Friday, October 15, 2010

Thomas Mann, The Magic Mountain: "Politically Suspect", Hippe", "Analysis"

Hans' first Sunday is one of the fortnightly Sunday band days -- one of the regular variations in the sanatorium routine that Hans is beginning to discover. Settembrini is late, and Hans chides him. Settembrini responds that he is suspicious of music, because it only stimulates emotions, while words alone can convey reason. Joachim responds that he is grateful for music because it breaks up and organizes time. Settembrini that music can in fact enliven us to the passage of time, but then he says it has the tendency to do the opposite -- to deaden us, to encourage quietism -- and thus he calls it 'politically suspect.'

Monday brings another variation: Krokowski's psychoanalytic lectures on love and sickness. In the morning before the lecture, Hans takes a long, singing hike through the hills -- which proves too much for him. He is exhausted and coughs up blood. He has to take a long, delirious rest before returning to the sanatorium. He daydreams about Pribislav Hippe, a schoolmate who had been a two-year preoccupation is his youth. Hippe's 'Kirghiz' eyes are the hidden memory of which Madame Chauchat reminded Hans.

Hans arrives to Krokowski lecture just after the start -- and finds himself behind Madame Chauchat and her distracting back and arm. The theme of the lecture: suppressed love reappears as illness.

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