Thomas Mann: Buddenbrooks: Verfall einer Familie [Buddenbrooks: The Decline of a Family]

(2458 words)
  • Hannelore G. Mundt

Thomas Mann was only twenty-two years old when he began writing his first novel, Buddenbrooks: Verfall einer Familie [Buddenbrooks: Decline of a Family], in October 1897. The work was completed in July of 1900 and published in October 1901. From the start Mann’s ambitions were set high. He wanted to write “a society novel disguised as a family saga” in the tradition of the great nineteenth-century European social novels, such as Renée Mauperin (1864) by the Goncourt brothers, Stendhal’s Le Rouge et le noir [The Red and the Black, 1830], and Theodor Fontanes Die Poggenpuhls [The Poggenpuhls,1896]. Furthermore, he wanted to surpass the literary fame of his older …

Please log in to consult the article in its entirety. If you are a member (student of staff) of a subscribing institution (see List), you should be able to access the LE on campus directly (without the need to log in), and off-campus either via the institutional log in we offer, or via your institution's remote access facilities, or by creating a personal user account with your institutional email address. If you are not a member of a subscribing institution, you will need to purchase a personal subscription. For more information on how to subscribe as an individual user, please see under Individual Subcriptions.

Mundt, Hannelore G.. "Buddenbrooks: Verfall einer Familie". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 17 September 2003
[, accessed 28 November 2015.]

Related Groups

  1. Family Sagas/ Chronicles