New anthology of contemporary Austrian folk plays
This second volume of Austrian Folk Plays gives further evidence of the popularity of this form among contemporary writers. In the late nineteenth century the folk play had fallen into disrepute as trivial literature, and not until the 1920s did it begin to be restored to prominence in the writings of Veza Canetti and Odon von Horvath. After World War II, writers rediscovered the form and believed that it was ideally suited to treat contemporary social problems. One can see this usage in each of the plays presented here: Heinz R. Unger's The Bell Tolls at Twelve shows an act of resistance against the Nazis by villagers, who refuse to allow their church bell to be removed and made into armaments; Thomas Baum's Cold Hands deals with the problem of incest and demonstrates the tragic consequences for the victim; Friedrich Ch.
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FRIEDRICH CH ZAUNER
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