Fiction / German Literature / Judaica


Mr. Brecher's Fiasco
A Novel
Martin Kessel
Translated by Brigitte Goldstein
With an afterword by the author

Library of World Fiction, Terrace Books

"A literary sensation, as explosive today as in 1932."—Bayerisches Fernsehen

Infused with the spirit of 1920s Berlin, Mr. Brecher's Fiasco is one of the great modern novels about the urban heart of Germany. It was a time of hope and hyperinflation, sexual liberation and repression, industrialization and unemployment, and constant political instability with the shadow of fascism looming ever larger. Kessel's novel draws upon the major intellectual and social issues of Weimar Germany and is a satire of the Berlin workplace and the white-collar workers of the city's mushrooming bureaucracy. Kessel's scenes are strikingly modern. Many of the actions, complaints, and frustrations could easily come from a present-day office novel.

"This book, which pulls the whole of human comedy through the needle's eye of an employee's everyday life, is not only one of the great literary works of the twentieth century and a major contribution to the 'psychology of the city' comparable to Döblin's Berlin Alexanderplatz, it is also a project of disillusionment that is eerily relevant today."—Neue Züricher Zeitung

Martin Kessel (1901–1990) was awarded numerous literary prizes, including the 1926 Kleist Prize, the 1954 Georg Büchner Prize, the 1960 Fontane Prize, and the 1961 Literature Prize of the Bavarian Academy of the Fine Arts. His work received renewed attention upon the centenary of his birth.

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the cover of Kessel's book is a remote blue, with a photo of a looming Berlin office building.
Available now at a newly reduced price
LC: 2005005461 PT
440 pp. 6 x 9
ISBN 978-0-299-21430-2
Cloth $24.95 t

Published in November 2005

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