Thursday, March 6, 2008

There is a sense in which I am tempted to group the truly critical voices of the Viennese arts (such as Kraus, Shoenberg, and Loos) with the fictional characters of Ulrich and Clarisse. Unlike Arnheim or Diotima, Ulrich and Clarisse possess a clarity of thought and perception that allows see beneath the superficiality of their peers and their respective endevours. The previously mentioned artists, each in their respective fields, sought for a purity of language and ideas that
reflects the thoughtful skepticism that both Musil's heroes display. It is my belief that Ulrich and Clarisse are subconsciously capable of sensing the impending end of their era and empire. How, if possible, can the critical nature of Vienna's artistic purists be seen as a warning sign for the end of an era? How are the arts reflected to the social and political decay of a culture? Should such questions be asked?

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