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A Companion to the Works of Elias Canetti


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The Bulgarian-born scholar and author Elias Canetti was one of the most astute witnesses and analysts of the mass movements and wars of the first half of the 20th century. Born a Sephardic Jew and raised at first in the Bulgarian and Ladino languages, he chose to write in German. He was awarded the 1981 Nobel Prize in Literature for his oeuvre, which includes dramas, essays, diaries, aphorisms, the novel Die Blendung (Auto-da-Fé) and the long interdisciplinary treatise Masse und Macht (s and Power). These works express Canetti's thought-provoking ideas on culture and the human psyche with special focus on the phenomena of power, conflict, and survival. Canetti's masterful prose, his linguistic innovations, his brilliant satires and conceits continue to fascinate scholars and general readers alike; his challenging, genre-bending writings merge theory and literature, essay and diary entry. This Companion volume contains original essays by renowned scholars from around the world who examine Canetti's writing and thought in the context of pre- and post-fascist Europe, providing a comprehensive scholarly introduction. Contributors: William C. Donahue, Anne Fuchs, Hans Reiss, Julian Preece, Wolfgang Mieder, Sigurd P. Scheichel, Helga Kraft, Harriet Murphy, Irene S. Di Maio, Ritchie Robertson, Johannes G. Pankau, Dagmar C.G. Lorenz, Penka Angelova and Svoboda A. Dimitrova, Michael Mack.
Dagmar C. G. Lorenz is professor of Germanic Studies at the University of Illinois-Chicago.


Overall, the book presents an image of Canetti's work that is reflective of his own style, in part by resisting a simple chronological organization. ... A valuable resource for those seeking an introduction to the works of Elias Canetti. GERMAN QUARTERLY

The Companion faithfully reflects the present state of scholarship... The image of the writer that emerges from this volume is agreeably open and multi-faceted. MODERN LANGUAGE REVIEW

This volume allows the reader to familiarize himself with the work of Canetti in its vast multiplicity and provides an interesting approach. ETUDES GERMANIQUES


First Published: 25 Jun 2004
13 Digit ISBN: 9781571132345
Pages: 364
Size: 9 x 6
Binding: Hardback
Imprint: Camden House
BIC Class: DSB

Details updated on 05 Oct 2015


  • 1  Introduction
  • 2  Good-Bye to All That: Elias Canetti's Obituaries
  • 3  "The Deeper Nature of My German": Mother Tongue, Subjectivity, and the Voice of the Other in Elias Canetti's Autobiography
  • 4  Elias Canetti's Attitude to Writers and Writings
  • 5  Canetti and the Question of Genre
  • 6  "The Faultiest Expressions Have the Greatest Attraction": Elias Canetti's Proverbial Aphorisms
  • 7  "Canetti's Aufzeichnungen"
  • 8  Staging a Critique of Modernism: Elias Canetti's Plays
  • 9  "Gute Reisende sind herzlos": Canetti in Marrakesh
  • 10  Space in Elias Canetti's Autobiographical Trilogy
  • 11  Canetti and Nietzsche: An Introduction to Masse und Macht
  • 12  Images of Male and Female in Canetti's Fictional, Autobiographical, and Theoretical Work
  • 13  Canetti's Final Frontier: The Animal
  • 14  Canetti, Roustchouk, and Bulgaria: The Impact of Origin on Canetti's Works
  • 15  Elias Canetti's Response to the Shoah: Masse und Macht

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