Anna Seghers

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Anna Seghers (1966)
Seghers' headstone.

Anna Seghers (November 19, 1900, MainzJune 1, 1983, Berlin) was a German writer.

Seghers was born as Netty Reiling in Mainz. Her parents were orthodox Jews, but also interested in Christians belief. Nelly made her abitur in 1920. Before she served as nurse in the World War I. She studied in Cologne and Heidelberg history, arts history and Chinese.

In 1925 she married Laszlo Radvanyi, a Hungarian Communist and joined later the Communist Party of Germany (KPD). They had three children.

After the Nazis took over government in Germany, she was arrested for a short while, her books were burned. After she got free again, she had the chance to flee into Switzerland. Then she went to Paris and worked for unions of exilised writers. After German troups occupied Paris she could flee to Marsaille, which was not occupied. But her husband was arrested. She tried to get him free.

In 1941 the complete family flew about Martinique and New York City to Mexico City. She founded new unions for exiled writers.

In 1947 she returned to Berlin, Eastern Berlin. She joined the Socialist Party of the later GDR and worked for the Writers Union of the GDR. She got a lot of prizes and awards. She tried to make silent interventions for colleges, who had trouble with the government, but she was unsuccessful.

She died in 1983 in Berlin.

Works[change | change source]

  • 1925 - Jans muss sterben (found by Pierre Radvanyi after her death)
  • 1928 - Aufstand der Fischer von St. Barbara
  • 1930 - Auf dem Wege zur amerikanischen Botschaft und andere Erzählungen
  • 1932 - Die Gefährten
  • 1933 - Der Kopflohn
  • 1935 - Der Weg durch den Februar
  • 1937 - Die Rettung
  • 1940 - Die schönsten Sagen vom Räuber Woynok. Sagen von Artemis
  • 1942 - Das siebte Kreuz
  • 1943 - Der Ausflug der toten Mädchen
  • 1944 - Transit
  • 1948 - Sowjetmenschen. Lebensbeschreibungen nach ihren Berichten
  • 1949 - Die Toten bleiben jung
  • 1949 - Die Hochzeit von Haiti
  • 1950 - Die Linie
  • 1950 - Der Kesselflicker
  • 1951 - Crisanta
  • 1951 - Die Kinder
  • 1952 - Der Mann und sein Name
  • 1953 - Der Bienenstock
  • 1958 - Brot und Salz
  • 1959 - Die Entscheidung
  • 1961 - Das Licht auf dem Galgen
  • 1963 - Über Tolstoi. Über Dostojewski
  • 1965 - Die Kraft der Schwachen
  • 1967 - Das wirkliche Blau. Eine Geschichte aus Mexiko
  • 1968 - Das Vertrauen
  • 1969 - Glauben an Irdisches
  • 1970 - Briefe an Leser
  • 1970 - Über Kunstwerk und Wirklichkeit
  • 1971 - Überfahrt. Eine Liebesgeschichte
  • 1977 - Steinzeit. Wiederbegegnung
  • 1980 - Drei Frauen aus Haiti
  • 1990 - Der gerechte Richter (written 1957, not published for political reasons)

Prizes, awards and Honours[change | change source]

  • 1928 Kleist-Preis
  • 1947 Georg-Büchner-Preises
  • 1951 International Lenin Peace prize / Stalin peace prize
  • 1951 National prize of the GDR (and 1959, 1971)
  • 1954 Vaterländischer Verdienstorden in silver
  • 1959 honourable doctorate: Dr. phil. h.c. der Universität Jena
  • 1960 Vaterländischer Verdienstorden in gold
  • 1961 Johannes-R.-Becher-Medaille
  • 1965 Karl-Marx-Orden (weitere 1969, 1974)
  • 1970 Stern der Völkerfreundschaft
  • 1975 Großer Stern der Völkerfreundschaft
  • 1975 Kulturpreis des Weltfriedensrates
  • 1975 Honourable Citizen of Eastern Berlin
  • 1978 Honourable President of the Writers Union
  • 1980 Held der Arbeit
  • 1981 Honourable Citizen of Mainz