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Scholz, Dieter David

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Deutschlandfunk - Germany | 24/05/2013

Richard Wagner a German misunderstanding

2013 marks the 200th anniversary of Richard Wagner's birth. But the current Wagner hype in Germany doesn't hide the fact that both admirers and critics of the composer remain trapped in their views, the public broadcaster Deutschlandfunk comments on its website: "If this so-called Wagner year has brought anything positive, it's at least the insight that Wagner is and remains a grand seducer, a hypnotist. ... Huge amounts of new literature has been published even though more has already been written about Wagner than about Jesus, Freud, Marx and Napoleon. Yet all the questions surrounding Wagner have basically long since been answered, including the awkward ones about his fatal impact on the 20th century, his anti-Semitism or Hitler's exploitation of Wagner. ... But one of the seemingly hard and fast constants surrounding perceptions of Wagner is the fact that both his fans and his despisers doggedly ignore everything brought to light by Wagner researchers, and cling to their prejudices regarding the composer. Richard Wagner is still a 'German misunderstanding' to this day."

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