In this month’s LRB Michael Hofman attempts to bring the Zweig revival to a decisive halt:
There is something touchingly wrong about Zweig. He had a trammelled life and preached freedom; he gave himself to public causes and had little to say; he was obtuse and hypersensitive and worshipped at the altar of friendship. He is like someone walking up a down escalator, his eyes anxiously fixed on Parnassus – all those people and friends whose manuscripts he collected – toiling away and not coming close. He, by the way, knew it: he deprecates himself and means it; he lists writers who are more important than he is, and means it; Friderike, his first wife, wrote to him, ‘your written works are only a third of yourself’ with little fear of contradiction from him; he is the modest man in the story with plenty to be modest about – so it’s his apologists who need telling.