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Everybody Talks About the Weather . . . We Don't: The Writings of Ulrike Meinhof Kindle Edition

4.2 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Length: 275 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 882 KB
  • Print Length: 275 pages
  • Publisher: Seven Stories Press; Seven Stories Press 1st Ed edition (4 Jan. 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00541YWJU
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #356,737 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is interesting from the point of view of psychology and is glimpse into the world of German politics in the 1960s and 1970s.

I found the writing compelling and intriguing too!
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Format: Paperback
Ulrike Meinhof' book was a very good read and it was nice to re discover her writings. powerful stuff that I found very relevant for these times. Made me want to watch the film and was very emotive.
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Format: Paperback
By pure accident, until recently I left unread the closing notes of Ulrike Meinhoff's daughter and I was quite disturbed by the amount of stupidity in this text. Living my whole life behind The Iron Curtain and knowing very well the communist system and its methods, Ulrike's daughter struggles to prove her mother was a communist for someone like me only looked as an act of insane attempt to prove the unprovable. Hence the editor's note: "This essay was the condition in exchange for the publication rights", a kind of blackmail to me, isn't it? So, do yourself a favour and tear out the pages 256-264, this way you will have an extraordinary body of work of an extraordinary free-minded thinker that lived in post-Nazi Germany.
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Revisiting political literature from the sixties/seventies means a historical excursion where you will discover that some of the texts from Ulrike Meinhof have quite some astonishing relevance for today. However the moral and ethical radicalism of the texts will make you forget that we live and manage our lifes in complex social systems, and political theories and texts should more encompass these complexities. Reading these texts now is a journey back, and not forward.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9623c384) out of 5 stars 6 reviews
29 of 31 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9681660c) out of 5 stars Excellent addition to the canon 29 May 2008
By Richard Huffman - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
"Everybody Talks About the Weather" is an excellent addition to the tiny canon of English Language books about the Baader-Meinhof era that gripped Europe in the late 60s and 1970s. Meinhof, the former star journalist turned left-wing terrorist, has never had an English-language book devoted to her until now.

Karin Bauer, the editor, has constructed an extremely informative work; part of it is composed of an extensive biographic sketch of Meinhof, firmly placing her writings in context. The bulk of the book are translations of 25 or so of her most famous editorial columns from the magazine konkret; editorials written throughout the 60s, prior to her decision to become a terrorist. The book also features an introduction by Nobel-winner Elfriede Jelinek, as well as an afterword by Meinhof's daughter.

It's quite impossible to separate Meinhof the columnist from Meinhof the terrorist; though it is important to make the effort. These columns were written by a politically aware intellectual, mother, and wife, who travelled freely in bourgeois society. They were not written by the most wanted women in Germany, who's face was featured on every lampost and bakery window. Clues to Meinhof's ultimate decision to go underground are everywhere; but these essays were not a progression of arguments towards fighting a global armed revolution. They were penetrating and insightful critiques of a German society that had failed to address it's own latent fascism in the era of the "Economic Miracle."

"Everybody Talks about the Weather" also makes clear something that is often lost when discussing Meinhof: she was an effective, compelling writer. Her writings are infused with a volatile mix of anger and Revolutionary optimism. There is also an ever-present undercurrent of an almost quaint smugness born of an absolute conviction that her worldview was the correct one. Meinhof's observations are typically penetrating and exact. More often than not she provides the instant analysis of events that will eventually become the conventional analysis in years to come. For example, in her essay about the arrests of members of Kommune I in their supposed plan to "bomb" visiting American Vice President Hubert Humphrey with pudding, Meinhof clearly recognized the media opportunties generated by their public demonstrations and the future danger to civil liberties of the coming Emergency Laws. All this at a time when most leftists viewed Kommune I's efforts as a fun "happening" and most on the right viewed it as simply out-of-control youth. Meinhof alone seemed to understand their significance.

"Everybody Talks about the Weather" offers much insight for people interested in one of western society's most important public intellectuals of the last 50 years.
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x963f3e04) out of 5 stars Great Book! 30 Aug. 2010
By Lawrence Gordon Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Everything from the title (taken from one of Ulrike's articles contained in the book) to the afterward is remarkable. As the title makes clear, this is written from the standpoint of "it's time to quit talking and do something!" And as she lived her life, so did Ulrike, one of the most intellectual beings of her, or our, time, she poured out reasoned educated thought onto the page.

The lengthy introduction is indispensable, and sets nicely the stage for the works contained in the book. It is well-balanced, doesn't take sides, and merely provides the reader with a quality background by which to read the next 100 pages of essays from the sixties.

I lived in Germany while the RAF was active and Ulrike was in prison, was in Stockholm when the RAF blew up the German Embassy, and have read widely of that time and place. This is one of the best, and most balanced, accounts of that troubled time. It is a great read - I just wish it were on Kindle as well!
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x96564300) out of 5 stars Still Relevant 29 Nov. 2008
By Aderyn - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I found this book so fascinating on so many levels that I actually had quite a bit of difficulty shaping a review for it. "Everybody Talks About the Weather...We Don't" is the story of Ulrike Meinhof, who has become a cult figure from the radical left of the 1960s-1970s. Included are a preface by Nobel prize winner Elfriede Jelinek, who calls Meinhof "...a historical riddle, and enigmatic woman..."; an introduction by Karin Bauer that comprises nearly half of the book and places Meinhof in historical context; an afterward by Bettina Röhl, Meinhof's daughter, unsympathetic to and critical of Meinhof's place in history; and the book's centerpiece, the writings of Ulrike Meinhof, herself.

Meinhof continued to write after her imprisonment in 1972 for participation in Germany's Red Army Faction, popularly spun (particularly in the American media) as the Baader-Meinhof Gang, but the columns included here stop in 1968. Meinhof had a difficult time in prison, not the least because of health problems that included prior brain surgery, and Bauer indicates that her prison columns tended to be disjointed and poorly done.

However, the importance of Meinhof's writing is not to learn what she thought of prison life or of the developments on the outside while she was locked away. Ulrike Meinhof expressed the frustration of a generation whose critical political and social issues were not of their making. Her writing illustrates how this frustration, and the politicians who refused to address the issues, shaped the transition from protester to terrorist. These could as easily be today's headlines as the last century's.

She calls out the sexism that was as present in the radical movement as everywhere else. Ironically, this even colors our perceptions of Meinhof, who is often criticized for choosing a life of political activity over staying home and raising her children. Ask yourself whether you consider a man a failure if he devotes his life to a political cause, leaving his children to be raised by their mother in his absence. Martin Luther King? Nelson Mandela?

Almost 40 years after Ulrike Meinhof's death, we are still struggling to understand and deal with the circumstances that move people to terrorism. We work to increase voter turnout among young people who shrug off a government that doesn't reflect their issues. Women still try to strike the right balance between raising children and working outside the home and to achieve fair compensation for either choice. Studies today indicate that men do, at best, about 40% of the work of running a home, and incredibly, nearly all of these studies suggest that this disparity is a women's problem, with the best "solution" being for women to adjust their expectations.

The issues explored in "Everybody Talks About the Weather...We Don't" continue to be as relevant and important today as they were more than half a century ago when Ulrike Meinhof was exploring them. Time spent reading this book is time very well invested.
HASH(0x96248cfc) out of 5 stars A Great Contribution to RAF Literature 27 Aug. 2012
By S. J. Boatwright - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The scarcity of quality information on the Badder-Meinhof group/Red Army Faction that is available in English can be quite frustrating to both researchers and those casually interested in the history. Given this fact, "Everybody Talks about the Weather" is an excellent addition to the available literature. Unlike others works on the group and its various members, this entire work comes straight from the mouth of one its most influential members.

Ulrike Meinhof has long stood as an enigma to many in the West who can't wrap their heads around why a successful, middle-class, journalist would help to launch a group of Marxist guerrillas. This work should clear up much of the speculation that currently circulates. Meinhof's hostility to bourgeois values, the Vietnam war, and Germany's failure to come to terms with the legacy of National Socialism is clear throughout the entirety of her pre-RAF journalism. Furthermore, her unapologetic support for the student movement shows early signs of her willingness to support direct action.

Despite being several decades old, many of her critiques of militarism and capitalism are every bit as poignant. Her writing is excellent and the introduction creates a nice backdrop for the proceeding articles. My opinions on the critical conclusion (written by her daughter) are mixed. I don't mind a critique, but the sophomoric and bitter tone of the article rob something from the content. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in this era of German history or the foundations of the late 60's urban guerrilla movement.
HASH(0x963e3a38) out of 5 stars Made a great gift! 20 Sept. 2014
By lain - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Thank you! Made a great gift!
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