Gerhart Hauptmann

Gerhart Johann Robert Hauptmann (15 November 1862 – 6 June 1946) was a German dramatist and novelist. He is counted among the most important promoters of literary naturalism, though he integrated other styles into his work as well. He received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1912.Hauptmann first encountered the various representatives of the naturalist movement through the avant-garde society "Durch" in 1885, which was an important influence. The society hearkened back to historical examples from the Sturm und Drang movement, especially the circle centered on the Hart Brothers up until the Vormärz period before the revolutions of 1848. At their meetings, aesthetic questions about idealism, Realism and the naturalist movement were discussed. Hauptmann gave a lecture about the theretofore largely forgotten poet and dramatist Georg Büchner. With that, he also established his naturalistic orientation.Hauptmann began producing naturalistic works in Zurich. From there, he sent the manuscript of "Bahnwärter Thiel," his first naturalistic work, to Munich to be read by the critic Michael Georg Conrad. Hauptmann's 1889 play "Before Sunrise" caused one of the largest scandals in German theater history. The bourgeois audience was shocked by the frank depictions of alcoholism and sexuality. According to Franz-Josef Payrhuber, "Before Sunrise" was an epoch-making work, but it is not the representative example of naturalistic drama, that label would go to Die Familie Selicke by Arno Holz and Johannes Schlaf. Read More on Wikipedia


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