Obviously, one takes interesting ideas wherever one finds them, but at the same time you don’t expect to see an intriguing distinction about worldviews in an article on the German love of volksmusic – which, to an outsider, seems to be all lederhosen and accordions, which maybe is why it doesn’t travel well.

Nonetheless, in trying to explain its popularity, Hans Beierlein, who has grown rich from his work in popularising volksmusic in Germany, came up with a fascinating distinction:

“It’s music that sings not of a heile Welt [an ideal world – a central concept of Nazi thinking], but of a heilbare Welt – a curable world, in which there is hope that order can be restored.”

Not to make too much of it, but it had resonances for me of the underlying philosophy which the Austrian activist Robert Jungk brought to the development of his futures workshops; of giving people the opportunity of repairing the damaged world they found themselves in.

Advertisements