The war has ended, and Drach, a Viennese Jew, has successfully avoided the Nazi gas chambers. Now, after years of flight, he decides to commit suicide because of an unhappy love affair. The plan fails, but the attempt reflects the determination, both desperate and proud, that characterises this writer's literary work and biography.
DAS BEILEID relates how Drach trades his precarious exile in Nice for the "slagheaps of sentiment and self-interest" he encounters in post-war Austria. As he describes the displacement from his home country in 1938, the occupation and dispossession of the family farm, and, finally, the long battle to regain his property, Drach has much to say about the meanness and hypocrisy of the Austrians. His outraged pen also takes aim at the Vichy collaborators of southern France in this angry comédie humaine.
This new edition of Das beileid includes detailed historical and biographical comments as well as photographs and facsimiles from the author's estate.
"A relentlessly rough-cut novel." (Hermann Wallmann, Frankfurter Rundschau)