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Gabriele Annan, 7 February 1991

Reminiscences and Reflections 
by Golo Mann, translated by Krishna Winston.
Faber, 338 pp., £25, January 1991, 0 571 15151 5
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... The Mann family romance is among the tragic real-life soap operas of the century, a large-cast drama of genius, talent, fame and infamy, fraternal hatred, rocky and rock-hard marriages, open and covert sexual deviancy, secrets and suicides. It provided material for Thomas, Heinrich, Erika and Klaus Mann’s novels and plays, and for plenty of biographies and psycho-literary studies besides ...

Marseille, 1940-43

Neal Ascherson, 18 July 2013

... constellations of German, Austrian and Eastern European anti-fascist celebrities: Heinrich and Golo Mann, Hannah Arendt, Anna Seghers, Simone Weil, Arthur Koestler, Victor Serge, Walter Benjamin, Franz Werfel and his wife Alma Mahler, Lion Feuchtwanger, Konrad Heiden (Hitler’s first truthful biographer), Marc Chagall, Jacques Lipchitz, Moïse ...

When in Bed

David Blackbourn, 19 October 1995

Reflections on a Life 
by Norbert Elias.
Polity, 166 pp., £35, October 1994, 0 7456 1383 7
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The Civilising Process 
by Norbert Elias.
Blackwell, 558 pp., £50, March 1994, 0 631 19222 0
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... to the Left, he remained strikingly aloof from politics – compare his account with that of Golo Mann, another Heidelberg contemporary, who was more of an aesthete but also much more engaged politically. In 1930, Elias moved to the Frankfurt Institute for Social Research, the ‘Marxburg’ His account of his three years there is austere. There is ...

Mann v. Mann

Colm Tóibín: The Brother Problem, 3 November 2011

House of Exile: War, Love and Literature, from Berlin to Los Angeles 
by Evelyn Juers.
Allen Lane, 400 pp., £25, May 2011, 978 1 84614 461 5
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... The imposing house on Stockton Street in Princeton where Thomas Mann lived between 1938 and 1941 is these days owned by the Catholic Church. The main room is large enough for a congregation to assemble, and now contains pews and an altar. At either end of this room there are two beautiful smaller rooms with walls of glass, one made for summer light and the other designed for the winter ...

I Could Sleep with All of Them

Colm Tóibín: The Mann Family, 6 November 2008

In the Shadow of the Magic Mountain: The Erika and Klaus Mann Story 
by Andrea Weiss.
Chicago, 302 pp., £14.50, May 2008, 978 0 226 88672 5
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... Thomas and Katia Mann had six children. It was clear from early on that Katia most loved the second child, Klaus, who was born in 1906, and that Thomas loved Erika, the eldest, born in 1905, and also Elisabeth, born in 1918. The other three – the barely tolerated ones – were Golo, born in 1909, Monika, born in 1910, and Michael, born in 1919 ...

Why should you be the only ones that sin?

Colm Tóibín, 5 September 1996

Thomas MannEros and Literature 
by Anthony Heilbut.
Macmillan, 636 pp., £20, June 1996, 9780394556338
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Thomas MannA Biography 
by Ronald Hayman.
Bloomsbury, 672 pp., £20, March 1996, 0 7475 2531 5
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Thomas MannA Life 
by Donald Prater.
Oxford, 554 pp., £20, September 1995, 0 19 815861 0
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... Adrian Leverkuhn, Felix Krull – are shaped by their uneasy and ambiguous homosexuality. For Mann being German came first, and he learned, as Anthony Heilbut rather quaintly puts it, to read German history as one long queer epic – he alluded to Frederick the Great’s homosexuality and depicted Bismarck as ‘hysterical and high-pitched’. When ...
... bourgeois democracy, as opposed to merely criticising it, had ever been a particularly good idea. Golo Mann, writing after World War Two, usefully dared to suggest that post-World War One society in Germany and Austria got far more satire than it needed. This suspicion is not necessarily dispelled by an extended study of Karl Kraus, who in my experience ...

Closet Virtuoso

Seamus Perry: Magic Mann, 24 February 2022

The Magician 
by Colm Tóibín.
Viking, 438 pp., £18.99, September 2021, 978 0 241 00461 6
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... Thomas Mann’s​ most noteworthy appearance in Irish letters until now came in one of the last poems of W.B. Yeats. In the spring of 1938 the poet read a piece in the Yale Review by Archibald MacLeish, the only article on his work ‘which has not bored me for years’ – a disarming piece of Yeatsian egotism since most of the article was not about him ...

Bring me another Einstein

Matthew Reisz, 22 June 2000

American Pimpernel: The Man who Saved the Artists on Hitler’s Death List 
by Andy Marino.
Hutchinson, 416 pp., £16.99, November 1999, 0 09 180053 6
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... Casals is probably worth 100,000. Picasso 50,000. Your trio [Feuchtwanger, Heinrich Mann and Franz Werfel] brought in 35,000. Since their arrival we have had nothing good to offer the public and they are pretty shopworn by this time. See if you can dig up something big. Marino gives most space to the Manns and the Werfels. For the crossing into ...

The European Coup

Perry Anderson, 17 December 2020

... Mutatis mutandis, the person and career of Friedrich Gentz, the ‘secretary of Europe’, as Golo Mann dubbed him in an admiring biography of 1946, suggests a resemblance. Bourgeois son of the director of the Prussian mint, after studying under Kant in Königsberg, where he corrected the proofs of Critique of Judgment, Gentz won fame by producing ...

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