In: KulturPoetik 2015, Heft 2


Justus Fetscher


Prioritätenwechsel post bellum. Alter und Apokalypse im deutschsprachigen Lied seit 1945




The paper outlines peak periods and major trends of apocalyptic imagination in (Western) Germany since 1945. Taking its cue mainly from popular songs and poems, it argues that the idea that the end of the world is nigh was particularly widespread at three junctures: after WWII when Germans reflected on the Nazi era and began to fear the destruction the Cold War might bring about; around 1980 when ecological and nuclear threats seemed imminent; and around the turn of the millennium as old grim (millenarian) apprehensions were tied in with uncertainties generated by new media technologies. Today, the main fear might stem from non-retrievable continuities epitomized by collective and personal fortgetfulness triggered by increasing life expectancy and data-collecting media.