Heinrich Heine (1797–1856) was a virtuoso German poet, satirist, and visionary humanist whose dynamic life story and strikingly original writing are ripe for rediscovery.
In this vividly imagined exploration of Heine’s life and work, George Prochnik contextualizes Heine’s biography within the different revolutionary political, literary, and philosophical movements of his age. He also explores the insights Heine offers contemporary readers into issues of social justice, exile, and the role of art in nurturing a more equitable society.
Heine wrote that in his youth he resembled “a large newspaper of which the upper half contained the present, each day with its news and debates, while in the lower half, in a succession of dreams, the poetic past was recorded fantastically like a series of feuilletons.”
This book explores the many dualities of Heine’s nature, bringing to life a fully dimensional character while also casting into sharp relief the reasons his writing and personal story matter urgently today.
George Prochnik is the author of Stranger in a Strange Land: Searching for Gershom Scholem and Jerusalem. His previous book, The Impossible Exile: Stefan Zweig at the End of the World, received the 2014 National Jewish Book Award for Biography/Memoir.
15 januari, 2021