Bertolt Brecht

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Bertolt Brecht, secretary (right of Brecht) and child bride (lower right) at Workers of the World Unite rally, 1937

Bertolt Brecht (10 February 1898 – 14 August 1956) is still dead. Before he died, he became known as a German poet, playwright, and theatre director. He was also known variously as Berthold, Bertie, and that dirty, lying, filthy, two-timing, commie bastard. In the German language, "brecht" is the imperative form of "brechen" (to vomit), which explains the origin of his last name.


The earliest plays for which Brecht is credited--Bail (about the dedicated men and women who put up the cash when the dirty, rotten, lying, totalitarian, capitalist police want to throw you in jail), Drums in the Nighty (about a pair of knockers in a nightgown), Mahogany or Maybe Some Nice Knotty Pine, and In the Jungle of the Cities (companion piece to the lost masterwork Monkeys are People, Too)--were written by Brecht. Then he underwent an enlightenment, embraced the ideals of the Pinko Commie Revolutionaries, and conceived the notion of the writing collective. As he was quoted at the time, "Commie chicks are not only hot in bed, they're not interested in petty, crass bourgeois concerns like artistic credit and royalties. Hey, good deal! I think I'm on to something here! Workers of the world unite!" Two of the important works of his writing collective period are Mother Discourage and Mann Ist Mann Unless He's Transgendered, in Which Case I'm Not So Sure.

In his lifetime, the only American production over which Brecht exercised any semblance of control was of his Galileo (not to be confused with the real Galileo who was really a much taller man). Some of the pearls of wisdom that most often appear in dramatic arts graduate program honors seminar essay tests were produced by the irritation this artist felt in being forced to work with the philistines of Hollywood in an attempt to achieve his artistic vision. For decades, dedicated theater scholars have pondered the meaning of "Libel Schmibel. The dead can't sue." "If only Galileo had stood to his principles and let the pope burn him at the stake, scientists would not have built the atomic bomb. The big wuss." "Hey, Laughton! Dummscheiss! You're on! Get your hand out of your pants!"

Things Brecht did[edit]

Submit to Hollywood a proposal for a script about a baker who heroically, against the evil forces of capitalist America, persisted in baking loaves of bread that--inexplicably--was rejected by those no good, money-grubbing studio moguls ("Workers of the world unite!")

Candidly and openly profess in his testimony to HUAC complete ignorance about and uninvolvement with the Communist party

Leave the U.S. after his HUAC testimony to run a theater group in Communist East Berlin

Things Brecht did after he died[edit]

He was also the art director for the Linkin Park video "What I've Done," from the 2007 album Minutes to Midnight. Fans dispute this fact, and like to claim that Bertie did not actually have any artistic talent to contribute to the clip. Most fans claim the artistic direction was actually done by Brecht's father, Constantin Stanislavski.

Things Brecht did not do[edit]

Write The Three Penny Opera

Discover Peter Lorre


More Famous Quotes[edit]

"Copyright? That's just a dirty, rotten, lying, totalitarian, capitalist plot designed to deny a revolutionary artist such as myself his moral right to take other people's stories and put his name on them! Workers of the world unite!"

"Bertolt Brecht, Ruth Berlau, Elizabeth Hauptmann--what does it matter who really wrote this play and whose name goes on it? To be completely fair and unbiased, let's just go with, hmm, I know--the person whose first name starts with the earliest letter in the alphabet. Workers of the world unite!"

"Did anyone see where I put my cigars?"

"Soap? That's just a dirty, rotten, filthy, totalitarian, capitalist plot! Workers of the world unite!"

"Fidelity? That's just a dirty, rotten, filthy, totalitarian, capitalist plot! Workers of the world unite!"

"You call it bad, unbelievable acting; poorly motivated, unconvincing characters; overlit, annoying, uninvolving staging. Are you so bourgeois that you are incapable of understanding the intellectual concepts of modern epic theater? I give you alienation effects; a righteous, moral attempt to not lull the audience into feeling that horrifying, dangerous emotion empathy; a way to make hot chicks feel dumb so they look up to you and are more willing to go to bed with you. Yeah, it's a sure thing. Trust me on this one. Workers of the world unite!"

Now I Must Eat.