February 1, 2020

February 1913 - Chronicles Of The Year Before The Great War

Woolworth building
Grand Central terminal
According to Florian Illies's 1913 - The Year Before The Storm, just a day
before Valentine's day 1913, Professor Rudolf Steiner gives a lecture, in which he talks of the impending doom he senses, but attenuated by a feeling of hope for new things to spring after:

For in those dying forces we finally sense, even see, the forces preparing themselves for the future, and in the sunset, the promise and hope of a new dawn moves closer to us. Our souls must always respond to human evolution in such a way that we tell ourselves: All progress is so. When what we have created turns to ruin, we know that out of those ruins, new life will blossom forth.

But was Steiner aware of the heavy sacrifices humanity would have to bear for this new era to come forth? 

In other news, in February 1913 Stalin returns (illegally) to Russia, undercover as a woman, only to be captured in St. Petersburg and subsequently exiled to Siberia; the Woolworth building in NYC is completed, the first building to beat the Eiffel tower in height; the Central Station in NYC is also finished; artists are turning more and more towards the abstract; Arnold Schönberg has his Gurrelieder performed, which includes 5 vocalists, 3 4-part male choirs, and a 150-piece orchestra; Charles Fabry is about to discover the ozone layer; and in Vienna, a real Beauty and the Beast scenario unfolds with the intense (though short-lived) romance between reputedly beautiful Alma Mahler and the supposed ugliest of painters Oskar Kokoschka.
Alma Mahler and Kokoschka
as painted by the artist