Heinrich Mann  

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"This, too, you have been told by others: by Heinrich Mann in Germany as long as twenty-five years ago, and in America by Upton Sinclair, Dos Passos and others. But you didn’t know of Mann or Sinclair. You know only the champion Al Capone. Faced with the choice between a library and a brawl, you will unquestionably choose the brawl. " --Listen, Little Man! (1945) by Wilhelm Reich

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Luiz (Ludwig) Heinrich Mann (March 27, 1871March 12, 1950) was a German novelist best-known for his novel Professor Unrat which was liberally adapted into the successful film The Blue Angel. He wrote works with social themes whose attacks on the authoritarian and increasingly militaristic nature of post-Weimar German society led to his exile in 1933, after Hitler's rise to power.

Life and work

Born in Lübeck as the oldest child of Thomas Johann Heinrich Mann and Júlia da Silva Bruhns. He was the elder brother of Thomas Mann. His father came from a patrician grain merchant family and was a Senator of the Hanseatic city. After the death of his father, his mother moved the family to Munich, where Heinrich began his career as a freier Schriftsteller or free novelist.

His essay on Zola and the novel Der Untertan earned him much respect during the Weimar Republic, since it satirized German society and explained how its political system had led to the First World War. Eventually, his book Professor Unrat was liberally adapted into the successful movie Der Blaue Engel (The Blue Angel). Carl Zuckmayer wrote the script, and Josef von Sternberg was the director. The book's author wanted his girlfriend, the actress Trude Hesterberg, to play the lead, but Marlene Dietrich was given her first major role instead as Lola Lola the "actress" (named Rosa Fröhlich in the novel).

Together with Albert Einstein and other celebrities, Mann was a signatory to a letter to the International League of Human Rights condemning the murder of Croatian scholar Dr Milan Šufflay on February 18, 1931. He became a persona non grata in Nazi Germany and eventually made his way to Marseille in Vichy France. There, he was aided to escape to Spain, and eventually the United States by Varian Fry in 1940.

During the 1930s and later in American exile, his literary career went downhill, and eventually he died in Santa Monica, California, lonely and without much money, just months before he was to move to Soviet-occupied Germany to become president of the Prussian Academy of Arts. His ashes were later taken to East Germany.



  • In einer Familie. 1894.
  • Im Schlaraffenland. 1900.
  • Die Jagd nach Liebe. 1903.
  • Professor Unrat. 1905.
    • The blue angel. Reprint of the 1932 ed. published by Jarrolds, London. Includes facsimile reprint of the original title page. New York: H. Fertig, 1976.
  • Der Untertan (The Loyal Subject or Man of Straw), 1919.
  • Das Kaiserreich (The Empire). 1918 – 1925
  • Die kleine Stadt. 1909.
  • Die Jugend des Königs Henri Quatre. 1935.
  • Die Vollendung des Königs Henri Quatre. 1938.
  • André Gide and the Crisis of Modern Thought. [With a portrait.]. Creative Age Press: New York, 1943.
  • Briefwechsel mit Barthold Fles, 1942-1949. 1993. (posthumous publication; editor Madeleine Rietra)

See also

  • Walter Fähnders/Walter Delabar: Heinrich Mann (1871 - 1950). Berlin 2005 (Memoria 4)

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Heinrich Mann" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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