Everyone knows the title of his great novel THE MAN WITHOUT QUALITIES but the author, more than sixty years after his death, remains as enigmatic as in his lifetime. Herbert Kraft's brilliantly written book demonstrates how life and work complement each other in Robert Musil's case and provides information and insights that will raise the understanding of this truly remarkable writer to a new level.
From THE CONFESSIONS OF YOUNG TORLESS to VINZENZ and NACHLASS ZU LEBZEITEN, Kraft sees both Musil's work and his biography ruled by a single objective: the work on the great novel that would give him the acknowledgement he felt was his due. Kraft sheds light on Musil's world and makes his work understandable for modern readers by presenting a portrait of a life filled with a passion for writing.
Musil's existence was determined by every-day concerns, and he was truly happy only when he could write (and smoke). A woman played the central role in his life. That woman "loved him in such a shameless manner as one loves life itself". The lives of Martha Marcovaldi and Robert Musil were echoed in Musil's protagonists Agathe and Ulrich.
"Musil forces us to think, to think precisely and boldly." (Ingeborg Bachmann)
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