A life like his could not even think of it, so Edgar Hilsenrath from the own experiences the basic material for his first novels. And they brought to him, estimates have been as still the end of the eighties, in Gero, of Wilperts “encyclopedia of world literature”, in which the writer thus characterizes it: “narrator relentlessly monstrous novels from Jewish. Time and fate“. So the books were meant as his debut “night” from 1964, “Bronskys confession” of 1980, but especially “The Nazi & the Barber” from 1971, a picaresque novel that seemed to be entirely aware of the title in the Tradition of Charlie Chaplin’s Film “The Great dictator”, but then through his black Humor a very different narrative path that was felt by many as cynical. Such a thing could not be published in Germany at the beginning of the seventies; the novel was first published in English Translation in the United States, then in French, and in both countries he was a best-seller. Until 1977, but a Cologne-based publishing (Helmut brown) ventured to it.

Andreas platthaus

editor responsible for the literature and literary life.

F. A. Z.

Hilsenrath that is not contested, particularly as the courage for all Involved paid off: The book was in this country a great success and allowed for the 1975 West Berlin, drawn-out writer being a freelance author. That, however, he was returned to Germany, was anything other than of course. In 1926, as the son of a Jewish businessman born in Leipzig, he got away with mother and the younger brother as a twelve-year-old from Nazi Germany to Romania; all the Shoah, the father, the it to France had survived. But Edgar Hilsenrath had been separated from his family, was liberated only in the last Minute from a ghetto and was once suspected of war orphans to Palestine, before he found his family in 1947 in Lyon yet again, and with her in the United States emigrated. There he wrote his first books, all in German.

These life stations are to be found in his novels, all in a highly sarcastic, a little sympathetic, in a way that acknowledged Hilsenrath is nowhere to become more at home with the exception of the literature. And even there, he was looking for new subjects, because he did not want to restrict the topic of the table only on his own experience: on Shoah and Jewish Emigration. In the eighties, he took a stand for the Armenians, whose fate under Turkish rule during the First world war, he was the forerunner for the national socialist genocide. The result of his “tale of the last thought”, which appeared in 1989, and in a dozen languages have been translated the same as “night” and “The Nazi & the Barber”, ten years after the publication, even in Turkish, which made him particularly proud. In Armenia, he was honored in 2006 for his involvement with the national prize for literature and an honorary doctorate from the University of Yerevan.