Racial thinking facilitated the rise of political anti-Semitism, itself so closely linked to the strains of modernization. Feelings of conservative anger at the disruptive consequences of economic change could find release in the vilification of the Jews, who were blamed for the collapse of traditional values and institutions. Racism indicated that the Jews were not just a religious community but biologically different from other races. Their reactionary response to the nationality problem and modernity led to a vision of a pan-German empire, in which the non-German nationalities and the lower classes would be denied all claims to emancipation or representation.
Theories of Aryan-German racial excellence, anti-liberalism, and anxiety about social and economic changes typify their volkisch concerns, but their occultism was an original contribution. Occultism was invoked to endorse the enduring validity of an obsolescent and precarious social order. The ideas and symbols of ancient theocracies, secret societies, and the mystical gnosis of Rosicrucianism, Cabbalism, and Freemasonry were woven into the volkisch ideology, in order to prove that the modern world was based on false and evil principles and to describe the values and institutions of the ideal world.
This reliance on semi-religious materials for their legitimation demonstrated the need of the Ario- sophists for absolute beliefs about the proper arrangement of human society: it was also an index of their profound disenchantment with the contemporary world. As romantic reactionaries and millenarians, the Ariosophists stood on the margin of practical politics, but their ideas and symbols filtered through to several anti-Semitic and nationalist groups in late Wilhelmian Germany, from which the early Nazi Party emerged in Munich after the First World War.
This study traces that survival of Ariosophy through personal contacts and literary influences. The possibility that List and Lanz von Liebenfels may have already had an influence on Adolf Fiitler in his pre-war Vienna days is also investigated. Ariosophy continued to be fostered in the s by small coteries that propagated racist mystery- religions during the Weimar Republic in the hope of a national revival.
In this account of their succession, it is shown how the fantasies of Ariosophy, besides being symptoms of anxiety and cultural nostalgia, illuminate the ultimate dream-world of the Third Reich. The constitutional changes of ended absolutism and introduced representative government and fulfilled the demands of the classical liberals, and the emperor henceforth shared his power with a bicameral legislature, elected by a restricted four-class franchise under which about 6 per cent of the population voted.
Because liberalism encouraged free thought and a questioning attitude towards institutions, the democratic thesis of liberalism increasingly challenged its early oligarchic form. A measure of its appeal is seen in the decline of the parliamentary strength of parties committed to traditional liberalism and the rise of parties dedicated to radical democracy and nationalism, a tendency that was reinforced by the widening of the franchise with a fifth voter class in This development certainly favoured the emergence of Pan- Germanism as an extremist parliamen- tary force. The other political changes in Austria concerned its territorial and ethnic composition.
Separated from both Germany and Hungary, the lands of the Austrian half of the empire formed a crescent-shaped territory extending from Dalmatia on the Adriatic coast through the hereditary Habsburg lands of Carniola, Carinthia, Styria, Austria, Bohemia, and Moravia to the eastern provinces of Galicia and Bukovina. The somewhat incongruous geographical arrangement of this territory was compounded by the settlement of ten different nationalities within its frontiers.
Most of the Germans — about 10 million in — lived in the western provinces of the state and constituted about 35 per cent of its 28 million inhabitants. In addition to Germans, Austria contained 6,, Czechs 23 per cent of the total population , 5,, Poles 18 per cent , 3,, Ruthenes or Ukrainians 1 3 per cent , 1 ,, Slovenes 5 per cent , , Serbo-Croats 3per cent , , Italians 3 per cent , and and , Romanians 1 per cent. The population and nationality figures for the provinces of the state indicate more dramatically the complexity of ethnic relationships: not only did the relative strength of the peoples vary from one province to another, but within the boundaries of some of the provinces the Germans were a clear majority, while in others they found themselves confronting a single united majority race, and in still others they were one nationality among several.
Against the background of democratization, some Austrian Germans began to fear that the supremacy of German language and culture in the empire, a legacy of rationalization procedures dating from the late eighteenth century, would be challenged by the non- German nationalities of the state. This conflict of loyalties between German nationality and Austrian citizenship, often locally sharpened by anxieties about Slav or Latin submergence, led to the emergence of two distinct, although practically related, currents of German national- ism.
Pan-Germanism was more overtly political, concerned with transforming the political context, rather than defending German interests. By a considerable number of wttwcA-cultural Vereine were operating in the provinces and Vienna. They occupied themselves with the discussion and commemoration of figures and events in German history, literature and mythology, while investing such communal activities as choral singing, gymnastics, sport and mountain- climbing with volkisch ritual.
In a federation of these Vereine , the Germanenbund, was founded at Salzburg by Anton Langgassner. Member Vereine of the federation held Germanic festivals, instituted a Germanic calendar, and appealed to all classes to unite in a common Germanic Volkstum nationhood. Their chief social bases lay in the provincial intelligentsia and youth. The government regarded such nationalism with wariness and actually had the Germanenbund dissolved in ; it was later re-founded in as the Bund der Germanen.
In more than Vereine of this kind belonged to the federation, distributed throughout Vienna, Lower Austria, Styriaand Carinthia, Bohemia and Moravia. It is against this ongoing mission of the volkisch-cuhurA Vereine in the latter decades of the century that one may understand the inspiration and appeal of his nationalist novels and plays in the pre-occult phase of his literary output between and The Pan-German movement originated as an expression of youthful ideals among the student fraternities of Vienna, Graz, and Prague during the s. Certain fraternities, agitated by the problem of German nationality in the Austrian state after 1 , began to advocate kleindeutsch nationalism; that is, incorporation of German- Austria into the German Reich.
This cult of Prussophilia led to a worship of force and a contempt for humanitarian law and justice. Georg von Schonerer first associated himself with this movement when he joined a federation of kleindeutsch fraternides in at Vienna. His ideas, his temperament, and his talent as an agitator, shaped the character and destiny of Austrian Pan-Germanism, thereby creating a revolutionary movement that embraced populist anti-capitalism, anti- liberalism, anti-Semitism and prussophile German nationalism.
Having first secured election to the Reichsrat in , Schonerer pursued a radical democratic line in parliament in common with other progressives of the Left until about By then he had begun to demand the economic and political union of German-Austria with the German Reich, and from he published a virulently nationalist newspaper, Unverfalschte Deutsche Worte [Unadulterated German Words], to proclaim his views. The essence of Schonererite Pan-Germanism was not its demand for national unity, political democracy, and social reform aspects of its programme which it shared with the conventional radical nationalists in parliament , but its racism — that is, the idea that blood was the sole criterion of all civic rights.
The Pan-German movement had become a minor force in Austrian politics in the mid- s but then languished after the conviction of Schonerer in for assault; deprived of his political rights for five years, he was effectively removed from parliamentary activity. Not until the late s did Pan-Germanism again attain the status of a popular movement in response to several overt challenges to German interests within the empire. It was a shock for those who took German cultural predominance for granted when the government ruled in that Slovene classes should be introduced in the exclusively German school at Celje in Carniola.
This minor controversy assumed a symbolical significance among German nationalists out of all proportion to its local implications. These decrees provoked a nationalist furore throughout the empire. The democratic German parties and the Pan-Germans, unable to force the government to cancel the language legislation, obstructed all parliamentary business, a practice which continued until When successive premiers resorted to rule by decree, the disorder overflowed from parliament onto the streets of the major cities.
During the summer of bloody conflicts between rioting mobs and the police and even the army threatened to plunge the country into civil war. Hundreds of German Vereine were dissolved by the police as a threat to public order. It is in this background of events involving parliamentary breakdown, public disorder, rampant German chauvinism, and the electoral gains of the Pan-Germans in , that one may find the roots of a new rancorous nationalist mood among Germans in the decade that witnessed the emergence of Ariosophy.
Their reasons for supporting the party often amounted to little more than the electoral expression of a desire to bolster German national interests within the empire, in common with the myriad volkisch-cuhural Vereine. For wherever they looked in the course of the past decade, Austrian Germans could perceive a steadily mounting Slav challenge to the traditional pre- dominance of German cultural and political interests: the Celje school controversy, the Badeni language ordinances and the menacing implications of universal male suffrage finally introduced in represented climaxes in this continuing and unresolved issue.
Many Austrian Germans regarded this political challenge as an insult to their major owning, tax-paying and investment role in the economy and the theme of the German Besitzstand property-owning class in the empire was generally current at the turn of the century. Both List and Lanz condemned all parliamentary politics and called for the subjection of all the nationalities in the empire to German rule.
The strident anti-Catholicism of Ariosophy may also be traced to the influence of the Pan-German movement. Although predisposed towards the volkisch paganism of the Germanenbund, Schonerer had begun by 1 8 90 to think of a denominational policy by which he might counter the Catholic Church, which he regarded as alien to Germandom and a powerful electoral force. The episcopate advised the emperor, the parish priests formed a network of effective propagandists in the country, and the Christian Social party had deprived him of his earlier strongholds among the rural and semi-urban populations of Lower Austria and Vienna.
He thought that a Protestant conversion move- ment could help to emphasize in the mind of the German public the association of Slavdom — after hated and feared by millions— with Catholicism, the dynasty, and the Austrian state. The conservative- clerical- Slavophile governments since had indeed made the emergence of a populistic and anti-Catholic German reaction plausible and perhaps inevitable. Many Germans thought that the Catholic hierarchy was anti-German, and in Bohemia there was resentment at the number of Czech priests who had been given German parishes.
In order to exploit these feelings, Schonerer launched his Los von Rom break with Rome campaign in The alliance remained uneasy: most of the volkisch leagues were strongly opposed to the movement, while other Pan-Germans denounced the Los von Rom campaign as a variation of old-time clericalism. For their part, the missionary pastors complained that the political implications of conversion alienated many religious people who sought a new form of Christian faith, while those who were politically motivated did not really care about religion.
The rate of annual conversions began to decline in , and by had returned to the figure at which it had stood before the movement began. Although a movement of the ethnic borderlands, its social bases were principally defined by the professional and commercial middle classes. The greatest success of the Los von Rom movement therefore coincided chronologically and geographically with the prestige of the Pan-German party: the campaign neither widened the appeal of Pan-Germanism nor significantly weakened the Catholic Church.
This mood was an essential element of Ariosophy. List cast the Catholic Church in the role of principal antagonist in his account of the Armanist dispensation in the mythological Germanic past. This wholly imaginary organization was held responsible for all political developments contrary to German nationalist interests in Austria and impugned as a Catholic conspiracy. He abandoned his Cistercian novitiate in a profoundly anti-Catholic mood in , joined the Pan-German movement, and is said to have converted briefly to Protestantism.
When the Social Darwinists invoked the inevitability of biological struggle in human life, it was proposed that the Aryans or really the Germans need not succumb to the fate of deterioration, but could prevail against the threats of decline and contamination by maintaining their racial purity. This shrill imperative to crude struggle between the races and eugenic reform found broad acceptance in Germany around the turn of the century: the principal works of Ernst Krause, Otto Ammon, Ludwig Wilser, and Ludwig Woltmann, all Social Darwinists, were all published between the early s and If some aspects of Ariosophy can be related to the problems of German nationalism in the multi-national Habsburg empire at the end of the nineteenth century, others have a more local source in Vienna.
Unlike the ethnic borderlands, Vienna was traditionally a German city, the commercial and cultural centre of the Austrian state. However, by , rapid urbanization of its environs, coupled with the immigration of non-German peoples, was transforming its physical appearance and, in some central districts, its ethnic compo- sition. Old photographs bear an eloquent testimony to the rapid transformation of the traditional face of Vienna at the end of the nineteenth century. During the s the old star-shaped glacis of Prince Eugene was demolished to make way for the new Ringstrasse, with its splendid new palais and public buildings.
A comparison of views before and after the development indicates the loss of the intimate, aesthetic atmosphere of a royal residence amid spacious parkland in favour of a brash and monumental metropolitanism. It may be that List rejected urban culture and celebrated rural-medieval idylls as a reaction to the new Vienna. Between and the population of the city had increased nearly threefold, resulting in a severe housing shortage. By no less than 43 per cent of the population were living in dwellings of two rooms or less, while homelessness and destitution were widespread. In only some 6, Jews had resided in the capital, but by this number had risen to ,, which was more than 8 per cent of the total city population; in certain districts they accounted for 20 per cent of the local residents.
Germans with volkisch attitudes would have certainly regarded this new influx as a serious threat to the ethnic character of the capital. The s subsequently witnessed a wave of German theosophical publishing. Mystical and religious speculations also jostled with quasi-scientific forms e. Social Darwinism, Monism of volkisch ideology in Germany. It is furthermore significant that several important ariosophical writers and many List Society supporters lived outside Austria.
The particular appropriateness of theosophy for a vindication of elitism and racism is reserved for a later discussion. Although still outwardly brilliant and prosperous, Vienna had become embedded in the past. Some bourgeois and petty bourgeois in particular felt threatened by progress, by the abnormal growth of the cities, and by economic concentration.
These anxieties were compounded by the increasingly bitter quarrels among the nations of the empire which were, in their turn, eroding the precarious balance of the multi-national state. Such fears gave rise to defensive ideologies, offered by their advocates as panaceas for a threatened world. That some individuals sought a sense of status and security in doctrines of German identity and racial virtue may be seen as reaction to the medley of nationalities at the heart of the empire.
Mir erschien die Riesenstadt als die Verkorperung der Blutschande. The city seemed the very embodiment of racial infamy. Its principal ingredients have been identified as Gnosticism, the Hermetic treatises on alchemy and magic, Neo- Platonism, and the Cabbala, all originating in the eastern Mediterranean area during the first few centuries AD. Gnosticism properly refers to the beliefs of certain heretical sects among the early Christians that claimed to posses gnosis, or special esoteric knowledge of spiritual matters. Although their various doctrines differed in many respects, two common Gnostic themes exist: first, an oriental Persian dualism, according to which the two realms of Good and Evil, Light and Darkness, order and chaos are viewed as independent battling principles; and second, the conviction that this material world is utterly evil, so that man can be saved only by attaining the gnosis of the higher realm.
The Gnostic sects disappeared in the fourth century, but their ideas inspired the dualistic Manichaean religion of the second century and also the Hermetica. These Greek texts were composed in Egypt between the third and fifth centuries and developed a synthesis of Gnostic ideas, Neoplatonism and cabbalistic theosophy. Since these mystical doctrines arose against a background of cultural and social change, a correlation has been noted between the proliferation of the sects and the breakdown of the stable agricultural order of the late Roman Empire.
Prominent humanists and scholar magicians edited the old classical texts during the Renaissance and thus created a modern corpus of occult specu- lation. However, a reaction to the rationalist Enlightenment, taking the form of a quickening romantic temper, an interest in the Middle Ages and a desire for mystery, encouraged a revival of occultism in Europe from about Germany boasted several renowned scholar magicians in the Renaissance, and a number of secret societies devoted to Rosicrucianism, theosophy, and alchemy also flourished there from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries.
However, the impetus for the neo-romantic occult revival of the nineteenth century did not arise in Germany. It is attributable rather to the reaction against the reign of materialist, rationalist and positivist ideas in the utilitarian and industrial cultures of America and England. The modern German occult revival owes its inception to the popularity of theosophy in the Anglo-Saxon world during the s. Here theosophy refers to the international sectarian movement deriving from the activities and writings of the Russian adventuress and occultist, Helena Petrovna Blavatsky Her colourful life and travels in the s and s, her clairvoyant powers and penchant for supernatural phenomena, her interest in American spiritualism during the s, followed by her foundation of the Theosophical Society at New York in and the subsequent removal of its operations to India between and , have all been fully documented in several biographies.
Madame Blavatsky s first book, Isis Unveiled , was less an outline of her new religion than a rambling tirade against the rationalist and materialistic culture of modern Western civilization. Her use of traditional esoteric sources to discredit present-day beliefs showed clearly how much she hankered after ancient religious truths in defiance of contemporary' agnosticism and modern science. In this enterprise she drew upon a range of secondary sources treating of pagan mythology and mystery religions, Gnosticism, the Hermetica, and the arcane lore of the Renaissance scholars, the Rosicrucians and odier secret fraternities.
Coleman has shown that her work comprises a sustained and frequent plagiarism of about one hundred contemporary texts, chiefly relating to ancient and exotic religions, demonology, Freemasonry and the case for spiritualism. Her fascination with Egypt as the fount of all wisdom arose from her enthusiastic reading of the English author Sir Edward Bulwer-Lytton.
His later works, Zanoni 1 , A Strange Story 1 , and The Coming Race , also dwelt on esoteric initiation and secret fraternities dedicated to occult knowledge in a way which exercised an extra- ordinary fascination on the romantic mind of the nineteenth century. This work betrayed her plagiarism again but now her sources were mainly contemporary works on Hinduism and modern science.
This new interest in Indian lore may reflect her sensitivity to changes in the direction of scholarship: witness the contemporary importance of Sanskrit as a basis for the comparative study of so-called Aryan languages under Franz Bopp and Max Muller. Now the East rather than Egypt was seen as the source of ancient wisdom. Later theosophical doctrine conse- quendy displays a marked similarity to the religious tenets of Hinduism.
The Secret Doctrine claimed to describe the activities of God from the beginning of one period of universal creation until its end, a cyclical process which continues indefinitely over and over again. The story related how the present universe was born, whence it emanated, what powers fashion it, whither it is progressing, and what it all means. The first volume Cosmogenesis oudined the scheme according to which the primal unity of an unmanifest divine being differentiates itself into a multiformity of consciously evolving beings that gradually fill the universe.
In the first round the universe was characterized by the predominance of fire, in the second by air, in the third by water, in the fourth by earth, and in the others by ether. This sequence reflected the cyclical fall of the universe from divine grace over the first four rounds and its following redemption over the next three, before everything contracted once more to the point of primal unity for the start of a new major cycle. Madame Blavatsky illustrated the stages of the cosmic cycle with a variety of esoteric symbols, including triangles, triskelions, and swastikas.
So extensive was her use of this latter Eastern sign of fortune and fertility that she included it in her design for the seal of the Theosophical Society. This electro- spiritual force was in tune with contemporary vitalist and scientific thought. The second volume Anthropogenesis attempted to relate man to this grandiose vision of the cosmos. Not only was humanity assigned an age of far greater antiquity than that conceded by science, but it was also integrated into a scheme of cosmic, physical, and spiritual evolution. These theories were partly derived from late nineteenth- century scholarship concerning palaeontology, inasmuch as Blavatsky adopted a racial theory of human evolution.
She extended her cyclical doctrine with the assertion that each round witnessed the rise and fall of seven consecutive root-races, which descended on the scale of spiritual development from the first to the fourth, becoming increasingly enmeshed in the material world the Gnostic notion of a Fall from Light into Darkness was quite explicit , before ascending through progressively superior root-races from the fifth to the seventh.
According to Blavatsky, present humanity constituted the fifth root- race upon a planet that was passing through the fourth cosmic round, so that a process of spiritual advance lay before the species. The fifth root-race was called the Aryan race and had been preceded by the fourth root-race of the Atlanteans, which had largely perished in a flood that submerged their mid-Atlantic continent.
The German Legal System
The Adanteans had wielded psychic forces with which our race was not familiar, their gigantism enabled them to build Cyclopean structures, and they possessed a superior technology based upon the successful exploitation of Fohat. The third Lemurian root-race flourished on a continent which had lain in the Indian Ocean. The individual human ego was regarded as a tiny fragment of the divine being. Through reincarnation each ego pursued a cosmic journey through the rounds and the root- races which led it towards eventual reunion with the divine being whence it had originally issued.
This path of coundess rebirths also recorded a story of cyclical redemption: the initial debasement of the ego was followed by its gradual sublimation to the point of identity with God. The process of reincarnation was fulfilled according to the principle of karma, whereby good acts earned their performer a superior reincarnation and bad acts an inferior reincarnation.
This chiliastic vision supplemented the psychological appeal of belonging to a vast cosmic order. These adepts were not gods but rather advanced members of our own evolutionary group, who had decided to impart their wisdom to the rest of Aryan mankind through their chosen representative, Madame Blavatsky. Like her masters, she also claimed an exclusive authority on the basis of her occult knowledge or gnosis.
Her account of prehistory frequently invoked the sacred authority of elite priesthoods among the root- races of the past. When the Lemurians had fallen into iniquity and sin, only a hierarchy of the elect remained pure in spirit. This remnant became the Lemuro- Atlantean dynasty of priest-kings who took up their abode on the fabulous island of Shamballah in the Gobi Desert. Firstly, the fact of a God, who is omnipresent, eternal, boundless and immutable. Secondly, the rule of periodicity, whereby all creation is subject to an endless cycle of destruction and rebirth.
These rounds always terminate at a level spiritually superior to their starting-point. Thirdly, there exists a fundamental unity between all individual souls and the deity, between the microcosm and the macrocosm. Only the hazy promise of occult initiation shimmering through its countless quo- tations from ancient beliefs, lost apocryphal writings, and the traditional Gnostic and Hermetic sources of esoteric wisdom can account for the success of her doctrine and the size of her following amongst the educated classes of several countries.
Theosophy offered an appealing mixture of ancient religious ideas and new concepts borrowed from the Darwinian theory of evolution and modern science. This syncretic faith thus possessed the power to comfort certain individuals whose traditional outlook had been upset by the discrediting of orthodox religion, by the very rationalizing and de- mystifying progress of science and by the culturally dislocative impact of rapid social and economic change in the late nineteenth century.
George L. Mosse has noted that theosophy typified the wave of anti-positivism sweeping Europe at the end of the century and observed that its outre notions made a deeper impression in Germany than in other European countries. Its advent is best understood within a wider neo-romantic protest movement in Wil- helmian Germany known as Lebensreform life reform. This movement represented a middle-class attempt to palliate the ills of modern life, deriving from the growth of the cities and industry.
The political atmosphere of the movement was apparently liberal and left-wing with its interest in land reform, but there were many overlaps with the volkisch movement. Marxian critics have even interpreted it as mere bourgeois escapism from the consequences of capitalism.
In July the first German Theosophical Society was established under the presidency of Wilhelm Hiibbe-Schleiden at Elberfeld, where Blavatsky and her chief collaborator, Henry Steel Olcott, were staying with their theosophical friends, the Gebhards. At this time Hiibbe-Schleiden was employed as a senior civil servant at the Colonial Office in Hamburg. He had travelled widely, once managing an estate in West Africa and was a prominent figure in the political lobby for an expanded German overseas empire.
Olcott and Hiibbe-Schleiden travelled to Munich and Dresden to make contact with scattered theosophists and so lay the basis for a German organization. Unfortunately for Hiibbe-Schleiden, his presidency lapsed when the formal German organization dissolved, once the scandal became more widely publicized following the exodus of the theo- sophists from India in April In Hiibbe-Schleiden stimulated a more serious awareness of occultism in Germany through the publication of a scholarly monthly periodical, Die Sphinx , which was concerned with a discussion of spiritualism, psychical research, and paranormal phenomena from a scientific point of view.
Its principal contributors were eminent psychologists, philosophers and historians. Another important member of the Sphinx circle was Karl Kiesewetter, whose studies in the history of the post-Renaissance esoteric tradition brought knowledge of the scholar magicians, the early modern alchemists and contem- porary occultism to a wider audience. Besides this scientific current of occultism, there arose in the 1 s a broader German theosophical movement, which derived mainly from the popularizing efforts of Franz Hartmann Hartmann had been born in Donauworth and brought up in Kempten, where his father held office as a court doctor.
After military service with a Bavarian artillery regiment in , Hartmann began his medical studies at Munich University. After completing his training at St Louis he opened an eye clinic and practised there until He then travelled round Mexico, settled briefly at New Orleans before continuing to Texas in , and in went to Georgetown in Colorado, where he became coroner in Besides his medical practice he claimed to have a speculative interest in gold- and silver-mining.
However, following his discovery of Isis Unveiled l, theosophy replaced spiritualism as his principal diversion. He resolved to visit the theosophists at Madras, travelling there by way of California, Japan and South-East Asia in late While Blavatsky and Olcott visited Europe in early , Hartmann was appointed acting president of the Society during their absence. He remained at the Society headquarters until the theosophists finally left India in April 1 However, once he had established himself as a director of a Lebensreform sanatorium at Hallein near Salzburg upon his return to Europe in , Hartmann began to disseminate the new wisdom of the East to his own countrymen.
In the second half of this decade the first peak in German theosophical publishing occurred. The chief concern of these small books lay with abstruse cosmology, karma, spiritualism and the actuality of the hidden mahatmas. In Paul Zillmann founded the Metaphysische Rundschau [Metaphysical Review], a monthly periodical which dealt with many aspects of the esoteric tradition, while also embracing new parapsychological research as a successor to Die Sphinx.
Hargrove and C. Wright were travelling through Europe to drum up overseas support for their movement. Hartmann supplied a fictional story about his discovery of a secret Rosicrucian monastery in the Bavarian Alps, which fed the minds of readers with romantic notions of adepts in the middle of modern Europe. This Wald-Loge Forest Lodge was organized into three quasi-masonic grades of initiation. In his capacity of publisher, Paul Zillmann was an important link between the German occult subculture and the Ariosophists of Vienna, whose works he issued under his own imprint between and Theosophy remained a sectarian phenomenon in Germany, typified by small and often antagonistic local groups.
In late 1 the editor of the Neue Metaphysische Rundschau received annual reports from branch societies in Berlin, Cottbus, Dresden, Essen, Graz, and Leipzig and bemoaned their evident lack of mutual fraternity. April ], opened a theosophical centre in the capital, while at Leipzig there existed another centre associated with Arthur Weber, Hermann Rudolf, and Edwin Bohme.
While these activities remained largely under the sway of Franz Hartmann and Paul Zillmann, mention must be made of another theosophical tendency in Germany. Steiner published a periodical, Luufer, at Berlin from to Astrological periodicals and a related book-series, the Astrologische Rundschau [Astrological Review ] and the Astrologische Bibliothek [Astrological library ], were also issued here from Meanwhile, other publishers had been entering the field. Karl Rohm, who had visited the English theosophists in London in the late s, started a firm at Lorch in Wiirttemberg after the turn of the century.
Although initially concerned with translations of American material, this firm was to play a vital role in German esoteric publishing during the s. Georgiewitz-Weitzer, who wrote his own works on modern Rosicrucians, alchemy and occult medicine under the pseudonym G.
The Leipzig bookseller Heinrich Tranker issued an occult book- series between and , which included the works of Karl Helmuth and Karl Heise. From Antonius von der Linden began an ambitious book- series, Geheime Wissenschaften [Secret Sciences] , which consisted of reprints of esoteric texts from the Renaissance scholar Agrippa von Nettesheim, the Rosicrucians and eighteenth-century alchemists, together with commentaries and original texts by modern occultists.
From this brief survey it can be deduced that German occult publishing activity reached its second peak between the years and 19 The story of this tradition is closely linked with Friedrich Eckstein The personal secretary of the composer Anton Bruckner, this brilliant polymath cultivated a wide circle of acquain- tance amongst the leading thinkers, writers and musicians of Vienna.
His penchant for occultism first became evident as a member of a Lebensreform group who had practised vegetarianism and discussed the doctrines of Pythagoras and the Neo-Platonists in Vienna at the end of the s. His esoteric interests later extended to German and Spanish mysticism, the legends surrounding the Templars, and the Freemasons, Wagnerian mythology, and oriental religions. In he befriended the Viennese mathematician Oskar Simony, who was impressed by the metaphysical theories of Professor Friedrich Zollner of Leipzig. Zollner had hypothesized that spiritualistic phenomena confirmed the existence of a fourth dimension.
Eckstein and Simony were also associated with the Austrian psychical researcher, Lazar von Hellenbach, who performed scientific experiments with mediums in a state of trance and contributed to Die Sphinx. Following his cordial meeting with Blavatsky in , Eckstein gathered a group of theoso- phists in Vienna. During the late s both Franz Hartmann and the young Rudolf Steiner were habitues of this circle. Eckstein was also acquainted with the mystical group around the illiterate Christian pietist, Alois Mailander , who was lionized at Kempten and later at Darmstadt by many theosophists, including Hartmann and Hubbe-Schleiden.
Eckstein corresponded with Gustav Meyrink, founder of the Blue Star theosophical lodge at Prague in , who later achieved renown as an occult novelist before the First World War. New groups devoted to occultism arose in Vienna after the turn of the century. There existed an Association for Occultism, which maintained a lending-library where its members could consult the works of Zollner, Hellenbach and du Prel.
The Association was close to Philipp Maschlufsky, who began to edit an esoteric periodical, Die Gnosis, from Although modern occultism was represented by many varied forms, its function appears relatively uniform. The attraction of this world-view was indicated at the beginning of this chapter. Occultism had flourished coincident with the decline of the Roman Empire and once again at the waning of the Middle Ages.
It exercised a renewed appeal to those who found the world out of joint due to rapid social and ideological changes at the end of the nineteenth century. Certain individuals, whose sentiments and education inclined them towards an idealistic and romantic perspective, were drawn to the modern occult revival in order to find that sense of order, which had been shaken by the dissolution of erstwhile conventions and beliefs. Since Ariosophy originated in Vienna, in response to the problems of German nationality and metropolitanism, one must consider the particular kind of theosophy which the Ariosophists adapted to their volkisch ideas.
Schorske has attempted to relate this cultivation of the self to the social plight of the Viennese bourgeoisie at the end of the century. He suggests that this class had begun by supporting the temple of art as a surrogate form of assimilation into the aristocracy, but ended by finding in it an escape, a refuge from the collapse of liberalism and the emergence of vulgar mass-movements. When theosophy had become more widely publicized through the German publishing houses at the turn of the century, its ideas reached a larger audience. Whereas the earlier Austrian theosophical movement had been defined by the mystical Christianity and personal gnosticism of cultivated individuals, its later manifestation in Vienna corresponded to a disenchantment with Catholicism coupled with the popularization of mythology, folklore and comparative religion.
The impetus came largely from Germany, and both List and Lanz drew their knowledge of theosophy from German sources. Zillmann was the first to publish both List and Lanz on esoteric subjects. Theosophy in Vienna after 1 appears to be a quasi-intellectual sectarian religious doctrine of German importation, current among persons wavering in their religious orthodoxy but who were inclined to a religious perspective. Given the antipathy towards Catholicism among volkisch nationalists and Pan- Germans in Austria at the turn of the century, theosophy commended itself as a scheme of religious beliefs which ignored Christianity in favour of a melange of mythical traditions and pseudo-scientific hypotheses consonant with contemporary anthropology, etymology, and the history of ancient cultures.
Furthermore, the very structure of theosophical thought lent itself to volkisch adoption. The implicit elitism of the hidden mahatmas with superhuman wisdom was in tune with the longing for a hierarchical social order based on the racial mystique of the Volk. The notion of an occult gnosis in theosophy, notably its obscuration due to the superimposition of alien Christian beliefs, and its revival by the chosen few, also accorded with the attempt to ascribe a long pedigree to volkisch nationalism, especially in view of its really recent origins.
In the context of the growth of German nationalism in Austria since , we can see how theosophy, otherwise only tenuously related to volkisch thought by notions of race and racial development, could lend both a religious mystique and a universal rationale to the political attitudes of a small minority. He also represented an exceptional figure among the volkisch publicists in Germany before First of all, he was a native of Vienna, the capital of Habsburg Austria, which by the turn of the century had stood outside the mainstream of German national development, as exemplified by the Bismarckian Reich, for more than three decades.
List, moreover, belonged to an older generation than most of his pre-war fellow ideologues and thus became a cult figure on the eastern edge of the German world. He was regarded by his readers and followers as a bearded old patriarch and a mystical nationalist guru whose clairvoyant gaze had lifted the glorious Aryan and Germanic past of Austria into full view from beneath the debris of foreign influences and Christian culture.
In his books and lectures List invited true Germans to behold the clearly discernible remains of a wonderful theocratic Ario- German state, wisely governed by priest- kings and gnostic initiates, in the archaeology, folklore, and landscape of his homeland. He applied himself to cabbalistic and astrological studies and also claimed to be the last of the Armanist magicians, who had formerly wielded authority in the old Aryan world. Guido Karl Anton List was born in Vienna on 5 October , the eldest son of a prosperous middle-class merchant.
Both his mother and his father were descended from trading families that had been settled in the capital for at least two generations. The great-grandfather had also kept an inn. Several accounts suggest that List was a happy child in a secure home. In Anton von Anreiter painted a water-colour portrait of him.
Young List enjoyed a good relationship with his parents. However, in , an incident occurred that revealed his lack of interest in orthodox religion. The dark and narrow vaults made a strong impression on him. He later claimed that he had knelt before a ruined altar in the crypt and sworn to build a temple to Wotan once he had grown up.
Evidently he regarded the labyrinth under the cathedral as a pre-Christian shrine dedicated to a pagan deity. List was later to claim that his conversion dated from this revelation. This ambition brought him into conflict with his father, who wanted him to work in the family leather business as the eldest son and heir. List conformed with these paternal expectations and resigned himself to a commercial training, but his submission to the demands of work was by no means total. Henceforth he divided his time between the claims of commerce and a private world of art, imagination and nature-worship.
During working hours he would assist his father, but he dedicated all his leisure time to rambling or riding through the countryside in all weathers, while sketching scenes and writing down his experiences. It is significant that his first published piece appeared in the annual of the Alpine Association.
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Sport had evidently assumed the role of an active communion with the elemental realms of rivers and mountains. He was happiest if he could undertake his excursions alone. Although not averse to the company of friends, he often experienced others as a hindrance to the enjoyment of his inmost being. His ritualization of such adventures served to make his private world even more exclusive and earned him the reputation of a lone wolf and a mystic.
Such rituals are illustrated by his midsummer solstice camps. After a long hike across the Marchfeld, List and his friends had once gone to an inn. When a thunderstorm compelled the group to stay there overnight, List left to celebrate the solstice by sleeping out alone on the Geiselberg hill-fort. Downstream they came upon the ruins of the Roman town of Carnuntum, where the group camped and caroused into the night.
For his friends this was a most congenial evening; for List, lost in reverie, it was the th anniversary of the tribal German victory over the Romans, which he celebrated with a fire and the burial of eight wine botdes in the shape of a swastika beneath the arch of the Pagan Gate. The modern economy had, according to List, led humans astray under the motto of self-seeking individualism.
While his father continued to manage the leather business. List could freely indulge his taste for solitude, sports, and long excursions. Being quite unsuited for commerce, he soon retired from the business and married his first wife, Helene Forster-Peters, on 26 September From to he published numerous articles about the Austrian countryside and the customs of its inhabitants in the newspapers Heimat, Deutsche Zeitung and Neue Welt, all known for their nationalist sentiment.
His studies of landscape were coloured by a pagan interpretation of local place-names, customs and popular legends. A typical early idyll about a group of medieval castles near Melk was published in the Neue Deutsche Alpenzeitung in 1 8 7 7. List now celebrated the fact that the landscape was native. The Alps and Danube were revered for their national identity; streams, fields and hills were personified as spirits culled from Teutonic myth and folklore. These early articles were distinguished from the juvenilia by their markedly volkisch and nationalist stamp.
During these years List was working at his first full-length novel, Camuntum, inspired by that memorable summer solstice party of In he published a short account ofhis vivid experiences on that occasion. Enthralled by the genius loci List had gazed into the distant past of Carnuntum. In his opinion this attack of the Quadi and Marcomanni tribes started the Germanic migrations which eventually led to the sack of Rome in and the collapse of the Empire. To List, the very word Carnuntum evoked the hazy aura of olden Germanic valour, a signal motto recalling the event that put the ancient Germans back on the stage of world history.
In the first place List placed Austrian- settled tribes in the van of the assault on Rome. Secondly, his account suggested that these tribal settlers of pre- Roman Austria and the post-Roman barbarian kingdoms of the Dark Ages constituted a continuous native occupation of the homeland. The present political order and main confession were shown to be illegitimate, deriving from the imposition of a foreign yoke and the suppression of Germanic culture many centuries before.
This mythology caught the attention of German nationalists in search of legitimations for their own disenchantment with the multi- national Austrian state. The earliest recognition of his novel proved most valuable to List. In there had also appeared an historical work entided Der altdeutsche Volksstamm der Quaden [The ancient German Quadi tribe] by Heinrich Kirchmayr.
Between Wannieck and List there developed a regular correspondence that laid the basis of a lasting friendship. Schonerer had first secured election to the Austrian Reichsrat in and became the outspoken protagonist of anti- Semitism and nationalism amongst the German nationals of the Habsburg empire. He made his first anti-Semitic speech before the assembly in and demanded the economic and political union of German- speaking Austria with the German Reich in his election address.
During this decade Schonerer achieved a modest following in many provincial groups, cultural societies, and sports clubs with similar sentiments. All these numerous associations were concerned with raising nationalist consciousness among the Austrian Germans in a variety of ways: anniversary celebrations for German royalty and culture heroes like the Prussian Kaiser, Bismarck, Moltke, and Wagner; midsummer and yuletide solstice festivals in accordance with ancient custom; and study-groups for the appreciation of German history and literature.
List now made his own mark in this milieu during the s. List became a regular contributor. In the paper published extracts of his recent book, Deutsch-Mythologische Landschaftsbilder [German- Mythological Landscape Pictures ] , which comprised an anthology of his folkloristic journalism from the previous decade.
His topics were heraldry and folk customs concerning baptism, marriage, and burial. In his opinion these traditional institutions all reflected archaic Teutonic practices. List claimed this extinct faith had been the national religion of the Teutons. In due course this imaginary priesthood would become the central idea of his political mythology. List continued to publish his own literary works throughout the s. In he had founded, together with Fanny Wschiansky, a belletristic society for the purpose of fostering neo-romantic and nationalist literature in Vienna. This Literarische Donaugesellschaft Danubian Literary Society was modelled on the fifteenth-century litteraria sodalita Danubiana of the Viennese humanist Conrad Celte , about whom List wrote a short biography in The success of his first novel Camuntum was repeated with two more historical romances set in tribal Germany.
The novel closes with the joyful return of the apostate to his original religion of sun-worship. Hardly less melodramatic was the saga Pipara , a two-volume novel which recounted the sensational career of Pipara, a Quadi maiden of Eburodunum Brno , who rose from Roman captivity to the rank of empress. There were poetry-readings and lectures by Ottokar Stauf von der March, editor of the Tiroler Wochenschn. List also composed lyrical pieces in a mythological and nationalist idiom. The same choral society organized a List festival to commemorate the silver anniversary of his literary endeavour on 7 April By this date List had become a celebrity amongst the Pan- German groups of Austria.
Aurelius Polzer had converted formally to Protestantism in ; Schonerer followed suit in It has been estimated that there were ten thousand converts in Austria by , and that over half of these were resident in Bohemia. Her portrait shows a pretty, young woman dressed in a fashion redolent of fin-de-siecle mystery and natural appeal. An interesting product of this use of the stage as a vehicle for his ideas was the programmatic pamphlet Der Wiederaujhau von Camuntum [The Reconstruction of Camuntum]] 1 Here List called for a reconstruction of the Roman amphitheatre as an open-air stage for the production of scenarios including dragon- slaying, regattas, bardic contests and Thinge annual Germanic assemblies , which would all carry the symbolism of Wotanism to an ever wider public of Pan-Germans in Austria.
His writings focused attention on the heroic past and religious mythology of his native country. The year 1 witnessed a funda- mental change in the character of his ideas: occult notions now entered his fantasy of the ancient Germanic faith. After undergoing an eye operation to relieve a cataract in 1 , List was blind for eleven months. Throughout a long and anxious period of enforced rest, he took solace in pondering the origins of the runes and language.
AND LEGAL LANGUAGE
This document set out the idea of a monumental pseudo-science concerned with Germanic linguistics and symbology: it was his first attempt to interpret, by means of occult insight, the letters and sounds of the runes and alphabet on the one hand, and the emblems and glyphs of ancient inscriptions on the other. Although the Academy returned his manuscript with no comment, this slight piece grew over the ensuing decade to become the masterpiece of his occult-nationalist researches.
This entry came to the notice of the nobility' archive, which urged an official enquiry. He claimed that his great- grandfather had abandoned the tide upon entering a burgher trade inn keeper , but that he, Guido von List, had resumed the title after leaving commerce for a literary career in In support of his title List produced a signet ring, which his great-grandfather had allegedly worn. This bore a coat-of-arms displaying two rampant foxes List means cunning in German upon a quartered field, which was the blazon of the twelfth-century knight, Burckhardt von List, according to an old chronicle.
Why did List want the tide must be our first question. The machines physically represent a new mode of production, at least in an embryonic form. They give an idea of what is possible in a free society when the means of production are not produced to make money but to serve needs. This project, however, appears to be neither aware of its enormous potential nor of its inherent contradictions, which could yet be its downfall — although not before it will have contributed not only, one hopes, materially, to needs in a direct sense through its machines , but also indirectly, through its role in the positioning and development of peer-commons more generally as, at least, an instantiation of the currently contradictory process of peer-commons production.
Open Source Ecology, I would argue, is doing the right thing while having some rather short-sighted ideas about business. Inevitably, contradictions will surface challenging the peer-commons character of the project. Historically, many projects mostly on a low-tech basis have started out ambitiously, but then either disappeared or transformed into ordinary companies.
To be clear: the contradictions do not occur solely or even primarily due to any individual human or organisational shortcomings, but rather because of objective constraints in a society that is dominated by monetary logic and the commodity form. This can be clearly understood using the five-step model. A peer-commons project cannot be anything other than a double-faced entity navigating through the shoals of openness and voluntariness as key motivators on one hand and alien requirements from markets and logics of valuation on the other.
A mid-sized stock corporation in the IT sector in Germany, Synaxon AG  follows a concept of radical self-organisation. In Synaxon, he internally launched a Wiki in and the communication tool Liquid Feedback in All company information operational data, job descriptions, projects, quarter-end accounts, etc. Everyone sees what others are working on, and everyone can change anything, including their own job description — without moderation.
To begin with, employees were somewhat reticent about this transparency, since not everyone wanted to share their knowledge and some were anxious that posting the wrong words might cost them their jobs. After digesting the shock, the management decided to let it go and not use its veto power.
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There have been many proposals that saved a lot of money for the company. Since all employees contribute to the Wiki using their real names, however, truly fundamental changes did not occur. Thus, Roebers decided to additionally implement Liquid Feedback, a communication and voting tool previously developed and used in the German Pirate Party.
Every employee uses a pseudonym and can anonymously post proposals. After the debate, the topic is frozen for a time-out period of reflection. Rather small but also crucial decisions related to things like salary payments and career opportunities have been made in this way, all of which have been realised, even if the management was not in favour. Wikis and Liquid Feedback can be a problem for weak managers, since openness challenges their monopoly on knowledge and low performing positions may become visible.
On the positive side, they can facilitate utilisation of the collective wisdom of the employees, and the success of this strategy is measurable. Openness and voluntariness are exploited under the imperative of being competitive on the market. Instead, the logic of valuation does the job. However, the limitations are obvious. Openness is only allowed within the confines of the company: outside of the company, internal information is treated as business secrets. Voluntariness means voluntarily subordinating under the market imperative.
This, of course, is exactly what the logics of exclusion are all about: freedom is the freedom to cooperate with your peer group in order to facilitate the exclusion of others and externalise all consequences that are not part of the commodity sold. The example of Synaxon indicates how peer production is growing everywhere in society. Indeed, the new mode of production emerges within the old framework, just as aspects of the new and the old are engaged with struggles within each individual. It is better to decide freely what job to do than to work under command, even though, of course, it is repellent that the ultimate goals are still alien ones.
Manifestly, if we have to use personal freedom in alien ways, it is not freedom. The freedom of self-exploitation is self-exploitation and not freedom. Nevertheless, and even under the premise of valuation, people who have learned to follow their personal abilities are able to do peer-commons. We already know how to self-organise tasks.
Next, we need to imagine what could be possible if free stigmergic self-selection of societal tasks were the foundation of society and not caught up in endless cycles of making more money from money. Comparing Open Source Ecology and Synaxon, we see that they are not as different as they might appear at first glance. The most important difference is the openness of OSE.
Open-sourcing all results provides an enormous potential for other commons to copy products and processes. However, this is precisely the main problem of openness within the context of a capitalist environment: the competitor in the market can use them as well. Synaxon handles this contradiction by keeping the openness internal. Other companies, however, show that opening up to other producers and customers can generate competitive advantages, due to reduction of transaction costs.
There is a clear, if presently limited, trend towards openness. With respect to voluntariness, Synaxon seems to be more flexible. The management trusts that its employees under the conditions of market demands will choose to do the right thing. In OSE, the founder wants to control the project and people. OSE members have chosen to work in the project, but they are less free to shape the project since the founder wants to have the final say.
Although the overall goals of OSE are highly motivating, the concrete organisational forms are too restrictive when compared to the overall aim of the project as well-being for all. This reduces motivation and causes conflicts. At first glance, these problems seem to be rooted just in personal disagreements, but underneath the surface lurk the same alien requirements of profitability, as with Synaxon. Although OSE is a peer-commons project rather than an ordinary enterprise like Synaxon, the latter is more successful in releasing the productive power of voluntariness — within the limits of alien market requirements.
Both the project and the company indicate the broad direction in which future developments will go. Capitalism cannot be out-competed on the field of valuation, it can only be out-cooperated beyond that field. The challenge is to deal with the emerging contradictions. In this chapter, I have tried to argue for a categorical shift away from an emancipatory approach within the framework of the categories of a commodity-producing society towards an approach that transcends these categories by creating a new mode of producing our livelihood.
This new mode of production is not a naked idea, since embryonic forms are appearing right in front of our eyes. A key question is whether the elementary social form of the peer-commons is able to constitute an overall societal mediation. It has been shown that polycentric self-organisation combined with stigmergic societal mediation can constitute a coherent society. Openness and voluntariness are the preconditions for a new mode of production — which is no longer separated from reproduction — to emerge.
In combination with the five-step model of historical transition, these may be used as analytical criteria when looking at our current situation. It is, perhaps, not disheartening to appreciate that a new mode of production can only emerge through contradictions. Compromise with capital should not be assumed as collaboration with the enemy, since it is inevitable, indeed necessary, at this stage of development of peer-commons production.
Certainly, there is no cure-all and no one right thing to do. This has been indicated here through the two concrete examples, one peer-commonist project and one stock company. From these, we can see that highly worthwhile project goals do not guarantee successful developments, while capitalist firms are able to adapt aspects of peer production within their predefined purpose of being competitive market players. So, peer-commons is not an idealistic utopia, but an objective trend in society as a whole.
Capitalism is beginning to produce its own gravediggers. In the original publication of Capital, Marx emphasised this word. There, scarcity is naturalised and mistaken for limitation; limitations are socially managed by artificially excluding people from access to goods as private property; thus, in capitalism, scarcity is always artificial. Two machines were sold, which directly provokes differences on the usage of that income; the following years did not show any sales. De Angelis, M. London: Pluto Press. Dragstedt, A. Value: Studies by Karl Marx.
London: New Park Publications. Dray, W. Martin and L. McIntyre Eds. Dyer-Witheford, N. Turbulence , no. Federici, S. Brooklyn, NY: Autonomedia. The stigmergy theory: an attempt at interpreting the behavior of termite constructors], Insectes Sociaux , 6: 48— Habermann, F. Heylighen, F. Lutterbeck, M. Gehring Eds. Berlin: Lehmanns. Holzkamp, K. Grundlegung der Psychologie [Foundation of psychology]. Grundlagen der Psychologischen Motivationsforschung 2 [Principles of psychological motivation research 2]. Kurz, R.
Luxemburg, R. The Accumulation of Capital. Marsh, H. Marx, K. Das Kapital. Kritik der Politischen Oekonomie. Erster Band [Capital. A critique of political economy, vol. Critique of the Gotha Programme. A Critique of Political Economy, Vol. Manifesto of the Communist Party. Mechanical Engineers Global Food. Waste Not. Want Not. Meretz, S. Bollier and S. Helfrich Eds. Amherst, MA: Levellers Press. Ostrom, E. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Raymond, E. The Cathedral and the Bazaar. Roebers, F. WEB 2. Hamburg: tredition-Verlag.
Scholz, R. Das Geschlecht des Kapitalismus. Feministische Theorien und die postmoderne Metamorphose des Patriarchats [The gender of capitalism. Feminist theories and the postmodern metamorphosis of patriarchy]. Bad Honnef: Horlemann. Siefkes, C. From Exchange to Contributions. Generalizing Peer-Production into the Physical World. Berlin: Edition C. Peercommony Reconsidered. Le Goff bezieht sich dabei vor allem auf die Situation vom Aber auch Kredite durch private Geldverleiher spielten eine Rolle, nicht nur in der Stadt, sondern auch auf dem Land, wo ab dem Jahrhundert die Abgaben an Grundherren oft in Geld statt Naturalien gefordert wurden.
Ab dem Erst ab dem Doch stelle ich diese in einen anderen gesellschaftstheoretischen Rahmen. Doch war die Inputseite durch traditionelle soziale Beziehungen bestimmt. Im England des Bei Landwirtschaft sind dies also nicht Samen oder Werkzeuge, sondern vor allem das Land selbst. Wer mehr bieten kann, bekommt es. Dies ist die gesellschaftliche Basis der englischen Agrarrevolution des Eine offene Frage betrifft die Arbeit. Ich bin mir hier nicht sicher. Keimform des Kapitalismus ist der Tausch. Unternehmen, Commons, etc.
Die Keimform des Kapitalismus, die Vermittlungsform Tausch, ist bereits transpersonal-gesellschaftlich. Voriger Artikel: Subsistenz, Zentralplanung, Commons. Rechte und Pflichte ausgehandelt und aneinander gekoppelt werden — bedeuten. Passen mir die Konditionen nicht, finde ich vielleicht einen anderen Anbieter, der mir bessere bietet, oder ich kann nachverhandeln und in der Hoffnung auf bessere Konditionen z.
Die Entscheidung liegt also dezentral bei den unterschiedlichen Konsumentinnen bzw. Ich setze einfach auf dem aktuellen Stand der Wikipedia auf und erstelle durch meine Arbeit einen neuen Stand. Noch schwieriger wird es, wenn das Gut oder seine Vorprodukte nicht lange haltbar sind oder wenn Lebewesen im Produktionsprozess eine Rolle spielen. Somit muss man als Nutzer nur dem Kernteam bzw.
Support, Geld verdienen. Wer selbst nicht programmieren oder in anderer Weise beitragen kann, ist weniger interessant. Ein Softwareprojekt kann die entwickelte Software in ihrer jeweils aktuellen Version allen Interessenten zum Download anbieten. Geld als Selbstzweck, dessen Vermehrung und Maximierung alle und alles untergeordnet werden, aber nicht. Voriger Artikel: Verteilung ohne Geld? Zuhause essen kochen oder die Kinder ins Bett bringen ist in diesem Sinne ebenso Produktion wie das Installieren einer Software auf einem Computer oder die Herstellung des Computer.
Kratzwald Wikipedia: Dunbar-Zahl. Meiner Ansicht nach ist das kein Zufall. So treffen sich bei Bieterrunden alle Solawi-Mitglieder face-to-face und gehen erst dann wieder auseinander, wenn alle erwarteten Kosten aufgeteilt wurden. Die Frage stellt sich dann, ob eine Gegenseitigkeit Gegenleistung explizit vereinbart, implizit erwartet oder gar nicht erwartet wird.
Explizit vereinbarte Gegenseitigkeit ist der im Kapitalismus vorherrschende Modus — hier einigen sich zwei Parteien auf einen Vertrag, der Leistung und Gegenleistung festlegt. Da Rechte und Pflichten meist in Form von Sachleistungen erbracht werden, handelt es sich bei solchen Commonssystemen aber oft um eine Art des geldfreien Wirtschaftens. Die radikalsten Verfechterinnen einer geldfreien Welt gehen davon aus, dass mit diesem zusammen auch jede Form von explizit oder implizit erwarteter Gegenseitigkeit verschwinden wird. Fortsetzung: Stigmergie und Selbstauswahl. Dalton, George Economic Anthropology and Development.
Essays on Tribal and Peasant Economies. New York: Basic Books. Habermann, Friederike Halbinseln gegen den Strom. Kratzwald, Brigitte : Das Ganze des Lebens. Selbstorganisation zwischen Lust und Notwendigkeit. Sulzbach Taunus : Ulrike Helmer. Siefkes, Christian : Beitragen statt tauschen. Voriger Artikel: Das Geld, eine historische Anomalie? Sie hat seit dem Erscheinen des Homo Sapiens vor ca. Andererseits umfasst sie die extrem ausdifferenzierte Arbeitsteilung, die zahlreiche unterschiedliche Berufe hervorgebracht hat. Gleichzeitig spielt Geld eine essenzielle Rolle im Produktionsprozess: Firmen produzieren, um Profite zu machen, d.
Geld in mehr Geld zu verwandeln, und Menschen gehen gegen Bezahlung arbeiten — sie verkaufen ihre Arbeitskraft oder manchmal deren Resultate an Firmen oder manchmal Privatpersonen. Wenn stattdessen jeder Mensch subjektiv entscheiden kann, handelt es sich um freie Entnahme bzw. Nutzung nach Lust und Laune. Damit diese sich allgemein verbreiten kann, muss sie vielmehr so attraktiv sein, dass sie auch von der Mehrheit der Menschen vorgezogen wird, denen der Kapitalismus noch eine ganz annehmbare Perspektive bietet. Aber da keines dieser Verfahren frei von Nachteilen ist, braucht es dazu eine gesellschaftliche Debatte.
Aber geht das, ohne dass man sich damit die gesamten Nachteile und Ausgrenzungen des kapitalistischen Verwertungsprozesses einhandelt? Heidenreich, Stefan im Erscheinen : Geld. Berlin: Merve. Herzig, Thomas Geldlose Gesellschaft — Alternative zum Kapitalismus mit Verfallsdatum?
Sulzbach Taunus : Helmer. Demonetize it! Planet Demonetization. Archive for keimform. Peer-commonist produced livelihoods [Article in: Ruivenkamp, G. Commons as an elementary social form Although the commodity form seems to be so dominant, even now, in advanced, post industrial countries, less than a half of societal reproduction in a broad sense is realised through paid work.
Exclusion logics vs. Commons and peer-commonist society Division of commons The commons may be divided into traditional commons — the survivors of the ongoing process of enclosure, understood as the separation of the people from their resources and transformation of these and also human activities into commodities, as outlined see also Holloway, — and new or emerging commons — often related but not limited to digital or cultural resources, where these resources are the results of peer production as defined by three aspects: contribution as opposed to exchange , free cooperation instead of command and control and possession rather than property see Siefkes, Societal mediation A society is an intangible entity, but one that can be conceptually reconstructed.
Polycentric self-organisation Commons are mainly perceived as a local phenomenon. The mission of project commons is doing : implementing the self-determined tasks of production and reproduction. These include the production of goods food, shelter, transport infrastructure, etc. The analogy for the current situation is obviously the private enterprise and public service sectors.
The mission of meta-commons is coordination. These create the preconditions for project commons and coordinate their activities, but are only required for fields where the number of commons is too large for them to coordinate themselves. Meta-commons are a kind of outsourced commons for special tasks of coordination, much as we have today in management or planning units in companies or public administrations.
The mission of infrastructure commons is networking. These provide network services for project and meta-commons. They are infrastructures for data as well as for material flows. This might also include distribution pools for some common goods that are no longer sold but simply provided.
Commons institutions focus on the durability of services. They provide ongoing social services mainly, but not only for local communities like local governments today. Focus-shift of actions Assuming a free society based on commons with voluntariness and openness already enables the drawing of some conclusions. Stigmergy Stigmergy is a type of self-coordination in large, decentralised systems through local information: Stigmergy is a mechanism of indirect coordination between agents or actions.
Some doubts considered Various concerns may be raised questioning whether stigmergy is really capable of replacing capitalist categories of mediation money etc. Transformation After developing a categorical skeleton of a peer-commonist society, the logical next step is to discuss how to get there. Embryonic form. A new function appears. In this phase the new function must not be understood as a rich seed encapsulating all the properties of the final entity and which only has to grow. Rather, in this phase, the embryonic form shows only principles of the new, but it is not the new itself.
Thus, commons-based peer production is not the new itself, but the qualitatively new aspect it shows is the needs-oriented mediation between peers based on voluntariness and openness. During the initial phase, this is visible only at a local level and a few fields at the global level.
This occurs only if the old system falls into a crisis as a whole and is no longer able to maintain the system functions; only then can the embryonic form leave its niche. The capitalist way of societal production and mediation via commodities, markets, capital and state has brought mankind into a deep crisis.
It has entered a phase of successive degradation and exhaustion of historically accumulated system resources. The recurring financial crises and developing ecological danger make this apparent. Function shift. The new function grows, leaves its niche, and gains relevance for the reproduction of the old system. The former embryonic form is now double-faced: on the one hand, it can be used for the sake of the old system, while on the other its own logic remains incompatible with the logic of the dominant old system.
Peer-commons production may be utilised for the purposes of cost savings and the creation of new environments for commercial activities, but it rests upon non-commodity development within its own activities. Co-optation and absorption into normal commodity-producing cycles become possible De Angelis, , therefore; so only if peer production is able to defend its own commons-based principles and abilities to create networks on this ground will the next step be reached.
Free Software is one example of peer-commons production that is quite clearly at this stage; Open Hardware is currently at the point where it is just about to leave its niches. Dominance shift. The new function becomes prevalent. The old function does not disappear immediately, but steps back as the previously dominant function to marginal domains. Peer- commons production reaches a network density on a global level, so that input—output links are closed to self-contained loops. Separated private production with subsequent market mediation using money is no longer required.
Needs-based stigmergic mediation organises production and distribution. The entire system has now qualitatively changed its character. The direction of development, the backbone structures and the basic functional logics have changed. This process embraces more and more societal fields, which refocus towards the new needs-based mode of societal mediation. The state is stripped down and new institutions emerge that no longer have the uniform state character, but are means of collective Selbstentfaltung.
New contradictions may emerge, and a new cycle of development may begin. Practical application Having developed a categorical framework of a free peer-commons society, a peer-commons modelling stigmergy and now the five-step analysis of a transitional path, we need to conclude with concrete examples of peer-commons production today.
Conclusions In this chapter, I have tried to argue for a categorical shift away from an emancipatory approach within the framework of the categories of a commodity-producing society towards an approach that transcends these categories by creating a new mode of producing our livelihood. Acknowledgements Special thanks to Pauline Schwarze and Andy Hilton for their valuable editing support. Negative Dialectics. New York: Seabury Press. Crack Capitalism. Literatur Le Goff, Jacques. Geld im Mittelalter. Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta. From: keimform. Verzicht auf jede Erwartung von Gegenseitigkeit wie bei Hobbyproduktion und digitalen Commons.
Ostrom, Elinor : Die Verfassung der Allmende. Zuhause essen kochen oder die Kinder ins Bett bringen ist […] From: keimform. Verteilung ohne Geld?