Hans Rudolf Vaget on “Germany and the Germans”
Let’s get started with #MutuallyMann! The first contribution comes from literary scholar Hans Rudolf Vaget. During a visit at the Thomas Mann House, the renowned Mann expert gets the discussion going by reporting on the significance and the role of Thomas Mann’s essay “Germany and the Germans” for post-war Germany as one of the very first attempts to honestly confront the question: How could Nazism happen in Germany?
Hans Rudolf Vaget is Professor of German Studies and Comparative Literature at Smith College (Northampton, Massachusetts). He received his academic training at the universities of Munich and Tübingen, the University of Wales at Cardiff and at Columbia University in New York. His research focuses on Goethe, Wagner and Thomas Mann, on which he has published extensively. Recently he published “Wehvolles Erbe: Richard Wagner in Deutschland. Hitler, Knappertsbusch, Mann” (S. Fischer Publishing House, 2017).