JOSEPH ROTH HIOB PDF
In works such as Hiob () and Der Leviathan (), Roth uses the journey of Jews from East- ern to Western Europe and to America as a. The Media Myth of America: Joseph Roth's Hiob and Tarabas. Kata Gellen. 7KH 0HGLD 0\WK RI $PHULFD -RVHSK 5RWKV +LRE DQG 7DUDEDV Kata. found in Ritchie Robertson, 'Roth's Hiob and the Traditions of Ghetto Fiction,' in Co-Existent Contradictions: Joseph Roth in Retrospect. Papers of the
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Request PDF on ResearchGate | On Jan 1, , G. Hasan-Rokem and others published Joban transformations of the wandering Jew in Joseph Roth's Hiob. Zeisls Hiob (German: Zeisl's Job) is a completion by Jan Duszyński and Miron Hakenbeck of The opera is based on Joseph Roth's novel, Job – The Story of a Simple Man, itself inspired Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version. März By submitting your contact information, you consent to receive communication from Prezi containing information on Prezi's products. You can.
The precise operations of this new literary register, the media myth of America, will be the subject of this essay. What happens to them, more specifically, when they en- counter typically American that is, technological works of art?
America en- ables Roth to generate narratives of modern Jewish existence by thematizing and enacting the revelatory potential of artistic illusion.
The point for him is not to reproduce some empirically verifiable version of America but to place it in a specific religious and geographical path that his characters traverse.
By focusing on this trajectory, I hope to shift the terms of the debate away from the question of just how anti-American and antimodern Roth really was and toward an understanding of how the media myth of America enabled Roth to imagine new possibilities for Jewish existence in the modern world. In other words, Roth and his characters are only truly at home and at their best in the Austro-Hungarian homeland.
Suf- ficiently intrigued by this discussion, Musil asks Morgenstern to introduce him to Roth. Mendel comes to this decision neither through a practical assessment of circumstances nor through an evaluation of moral duties but through a night of sustained prayer: Auf den Ofenbank schlief ein obdachloser Jude.
So betete er dem Morgen entgegen. Thus the pas- sage in Hiob that Morgenstern and Musil so admire—where song, prayer, and ritualized movement allow Mendel to receive a divine message—is not exclu- sive to the East European homeland.
Such moments can happen in America, albeit under different circumstances and with very different consequences. It is above all a fictive location. Roth nev- er set foot in America, even though substantial sections of numerous works, both fictional and essayistic, either refer to or are set in America. Roth chose to portray Jewish im- migrants in the three European cities in which he spent most of his adult life Vienna, Berlin, and Paris ; additionally, he chose to depict not America, but the act of leaving for America.
Correspondingly, most of this chapter of Juden auf Wanderschaft describes the process of leaving the European homeland: fantasies about freedom and wealth, plots to escape conscription, the acquisition of travel visas, the pro- cess of saving money, the purchase of tickets, and, finally, very briefly, the ac- tual journey and arrival at Ellis Island in New York Harbor.
Though Hiob is set largely in America, Mendel Singer arrives there and immediately wants to re- turn. For all the clarity and confidence of his decision to emigrate, he feels only loss, misery, and disorientation in his new home.
His only remain- ing wish is to return to Galicia for his death and burial. Tarabas was sent to America as punishment for a crime but seizes the first opportunity to flee: upon learning that war has broken out between Germany and Russia, he returns home to fight. There Tarabas establishes a new kind of existential Heimat in war, violent revolution, and tyranical rule. Der Krieg wurde seine Heimat. Von einem Teil der Front zum anderen kam er.
Devastated by war, in the throes of want and poverty, and rife with ethnic and religious tension, Koropta is still more of a Heimat to Tarabas than New York ever was.
These novels confirm the image of America as a place of transit, a des- tination, and a point of departure—in a word, America as anti-Heimat. But in so doing they raise a peculiar question: why is New York a place to and from which sinners travel? And more specifically, what does the cycle of trans- gression and repentance have to do with the trajectory Galicia—New York— Galicia?
Tarabas is also compelled by an external force to leave home: his father orders him to go to New York as punishment for a political crime. The result of these transgressions and forced migrations is total misery—hence the image of America as a prison.
Gellen: The Media Myth of America 9 Clearly it is a place sinners go to be punished, but a closer analysis of these novels reveals that it is also a place where they experience spiritual renewal. Nor is his aim to idealize or villify New York, for that matter. Rather, for Roth New York is a setting that functions as a literary device—the necessary precondition for personal rehabilitation and transfor- mation and the foundation for later scenes of religious-aesthetic delivery in both Hiob and Tarabas.
Convinced that he is completely alone in the world, Mendel tries to sever the last rela- tionship he has—to God—but stops short of burning the holy scriptures. Indeed, his restored health fulfills a decades-old prediction. Menuchim is thus associ- ated with the fulfillment of prophetic statements. Af- ter all, why would Mendel, who has renounced God and abandoned religious practice, even accept an invitation to a Passover seder, if he has not already experienced a spiritual transformation?
The transformative experience Mendel undergoes before his reunion with Menuchim, the experience that in fact enables this reunion, is compa- rable to the scene of prayer that precedes his decision to go to America. At this moment Mendel decides, for the first time since his renunciation of life and God, to celebrate.
Having seen others operate the gramophone in the store where he idles, he puts on a new record: Mendel packte die oberste [Platte] aus, legte sie behutsam auf das Instrument, dachte eine Weile nach, um sich genau an die Hantie- rung zu erinnern, und setzte endlich die Nadel auf.
Dann erklang das Lied. Es war Abend, Mendel stand im Finstern neben dem Grammophon und lauschte. Aber niemals war ein Lied wie dieses hier gewesen. Moreover, Mendel listens to the song sixteen times, fully absorbing each note and word through this repeated exposure.
The scene thus closely resembles the earlier scene of somber and rote acoustic repetition, which was set in the homeland and was explicitly religious in nature, even if for Mendel the present experience seems to be a secular musical encounter with a merely symbolic connection to his personal life. This moment—a ritualized aesthetic experience of listening to the gramophone record, combined with a personal and religious memory of singing to his son—represents the turning point at which Mendel returns to work, family, friends, and God.
Rather than knowledge or awareness of divine intervention, it is an aesthetic experience that reawak- ens Mendel to the presence of God in the world. One of them, a man who calls himself Alexej Kossak, tells Frisch that he comes from the same village as Mendel Singer and would like to meet him. Er betrachtete die Foto- grafie. Sie blickten Mendel Singer geradeaus an, er konnte sich nicht mehr von ihnen befreien.
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Ihre Klug- heit sah er leuchten. Alt waren sie und jung zugleich. Vor Jahren, als er anfing, die Bibel zu lernen, waren es die Augen der Propheten. Alles wissen sie, nichts verraten sie, das Licht ist in ihnen. The visual impact of the photograph derives from its power to produce illusion—a stat- ic, two-dimensional image seems to come alive—but here illusion does not imply falseness or deception. The image restores him to an earlier stage of faith, one marked by the excitement, innocence, and Gellen: The Media Myth of America 13 openness of youthful biblical study, and it returns him to his former belief in messianic knowledge, light, and delivery.
While the novel does employ the language and images of miracles, prophecy, and messianism, it does not present these as the basis of religious transformation. America is not or not only the technological hell for Roth that critics claim it is. For this, I turn to Tarabas. During what will turn out to be his last evening in town, Tarabas goes to the bar where his girlfriend Katharina works.
In a perverse and superstitious at- tempt to be the master of a fate he deems inescapable, Tarabas decides to ap- proach not the first but the third policeman he sees. However, before this can happen, he hears the voice of a newsboy announcing the outbreak of war in Europe. Back home Tarabas engages in acts of brutal warfare, terrorizes the Galician village he governs, and sanctions a deadly pogrom.
The more he loses—family, lover, homeland, the war—the more he seems to want to destroy the world around him. It is only after he commits an arbitrary act of violence against a man of God that he decides to atone for his sins: Tarabas tears out the beard of a red-headed Jew, the synagogue assistant Schemarjah, whom he sees on the street one Sunday morning.
This wild and vicious act is motivated by a dou- ble supersitition of red-headed Jews and of encountering a Jew on a Sunday, both of which Tarabas, in his ignorance, regards as bad omens. Tarabas immediately sets out on a life of wandering, day labor, and self-deprivation, giving away all but his most basic necessities and atoning his way into nonexistence. He has had many unsuspecting, innocent, and helpless victims up to this point, but this is the first Jew—a pious, modest Ostjude—against whom he trans- gresses.
Unbeknownst to Tarabas and the fortune teller who correctly pre- dicts his destiny, it is a Jewish god who rules over his fate. This makes Tarabas a distinctly Jewish novel; indeed, it draws the worlds of Tarabas and Hiob into the same orbit.
The cycle of religious experience they both complete in these narratives of prophecy, punishment, and repen- Gellen: The Media Myth of America 15 tance share the trajectory Galicia—New York—Galicia. First he goes to the movies. The first film he watches tells the story of an innocent man forced into a life of brutal crime in order to protect a helpless woman; condemned to death, he requests, as his last wish, to write the name of his lover, Evelyn, in his own blood on the wall of his prison cell.
Tarabas, always on the lookout for signs and omens, immediately sees a connection between himself and this selfless hero as well as one between Katharina and Evelyn as demanding females who cause the demise of their devoted men. Then the next film begins: it recounts the biblical story of Samson and Delilah, to which Tarabas, again, intimately relates. An even more striking sign of the persistence of transgressive desire is the name under which Menuchim arrives in America, Alexis Kossak.
The surname emphasizes the connection between Menuchim and his dead mother, whose maiden name was "Kossak," and his mad sister, whose main character trait is her desire for Cossacks. His comportment in New York, where he participates in the Passover but speaks little Yiddish and drives on the Sabbath, makes it also difficult to place him clearly in the traditional or the assimilated camp.
However, we do know that "Alexis Kossak" is a pen name and as such expresses Menuchim's self-chosen artistic identity. Roth highlights this act of identification when he has Menuchim, upon his arrival in America, four times in a row referred to as "dieser Kossak" Werke 5: The shift from Miriam's insatiable desire for Cos- sacks to Menuchim's symbolic identification with them preserves, in the midst of redemption from suffering, the very desire held respon- sible for suffering to begin with.
Roth thus mitigates the destructiveness of assimilatory desire in Hiob by juxtaposing two different narratives of assimilation that hark back to biblical models and by invoking the redemptive power of the Job story in the novel's abrupt, miraculous ending. In Der Leviathan, he achieves a similar effect by reinterpreting transgres- sive erotic desire as a form of messianic hope. In this novella, women are objects rather than subjects of such a desire.
The corals, the pretty girls who tie them into necklaces, and the prostitutes in the tavern constitute a series of erotic substitutes that illustrates Piczenik's social and moral decline.
The representation of his drift from tradi- tional Judaism as an unleashing of erotic energy sexualizes a social process while casting the feminine in the stereotypical role of the seductive other. However, like Hiob, Der Leviathan reintegrates assimilatory desire by situating it in a Jewish tradition that it at the same time boldly reinterprets. As Shaked notes, the ocean that is the ultimate object of Piczenik's longing and cause of his death is something quite un-Jewish "Kulturangst" This observation is supported by Roth's Juden auf Wanderschaft, where the ocean is cast as the main obstacle on the way to America, inspiring fear of disorientation and doubts about the possibility of the resurrection of the dead and their gathering in the Promised Land after the coming of the Messiah Werke 2: In Der Le- viathan, the ocean inspires idolatrous behavior in Piczenik, including his fascination with the stamps on letters from his suppliers and his receptivity to seductive images in the tavern.
However, while Piczenik's longing for the ocean is an expression of his inner distance from Jewish life, it is also a form of messianic hope. Piczenik feels home- sick for the ocean, which he has never seen but still intuitively knows as the "Heimat der Korallen" Werke 6: The death Piczenik suffers in the ocean turns out to be a state of messianic expectation rather than an absolute end: Roth's tendency to blame the destruction of tradition on Jewish women is certainly indicative of such an effort to "remasculate" Judaism.
As I have shown, in Roth both Jewish men and Jewish women are propelled toward the non- Jewish world by the force of a quasi-erotic desire, but it is in Jewish women that this desire becomes especially uncontrollable and de- structive. However, I have also shown that Roth's peculiar eroticiza- tion of a social process is more complex and interesting than his reliance on gender stereotypes suggests.
Assimilatory desire emerges in his work as a drive in the psychoanalytic sense, that is, not a blind natural force but a form of energy that attaches itself to symbolic forms and by which the individual responds to social demands. This idea has its analog in a literary style that infuses archetypal biblical configurations with modernist indeterminacy, which makes it diffi- cult to gauge the degree of agency possessed by his literary charac- ters.
In thus complicating the link between femininity and assimilatory desire, Roth offers evidence for the theses of Daniel Boyarin, who has taken the projection theory into a different direction.
In Unhe- roic Conduct, Boyarin argues that in a culture that stereotyped Jews as effeminate, male Jews who wished to assimilate needed to pass as men before they could pass as Germans. For Boyarin, the result- ing social pressure explains the masculinist and homophobic strains in the thought of such influential figures as Freud and Herzl.
Boyarin identifies the Eastern European Jewish ideal of the Mentsh and his characteristic of Edelkayt, or nobility, as one of the manifestations of this ideal. Garloff Both Roth and Boyarin valorize the diasporic existence that is associated with femininity: Boyarin openly, by arguing that tradi- tional Jewish diaspora culture furnishes alternatives to Western masculinism, including "effeminate" resistance strategies such as trickery and evasion; Roth ambivalently, by giving his narratives about the destructive effects of assimilatory desire and the Jewish Wandertrieb an unexpected redemptive twist.
In both writers, the critique of assimilation gives way to a concept of Jewish diaspora culture as always-already entwined with the majority culture. If Boyarin emphasizes the culturally productive tension of separation and entanglement in the diaspora, Roth identifies cosmopolitanism as a traditional Jewish value and a healthy antidote against rising nationalism in the world.
He thus concludes an article from titled "Der Segen des ewigen Juden: Stylistically, he accomplishes this shift through a modernist transformation of the Joseph legend, which Boyarin, too, cites as a prime example of Jewish empowerment in the diaspora.
Roth's allusions to the Joseph legend in Hiob do not anchor the novel in a stable frame of reference but rather reduce the biblical myth to a few evocative signals interspersed in the story of Menuchim's rise to a star of the culture industry.
This descriptive reduction allows Roth to avoid a clear verdict on assimilation and to hover in between tradition and modernity. The figure of the traditional Eastern Euro- pean Jew who is always-already attracted to non-Jewish culture is his contribution to the modernist archive of Jewish identities.
I would like to thank the respective audi- ences for their stimulating discussion. On this gender dynamic of assimilation, see Hyman 10— Hyman emphasizes that the relocation of religion in the domestic sphere during the nineteenth century reversed this gender dynamic. For further qualifications of the notion of Jewish women as primary agents of assimilation, see Lowenstein esp.
On Roth's critique of modernity, which shares positions with both conservative Kulturkritik and the Frankfurt School, see Frey and Eggers. See also Roth's journalistic writings from the early Weimar Republic in Werke, volume 1: On the representation of women in Roth's work, see Chambers. For an account of the history of the image of the feminized Jew, see Robertson's "Historicizing Weininger. See Berkowitz 99—, Gilman 60—, and Boyarin — In her recent study on modern German Jewish writers, Fuchs implicitly puts Roth's work into a series of such projections.
On the aim of mimetic desire to become the other, see also Girard's Deceit, Desire and the Novel esp. Fuchs similarly concludes "that the abjection articu- lated in this novel is not caused by the experience of migration but by the erosion of the symbolic order from within" I prefer the term of mimetic desire to abjection because it better accounts for the undecidability between psychical desires and social forces in Hiob.
Magris argues that Hiob is a nostal- gic book that can hail the world of Jewish tradition only because it abstracts and reduces it to a set of symbols. Robertson sees the use of abstraction in the text as a vehicle of modernization: Hiob mobi- lizes and changes narrative elements of a traditional German Jewish genre, the nostalgic strain of ghetto fiction.
Like earlier ghetto fic- tion, it incorporates positive images of Jewish domesticity and reli- gious ritual to contend against the negative stereotypes of Jews in German culture, yet it does so in a modernist manner, relying on theatrical means to create a reality effect.
Garloff In a couple of instances in this essay, I have modified the standard English translation. On Roth's critique of film and photography as the quintessential me- dia of modernity and vehicles of alienation, see Frey 68— For Fuchs, this scene epitomizes the novel's attempt to appropriate and control the female, abject other through "sentimental reverie" I argue that it is mimetic desire rather than the female body that is at stake here, and that the means of control is objectification rather than abjection.
Whereas abjection draws a boundary between the pure and the impure, objectification reestablishes the boundary between subject and object. The fact that a typical Jewish surname is here identical with that of the Ukrainian soldiers captures one of the paradoxes of Jewish life in Europe: I therefore disagree with Shaked that the image of America in Der Leviathan differs from that in Hiob in that it emblematizes suicide rather than the chance for a new beginning "Kulturangst" Rather, America figures in both texts as the destination of a journey that brings to the fore a redemptive potential of otherwise self—de- structive assimilatory desire.
On Roth's identification of the image of wandering Jew and the myth of the supranational Habsburg empire, see Traverso esp. On Roth's view of Zionism as an assimilation to modern Western ideas, see his Juden auf Wanderschaft in Werke, volume 1 esp. Works Cited Berkowitz, Michael.
Chapel Hill: U of North Carolina P, Borch-Jacobsen, Mikkel. The Emotional Tie: Psychoanalysis, Mimesis, and Affect. Douglas Brick et al. Stanford UP, The Freudian Subject. Catherine Porter.
PDF Hiob Joseph Roth German Edition Read Online
Boyarin, Daniel. Unheroic Conduct: U of California P, Joseph Roth in Retrospect. Helen Chambers. Riverside, CA: Ariadne, Eggers, Frank Joachim. Frankfurt am Main, Ger.: Lang, Frey, Reiner. Kein Weg ins Freie. Fuchs, Anne. A Space of Anxiety: Rodopi, Gilman, Sander L. The Jew's Body. New York: Routledge, Deceit, Desire and the Novel: Self and Other in Literary Structure. Yvonne Freccero. Johns Hopkins UP, Violence and the Sacred. Patrick Gregory. An Etymological Dictio- nary.
Heinrich W. Guggenheimer and Eva H. Hoboken, NJ: Ktav Pub. Hiob Der Mythos des Skeptikers. Gunter E. Hyman, Paula E. Gender and Assimilation in Modern Jewish History: The Roles and Representation of Women.
U of Washington P, Kaplan, Marion. A Gender Analy- sis. Krobb, Florian.
Jahrhundert bis zum Ersten Weltkrieg. Niemeyer, All present seemed to suckle at Deborah. There were so many others that were nice, malleable, and well trained: happy, balanced Greeks, adventurous Phoenicians, artful Egyptians, Assyrians with strange imaginations, northern tribes with beautiful, blond-haired, as it were, ethical primitiveness and refreshing forest smells.
But none of the above! The weakest and far from loveliest of peoples was given the most dreadful curse and most dreadful blessing, the hardest law and the most difficult mission: to sow love on earth, and to reap hatred. Ross Benjamin Roth , 18 , it may be noted, nonetheless offers a more accurate translation.
Miracles in this narrative can only be foretold in the traditional and Jewish domain of Eastern Europe, but actually occur on the modern and religiously syncretic Lower East Side, which for Roth more than his invented characters functions as a realm of fantasy and illusion. These contrasts, however, are by no means static. In this respect, it is their ability to traverse the geographical and metaphysical distance between the shtetl and Manhattan that is significant. And in order to get these one had to go to Dubno.
New York seems artificial there, as if filmed in a studio. Although one might wonder whether Roth could have set a similarly fanciful narrative in Berlin, it is worth considering how seldom he set fiction of any kind in Berlin, particularly in the latter decade of his career.
More than a faith in a specific metaphysi- cal system or religious credo, therefore, the novel commits itself to a humanistic faith in the connectivity among places, cultures, and people, in which the margin- al figure of the East European shtetl Jew circulates, and is circulated, at the heart of modern civilization.
Ultimately Hiob is no more a religious or an erotic tale than it is a Jewish or Christian one; it is all of these, but also none of them, completely. A whole company sang that song to her! A hundred men sang to her! In an hour she would meet one of them, or maybe two.
Some- times, even, three came. The soldiers appeal to her less than the song they sing in her presence, and the sex she engages with them seems correspondingly anonymous, compulsive, and joyless. She has gone mad. This wordplay offers the only evidence that Mirjam articulates her breakdown in Yiddish rather than English. It is all the more meaningful that at the moment when Mirjam appears to be on the verge of stating an incestuous desire toward her father — in their familial language — the nurse covers her mouth and Mirjam falls silent.
Unlike these Yiddish authors, however, both the Russian shtetl and Manhattan for him are not represented spaces, but imagined ones. In her right hand she holds a torch. And the best of all is that this torch burns in the night, and yet is never burnt up.
Those must be the American Cossacks, thought Mendel […]. What was life, with us, is death here. The son, who at home was called Schemarjah, here was called Sam. You are buried in America. Deborah, and I, too, will be buried in America. Roth resists American nationalism not because it is American but because it is nationalistic, and the identification of Jews with a specific territory — distinct, however obscurely, from their identification with the Slavic landscape in the sense that nature is distinct from nationhood — whether in Germany, America, or especially Palestine, poses the greatest threat to what Roth identifies as Jewish values and the Jewish contribution to humanity.
Had my father died in America, I could be perfectly at home in America. My son will be a full-blooded American, because I shall be buried there.
In this sense America is both a space of fantastic vitality and ultimate doom Rosenfeld , To cite just one example of this ideology, in which he equates, with a degree of historical justification, his own Authenticated a. Soon he no longer knew whether he was hearing, seeing, smelling. He went on smiling and nodding. America pressed down on him; America broke him; America shattered him.
After a few minutes he became unconscious. Fittingly, this division corresponds to the mythic rhythms of the novel, not the chronological pacing of the events it narrates. For the latter would change Judaism root and branch. His Jewish nation would be along the lines of a European state. In this passage, he suggests by a rhetorical bait-and-switch that his own attraction to Christianity remains compatible with Hasidic piety, or at least more so than Zionist nationalism!
I lay down on the floor. I crept to the door. Suddenly someone seemed to lift me up and push me. I was outside. People were standing on the other side of the street. He leaves definitively the observation of reality in order to embark on an atemporal tale anchored in the world of traditional Jewish life in Eastern Europe.
Though an immigrant, Mendel is depicted as an exile, and the redemption that Roth provides for him serves not to assimilate him to his new environment or its temporality, but to valorize his homelessness through a discourse of myth.
Both Mendel and his children are unable to live in the present. Once the Singers arrive in New York, however, they enter into a verifiable and urgently historical temporality. As Roth writes: Before him lay the vast ocean. Once again he must cross it. The whole great sea waited for Mendel. All of Zuchnow and its surroundings waited for him: the barracks, the fir forest, the frogs in the swamp, and the crickets in the fields.In my opinion it lifts an otherwise ordinary moralistic tale of despair and loss of faith in religion or life to a much higher level.
Joseph Roth, journalist and novelist, was born and grew up in Brody, a small town near Lemberg in East Galicia, part of the easternmost reaches of what was then the Austro-Hungarian empire and is now Ukraine.
I spent hours comparing it to America by Kafka. My central claim goes against every reading of Hiob that I have encountered, all of which stress that for Roth America is a miserable and godless place that leaves no hope for religious renewal. Roth enters into the heart and mind of his central character, describing his daily life, his despair and his decision to rebel against God.