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Ernest Lens Collection

 Collection
Identifier: AR 5133

Scope and Content Note

This collection concerns Sechs Aerzte sprechen ueber Leben und Tod (Six Doctors Discuss Life and Death), a manuscript of over 600 pages written by Ernest Lens under the nom de plume Mme. Po-Jo Syn Luke. Lens hoped that it would popularize the ideas of Austrian inventor and philosopher Josef Popper-Lynkeus. The author was a friend and adherent of Popper-Lynkeus.

The manuscript is a fictional summary of six doctors' wide-ranging philosophical discussions about the United States. Set during their vacations in 1942-1943, the work addresses Popper-Lykeus' themes of tolerance, the individual and his valuation, social reform, and military service. Individual chapters and sections are cast as short stories, essays, parables, poems, and other forms. Transcripts of newspaper articles and extensive quotations are also included.

This collection contains a typescript, bound in 11 volumes, of Sechs Aerzte sprechen ueber Leben und Tod. It also includes a typescript epilogue, in both German and English, that is not found in the bound volumes. Four additional folders of loose annotated typescript pages are also included.

Loose items removed from MS 833, the bound typescript of this work cataloged separately, are also found in the collection. The Materials about "Sechs Aerzte" folder includes a description of the book and information about the author Po-Jo Syn Luke and a letter from Siegfried Pirker discussing the manuscript, as well as a summary and excerpts in English.

Also included are materials by and about Popper-Lynkeus, primarily essays (including a biographical essay by Henry Wachtel) and articles, some correspondence between Lens and the United States, Austrian, and German copyright offices concerning Popper-Lynkeus copyrights, and some miscellaneous items, such as a photograph of the Popper-Lynkeus memorial in Vienna, and an essay by Lens entitled "Save the Jewish Youth of Europe."

Dates

  • 1910-1961

Creator

Language of Materials

The bound typescript is in German. Remainder of collection is mostly German, with some English.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open to researchers.

Access Information

Part of the cllection has been partially digitized. Follow the links in the Container List to access the digitized materials.

Biographical Note<extptr actuate="onload" altrender="Ernest Lens (1890-1962)" href="http://digital.cjh.org/webclient/DeliveryManager?pid=1368829" linktype="simple" show="embed" title="Ernest Lens (1890-1962)"/>

Ernest Lens (1890-1962) was born Ernst Czuckza in Vienna, Austria. He finished gymnasium in 1912, and then studied law and social sciences in Berlin and Vienna. From 1918 to 1933, he was an administrator in business and welfare organizations. He married Richard Beer-Hofmann's daughter Miriam in 1924. They emigrated to Amsterdam in 1934, Paris in 1936, Great Britain in 1938, and the United States in 1940. Upon naturalization in 1947, they changed their surname to Lens. Ernest held various jobs in the United States, including as a bookseller, until he became the manager of the archives and blueprint repository for Loewy Hydropress Company in 1949. He retired in 1960, and died in 1962. Miriam Beer-Hofmann Lens died in New York in 1984.

Extent

1 Linear Feet

Overview

This collection concerns Sechs Aerzte sprechen ueber Leben und Tod (Six Doctors Discuss Life and Death), a manuscript of over 600 pages written by Ernest Lens under the nom de plume Mme. Po-Jo Syn Luke. Lens hoped that it would popularize the ideas of Austrian philosopher and writer Josef Popper-Lynkeus. The work is a fictional summary of six doctors' wide-ranging philosophical discussions about the United States, addressing Popper-Lykeus' themes of tolerance, the individual and his valuation, social reform, and military service. The collection includes a bound typescript, loose typescript pages, and supporting research material.

Related Material

A bound four-volume set of the manuscript Sechs Aerzte sprechen ueber Leben und Tod was cataloged separately as MS 833.

The collection of Miriam Beer Hofmann Lens (AR 7258), Ernest Lens's wife, contains biographical materials about him.

Separated Material

A ceramic medallion of Josef Popper-Lykeus was removed to LBI Arts and Objects.

Processing Information

Three boxes (from locations S 48/7 and A 29/3) were reviewed. One copy of the typed manuscript Sechs Aerzte sprechen ueber Leben und Tod (MS 833) was removed to the LBI Manuscript Collection. A second copy of the typed manuscript, as well as supporting materials, were organized, refoldered, and placed in a new box. Duplicates were removed where identified. The collection title was changed from "Physicians Talk About Life and Death" to the Ernest Lens Collection.

Creator

Title
Guide to the Ernest Lens (1890-1962) Collection Undated, 1910-1961 AR 5133
Status
In Progress
Author
Processed by Kevin Schlottmann
Date
© 2011
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Sponsor
as part of the Leon Levy Archival Processing Initiative, made possible by the Leon Levy Foundation

Revision Statements

  • February 25, 2015 : Links to digital objects added in Container List.

Repository Details

Part of the Leo Baeck Institute Repository

Contact:
15 West 16th Street
New York NY 10011 United States