By Harry Kessler, Laird Easton

Those interesting, never-before-published early diaries of count number Harry Kessler--patron, museum director, writer, cultural critic, soldier, undercover agent, and diplomat--present a sweeping landscape of the humanities and politics of Belle Époque Europe, a glittering international poised to be replaced irrevocably by means of the nice conflict. Kessler's immersion within the new artwork and literature of Paris, London, and Berlin unfolds within the first a part of the diaries. This subtle global provides option to brilliant descriptions of the bad combating at the japanese and Western fronts of worldwide struggle I, the interesting deepest discussions one of the German political and army elite concerning the growth of the warfare, in addition to Kessler's account of his position as a diplomat with a mystery challenge in Switzerland.

Profoundly sleek and infrequently prescient, Kessler was once an erudite cultural impresario and catalyst who as a cofounder of the avant-garde magazine Pan met and contributed articles approximately the various top artists and writers of the day. In 1903 he grew to become director of the Grand Ducal Museum of Arts and Crafts in Weimar, decided to make it a middle of aesthetic modernism along with his pal the architect Henry van de Velde, whose college of layout could finally develop into the Bauhaus. while a public scandal compelled his resignation in 1906, Kessler grew to become to different tasks, together with taking part with the Austrian author Hugo von Hofmannsthal and the German composer Richard Strauss at the opera Der Rosenkavalier and the ballet The Legend of Joseph, which used to be played in 1914 by way of the Ballets Russes in London and Paris. In 1913 he based the Cranach-Presse in Weimar, probably the most very important deepest presses of the 20 th century.

The diaries current awesome, sharply etched, and infrequently richly comical descriptions of his encounters, conversations, and artistic collaborations with essentially the most celebrated humans of his time: Otto von Bismarck, Paul von Hindenburg, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, Richard Strauss, Igor Stravinsky, Sergei Diaghilev, Vaslav Nijinsky, Isadora Duncan, Ruth St. Denis, Sarah Bernhardt, Friedrich Nietzsche, Rainer Marie Rilke, Paul Verlaine, Gordon Craig, George Bernard Shaw, Harley Granville-Barker, Max Klinger, Arnold Böcklin, Max Beckmann, Aristide Maillol, Auguste Rodin, Edgar Degas, Éduard Vuillard, Claude Monet, Edvard Munch, Ida Rubinstein, Gabriele D'Annunzio, Pierre Bonnard, and Walther Rathenau, between others.

Remarkably insightful, poignant, and cinematic of their scope, Kessler's diaries are a useful list of 1 of the main unstable and seminal moments in smooth Western heritage.

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Additional resources for Journey to the Abyss: The Diaries of Count Harry Kessler, 1880-1918

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Sectional Literatures receive little or no support from the state. For example, the only opportunities for new works in English lie in the annual drama, short story and poetry competitions organised by English language newspapers such as the New Straits Times and the Star, with sponsorship from major multinational corporations. The strong association between the newspaper organisations and the ruling elite implies that the selection process for such competitions may be influenced by the wider political context.

And having lost their hard-earned privileges, they have little else to Conditions of Production • lose from now on ... 18 This combative sensibility is particularly prevalent in the older generation of artists who had lived through the throes of independence and the promise of a culturally democratic Malaysia. By the 1980s and 1990s, Malay political hegemony had consolidated, and the English language was no longer perceived to be a threat to the authorities, as it had in the early years of decolonisation.

44 The notion that language is somehow imbued with an essential supply of race-specific cultural values is problematic, to say the least. Even more troubling is the question of what exactly 'Asian' or 'traditional' values are and how they differ from the undesirable 'Western values'. As Shirley Chew points out with reference to the Chinese community: 'What is wrong with "traditional values" is that they refer us back to a China which no longer exists ... 45 The term 'Asian values' is often glibly used as a reductive and ahistorical category that ignores the internal diversity of the various cultural systems within the Asian region.

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