Tehran session to discuss connections between Walter Benjamin, Bertolt Brecht

July 10, 2019

TEHRAN – A number of Iranian scholars and artists will come together in a meeting at Tehran’s City Theater Complex on Friday to discuss the influences German philosopher Walter Benjamin and German playwright Bertolt Brecht have on each other’s works. 

Iranian scholars Morad Farhadpur, Reza Sarvar, Nima Isapur and stage director and playwright Mohammad Rezairad are scheduled to give lectures during the session entitled “Walter Benjamin, Bertolt Brecht and All the Angels of the History”. 

In addition, “The Angel of the History”, a play that is currently on stage at the Charsu Hall of the complex, will be reviewed during the session. 

Rezairad is the writer and director of the play, which is about the last night of the life of Benjamin, who killed himself while fleeing Europe to the U.S. in 1940.

Milad Rahimi, Reza Behbudi, Baran Kosari, Milad Shajareh and Sina Karami are the main members of the cast for the play, which will remain on stage until July 19. 

Benjamin was an acclaimed critic, a literary theorist and an eclectic thinker. Among his best-known works are the essays “The Task of the Translator”, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” and “Theses on the Philosophy of History”.

Brecht was one of the twentieth century’s most influential theater artists. He was the main proponent of the genre named epic theater. Among his credits are the plays “Life of Galileo”, “Hangmen Also Die”, “Don Juan” and “The Seven Deadly Sins”.

Benjamin and Brecht met each other when they were both in exile during the Nazi period and World War II. It seems the friendship between the two artists had shaped their thoughts and writings. 

Photo: A poster for the meeting “Walter Benjamin, Bertolt Brecht and All the Angels of the History”.