Stefan Zweig – The Reluctant Anglophile

21. September 2023 19:00

Prof. Rüdiger Görner

The Deutsch-Britische Gesellschaft
Rhein-Main e.V.
invites you to a Celebratory Lecture entitled
“Stefan Zweig – The Reluctant Anglophile”
Prof. Rüdiger Görner
on Thursday, September 21, 2023, at 19 hrs (CET)
Venue: Frankfurter Presseclub, Ulmenstraße 20, 60325 Frankfurt and virtual (via Zoom*)
Please register for the FPC by September 15 and for Zoom by September 19 at *Registered Zoom-participants will receive login details on September 20.

Biographical Note:
RÜDIGER GÖRNER, Prof. Dr. phil., was born in Rottweil am Neckar in 1957. Has lived in London since 1981. Writer and critic. University professor since 1984, as a lecturer at the University of Surrey (1984-1991), as a reader and after 1997 as a professor at Aston University in Birmingham (1991-2004) and as director of the Institute of Germanic Studies at the School of Advanced Study, University of London (1999-2004). There also founding director of the Ingeborg Bachmann Center for Austrian Literature. Since 2004 at Queen Mary University of London as Professor of German Literature with Comparative Literature (since 2019 as Centenary Professor of German) and founding director of the Center for Anglo-German Cultural Relations.
Visiting professorships in Tokyo, Mainz, Heidelberg, Vienna, Cologne, and Salzburg.
Member of the German Academy for Language and Poetry.
German Language Prize of the Henning Kaufmann Foundation (2012)
Reimar Lüst Award Winner of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation for Lifetime Achievement (2016)
Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (2017)

England, and London in particular, fascinated Stefan Zweig even though both were in the shadow of his preoccupation with France and French culture. But from his early pre-First World War visit to London until the mid-/late 1930s, when his initial emigration to England had become a necessity before he went on to the US and, finally, Brazil, his attitude towards English life & culture remained ambiguous. From a literary point of view his relationship with England was productive if we consider his essay on Charles Dickens and fascination with William Blake, let alone his masterly biography on Mary Stuart. In political terms, he was appalled by appeasement and the ‘phoney war’ during the first months of the Second World War. Timely naturalization prevented him from internment as an ‘enemy alien’ and his time at London’s Portland Place, Hallam Street, and for a few months only in Bath, together with his second wife, Eva Altmann, deeply troubled as circumstances were, remained productive. This lecture will assess the meaning of ‘England’ for this extraordinary writer and his standing in world literature. It is pleasing to note that after over a decade of campaigning, a Blue Plaque has finally been approved by English Heritage in memory of his time in London.


Note: By registering and participating in this event, you consent to the recording of your appearance and / or your voice, to be published by the German-British Society in photos, videos and accompanying sound recordings via any media and for any purpose.