Publication Date: September 8, 2009
Other Editions of This Title: Hardcover
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Here is “a rich and lyrical masterpiece”–notes Peter Constantine–the first translation of a lost treasure by acclaimed author H. G. Adler, a survivor of Theresienstadt and Auschwitz. Written in 1950, after Adler’s emigration to England, The Journey was ignored by large publishing houses after the war and not released in Germany until 1962. Depicting the Holocaust in a unique and deeply moving way, and avoiding specific mention of country or camps–even of Nazis and Jews–The Journey is a poetic nightmare of a family’s ordeal and one member’s survival. Led by the doctor patriarch Leopold, the Lustig family finds itself “forbidden” to live, enduring in a world in which “everyone was crazy, and once they finally recognized what was happening it was too late.” Linked by its innovative style to the work of James Joyce and Virginia Woolf, The Journey portrays the unimaginable in a way that anyone interested in recent history and modern literature must read.
H. G. Adler was the author of twenty-six books of fiction, poetry, philosophy, and history. A survivor of the Holocaust, Adler later settled in England and began writing novels about his experience, The Journey being the first of six works of fiction. Working as a freelance writer and teacher throughout his life, Adler died in London in 1988.
Peter Filkins is an acclaimed translator and the recipient of a Berlin Prize fellowship in 2005 from the American Academy in Berlin, among other honors. He teaches writing and literature at Bard College at Simon’s Rock in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.
“H.G. Adler’s works . . . survive as a magnificent achievement of courage, art, and the stubborn will to survive.”—Peter Demetz, Sterling Professor Emeritus of Germanic Language and Literature, Yale University
“A masterpiece . . . For me, Adler has restored hope to modern literature.”—Elias Canetti, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature
“As important a find as Irène Némirovsky’s Suite Française, and as well translated into English, it is indeed, as Veza Canetti wrote to the author in 1962, ‘too beautiful for words and too sad.’ ”—Sander L. Gilman, author of Jurek Becker: A Life in Five Worlds
“A tribute to the survival of art and a poignant teaching in the art of survival. I tend to shy away from Holocaust fiction, but this book helps redeem an all-but-impossible genre.”—Harold Bloom