By Theodor W. Adorno, Thomas Mann
In December 1945 Thomas Mann wrote a well-known letter to Adorno within which he formulated the primary of montage followed in his novel Doctor Faustus. the author expressly invited the thinker to ‘consider, with me, how this type of paintings – and that i suggest Leverkühn’s paintings – may possibly roughly be virtually realized’. Their shut collaboration on questions in regards to the personality of the fictitious composer’s putatively overdue works (Adorno produced particular sketches that are incorporated as an appendix to the current quantity) successfully laid the root for yet another trade of letters.
The resulting correspondence among the 2 males files a unprecedented come upon of inventive pressure among literary culture and aesthetic modernism which might be sustained correct up until eventually the novelist’s demise in 1955. within the letters, Thomas Mann overtly said his ‘fascinated reading’ of Adorno’s Minima Moralia and commented intimately at the Essay on Wagner, which he used to be as wanting to learn as ‘the one within the booklet of Revelation who consumes a publication which tastes “as candy as honey”’. Adorno in flip provided particular observations upon and often enthusiastic commendations of Mann’s later writings, equivalent to The Holy Sinner, The Betrayed One and The Confessions of Felix Krull. Their correspondence additionally touches upon problems with nice own importance, particularly the delicate dialogue of the issues of coming back from exile to postwar Germany.
The letters are commonly annotated and provide the reader specific notes in regards to the writings, occasions and personalities referred or alluded to within the correspondence.
“Begun in the course of their joint exile in California and finishing with Mann’s dying quite a few days ahead of a long-postponed reunion in post-war Europe, this correspondence among the 20th century’s so much extraordinary thinker of modernism and the mythical German consultant of modernist fiction is an incredibly relocating record to their mutual recognize and admiration, closeness and distance, guarded intimacy and extraordinary highbrow affinities. conscientiously annotated, those letters supply us a treasure trove of deeply own exchanges approximately each one man’s works, whereas brimming with shared insights into post-war German tradition and the McCarthy years within the United States.” —Andreas Huyssen, Columbia University
“Adorno were a lifelong, if now and then uneasy, admirer of Thomas Mann’s genius. The invitation by means of Mann to develop into a technical and ancient adviser for the musicology and philosophy of song in Mann’s Doctor Faustus positioned Adorno close to the centre of shared exile in California. It additionally entailed a sour clash with Schoenberg. Adorno was once stuck within the center. those letters record not just a desirable highbrow stumble upon, yet an example of inventive collaboration infrequent in literary history.” —George Steiner, Churchill collage, Cambridge
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Additional info for Correspondence 1943–1955
He published a monograph, Richard Strauss. Betrachtungen und Erinnerungen [Richard Strauss: Reflections and Reminiscences] in Zurich in 1949. Schuh had already expressed public support for Thomas Mann on the occasion of the ‘Protest of Munich, City of Richard Wagner’ in 1933. Mann never forgot this earlier act of solidarity and continued to remain in regular contact with Schuh. He mentions him explicitly in chapter 39 of Doctor Faustus as ‘Dr Schuh, the excellent music-critic of the Neue Zürcher Zeitung’ (English translation: Harmondsworth, 1968, p.
In addition to a number of symphonies and piano concertos he composed a dramatic cantata for soloists, choir and orchestra, Die kleine Seejungfrau [The Little Mermaid], op. 75 (1948), which received its first performance with Studio Basel in 1949. It is not known whether, or how, Adorno responded to Mann’s request. 2 On 29 May 1948 Thomas Mann had written to the publishing house J. C. B. Mohr in Tübingen: Dear Sirs, I am particularly gratified to learn that you are intending to publish Theodor Adorno’s book ‘The Philosophy of the New Music’ and I should like to express my sincere hope that you will awaken fresh interest in this author, whose important work on Kierkegaard you have already published [in 1933], precisely through this no less significant publication.
Adorno, Nachgelassene Schriften, Vol. 1: Beethoven: Philosophie der Musik: Fragmente und Texte, ed. Rolf Tiedemann, Frankfurt am Main, 1993; English translation: Beethoven: The Philosophy of Music, trans. E. ) 14 Adorno’s collection of aphorisms, subtitled ‘Reflections from Damaged Life’, was published in Germany in 1951 (GS 4, pp. 7–281; English translation: Minima Moralia, trans. E. Jephcott, London, 1974). 12 thomas mann to theodor w. 1 Klaus is physically restored, and for the moment is staying at Bruno Walter’s along with Erika,2 who is attending to his psychological well-being.