Tuesday, 11 February 2014

study-hall oder archetype

One forgets, sometimes, how Wikipedia, and earlier with bibliomancy at the library or with encyclopedia articles, can be a digest for the curious.

Recently, one of its featured entries invited visitors to learn more about an auditorium, an art deco masterpiece, and research centre called the Atlantis House (Atlantis Haus, more historical photographs hier) in Bremen built during the interbellum years by an accomplished architect at the behest of a wealthy coffee-magnate.  The businessman was himself entranced by the theories of the ethnographer who would go on to found the Ahnenerbe Society. This group conducted expeditions, sponsored by the Nazi regime, to explore mythological and ideological links, mostly constructing specious and affirming connections. The function of this institution was to promote the theory that the Germanic race issued from a now sunken continent in the North Sea and were responsible for creating the continuum of civilisation that we've inherited from Mesopotamia. I wonder what sort of lectures were delivered there. I still recall vividly the feeling on learning that Hollywood treatments like the sagas of Indiana Jones and Hellboy were not without some basis in reality. That's a strange sort of legitimising to assume for one's posture.