The Thinkers Club

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One version of the cartoon.

The Thinkers Club (German: Der Denker-Club) was a cartoon based on a fictitious group of professors and scholars which was popularized throughout the German Confederation in 1819.

The cartoon depicts the suppression of freedom of expression within the German Confederation under the Carlsbad Decrees, which stipulated for rigorous surveillance and censorship of universities following a surge in student violence and radicalism.The plaque on the left bears the inscription: "The most important question of today's meeting: how long will thinking be allowed to think?" [1]

Interpretation[edit]

The "club" is representative of all the clubs and societies that emerged at that point. The eight professors on the caricature are muzzled, which points out the radical nature of the mentioned political system. They were deprived of the right of expressions, as their written works were forbidden because of the press censorship. Therefore, the intellectuals are left only with their right of thought and prudently pose the question, how long they will still be allowed to think.

References[edit]