LifeToller is born in Samotschin, in the province of Posen, at the time in Prussia, today in Poland, 1893. With the release of the First World War, it engages like volunteer in the army, fights thirteen months on the face of the west, before undergoing a physical and moral collapse. Its first drama, Transformation ( Die Wandlung ), is directly inspired by these experiments of war.
Toller interferes in 1919 with the République with the Councils Munich with other anarchistic figures , like B. Traven, Minister-President Kurt Eisner and Gustav Landauer, and of the communist . This republic has a short existence, before being demolished by the forces reactionaries. It is stopped for its participation in the revolution.
During its imprisonment, it completes Transformation , which is played for the first time at Berlin in September 1919, on a setting into scene of Karlheinz Martin. For the 100e of Transformation , the Bavarian government offers its forgiveness to Toller, which rejects it, in solidarity with the other political prisoners. Toller wrote the majority of its more famous texts in prison, in particular the dramas the man of the masses ( Masse Mensch ), the Breakers of machine ( Die Maschinenstürmer ), Hinkemann, the German ( DER deutsche Hinkemann ) and many poems. He does not see any of his parts before his widening, in July 1925. This year, most famous of its dramas, Hoppla, we are alive! ( Hoppla, to wir Leben! ), put in scene by Erwin Piscator, is played Berlin. It is the history of a revolutionist who, after having spent eight years in a psychiatric hospital, discovers that his/her former comrades became sufficient and hopelessly compromised themselves with the system to which they were opposite. Out of despair, it commits suicide.
In 1933, being in Germany, Toller is stopped by the Nazis, experiment painful: “It was terrible and inhuman. The guards forced me to almost swallow a whole volume of my last books. ” After these tortures, it is exiled of Germany. Its citizenship is cancelled by the government National-Socialist with the end of the year. It leaves to London and takes part as ropelayer in scene with the production of its part Retire firebrands of fire ( Feuer aus den Kesseln ) to Manchester in 1935. It engages conference series with the the United States and the Canada in 1936-1937, before settling in California, where it works with scenarios which are not produced. Toller settles in 1936 with New York, where he lives in the middle of a group of artists and writers in exile like Klaus and Erika Mann, Therese Giehse… Enfoncé in a deep depression (his wife left it for another man) and of the money worries (he gave all his money to the refugees of the Guerre of Spain), he hangs himself in his hotel room on May 22nd, 1939.
- Die Wandlung , 1919
- Mass Mensch , 1921
- Die Maschinenstürmer , 1922
- Hinkemann (at the origin DER deutsche Hinkemann ), Uraufführung September 19th 1923
- Hoppla, to wir leben , 1927
- Feuer aus den Kesseln , 1930
- Eine Jugend in Deutschland , 1933 (Autobiography), Amsterdam
- Briefe aus dem Gefängnis , 1935, Amsterdam
- I has German , 1934, (Autobiography), New York
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