Frank Lloyd Wright and the Bauhaus

As a matter of fact Frank Lloyd Wright not only resembled the libertarian architect-hero in Ayn Rand's _The Fountainhead_ he was in fact the inspiration for Rand's character. As Lou points out he drew much of his inspiration from WIlliam Morris' arts and crafts movement, another source of inspiration for him was the writings of Nietzsche. As he grew older the latter influence began to dominate over the former. It was Wright's Nietzschean derived romantic individualism that made such a strong impression on Rand.

Speaking of the Bauhaus, a number of philosophical commentators have drawn a connection between the Bauhaus and the Vienna Circle of logical positivists although I have never quite been able to comprehend exactly what the nature of this link was supposed to be. I am aware that one of the luminaries of the Circle, the physicist and philosopher, Philip Frank had a brother who was an architect and was apparently connected to the Bauhaus. Both the Bauhaus and the Vienna Circle did share a common allegiance to the Social Democrats and both were presumably part of the "counterculture" that developed around the Social Democrats especially in "red Vienna." And the most political member of the Circle, the economist and sociologist Otto Neurath was a Marxist who had served as minister of economic planning for the short lived Soviet Republic of Bavaria during the 1919 revolution. Neurath was subsequently tried by the Weimar government for treason and was released after the intercession of the Austrian government and of his teacher, Max Weber. However, what all this might have to do with architecture I am not sure.

As I mentioned in an earlier post I have seen in several different philosophy texts the claim that there was a linkage between the Bauhaus and the Vienna Circle. Other than the fact that both movements developed more or less within the "counterculture" that developed around the Social Democrats in Germany and Austria and the fact that at least one member of the Circle, Philip Frank had an architect brother with Bauhaus connections, the nature of this alleged link seems to me to be a mystery.

On the other hand what does seem apparent is that both the Bauhaus in architecture and logical positivism in philosophy experienced analogous receptions in the US. Whereas, back in Europe both the Bauhaus and the Vienna Circle were highly political, both having developed within central European social democratic culture. (The Vienna Circle developed when Austria was undergoing a bitter conflict between the anti-clerical Social Democrats and the emerging clerical fascism on the Catholic right) in the US both movements underwent a profound de-politicization which stripped them of their original radical (and emancipatory) content. The material you posted describes the de-politicization of the Bauhaus. Likewise, the doctrines of the Vienna Circle were similarly de-politicized. Back in Europe one of the leading figures in the Circle, Otto Neurath had been a revolutionary Marxist (and a participant in the 1919 German revolution). The manifesto for the Circle that he co-authored with Rudolf Carnap emphasized the politica