The Art Scab George Grosz, Berlin Dada, and the Spartacus League

5681 Words Jun 3rd, 2013 23 Pages
The Art Scab
George Grosz, Berlin Dada, and the Spartacus League

I. Introduction
A. Topic During post World War I Germany, the Weimar Republic was established as bourgeois capitalistic democracy. However, the period was plagued with income inequality, corruption, and authoritarianism. At the start of this period, the German Revolution spread around the country. In Berlin, the Spartacus League, founded as a communist alternative to the Socialist Democrats of Germany party, was pushing for a workers revolution to put in place a Communist system. The Spartacus League’s radical message, as spoken through their leader Rosa Luxemburg, would inspire the art of a young Dada artist George Grosz. A former soldier in WWI, he was an anti-war
…show more content…
Background and World War I Towards the end of World War I revolution broke out in Germany from 1918 to 1919. During this German Revolution the Berlin based Spartacus League was a left-wing communist group that was active up until the Spartacist Uprising of January 1919. After the government put down this uprising, the leaders Rosa Luxemburg and Karl Liebknecht were killed by the Social Democratic Party lead government. Luxemburg’s ideas on spontaneous revolution was an inspiration to one of the artists arrested at the uprising. This artist, George Grosz, resided in a society that had been devastated by the industrial advancements of World War I and the free market advancements of capitalism in the early 20th century. Grosz himself believed that: When war broke out, it became clear to me that the vast majority of the people had no will of their own...I could see that the individual freedom that I had enjoyed until then was being threatened...I viewed this was a monstrous and denatured manifestation of the ugly struggle for ownership....At this time I began to draw, not only because it gave pleasure but also in the knowledge that other people shared my way of thinking.[1] Grosz wanted to use his art to propagandize for the cause of liberating the underclass of Germany that he felt was being used by the political rulers and the upper-class. This propaganda followed in the intellectual frames of dialectical materialism as dictated by the Spartacus League. The basic idea

Related Documents