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You may wish to follow our Road Trip to NSW OZ end of Dec and Jan 2023 via our BLOG!


Vintage Holden | Credit phb

Another beautiful day on Tambourine Mountain Gold Coast Hinterland and a few shots to share: The photos were taken in the late afternoon after 3pm looking WEST …

Coffee at the Polish Place

Credit phb 27 Jan 2023
Credit phb 27 Jan 2023
Credit phb 27 Jan 2023
Credit phb 27 Jan 2023

My next destination in this area will be Eagle Heights.

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(To be continued and republished later … Updated on Wed 8 Mar 2023 by P H Bloecker, Director Of Studies)

German Exile Literature by Brecht, Mann, and other writers, from 1933 – 1945


The period of 1933 to 1945 was marked by the rise of the Nazi regime in Germany, which led to the persecution of intellectuals, artists, and writers. Many of them fled the country to escape persecution and continue their work in exile. The literature produced during this time is known as German exile literature, which not only reflects the political and social conditions of the time but also speaks to universal themes such as human suffering, displacement, and resistance.

My short overview will focus on the contributions of two prominent writers, Bertolt Brecht and Thomas Mann, as well as other notable figures in German exile literature during the period of 1933 to 1945.

Bertolt Brecht:

Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956) was a German poet, playwright, and theatre director who was forced to flee Germany in 1933 due to his socialist and anti-fascist views. During his exile, he continued to write plays, poems, and essays that addressed social and political issues. His work was characterized by his use of epic theatre, which aimed to provoke critical reflection rather than emotional engagement.

One of Brecht’s most famous works during this period was “Mother Courage and Her Children” (1939), a play that tells the story of a woman who tries to profit from the Thirty Years’ War by selling goods to soldiers. The play exposes the devastating effects of war on individuals and society, while also criticizing the profit motive that drives people to participate in it.

Another notable work by Brecht during his exile was “The Good Person of Szechwan” (1943), a play that explores the question of whether it is possible to be a good person in a capitalist society. The play also critiques the concept of charity, arguing that it is not a solution to systemic problems.

Bertolt Brecht first fled Nazi Germany to Denmark in 1933, before eventually settling in the United States in 1941. While in Denmark, he continued to write and produce works, including his play “The Mother” (1935) and his film script “Kuhle Wampe” (1932).

In Denmark, Brecht also worked with other exiled writers and intellectuals, including his close friend and collaborator, the composer Hanns Eisler. However, Brecht faced increasing pressure and harassment from the Danish authorities, who viewed his political views and activities as threatening to their neutrality.

As a result, Brecht and his family eventually fled Denmark and traveled to various countries, including Sweden and Finland, before finally settling in the United States. In the United States, Brecht continued to write and produce works, including his plays “The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui” (1941) and “The Good Person of Szechwan” (1943), and he became involved in various cultural and political activities, including anti-fascist rallies and lectures.

Brecht’s time in exile in Denmark and the United States was a transformative period for his work and his political views, and he continued to be a leading voice in the international literary and intellectual scene. His contributions to modern theater, especially his development of the “epic theater” style, and his commitment to using art as a means of social critique and political activism remain an important part of his legacy.

Thomas Mann:

Thomas Mann (1875-1955) was a German novelist, essayist, and critic who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1929. He left Germany in 1933 due to his opposition to the Nazi regime and settled in the United States. During his exile, he continued to write novels, essays, and speeches that addressed political and social issues.

One of Mann’s most famous works during his exile was “Doctor Faustus” (1947), a novel that tells the story of a composer who sells his soul to the devil in exchange for artistic genius. The novel explores themes of the corruption of power, the role of art in society, and the human condition.

Another notable work by Mann during his exile was “The Magic Mountain” (1924), a novel that tells the story of a young man who visits a tuberculosis sanatorium in the Swiss Alps and becomes embroiled in the philosophical debates of the patients. The novel explores themes of time, mortality, and the search for meaning in life.

Other Notable Writers:

In addition to Brecht and Thomas Mann, there were many other notable authors in German exile literature during the period of 1933 to 1945. Some of these include:

  • Lion Feuchtwanger (1884-1958), a novelist and playwright who wrote about historical and political themes. His most famous work during his exile was “The Oppermanns” (1934), a novel that tells the story of a Jewish family during the rise of the Nazi regime.
  • Anna Seghers (1900-1983), a novelist who wrote about social and political issues. Her most famous work during her exile was “The Seventh Cross” (1942), a novel that tells the story of a group of prisoners who escape from a concentration camp.
  • Heinrich Mann (1871-1950) Younger brother of Thomas Mann.

Walter Benjamin

Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) was a German philosopher, cultural critic, and essayist who was associated with the Frankfurt School of critical theory. He was forced to flee Germany in 1933 and spent the rest of his life in exile in Paris.

During his exile, Benjamin wrote some of his most influential works, including “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” (1936), which examined the impact of mass production and reproduction on art and culture. He also wrote extensively on the idea of history and the role of the intellectual in society.

One of Benjamin’s most famous works during his exile was “The Arcades Project” (1927-1940), a massive, unfinished study of the 19th-century Parisian arcades, which were covered shopping passages that were a precursor to the modern shopping mall. The book combined historical research, cultural criticism, and personal reflection to create a unique and ground-breaking work of literature.

Benjamin’s writing was characterized by his interest in the relationship between art, culture, and politics, and his work had a significant impact on the development of critical theory and postmodernism. He committed suicide in 1940 while attempting to flee Nazi-occupied France, and his legacy continues to be felt in contemporary philosophy, literature, and cultural studies.

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