Arnold Schönberg and Thomas Mann, two towering figures of twentieth-century music and literature, both found refuge in the German-exile community in Los Angeles during the Nazi era. The complete edition of their correspondence provides a glimpse inside their private and public lives and culminates in the famous dispute over Mann’s novel Doctor Faustus. Gathered here for the first time in English, the letters in this essential volume are complemented by diary entries, related articles, and other primary source materials, as well as an introduction by German studies scholar Adrian Daub that contextualizes the impact these two great artists had on twentieth-century thought and culture.

„The book is organized to help the reader access the available sources for the Schoenberg-Mann controversy. It begins with an essay by Adrian Daub, which provides the necessary context for the two protagonists (Schoenberg and Mann), as well as the leading supporting figure (Adorno). In the main body of the book, the letters, diaries, and other materials are broken up into two chronological sections, before and after Mann’s delivery of a copy of Doctor Faustus to Schoenberg in January of 1948. These sections also include letters and articles written by and to several related figures connected with the main characters, such as the two letters from Gertrud Schoenberg to Alma Mahler-Werfel. The extensive footnotes are intended to provide further background materials to round out the story without slowing it down or introducing threads too soon. […] After the letters and diaries, the reader will find a firsthand account by Schoenberg’s assistant Richard Hoffmann and an analytical rssay by Bernhold Schmid, as well as an appendix of original essays and writings by Schoenberg, Mann, and Adorno that are referenced in the letters and diaries.“ (E. Randol Schoenberg, Foreword, excerpt)

The Doctor Faustus Dossier
Arnold Schoenberg, Thomas Mann, and Their Contemporaries, 1930–1951
E. Randol Schoenberg (Editor), Adrian Daub (Introduction)
University of California Press 2018

University of California Press

 

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