German-Jewish Relations in the Works and Lives of German-Speaking Nobel Literature Laureates
Breen, Megan German-Jewish Relations in the Works and Lives of German-Speaking Laureates of the Nobel Prize in Literature.pdf
AuthorBreen, Megan J.
AdvisorPettey, John C.
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German-Jewish relations has been a widely studied field, often with the intent of understanding or explaining exactly why and how a modern state could have developed a system of mass genocide. While scholars tend to view the Judenfrage—a socially and politically charged debate about the place of Jews in European, especially German society—as an issue pertaining only to the years of National Socialism (1933-1945) and most common amongst less educated classes in Germany, in reality the “Jewish Question” spans centuries and pervaded even the upper-educated spheres of German-speaking societies. This thesis explores the development of German-Jewish relations in such academic societies from about 1880 to the present by examining the social, political, and personal influences of the “Jewish Question” in the lives and works of thirteen German-speaking laureates for the Nobel Prize in Literature. These laureates and their year of award include: Theodor Mommsen (1902), Rudolph Eucken (1908), Paul Heyse (1910), Gerhart Hauptmann (1912), Carl Spitteler (1919), Thomas Mann (1929), Hermann Hesse (1946), Nelly Sachs (1966), Heinrich Böll (1972), Elias Canetti (1981), Günter Grass (1999), Elfriede Jelinek (2004), Herta Müller (2009).