Mehring, Walter

(1896-1981)
   poet and lyricist; among the Weimar era's most celebrated cabaret* writers. He was born to a Jewish family in Berlin.* His father was an editor for Ulk, the satirical supplement of the Berliner Tageblatt; his mother was an opera singer. As his home was frequented by such artists as Heinrich Zille and Lyonel Feininger,* Mehring chose to defer univer-sity in 1914 and join the Expressionist* movement. He entered bohemian so-ciety, frequented Cafe des Westens, and published his first poetry in Herwarth Walden's* Sturm. While studying art history, he was drafted in December 1916; he was released early when the army despaired at his unreliability. Introduced to George Grosz,* he broke with the Sturm circle in favor of the Berlin Dada* movement (Grosz and Mehring staged a race between a sewing machine and a typewriter). Although he hoped to draw, he was soon writing political chansons for cabaret shows. His work was used by Max Reinhardt's* Schall und Rauch, Rosa Valetti's Grossenwahn, and Trude Hesterberg's Wilde Buhne. He was soon well known in Berlin; his irreverent lyrics—including iconoclastic jabs at mil-itarism, the SPD, and the NSDAP—merged Berlin dialect with jazz rhythm. They were so offensive that proceedings were brought against him in 1920. Much of his witty and often-savage poetry is included in Ketzerbrevier (1921) and Arche Noah SOS (1931).
   Mehring fused pacifism with a proclivity for anarchism. Residing in Paris during 1922-1928, he worked as a correspondent for Die Weltbuhne* in 1922-1924 and for Stefan Grossmann's Tage-Buch* in 1925-1928. Following several short stories and translations, his satirical history of the press, Paris in Brand (Paris on fire) appeared in 1927. In 1928 he returned to Berlin and soon formed an association with Erwin Piscator.* His comedy Der Kaufmann von Berlin (The merchant of Berlin) produced by Piscator in 1929, generated a storm with its allegedly anti-Semitic portrayal of Ostjuden* speculating on Germany's inflation.* One of his best volumes of verse, Und Euch zum Trotz (To you in defi-ance), appeared in 1934.
   Mehring fled Berlin on 27 February 1933. During 1934-1938, living primarily in Vienna, he wrote for the Neue Tage-Buch and satirized Nazi Germany in his 1935 novel Muller; the NSDAP revoked his citizenship the same year. When German troops marched into Austria,* he fled to Paris. With the actress Hertha Pauli (sister of Wolfgang Pauli*) and Odon von Horvath, he lived in a small hotel in the Latin quarter. The outbreak of war brought internment as an alien. Taken to Paris in February 1940, he and Pauli escaped in June, but were recap-tured by French police in Marseilles. With help from Varian Fry of the American Emergency Rescue Committee, he was released to emigrate to the United States in early 1941. He returned to Germany after the war.
   REFERENCES:Deak, Weimar Germany's Left-Wing Intellectuals; Fry, Surrender on De-mand; Hellberg, Walter Mehring; Mehring, Lost Library; NDB, vol. 16; Pauli, Break of Time.

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

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  • MEHRING, WALTER — (1896–1981), German poet and author. The son of the well known journalist Sigmar Mehring (1866–1915), Walter Mehring was born and raised in Berlin. He studied art history in Berlin and Munich. A friend of kurt tucholsky , he joined the Berlin… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Walter Mehring — (* 29. April 1896 in Berlin; † 3. Oktober 1981 in Zürich) war ein deutscher Schriftsteller und einer der bedeutendsten satirischen Autoren der Weimarer Republik. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 2 Werke …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Mehring — ist ein Ortsname: Mehring (Oberbayern), Gemeinde im Landkreis Altötting, Bayern Mehring (Mosel), Gemeinde im Landkreis Trier Saarburg, Rheinland Pfalz Mehring (Hebertsfelden), Ortsteil der Gemeinde Hebertsfelden, Landkreis Rottal Inn, Bayern… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Mehring — Mehring,   1) Franz, Journalist, Historiker und Politiker, * Schlawe in Pommern 27. 2. 1846, ✝ Berlin 28. 1. 1919; war seit 1868 als Journalist zunächst bei demokratischen und liberalen, später sozialdemokratischen Blättern tätig (u. a. 1902 07… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Walter Mehring — (April 29 1896 ndash; October 3 1981) was a German author and one of the most prominent satirical authors in the Weimar Republic. He was banned during the Third Reich, and fled the country. He was captured by the German security police in 1940… …   Wikipedia

  • Mehring — (izg. mȇring) DEFINICIJA 1. Franz (1846 1919), njemački socijaldemokratski političar i povjesničar, jedan od osnivača KP Njemačke 2. Walter (1896 1981), njemački pisac i filmski stvaratelj, jedan od utemeljitelja dadaističke skupine, antinacist,… …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • Mehring — Herkunftsnamen zu den Ortsnamen Mehring (Bayern, Rheinland Pfalz), Mehringen (Niedersachsen, Nordrhein Westfalen, Sachsen Anhalt, Baden Württemberg). Bekannte Namensträger: Franz Mehring, deutscher Schriftsteller und Politiker (19./20.Jh.);… …   Wörterbuch der deutschen familiennamen

  • Franz Mehring — Franz Erdmann Mehring (* 27. Februar 1846 in Schlawe in Pommern; † 28. Januar 1919 in Berlin) war ein deutscher Publizist und Politiker. Er gilt zugleich als einer der führenden marxistischen Historiker …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Howard Mehring — Howard Mehring, 1931 – 1978 was a twentieth century painter born in Washington, D.C.Howard Mehring is associated with the Washington Color School and the artists at Jefferson Place Gallery. Mehring and Robert Gates both received grants from… …   Wikipedia

  • Sigmar Mehring — (* 13. April 1856 in Breslau; † 10. Dezember 1915 in Berlin) war ein deutscher Schriftsteller und Übersetzer. Er heiratete im Jahre 1895 Hedwig Stein (Löwenstein), Opernsängerin des königlichen Landestheaters Prag. Der gemeinsame Sohn und spätere …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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