At 12:42 in this video, Barbara Brecht, Brecht’s daughter, talking about what Brecht wanted from his audiences, states:
“he wanted them to respond emotionally, but he wanted them to think also. I mean, you can do both.”
Until watching this, I had understood it that he wanted to distance the audience from identifying emotionally with the characters in his plays in order to think about the ideology they are caught up in. Now, I understand the importance of his work: without the emotional response it is hard to change dystopian reality and you need to think in order to create options.