Marcel Reich-Ranicki, Literary Critic, Wagnerian, Dies Aged 93

Written By The Wagnerian on Thursday, 19 September 2013 | 11:07:00 am

Marcel Reich-Ranicki ;(2 June 1920 – 18 September 2013) was a Jewish Polish-born German literary critic and member of the literary group Gruppe 47. He was regarded as one of the most influential contemporary literary critics in the field of German literature and has often been called the "Pope of Literature" ("Literaturpapst") in Germany.

“The biggest anti-Semite in the history of German culture was Richard Wagner,” And the greatest opera I know is his ‘Tristan and Isolde.’ Marcel Reich-Ranicki
"Of course, Wagner's opera texts are of varying quality. I have little sympathy for the libretto of "Lohengrin", still less for the "Siegfried" and absolutely none for "Parsifal". Although the story of Tannhauser has always interested me
 

But none of Wagner's work fascinates me as much as "Meistersinger" - since my youth. This is an urban fairy tale and a poetic dream and at the same time an opera about the arts and literature, even the the literary life itself. A mediation upon modern art and modern literature. That had never happened before "Die Meistersinger": an opera that not only illustrates and discusses social issues, but also the aesthetic - how poetry and polemics condition each other and form a unit. Marcel Reich-Ranicki (poor translation via TW)"