Norman Mailer and Günter Grass on the twentieth century


In this video from the USA, Author Norman Mailer says that he thinks “The Castle in the Forrest” is one of his major novels.

By Sandy English:

Last month I attended a forum at the New York Public Library on 42nd Street in Manhattan featuring the writers Günter Grass and Norman Mailer, entitled, “The 20th Century on Trial.”

Both of these figures have some claim to delivering a verdict. Grass (born 1927) was one of the postwar artists who called on German society to confront the period of fascism in a compassionate and intelligent way, especially in his first novel, The Tin Drum. He exposed the continuity between many of the leaders and functionaries of the Federal Republic of Germany and the former Nazi regime.

Mailer (born 1923), who went through an early flirtation with Marxism, has produced significant novels that dealt with the war and postwar social life in the United States including The Naked and the Dead and Barbary Shore. He was a visible figure in New York intellectual and political life during the 1960s and 1970s, even running in the Democratic Party primary for mayor, half-seriously, on one occasion. His new novel, the Castle in the Forrest, is about Adolph Hitler’s childhood.

In other words, these men are substantial figures and one had a right to expect something serious on the topic of the 20th Century.

It was a disappointing event.

New York’s premier library to be renamed for billionaire Wall Street speculator: here.

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