Beauty in the Service of Commerce (Die Schönheit im Dienste des Kaufmanns)

Die Fackel

Dear Loos[1],

you are going to give a talk against the idea, which could only exist in Viennese minds, of creating a Viennese fashion, this last word of the stupid Viennese idea of freeing itself from the yoke of Parisian fashion¸ that well-known yoke which has the peculiarity that one has sighed under it for so long, and can now only sigh after it. Continue reading

Two Voices (Zwei Stimmen)

Die Fackel

In the Vatican press:

Benedict[P1] ’s prayer… In the holy name of God, our heavenly Lord and father, for the sake of the blessed blood of Jesus, which was the price of the redemption of mankind, we beseech you who are entrusted by divine providence with the government of the nations at war, finally to declare what this terrible killing, which has now been disgracing Europe for a year, is supposed to achieve. It is the blood of our brothers which is being spilt on land and sea. The most beautiful parts of Europe, this garden of the world, are sown with corpses and ruins… You carry, before God and man, the terrible responsibility for peace and war. Hear our prayer, hear the fatherly voice of the vicar, the eternal and highest judge, to whom you will have to answer for both your public and private deeds. The wealth of riches with which God the Creator has blessed the lands over which you rule, are certainly sufficient to continue the struggle, but at what price? The answer is given by the thousands of young human lives which are extinguished daily on the battlefields…

Also reported:

Benedikt[P2] ’s diktat

„… and the fish, lobsters and crabs of the Adriatic have not had it so good for a long time. In the southern Adriatic they ate almost the entire crew of the Leon Gambetta. The inhabitants of the central Adriatic were nourished by those Italians from the vessel Turbine whom we could no longer save, and in the northern Adriatic the table is always well-laid for the sea creatures. The battle cruiser Amalfi has now joined the Medusa and two torpedo boats. This exemplary specimen of the yield of the sea, which used to comprise only sea-food, has grown considerably, and the Adriatic, whose floor is littered more and more with the broken hulls of Italian ships, and over whose blue tides wafts the smell of  the decay of the fallen liberators of the karst plateau, must be more bitter than ever…”

 [P1]The Pope

 [P2]The editor of the Vienna Neue Presse, who stridently supported the Austrian war effort

Author: Karl Kraus

Published in: Die Fackel Die Fackel KrausWeltgericht1 Kraus Judgement Day I

Serious Times and Old-Fashioned Satire (Der Ernst der Zeit und die Satire der Vorzeit)

Die Fackel

When this huge disaster descended on mankind, and everyone comforted themselves with the thought that the machine has a soul, and that in the end the soul would serve it, I expressed my doubt; I was willing to say nothing, and I had the courage to express my silence, so that people could understand how it was meant. Continue reading