PD Smith

Culture clash

22 August 2007 | German culture, Los Angeles, Reviewing, Th Mann | Post a comment

The Times Literary Supplement has just published my review of Weimar on the Pacific: German Exile Culture in Los Angeles and the Crisis of Modernism, by Erhard Bahr, a fascinating book I mentioned in an earlier post. Here's the opening paragraph:

In 1966, Erhard Bahr stopped his VW Beetle at a petrol station in Westwood, a suburb of Los Angeles. He was en route to take up his first lectureship at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the car’s back seat was piled high with his books. On top was a collection of Thomas Mann’s short stories. This caught the eye of the pump attendant who then engaged Bahr in a lengthy discussion of The Magic Mountain. “I took it as a good omen”, says Bahr in the preface to Weimar on the Pacific, the fruit of thirty years’ research into the West Coast’s exile culture.

It's not yet online but you can read it here.

Leave a Reply

Name (required)
Mail (will not be published) (required)