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Carpe Mundum

German Youth Culture of the Weimar Republic


Luke Springman

Carpe Mundum analyzes German Youth culture during the Weimar Republic (1918-1933). Each chapter addresses a distinct topic: sex educational materials for young people, the language of the censorship debates, novels dealing with war, historical narration, magazines, popular science and science fiction, radio, and sports. Together the themes illustrate the influence of nineteenth-century holistic thinking in popular culture in early twentieth-century Germany. Public policies and institutions governing German youth culture during the Weimar Republic, including education and social welfare, evince spiritual underpinnings of Naturphilosophie – a movement which promoted the unity of all things. As cultural modernity in Germany enabled young people greater participation in shaping their culture, elements of a modernity of youth emerged as distinct from that of the adult world and its ideologically laden system of values. The essence of youthful modernity in Germany as evident most clearly in popular magazines, radio, and sports rests primarily on spontaneity, ingenuity and camaraderie.
The Author: Luke Springman is an Associate Professor at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.