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The old never give the young an easy time. “They think they know everything,” “They’re lazy” — the cross-generational gripes have been around as long as people have.

One person who likely had a particularly hard time with his elders was the young German playwright Frank Wedekind (1864-1918), who often used satire to criticize bourgeois attitudes, particularly toward sex. In fact, his most influential work, “Spring Awakening,” written in 1891 when he was 26, so repelled polite society that it wasn’t staged for 15 years until the Deutsches Theater in Berlin finally dared to show it.

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