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Albert Cohen: Dissonant Voices (review)

Albert Cohen: Dissonant Voices (review) The last contribution to this collection of studies, "Thomas Mann and Jewry: A Collage," by Thomas Klugkist, offers what seems to be a complete compendium of passages in the author's fiction, non-fiction, diaries, radio speeches, and personal correspondence pertinent to the general topic. The list would be helpful to anybody doing research in this area. What I found lacking in this volume is an examination of the influence Thomas Mann's wife, Katia Pringsheim, had on Mann's thinking about Jews in general. To be sure, Pringsheim was not only a secular Jew but also an assimilated one. She came from a wealthy family and supported her husband in many important ways. There is no doubt that Mann was depicting their relationship, at least its beginnings, in his "fairytale" novel Königliche Hoheit ("Royal Highness"), and perhaps any attempt to show how Katia Mann influenced her husband with regard to Judentum would turn out to be nothing more than an exercise in amassing detail to support what is already generally known. But Mann tirelessly recorded the details of his life for posterity, and an investigation of his experience of Jewishness on this most intimate level would hardly seem irrelevant. When ambivalence http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish Studies Purdue University Press

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Publisher
Purdue University Press
Copyright
Copyright © 2006 Purdue University.
ISSN
1534-5165
Publisher site
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Abstract

The last contribution to this collection of studies, "Thomas Mann and Jewry: A Collage," by Thomas Klugkist, offers what seems to be a complete compendium of passages in the author's fiction, non-fiction, diaries, radio speeches, and personal correspondence pertinent to the general topic. The list would be helpful to anybody doing research in this area. What I found lacking in this volume is an examination of the influence Thomas Mann's wife, Katia Pringsheim, had on Mann's thinking about Jews in general. To be sure, Pringsheim was not only a secular Jew but also an assimilated one. She came from a wealthy family and supported her husband in many important ways. There is no doubt that Mann was depicting their relationship, at least its beginnings, in his "fairytale" novel Königliche Hoheit ("Royal Highness"), and perhaps any attempt to show how Katia Mann influenced her husband with regard to Judentum would turn out to be nothing more than an exercise in amassing detail to support what is already generally known. But Mann tirelessly recorded the details of his life for posterity, and an investigation of his experience of Jewishness on this most intimate level would hardly seem irrelevant. When ambivalence

Journal

Shofar: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Jewish StudiesPurdue University Press

Published: Jul 12, 2006

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