Tales of Mr Keuner
Bertolt Brecht and ULF K.
Translated by James Reidel
What are you doing here, Keuner?’
‘I am very troubled. I am preparing for my next mistake,’ answered Mr K.
From the 1920s to the 1950s, Bertolt Brecht wrote a number of short, fictionalized comments on contemporary life, politics and thought. Through the dramatic events of the first half of the twentieth century, Brecht’s Mr Keuner offered up aphorisms, stray thoughts and fragments of anecdote that punctured contemporary self-regard about religion, politics, business and more. Deceptively light in tone, and bite-size in presentation, Mr Keuner’s comments bring Brecht’s lacerating wit to bear on a wide range of the half-truths and public lies of his era.
This graphic-novel adaptation sets a number of Brecht’s Mr Keuner pieces, newly translated, alongside cartoons by German artist Ulf K., whose spare, abstract style lends force to the underlying meanings of Keuner’s pronouncements.