Jeffrey Meyers has written acclaimed biographies of many of the most influential authors of the twentieth century, but none has affected him as deeply as Thomas Mann. From his first youthful encounter with Death in Venice, Meyers has cultivated a lifetime obsession with Mann's elegant style, penetrating irony, and insight into the life of the artist.
Thomas Mann's Artist-Heroes follows Mann's own obsession with the artistic life through his characters: from the fiction of Gustav von Aschenbach in Death in Venice and the music of Adrian Leverkuhn in Doctor Faustus, to Tonio Kroeger's life as a writer, to the artistically minded patient Hans Castorp in The Magic Mountain, and finally to Mann's time in America and later memoirs by his family. Mann probes deeper than perhaps any other author into questions of how an artist is formed, why he must defy conventional society, and how suffering and disease affect his work.
Admirers of Thomas Mann and of Jeffrey Meyers's biographies will find in this remarkable book the best introduction to one of the greatest writers of the modern age.