Blog-Post February 2024

Dear readers of my blog,

a Happy New Year to all of you even though it is very late in the day to mention this. Last year the calendar for 2024 went into print in September, and everything seemed to run smoothly, but then, on 7 October 2023, just five days after it had been delivered, the attack on Israel changed everything. Since then, I have only been able to relay political posts to friends privately, asking them to sign petitions, and asking people to donate, engaging in private political exchanges.

While I am aware that the German government has been in a double bind as to Israel and the cause of the Palestinians, something that ought to have been resolved a long time ago – in 1972, that is – my own stance is clear. Anybody who sets out to exterminate people, let alone a people, cannot expect to receive my support.

If there are even academic efforts to support this sort of antisemitism, such as on the part of the once elected but never since then re-elected president who even spoke in that vein in the Federal Press Conference at Berlin without being called to task by his host, then I consider it my duty to call these academic efforts political propaganda in disguise of the worst sort. And having studied German history all my life, I can tell you I know but what this is about both in public and in private.

At the same time when I wanted to pursue my studies of Wilde, preparing another calendar or recording the texts for the website, it was German politics that captured my attention both in my official functions and at home. Asked by students why they had to study such a difficult topic as antisemitism at a time of crisis I could only answer that having done so in a niche for twenty years I cannot refrain from doing so now when its worst repercussions can be felt in public discourse and in the streets of Germany. They did well since as young people they are still used to talking topics systematically, while the general public at large as well as the larger political community seem to have unlearned that art of structured debate where you choose your words well to win the argument while respecting your opposite number.

So this year’s calendar is going to be presented online in words and in the collage work by Ulrich Hoepfner. For those of you who like to listen to such calendars or the posts read out to them, they must accept, for the time being, to follow the automatic voice once again. I am very sorry, but at the moment there is so much to do that even writing this post requires extra time, and I am very glad to have it today. If someone else wanted to record the texts of this year’s calendar, however, I would be very glad to help in preparing the recordings and having them uploaded as well.

All best wishes,

Jörg W. Rademacher, 5 February 2024

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