A Companion to the Works of Thomas Mann by Herbert Lehnert, Eva Wessell
By Herbert Lehnert, Eva Wessell
Thomas Mann is one of the maximum of German prose writers, and used to be the 1st German novelist to arrive a large English-speaking readership considering the fact that Goethe. Novels reminiscent of Buddenbrooks, The Magic Mountain, and Doktor Faustus attest to his mastery of refined, distanced irony, whereas novellas equivalent to dying in Venice exhibit him on the peak of his mastery of language. as well as clean insights approximately those best-known works of Mann, this quantity treats less-often-discussed works resembling Joseph and His Brothers, Lotte in Weimar, and Felix Krull, in addition to his political writings and essays. Mann himself used to be a paradox: his position as family-father used to be either safe haven and faГ§ade; his love of Germany was once matched by way of his contempt for its having embraced Hitler. whereas in exile through the Nazi interval, he functioned because the top consultant of the ''good'' Germany within the struggle opposed to fascism, and he has frequently been remembered this fashion in English-speaking lands. yet a brand new view of Mann is rising part a century after his dying: a view of him as one of many nice writers of a modernity understood as extending into our twenty first century. This quantity offers 16 essays via American and ecu experts. They exhibit the relevance of his writings for our time, making specific use of the biographical fabric that's now on hand. members: Ehrhard Bahr, Manfred Dierks, Werner Frizen, Clayton Koelb, Helmut Koopmann, Wolfgang Lederer, Hannelore Mundt, Peter PГјtz, Jens Rieckmann, Hans Joachim Sandberg, Egon Schwarz, and Hans Vaget.
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Additional resources for A Companion to the Works of Thomas Mann
While love is missing in the earlier novel because of a bourgeois ideology that values economics over human relations, it is missing here because of an ideology of creative superiority. In this sense Doktor Faustus, the Nietzsche-novel, also carries a critique of Nietzsche’s vision. The novel leaves it open whether the god who may grant his grace is dead or living. This ambiguity, this openness, is signaled when Leverkühn, in his last sane moments, breaks down on the piano with outstretched arms as if crucified, while seemingly being pushed by the devil (GW 6, 667).
His protagonist was to be a simple young German rather than an artist. But the figure of Hans Castorp, cast out of his ordinary life, soon began to fascinate his author. ” Here there was potential for the great national novel, to be read by the readers of “higher” German literature, the educated class or Bildungsbürger, the core of which were the higher civil servants. The brothers Mann fought one another for their attention. Heinrich wanted those Bildungsbürger to become political and to take power away from established authority; literature was to be the instrument of political change.
Mann had fought the Nazis as well as he could. But despite all his implied and open criticism, he had been an admirer of Nietzsche all his life. In spite of his efforts to ward off Nazi power, he had been a part of a German artistic and intellectual elite that had failed to lead the country toward civilized relations with the rest of the world. Guided by Wagner and Nietzsche, the concern of this elite had been breaking through conventions and artistic traditions for the sake of individual greatness.