' d i f f i c u l t ' by q u e s t i o n i n g commonly h e l d d o c t r i n e s . 7 9  80 Lenz pays homage to Socrates i n h i s essay, "Verteidigung des H e r m W. gegen d i e Wolken" (I, 43738) . In h i s Concluding U n s c i e n t i f i c P o s t s c r i p t . Kierkegaard d e c l a r e s : "The e t h i c a l r e a l i t y of the i n d i v i d u a l i s the only r e a l i t y " (291). 8 1  173  consciousness of what i t means to e x i s t as an autonomous and e t h i c a l s e l f . Hence, the quest f o r the s e l f , advocated  by  Socrates i n the Phaedrus (478) more than two thousand y e a r s ago,  implicit  i n the "That, thou a r t " of the Uoanishads  (101).  the Sacred books of the ancient Vedic r e l i g i o n s , and echoed i n P o l o n i u s ' s advice to L a e r t e s T h i s above a l l - - t o thine own  s e l f be t r u e  And i t must follow, as the n i g h t the day Thou can'st not then be f a l s e to any (Shakespeare, Hamlet I . i i i ,  man.  1013)  becomes the e x i s t e n t i a l imperative f o r Lenz. One may  conclude,  t h e r e f o r e , that Lenz's e t h i c s i s not an e t h i c s of duty or consequences it  but an e t h i c s of s e l f - r e a l i z a t i o n , and as such,  stands d i a m e t r i c a l l y opposed to Kant's  e t h i c a l imperative.  "categorical"  174  Works C o n s u l t e d Adamczewski, Zygmunt. "Questions i n Heidegger's Thought about B e i n g " i n The Q u e s t i o n of Being. 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