Ways to Strength and Beauty

Felix Hollaender’s “Ways to Strength and Beauty” focuses on the importance of the human body’s physical being. He stresses the interconnectivity of the human body and mind, and how they function synergistically. When one improves their physical abilities, he or she also improve their mental attributes at the same time. He frequently references the Greek and Roman perceptions surrounding physical fitness and the aesthetically appreciation of the human form, both male and female included. The human body should not be viewed in solely a sexual manner, but instead celebrated as another human sense that is a representation of the human soul and spirit.

Hollaender describes how certain people within society had difficulty finding the time to train their bodies because their jobs interfered. Modernization has created sedentary desk jobs that do not engage the body physically. These modern office environments did not exist in the past and have replaced jobs were physical exertion was a critical component of the type of work. Hard laborers became fit through the type of work that they did. Since jobs requiring physical assertion have been waning with modernization, the population as a whole must find other ways to maintain their bodies. In order to address this newly developing trend, Hollaender emphasizes the need for sport and other varying forms of physical competition in order to offset the sedentary trend of new forms of employment that has developed.

Do you believe that the Nazi’s were in accordance with Hallaender’s beliefs about the human body and how physical fitness could strengthen the connectedness of the human sole? Or do you believe that they simply viewed human fitness as a means to create better soldiers who would be more adept in battle?