Discuss the theme of Class Consciousness in play Life of Galileo.
It is human nature to change and progress- in a very few societies in modern world has equilibrium been maintained as Karl Marx said “The history of all hither to existing societies is the history of class struggle” (Engels, Marx 7). In mid-1930’s, Europe was undergoing significant change. Legal, social and political traditions were being swept away by the onslaught of totalitarianism. Governments were introducing policies of restricting individual freedom and seeking to subordinate all the aspects of the individual’s life to the political ideology of the time.
Brecht through literature sought not to provide accurate images but, instead, provoked changes and to encourage thought and evaluation.
Life of Galileo is a play although being set in past concentrates on presenting contemporary implications and consequences of the remarkable account of the struggle between Galileo’s scientific discoveries and the extraordinary power and influence of Catholic Church. Brecht concentrates and distils his experiences and basic issues of the generation from the first World War and its dilemmas facing a sensitive and passionate personality in the age of declining faith; the dangers that beset an artist whose indignation about the social evils of his society drives him into the arms of political and theoretical difficulties encountered by a rigidly authoritarian society leaving the choice between lavishly subsidized but severely restricted working conditions in a communist state on one hand and the limitation on the individual imposed upon him by free but commercial society, Brecht shed a light on all this issue and exemplifies Galileo as a genius artist with new ideas, and has potential for new age to dawn confronting the forces of Church and Aristocracy with rigid doctrine and old ideas.
Throughout the play, Galileo sustained his belief in mankind’s sense of reason. He perceived that our innate...