Bertolt Brecht (1898 - 1956 )

German literature: Berthold Brecht Bertolt Brecht, Foto: Suhrkamp Verlag

Together with colleagues (Max Reinhardt, Helen Weigel, Kurt Weill, etc.) Brecht set out to reform German theatre and to adapt it to his political needs.

In his eyes theatre ought to confront social problems rather than escape them. In his literary and theoretical work Brecht defined the outlines of Epic theatre which suited his political ideas.

Important examples are 'Mother Courage and her Children', 'The Good Woman of Setzuan' and 'The Three Penny Opera'. His poetry, too, promotes communist ideals.

During WW II he wandered through Europe and finally settled in the United States. As a result of his communist ideas as reflected in 'Galileo' he decided to return to Europe and moved to the German Democratic Republic to finally live according to his political principles.