In: KulturPoetik 2004, Heft 2


Dietmar Voss


Nehmen wir den Vater mit? Randglossen zum Vaterschaftsprozeß der Moderne




Perceiving the dramatic disappearance of the father principle in all fields of modern society, this essay commemorates the cultural functions of the father’s part and the dialectic of his work. It interprets the social decline of the father principle as an inevitable result of capitalist global modernization and its dynamics of transgression. The contradictory consequences of that process for the ›lost‹ sons, who will be eternal and structural sons in a near transhistorical time, are reconstructed here by interpreting – using philosophical and psychoanalytical methods – literary works by Shakespeare (Hamlet), Hofmannsthal, Kafka, Bronnen, Hemingway and Heiner Müller. It will become evident that the collapse of the father-institution was an important stimulus for the creative explosion in modernist poetry and art.