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Der Begriff der »Masse« im ästhetisch-literarischen Kontext

Einige signifikante Positionen

Zurück zum Heft: Archiv für Begriffsgeschichte. Band 45
DOI: 10.28937/9783787336791_7
EUR 16,90

Mainly two fields designate the mostly negative concept of ›mass(es)‹ in the nonphysicalistic sense until the mid-20th-century: cultural pessimism and political morphology on the one hand as well as crowd-psychology in the 20th-century on the other hand. – Gustave Le Bon took up the view of criminologists like Enrico Ferri and Scipio Sighele who stated that an individual within a crowd is apriori likely to become criminal due to the lack of responsibility. While after him Sigmund Freud believed in the regressive ›wildness‹ of being (with)in the masses Wilhelm Reich on the contrary pointed at the difference between fascist masses and liberal masses on the basis of a sexual economy. Social masses have hardly ever been accepted as such until Elias Canetti (who was introduced to Reichs insight by Hermann Broch) discovered the inner richness and divergence of masses, which cannot be gathered under a common moral judgement. Thus the second half of the 20th-century then brought about a reevaluation of mass-movements and the acceptance of their dynamics (Klaus Theweleit). Recently a pessimistic turnabout of the discussion (Peter Sloterdijk) has to be considered.