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"The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom
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Author:  Murrill [ Mon Jun 27, 2011 7:49 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

I thought that Knecht's expedited admission to the Order was interesting. Conspiracy theories abound: Were they trying to silence him? Did they just want him isolated? It was foreboding, I thought.

I hope we can jump-start this discussion. There does not seem to be a very much participation, and I began to wonder if I was too "vocal." This is my first discussion on this site, so I don't have any real basis for comparison.

Author:  hesse [ Mon Jun 27, 2011 8:12 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

Murrill, I think some of the 'lurkers' have benefited from your discussion points...fire away!!!

Author:  lindad_amato [ Tue Jun 28, 2011 4:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

Murrill,
Keep up the good input. I think perhaps we are just seeing some folks opting out of this one for the Summer.

I liked your comment on Knecht's acceptance to the Castalia schools. I thought perhaps he was wanted because he was an orphan and could be molded to the life with no interference from the outside world. However, as we see in Ch. 3, the leaders of the Order did not count on K's inquisitiveness. He took his Years of Freedom to study the history of the Game extensively and to question it. In this chapter we see him questioning the Order as he did not do when he defended it to Plinio.

Author:  Murrill [ Tue Jun 28, 2011 7:04 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

I wonder if the Order has created a monster? Of course, this story is being told in retrospect, so I assume that Castalia, the Game, etc has survived into 2400-2500 AD.
I think DL Hesse mentioned earlier that it seemed Knecht was made for this, and it seems that he was. But his curiosity is taking him into forbidden places. I look forward to seeing him develop.

Author:  hesse [ Tue Jun 28, 2011 8:40 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

All I'm gonna say is that your instincts are true.....read on!

Author:  Robert Tulip [ Wed Jun 29, 2011 6:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: "The Glass Bead Game", Chapter 3, Years of Freedom

The beginning of Chapter Three presents Hesse's idyllic ideal of university undergraduate life as a time of freedom in which students can find themselves. He comments that Joseph Knecht was not driven by a single talent to a specialty, but his nature rather aimed at integration, synthesis and universality, making his springtide of free study a period of intense happiness. Hesse says that the order of Castalia allows this freedom, suggesting it as an ideal compared to the shoals of untrammeled dilettantism caused by a failure of effective grounding in good secondary education and, he says, meditation.

The idea of Castalia is perfect order, built on understanding of how to develop the mind in community. By contrast, the imperfect community of our current world is the object of Hesse's scorn, as producing Faustian brilliant amateurism and resulting tragedy, and presenting numerous risks of wasted opportunity. The structured freedom of Castalia is designed to enable the flowering of potential.

Knecht is both the highest product of this system and the one who reveals its flaws, a creative genius who, as the book unfolds, is unwilling to be trammeled by the lack of vision of potential change that is inherent in any hierarchy where tradition and authority are governing principles.

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