George, Stefan

   poet and writer; generally judged Ger-many's best lyric poet. Born in the Rhineland village of Buïdesheim, he culti-vated an interest in languages and poetry while attending Gymnasium. His first poetry appeared in 1887 under the pseudonym "Edmond Delorme." Broad trav-els strongly influenced his development. Three semesters at Berlin,* begun in 1889, were followed by a sojourn in Vienna and a stormy friendship with Hugo von Hofmannsthal. (The correspondence between the two poets, which lasted until 1906, is an important piece of fin de siecle documentation.) He helped found the periodical Blatter fur die Kunst in 1892, devoted to the work of the George Circle (a group of like-minded poets and writers), and edited it until 1919.
   George sought to shape and control all that was foreign to him. Whereas Hofmannsthal aimed to grow by assimilating his environment, George disdained such cosmopolitanism and rebuked all that failed to fit his own cast of mind. Critics contend that it was due to such intolerance that he created his own language (he dispensed with punctuation and capitals), his own circle of admir-ers, and his own cult. In 1907 he published Der siebente Ring (The seventh ring); generally judged his best collection of verse before World War I, the book evokes much of the German myth often associated with Goethe, Nietzsche, and the Hohenstaufen Emperors. Although he naively welcomed war as the violent purging required of civilization, he was disillusioned by a reality that had no relationship to the ideals he revered. As with Dante, for whom he formed an affinity (he translated Dante, Baudelaire, and Shakespeare), he considered him-self the judge and censor of his age.
   Did George lay a piece of Nazi Germany's intellectual foundation? He cer-tainly deplored the Republic; in his work Das neue Reich (1928) he espoused a new German culture. The influence of the George-Kreis, with its stress upon elite cohesiveness, reached its height during the Weimar years. It deemed itself an Orden or Bund (roughly, order or federation), vague sociological concepts that contributed to a revival of medieval constructs. Although its esoteric thought was never coherent, the George-Kreis did stress the need to sacrifice for a leader possessed of a lofty mission of cultural and political revival. Yet there is no disagreement regarding George's attitude toward the Nazis: offered a place of honor in Hitler's* Germany—president of a new Academy for Poetry—he con-temptuously moved to Switzerland in August 1933 and died there in December.
   REFERENCES:Benz and Graml, Biographisches Lexikon; Curtius, Essays; Metzger and Metzger, Stefan George; Struve, Elites against Democracy.

A Historical dictionary of Germany's Weimar Republic, 1918-1933. .

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  • George, Stefan — George, Stefan, Lyriker, geb. 12. Juli 1868 in Büdesheim (Rheinhessen), absolvierte das Gymnasium in Darmstadt, studierte von 1888 ab Philologie und Kunstgeschichte an den Universitäten in Paris, Berlin und München, lebte dann längere Zeit auf… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • George, Stefan — born July 12, 1868, Büdesheim, near Bingen, Hesse died Dec. 4, 1933, Minusio, near Locarno, Switz. German poet. George traveled widely, becoming associated with Stéphane Mallarmé and the Symbolist movement in Paris and the Pre Raphaelites in… …   Universalium

  • George, Stefan — ► (1868 1933) Poeta alemán. Combatió el materialismo filosófico y el naturalismo literario; defendió el principio del arte por el arte. Obras: Himnos (1890) y El año del alma (1897). * * * (12 jul. 1868, Büdesheim, cerca de Bingen, Hesse–4 dic.… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Stefan George — Stefan Anton George (July 12, 1868 ndash; December 4, 1933) was a German poet, editor and translator.BiographyGeorge was born in Bingen in Germany. He spent time in Paris, where he was among the writers and artists who attended the Tuesday… …   Wikipedia

  • Stefan George — (1910). Stefan George (Büdesheim, Bingen am Rhein, Hesse, 12 de julio de 1868 – Minusio, Locarno, 4 de diciembre de 1933) fue un poeta y traductor alemán …   Wikipedia Español

  • GEORGE (S.) — GEORGE STEFAN (1868 1933) Le rôle et l’influence de Stefan George restent très discutés en Allemagne. Les uns voient en lui le grand restaurateur du lyrisme, l’esthète au dessus de la mêlée; les autres un poète ésotérique et réactionnaire, se… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Stefan I. — Stefan ist ein männlicher Vorname. Das Wort bedeutete ursprünglich im Altgriechischen Στέφανος „Kranz“; „Krone“ („der Bekränzte“ oder „der Gekrönte“). Bei den späteren Namensträgern ist jedoch fast stets ein Bezug auf einen der Heiligen dieses… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • George — George, David Lloyd George, Henry George, Pierre George, Stefan * * * (as used in expressions) Aberdeen, George Hamilton Gordon, 4 conde de George William Russell Akerlof, George A. Alexander, Harold (Rupert Leofric George) Alexander, 1 conde… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Stefan — Stefan, Josef * * * (as used in expressions) Stefan Batory George, Stefan Lochner, Stefan Wyszynski, Stefan Zweig, Stefan …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • George [3] — George, Stefan, Dichter, geb. 12. Juli 1868 in Bingen, Mitbegründer der »Blätter für die Kunst« als Gegenströmung gegen den Naturalismus; schrieb die Dichtungen »Algabal« (1892), »Das Jahr der Seele« (1897), »Der Teppich des Lebens« (1899), »Tage …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

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