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Auction archive: Lot number 205

EINSTEIN, Albert. Typed letter signed ("A.Einstein") to Johann Twersky of Hebrew Teacher's College in Roxbury, Massachusetts, Princeton, N.J., 2 February 1943. 1 full page, 4to, single-spaced, top edge slightly browned , otherwise in good condition. ...

Auction 19.05.2000
19 May 2000
Estimate
US$6,000 - US$8,000
Price realised:
US$5,875
Auction archive: Lot number 205

EINSTEIN, Albert. Typed letter signed ("A.Einstein") to Johann Twersky of Hebrew Teacher's College in Roxbury, Massachusetts, Princeton, N.J., 2 February 1943. 1 full page, 4to, single-spaced, top edge slightly browned , otherwise in good condition. ...

Auction 19.05.2000
19 May 2000
Estimate
US$6,000 - US$8,000
Price realised:
US$5,875
Beschreibung:

EINSTEIN, Albert. Typed letter signed ("A.Einstein") to Johann Twersky of Hebrew Teacher's College in Roxbury, Massachusetts, Princeton, N.J., 2 February 1943. 1 full page, 4to, single-spaced, top edge slightly browned , otherwise in good condition. In German. EINSTEIN'S RECOLLECTIONS OF RATHENAU, JEWISH FOERIGN MINISTER OF THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC A remarkable letter containing Einstein's rambling reminiscences of Walther Rathenau (1867-1922), son of a noted industrialist, and director of war procurement for Germany during World War I. Later, Rathenau, a moderate, had served in Germany's first post-war cabinet and attended the Cannes Conference in 1922, where he secured a reduction in war reparations; in 1922, he was named foreign minister and signed the Rapallo Treaty with Russia, but was assassinated by reactionaries. Einstein recalls: "I spent many hours on many occasions with Rathenau and discussed many subjects with him. The conversations were to some extent one-sided. He spoke and most of the time I listened. For one thing, it was not so easy to register my opinions, and secondly, listening was so pleasant that one didn't make any real effort. Rathenau's real interests weren't in the field of exact scientific thought. He was primarily interested in problems of society and all kinds of art. His affections were contradictory. He regarded himself as a Jew, thought internationally, and at the same time, by the way, like quite a few gifted Jewish intellectuals of that generation, was in love with Prussianism ['Preussentum'], with its Junkers and military caste." "To Zionism he was decidedly opposed. He regarded the Palestinian project as economically unwholesome, as more sentiment than substantive political reality ["realpolitisch fundiert"]. In my opinion his judgement was not impartial, but influenced by this feeling of inferiority that the Germans were able to inspire in even the strongest personalities among the German Jews. He also used the argument that it was foolish to try to lead the Jews back to a spiritless agricultural and manual labor, after they had reached through the hard work of so many centuries such a high degree of intellectuality. Rathenau tried to persuade me, at that time, after the war, to accept a really risky invitation to Paris. On that occasion I clearly saw how far remote he was from the narrow-minded, nationalistic political attitudes of almost any other German intellectual whom I got to know a bit better. In spite of this, strangely enough, he was emotionally dependent on the appreciation of those people who stood far beneath him in any human quality. In spite of this strange sort of dependence it pleased him to depict event and persons in a humorous way. Such improvisations were often real works of art in their comical simplicity."

Auction archive: Lot number 205
Auction:
Datum:
19 May 2000
Auction house:
Christie's
New York, Rockefeller Center
Beschreibung:

EINSTEIN, Albert. Typed letter signed ("A.Einstein") to Johann Twersky of Hebrew Teacher's College in Roxbury, Massachusetts, Princeton, N.J., 2 February 1943. 1 full page, 4to, single-spaced, top edge slightly browned , otherwise in good condition. In German. EINSTEIN'S RECOLLECTIONS OF RATHENAU, JEWISH FOERIGN MINISTER OF THE WEIMAR REPUBLIC A remarkable letter containing Einstein's rambling reminiscences of Walther Rathenau (1867-1922), son of a noted industrialist, and director of war procurement for Germany during World War I. Later, Rathenau, a moderate, had served in Germany's first post-war cabinet and attended the Cannes Conference in 1922, where he secured a reduction in war reparations; in 1922, he was named foreign minister and signed the Rapallo Treaty with Russia, but was assassinated by reactionaries. Einstein recalls: "I spent many hours on many occasions with Rathenau and discussed many subjects with him. The conversations were to some extent one-sided. He spoke and most of the time I listened. For one thing, it was not so easy to register my opinions, and secondly, listening was so pleasant that one didn't make any real effort. Rathenau's real interests weren't in the field of exact scientific thought. He was primarily interested in problems of society and all kinds of art. His affections were contradictory. He regarded himself as a Jew, thought internationally, and at the same time, by the way, like quite a few gifted Jewish intellectuals of that generation, was in love with Prussianism ['Preussentum'], with its Junkers and military caste." "To Zionism he was decidedly opposed. He regarded the Palestinian project as economically unwholesome, as more sentiment than substantive political reality ["realpolitisch fundiert"]. In my opinion his judgement was not impartial, but influenced by this feeling of inferiority that the Germans were able to inspire in even the strongest personalities among the German Jews. He also used the argument that it was foolish to try to lead the Jews back to a spiritless agricultural and manual labor, after they had reached through the hard work of so many centuries such a high degree of intellectuality. Rathenau tried to persuade me, at that time, after the war, to accept a really risky invitation to Paris. On that occasion I clearly saw how far remote he was from the narrow-minded, nationalistic political attitudes of almost any other German intellectual whom I got to know a bit better. In spite of this, strangely enough, he was emotionally dependent on the appreciation of those people who stood far beneath him in any human quality. In spite of this strange sort of dependence it pleased him to depict event and persons in a humorous way. Such improvisations were often real works of art in their comical simplicity."

Auction archive: Lot number 205
Auction:
Datum:
19 May 2000
Auction house:
Christie's
New York, Rockefeller Center
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