In: KulturPoetik 2014, Heft 2


Dietmar Voss


Schweijk und das schwarze Lachen des Maschinenhelden. Ein Antiheld zwischen Hermes, Harlekin und Rambo




The anti-hero Schwejk, created by Jaroslav Hasek, appears as the spirit of the people in narrative form and as Dionysian in nature, throwing the military power of the Habsburg monarchy into confusion and impotence - just by his ‚love’ for it. But beneath this cover can be recognized mercilessness, sarcasm, hardness, defiance of death and internal emptiness. In the middle of war waged on an industrial scale, Schwejk proves to be essentialy controlled from within the kind (or species) of machine-hero born of large-scale industrial war. The inorganic outlines of this machine-hero are hidden under the soft, childlike appearance of Schwejk. Under his comedy sounds as a keynote the black laughter of the machine hero.