On the 80th anniversary of Lion Feuchtwanger’s 1937 visit to Moscow, and to accompany publication of a new book on the subject by Professor Anne Hartmann (see earlier posts), a conference entitled ‘Die revolutionäre Versuchung. Reiseberichte aus dem Exil: Auf nach Moskau! Der Fall Lion Feuchtwanger‘ will be held at Literaturhaus Berlin on 8-9th December 2017.
The International Feuchtwanger Society Conference 2017, with the title ‘France as Host Country to German-speaking (in particular German-Jewish and Austrian-Jewish) Émigrés between 1933 and 1940: Forms and Media of Public Memory Culture,’ will be held in Paris from October 12th -14th 2017. An advance copy of my paper for this conference, entitled ‘Die Geschwister Oppermann: A German Jewish Family in Extremis,’ is available here.
Some recent discussions of the quality of Lion Feuchtwanger’s work, immortality and “the canon” in mainstream media:
Literaturpapst Marcel Reich-Ranicki rightly includes Höhenflugrekord, a classic of the Neue Sachlichkeit, in his influential Der Kanon–Erzählungen . In the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung in 2010, however, he argued that Feuchtwanger’s writing was sometimes “gaudy”.
Micha Brumlik, professor of education at the University of Frankfurt, writing in the Jüdische Allgemeine in 2013, values in particular the contemporary relevance of Der jüdische Krieg (for my own contribution to this debate, see A Post-nationalist Weimar Novel? A Third-generation View of Der jüdische Krieg (1932) (paper delivered at the International Feuchtwanger Conference 2015)).
Bayerischer Rundfunk, on the occasion of its 2014 rerun of Dietrich Leube’s TV documentary Lion Feuchtwanger: Geachtet & geächtet, argued that it was with Erfolg that Lion Feuchtwanger staked his claim to immortality.
And Ian Wallace, IFS president and emeritus professor of German at the University of Bath, writing for the Forgotten Gems section of the website New Books in German, admires Die Jüdin von Toledo for its portrayal of the mindset behind holy war (a matter of great concern today).
With Edgar at the Bibliothek der verbrannten und verbannten Bücher at Munich’s new NS-Dokumentationszentrum. Oskar Maria Graf famously commented that he wished the Nazis had burned his books in 1933; a year later they were in fact banned. The yellow edition of Jud Süss appears to be the 1931 Th. Knaur Nachf. Verlag (Berlin) edition. The total print run in German up until 1933 was 200,000; in other European languages (English, French and a dozen others), Yiddish and Hebrew it was 638,000.
Erlebte Geschichten, Edgar Feuchtwanger, hosted by Ingo Zander. Minute 6.40: Edgar recalls day-to-day life living opposite Hitler, who was–fortunately, needless to say–unaware that Edgar and his family were the closest relatives of one of the Nazis’ most vocal public enemies (Lion Feuchtwanger).
A couple of re-runs of note:
Michael Verhoeven’s film Menschliches Versagen tomorrow night on ARD:
The photo is of the passport held by Edgar at age 14.
And the re-run of Barbara Schepanek’s 2015 TV documentary Schatten über Muenchen, which uses Erfolg as a basis for its account of Munich as the “Hauptstadt der Bewegung”:
Image set from filmmaker Herbert Krill’s talk ‘Much More than a Secretary: Hilde Waldo and the Legacy of Lion Feuchtwanger’, given at Villa Aurora on October 29th 2016:
Sad news–Peter Feuchtwanger the pianist has died. His obituary in the Süddeutsche Zeitung describes him fondly and rather well, and also sketches in some background about Bavaria and the Feuchtwanger family, including Lion.