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The Man Who Wrote Too Much

Nick Richardson: Jakob Wassermann, 7 March 2013

My First Wife 
by Jakob Wassermann, translated by Michael Hofmann.
Penguin, 275 pp., £16.99, August 2012, 978 0 14 138935 6
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... Jakob Wassermann, who published nearly a book a year for the last thirty years of his life but died broke and exhausted, soon to be forgotten, on 1 January 1934 at the age of sixty, was well acquainted with the dangers of literature. My First Wife, which first appeared a few months after his death, is a cautionary tale ...

The Colour of His Eyes

Michael Hofmann: Hugo von Hofmannsthal, 12 March 2009

The Whole Difference: Selected Writings of Hugo von Hofmannsthal 
edited by J.D. McClatchy.
Princeton, 502 pp., £24.95, October 2008, 978 0 691 12909 9
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... falsetto, unpleasing, though lower and more sonorous in a tête à tête, according to his friend Jakob Wassermann. And then there was the handshake, the hand oddly quick about its business, quickly extended, firm, but then seeming positively to repulse the other hand. Even Hofmannsthal’s bottom came in for commentary, from the diarist Harry ...

City of Blood

Peter Pulzer, 9 November 1989

The Jews of Vienna in the Age of Franz Joseph 
by Robert Wistrich.
Oxford, 696 pp., £45, June 1989, 0 19 710070 8
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Vienna and the Jews, 1867-1938: A Cultural History 
by Steven Beller.
Cambridge, 271 pp., £27.50, August 1989, 0 521 35180 4
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The German-Jewish Economic Elite 1820-1935: A Socio-Cultural Profile 
by W.E. Mosse.
Oxford, 369 pp., £35, October 1989, 0 19 822990 9
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Decadence and Innovation: Austro-Hungarian Life and Art at the Turn of the Century 
edited by Robert Pynsent.
Weidenfeld, 258 pp., £25, June 1989, 0 297 79559 7
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The Torch in My Ear 
by Elias Canetti, translated by Joachim Neugroschel.
Deutsch, 372 pp., £13.95, August 1989, 0 233 98434 8
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From Vienna to Managua: Journey of a Psychoanalyst 
by Marie Langer, translated by Margaret Hooks.
Free Association, 261 pp., £27.50, July 1989, 1 85343 057 9
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... and significant’? Others before him have faced the question. Some simply recorded the fact, like Jakob Wassermann, a Jew himself, who arrived in Vienna from Germany in 1898 and was flabbergasted at ‘the hosts of Jewish physicians, attorneys, clubmen, snobs, dandies, proletarians, actors, newspapermen, poets’. Anti-semites attributed all they ...

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