Authors & Events
Authors & Events
Jul 27, 1999
| ISBN 9780375701160
Jun 02, 1992
| ISBN 9780679409960
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Jul 27, 1999 | ISBN 9780375701160
Jun 02, 1992 | ISBN 9780679409960
“John E. Woods is revising our impression of Thomas Mann, masterpiece by masterpiece.” —The New Yorker“Doctor Faustus is Mann’s deepest artistic gesture. . . . Finely translated by John E. Woods.” —The New RepublicThomas Mann’s last great novel, first published in 1947 and now newly rendered into English by acclaimed translator John E. Woods, is a modern reworking of the Faust legend, in which Germany sells its soul to the Devil. Mann’s protagonist, the composer Adrian Leverkühn, is the flower of German culture, a brilliant, isolated, overreaching figure, his radical new music a breakneck game played by art at the very edge of impossibility. In return for twenty-four years of unparalleled musical accomplishment, he bargains away his soul—and the ability to love his fellow man. Leverkühn’s life story is a brilliant allegory of the rise of the Third Reich, of Germany’s renunciation of its own humanity and its embrace of ambition and nihilism. It is also Mann’s most profound meditation on the German genius—both national and individual—and the terrible responsibilities of the truly great artist.
Thomas Mann wrote his last great novel, Doctor Faustus, during his exile from Nazi Germany. Although he already had a long string of masterpieces to his name, in retrospect this seems to be the novel he was born to write. A modern reworking of the Faust legend in which a twentieth-century composer sells his soul to the devil for the artistic power he craves, the story brilliantly interweaves music, philosophy, theology, and politics. Adrian Leverkühn is a talented young composer who is willing to go to any lengths to reach greater heights of achievement. What he gets is twenty-four years of genius—years of increasingly extraordinary musical innovation intertwined with progressive and destructive madness. A scathing allegory of Germany’s renunciation of its own humanity and its embrace of ambition and nihilism, Doctor Faustus is also a profound meditation on artistic genius. Obsessively exploring the evil into which his country had fallen, Mann succeeds as only he could have in charting the dimensions of that evil; his novel has both the pertinence of history and the universality of myth. Translated from the German by H. T. Lowe-Porter
Thomas Mann (1875–1955) was from Germany. At the age of 25, he published his first novel, Buddenbrooks. In 1924, The Magic Mountain was published, and five years later, Mann was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. Following the rise of the Nazis to… More about Thomas Mann
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