Книги по философии

Альберт Эйнштейн
The world as I see it

(страница 15)

Further, I described the present state of affairs in Germany as a

state of psychic distemper in the masses and also made some

remarks about its causes.

In a written document which I allowed the International League

for combating Anti-Semitism to make use of for the purpose of

enlisting support, and which was not intended for the Press at all,

I also called upon all sensible people, who are still faithful to the

ideals of a civilization in peril, to do their utmost to prevent this

mass-psychosis, which is exhibiting itself in such terrible

symptoms in Germany to-day, from spreading further.

It would have been an easy matter for the Academy to get hold

of a correct version of my words before issuing the sort of

statement about me that it has. The German Press has

reproduced a deliberately distorted version of my words, as

indeed was only to be expected with the Press muzzled as it is


I am ready to stand by every word I have published. In return, I

expect the Academy to communicate this statement of mine to

its members and also to the German public before which I have

been slandered, especially as it has itself had a hand in slandering

me before that public.

The Academy's Answer of April 11, 1933

The Academy would like to point out that its statement of April

1, 1933. was based not merely on German but principally on

foreign, particularly French and Belgian, newspaper reports

which Herr Einstein has not contradicted; in addition, it had

before it his much-canvassed statement to the League for

combating anti-Semitism, in which he deplores Germany's

relapse into the barbarism of long-passed ages. Moreover, the

Academy has reason to know that Herr Einstein, who according

to his own statement has taken no part in atrocitymongering, has

at least done nothing to counteract unjust suspicions and

slanders, which, in the opinion of the Academy, it was his duty

as one of its senior members to do. Instead of that Herr Einstein

has made statements, and in foreign countries at that, such as,

coming from a man of world-wide reputation, were bound to be

exploited and abused by the enemies not merely of the present

German Government but of the whole German people.

For the Prussian Academy of Sciences,

(Signed) H. von Ficker,

E. Heymann,

Perpetual Secretaries.

Berlin, April 7, 1933

The Prussian Academy of Sciences.

Professor Albert Einstein, Leyden,

c/o Prof. Ehrenfest, Witte Rosenstr.

Dear Sir,

As the present Principal Secretary of the Prussian Academy I

beg to acknowledge the receipt of your communication dated

March 28 announcing your resignation of your membership of

the Academy. The Academy took cognizance of your

resignation in its plenary session of March 30, 1933.

While the Academy profoundly regrets the turn events have

taken, this regret is inspired by the thought that a man of the

highest scientific authority, whom many years of work among

Germans and many years of membership of our society must

have made familiar with the German character and German

habits of thought, should have chosen this moment to associate

himself with a body of people abroad who--partly no doubt

through ignorance of actual conditions and events--have done

much damage to our German people by disseminating erroneous

views and unfounded rumours. We had confidently expected

that one who had belonged to our Academy for so long would

have ranged himself, irrespective of his own political sympathies,

on the side of the defenders of our nation against the flood of lies

which has been let loose upon it. In these days of mud-slinging,

some of it vile, some of it ridiculous, a good word for the

German people from you in particular might have produced a

great effect, especially abroad. Instead of which your testimony

has served as a handle to the enemies not merely of the present

Government but of the German people. This has come as a

bitter and grievous disappointment to us, which would no doubt

have led inevitably to a parting of the ways even if we had not

received your resignation.

Yours faithfully,

(signed) von Ficker.

Le Coq-sur-Mer, Belgium, April 12, 1933

To the Prussian Academy of Sciences, Berlin.

I have received your communication of the seventh instant and

deeply deplore the mental attitude displayed in it.

As regards the fact, I can only reply as follows: What you say

about my behaviour is, at bottom, merely another form of the

statement you have already published, in which you accuse me

of having taken part in atrocity-mongering against the German

nation. I have already, in my last letter, characterized this

accusation as slanderous.

You have also remarked that a "good word" on my part for "the

German people" would have produced a great effect abroad. To

this I must reply that such a testimony as you suggest would have

been equivalent to a repudiation of all those notions of justice

and liberty for which I have all my life stood. Such a testimony

would not be, as you put it, a good word for the German nation;

on the contrary, it would only have helped the cause of those

who are seeking to undermine the ideas and principles which

have won for the German nation a place of honour in the

civilized world. By giving such a testimony in the present

circumstances I should have been contributing, even if only

indirectly, to the barbarization of manners and the destruction of

all existing cultural values.

It was for this reason that I felt compelled to resign from the

Academy, and your letter only shows me how right I was to do


Munich, Aril 8, 1933

>From the Bavarian Academy of Sciences to Professor Albert Einstein.


In your letter to the Prussian Academy of Sciences you have

given the present state of affairs in Germany as the reason for

your resignation. The Bavarian Academy of Sciences, which

some years ago elected you a corresponding member, is also a

German Academy, closely allied to the Prussian and other

German Academies; hence your withdrawal from the Prussian

Acadeiny of Sciences is bound to affect your relations with our


We must therefore ask you how you envisage your relations with

our Academy after what has passed between yourself and the

Prussian Academy.

The President of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences.

Le Coq-sur-Mer, April 21, 1933

To the Bavarian Academy of Sciences, Munich.

I have given it as the reason for my resignation from the Prussian

Academy that in the present circumstances I have no wish either

to be a German citizen or to remain in a position of

quasi-dependence on the Prussian Ministry of Education.

These reasons would not, in themselves, involve the severing of

my relations with the Bavarian Academy. If I nevertheless desire

my name to be removed from the list of members, it is for a

different reason.

The primary duty of an Academy is to encourage and protect

the scientific life of a country. The learned societies of Germany

have, however--to the best of knowledge--stood by and said

nothing while a not inconsiderable proportion of German savants

and students, and also of professional men of university

education, have been deprived of all chance of getting

employment or earning their livings in Germany. I would rather

not belong to any society which behaves in such a manner, even

if it does so under external pressure.

A Reply

The following lines are Einstein's answer to an invitation to associate himself with a French manifesto against Anti-Semitism in Germany.

I have considered this most important proposal, which has a bearing on several things that I have nearly at heart, carefully from every angle. As a result I have come to the conclusion that I cannot take a personal part in this extremely important affair, for two reasons:--

In the first place I am, after all, still a German citizen, and in the second I am a Jew. As regards the first point I must add that I have worked in German institutions and have always been treated with full confidence in Germany. However deeply I may regret the things that are being done there, however strongly I am bound to condemn the terrible mistakes that are being made with the approval of the Government; it is impossible for me to take part personally in an enterprise set on foot by responsible members of a foreign Government. In order that you may appreciate this fully, suppose that a French citizen in a more or less analogous situation had got up a protest against the French Government's action in conjunction with prominent German statesmen. Even if you fully admitted that the protest was amply warranted by the facts, you would still, I expect, regard the behaviour of your fellow-citizen as an act of treachery. If Zola had felt it necessary to leave France at the time of the Dreyfus case, he would still certainly not have associated himself with a protest by German official personages, however much he might have approved of their action. He would have confined himself to--blushing for his countrymen. In the second place, a protest against injustice and violence is incomparably more valuable if it comes entirely from people who have been prompted to it purely by sentiments of humanity and a love of Pew This cannot be said of a man like me, a few who regards other Jews as his brothers. For him, an injustice done to the Jews is the same as an injustice done to himself. He must not be the judge in his own case, but wait for the judgment of impartial outsiders.

Название книги: The world as I see it
Автор: Альберт Эйнштейн
Просмотрено 27267 раз