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Chapter 7 of the Exhibition Catalogue GOLEM: Introduction

Martina Lüdicke

The golem figure is frequently associated with the many-faceted motif of the doppelgänger: the golem as a simplified image of a human being, as an alter ego that gives form to hidden longings.

Jacob Grimm’s retelling of the golem legend in the Zeitschrift für Einsiedler in 1908 introduced the authors of German Romanticism to the golem. The Romantic authors used doppelgängers, human-like dolls, and automata to address the spiritual abysses and desires that stood in opposition to the disenchanted world of rationality.

Encounters with the doppelgänger forced human beings to confront the uncanny sides of their psyche. These literary, artistic metaphors were further developed in the concepts of psychoanalysis. Artists and authors combined their presentations of the golem with the notion of the doppelgänger, in order to paint an enigmatic, ambiguous picture of creator and creation. The self-portrait has remained a popular genre for portraying a doppelgänger.

Citation recommendation:

Martina Lüdicke (2016), Doppelgänger. Chapter 7 of the Exhibition Catalogue GOLEM: Introduction.

Golem als Actionfigur (Ausschnitt)

Online Edition of the GOLEM Catalog: Table of Contents

The Golem in Berlin – introduction by Peter Schäfer
Chapter 1
The Golem Lives On – introduction by Martina Lüdicke
My Light is Your Life – by Anna Dorothea Ludewig
Avatars – by Louisa Hall
The Secret of the Cyborgs – by Caspar Battegay
Chapter 2
Jewish Mysticism – introduction by Emily D. Bilski
Golem Magic – by Martina Lüdicke
Golem, Language, Dada – by Emily D. Bilski
Chapter 3
Transformation – introduction by Emily D. Bilski
Jana Sterbak’s Golem: Objects as Sensations – by Rita Kersting
Crisálidas (Chrysalises) – by Jorge Gil
Rituals – by Christopher Lyon
A Golem that Ended Well – by Emily D. Bilski
On the Golem – by David Musgrave
Louise Fishman’s Paint Golem – by Emily D. Bilski
Chapter 4
Legendary Prague – introduction by Martina Lüdicke
Golem Variations – by Peter Schäfer
Rabbi Loew’s Well-Deserved Bath – by Harold Gabriel Weisz Carrington
Chapter 5
Horror and Magic – introduction by Martina Lüdicke
Golem and a Little Girl – by Helene Wecker
The Golem with a Group of Children Dancing – by Karin Harrasser
Bringing the Film Set To Life – by Anna-Carolin Augustin
Golem and Mirjam – by Cathy S. Gelbin
Chapter 6
Out of Control – introduction by Emily D. Bilski
Golem—Man Awakened with Glowing Hammer – by Arno Pařík
Dangerous Symbols – by Charlotta Kotik
Be Careful What You Wish For – by Marc Estrin
Chapter 7
Current page: Doppelgänger – introduction by Martina Lüdicke
From the Golem-Talmud – by Joshua Cohen
Kitaj’s Art Golem – by Tracy Bartley
The Golem as Techno-Imagination? – by Cosima Wagner
See also
GOLEM – 2016, online edition with selected texts of the exhibition catalog
GOLEM – 2016, complete printed edition of the exhibition catalog, in German
Golem. From Mysticism to Minecraft – Online Feature, 2016
GOLEM – exhibition, 23 Sep 2016 to 29 Jan 2017

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