“Material Madchen”: I read “The Artificial Silk Girl”

at AmCon:

I picked up Irmgard Keun’s 1932 novel The Artificial Silk Girl at the Neue Galerie in New York, basically on a whim. It promised to be a dizzying tour of Weimar Berlin, last call before Hell and all that, from the perspective of a young, single woman whom the introduction compares to Madonna’s “Material Girl.”

Certainly our heroine, Doris, is materialistic in a certain sense. She pays her bills by dating men. Her closest relationship is with her stolen fur coat. (The letter she writes to the coat’s rightful owner is a terrific, tilt-a-whirl study in ambivalent amends.) But she isn’t hard-headed; her desires are a collage of sentiment and hunger. She maintains her girlish figure easily, since throughout most of the novel she can’t actually afford food.

more

"I lived and worked in the UK. Sure I received “free healthcare.” There, hospitals are ..."

This is the only thing I ..."
"Sounds great! Needed a picture!"

Kitchen adventures: ginger-peachy!
"Great idea! The comment box can be toxic to your peace of mind.*chuckles that I'm ..."

Housekeeping: Make me do things!
""We’re the people of St Francis and St Joan, not Ken and Barbie." Well said ..."

Butch and Femme Metaphors in the ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!