A Bad Person

Through flowerville (I think, though I can no longer find the original reference) I discovered Annemarie Schwarzenbach’s work. I’ve been reading three books published by Seagull Books, drawn as much to Schwarzenbach as her writing. I do hope that Schwarzenbach’s letters find a good translator and publisher.

I’m having a run of Bohemians.

The following is from an Afterword to her Lyric Novella, though I think it is the travel diaries I prefer; she writes beautifully of landscape and skies. Though, to quote Wilde, the truth is rarely pure, and never simple, this excerpt strikes me as refreshingly truthful.

When she is lonely, she writes him a sort of love letter in which she categorically denies any possibility for loving a man: ‘Incidentally, you are so sure of yourself, so conceited in your hyper-criticism, so endlessly alone due to your knowledge. [ . . . ] For I also believe that you are a bad person. Weak, vain and wicked, like all men, because they do not have the same humility as we women do.’

Annemarie Schwarzenbach
Pariser Novelle II

4 thoughts on “A Bad Person

  1. hi anthony, yeah might have been me, but as you know i always shift my blogular content about, and anyway main thing is you enjoy the bookses. from what i can see from the german/swiss side, they’ve been doing a lot in the last years, unearthening her writing and letters and published & edited it really nicely. it seems that seagull follows suit.
    and here’s a documentary in case you haven’t already seen it which you may well have…

    • Schwarzenbach’s overly possessive mother destroyed a lot of material including diaries and Erika Mann’s letters.

      Thanks for the documentary. I’ll watch it this evening.

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