Hans-Jürgen Heinrichs in conversation with Gerhard Roth
To his interviewer, writer and ethnologist Hans-Jürgen Heinrichs, Gerhard Roth is not only the last great epic novelist, daring to write cycles such as “Die Archive des Schweigens” and “Orkus”, he is also one of the greatest masters of language, transgressing the boundaries between literature and history. In this in-depth, lively dialogue the two men fathom Roth’s great novels and address personal subjects such as the origins of writing, the significance of memory and indeed death. The reader embarks on the “Journey into the Unspeakable” Roth takes in his writing.
Thomas Bernhard was all that and more, as this comprehensive biography shows. The acknowledged expert Manfred Mittermayer has drawn together Bernhard’s life and work into one great story, reaching from his ‘origin complex’ – his grandfather Johannes Freumbichler’s family – to his premature death following years of illness. Mittermayer creates a nuanced picture of Bernhard’s multi-layered public image and the various phases of his private life, placing his most significant works of prose and theatre in relation to a life story inseparably bound to post-war history.
“I cannot deny that I’ve always led two existences: one which comes close to the truth, which I do have the right to describe as reality, and another which I have played out. Over time, the two together have formed the existence which keeps me alive.”
Thomas Bernhard, Der Keller (The Cellar – part II of his autobiography)
Still in brutal solitary confinement in the Mauthausen concentration camp at the beginning of the year, Nazi prisoner Leopold Figl awaits his trial on death row. In April, as the Russians already begin to enter Vienna, he’s released. Soon after Figl organises the improvised Viennese food supply. In May, he became the first Governor of Lower Austria. Finally, he led the People's Party in November in the parliamentary elections, which made him the first Chancellor of the Second Republic. Based on meticulous research Helmut Wohnout allows the life of Leopold Figl to make the year 1945 eventful in a new whole new light.
How Fundamentalism and the Surveillance State Threaten Our Democracy
Terrorist attacks and radicalisation directly cause oppression in Western society. The fear of "Islam" is associated with the expansion of the surveillance state. But how does Islamist terrorism impact us? Are fears of "foreign infiltration" justified? Or do they rather serve as a pretext for massive government intervention in our freedom? Christa Chorherr tirelessly shows how big the dangers of Islamism and terrorism in Europe really are – and what the consequences are for us all: state "protection", which degenerates into the escalating use of endlessly collected personal data and which leads to the increasing loss of our privacy.
A journey through the life of the great fighter for the health of mothers and medical progress. "Wash your hands": this rule of hygiene is taken for granted. That this was not always the case is revealed through the history of the 1818-born Semmelweis, who worked as a gynaecologist in Vienna. He had to fight hard for it to be recognised that doctors’ dirty hands were infecting child-bearing women. His life story, which is of immense importance still today, let’s us look deep into the fascinating world of scientific discoveries and intrigue.
New research on the darkest chapter of World War I: the authors examine the strategies and calculations employed by the Habsburg ruling elite. They show how the war, which began with the main aim of destroying Serbia, was allowed to get out of hand, with no consideration of the losses. And what happened in the zones occupied by the Imperial armies? Were Austro-Hungarian forces responsible for war crimes?
This book sheds a shocking light on chains of command, prejudices, and escalating violence towards suspects, civilians and ‘administrated masses’. A disturbing panorama of the Habsburg Empire’s path to downfall.
Music brings pleasure: Nikolaus Harnoncourt reflects persuasively and passionately on his metier. His texts, speeches and interviews reveal the vision of a great artist, looking back on his own influence and far beyond into musical history. He addresses subjects such as the urgency of art, Haydn, and “a crocodile called Mozart”, and considers romantic insight and baroque reminiscence. He gazes into the depths of an immoral world and shares anecdotes from the Vienna Music Society. He explains why artists cannot lie, why The Magic Flute remains an eternal mystery, and why great art ultimately arises from doubt.
An handcart and the infidelity of an attractive bookseller’s-daughter launch the story: Jutta Jacobi tells the tale of Johann Schnitzler, talented son of a poor Jewish carpenter from Nagykanizsa, who became a famous Viennese doctor; of his son Arthur, who changed from a sex maniac to a moralist; of his wife Frau Olga, the most remorseful divorcee ever, of Lili, who found happiness at the side of a fascist officer; of Heinrich, forced to emigrate to America in 1938; of Arthur’s grandsons Peter and Michael, who free themselves from the burden of the past; and of great granddaughter Giuliana, who decorates the graves in the Central Cemetery with stars.
A story of desire, warmed by humour, with changing perspectives over the course of the narrative.
Popes who studied at Arab universities; Turkish princes who grew up with European Emperors’ sons; Persian kings who saved Greek philosophy from destruction. Whether it was banks, minnesingers, or the concept of romantic love – many ideas perceived as western are in fact developments shared between orient and occident.
This book shows how there has always been exchange between these purportedly very different cultures and, despite wars and religious differences, how they developed into a unified whole. Dispensing with clichés it describes a cultural cohabitation which extends to the present day. A journey into ourselves and the diversity we hold within us.
Gustav Mahler’s circle of friends and colleagues ran into hundreds. Alongside famous contemporaries such as Richard Strauss and Gerhart Hauptmann, it included many people whose connection to Mahler is well known, but about whom we otherwise know little – from opera singer Rosa Papier, who was instrumental to Mahler’s engagement at the Vienna State Opera; landscape photographer Hugo Henneberg, whose wife Marie became godmother to Mahler’s daughter; to the lawyer Serafin Bondi, a member of the vegetarian association Mahler also belonged to. The book provides seventy fascinating biographies, filling the many gaps in Mahler’s biography.