Buddenbrooks

Buddenbrooks

Summary

Discover Mann's Nobel Prizewinning semi-autobiographical and sweeping family epic.

The Buddenbrook clan is everything you'd expect of a nineteenth-century German merchant family - wealthy, esteemed, established. Four generations later, a tide of twentieth-century modernism has gradually disintegrated the bourgeois values on which the Buddenbrooks built their success.

In this, Mann's first novel, his astounding, semi-autobiographical family epic, he portrays the transition of genteel Germanic stability to a very modern uncertainty.

'Perhaps the first great novel of the 20th century' New York Times

Reviews

  • Perhaps the first great novel of the 20th century
    New York Times

About the author

Thomas Mann

Thomas Mann was born in 1875 in Lubeck, of a line of prosperous and influential merchants. He was only twenty-five when Buddenbrooks, his first major novel, was published. Before it was banned and burned by Hitler, it had sold over a million copies in Germany alone.

His second great novel, The Magic Mountain, was published in 1924 and the first volume of his tetralogy Joseph and his Brothers in 1933. In 1929 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature. In 1933 Thomas Mann left Germany for Switzerland. Then, after several previous visits, in 1938 he settled in the United States, where he wrote Doctor Faustus and The Holy Sinner. Among the honours he received in the US was his appointment as a Fellow of the Library of Congress. He revisited his native country in 1949 and returned to Switzerland in 1952, where The Black Swan and Confessions of Felix Krull were written and where he died in 1955.
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