Thomas Mann: Tonio Kröger

(1162 words)
  • Hannelore G. Mundt (University of Wyoming)

Thomas Mann's early novella Tonio Kröger (1903) ranks amongst his most popular narratives. Written over a period of two years and regarded by the author himself as his “favorite literary child” (“literarisches Lieblingskind”), the text's central theme is the antagonism between life and art, an antagonism that also plays a major role in some of Mann's previous works. This can be seen in the novella Der kleine Herr Friedemann [Little Herr Friedemann, 1897], where a crippled outsider escapes into the realm of art to avoid life. In the novel Buddenbrooks (1901) the renunciation of a bourgeois existence is coupled with life-negating aestheticism and death. Art and life are also diametrically opposed in …

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.. "Tonio Kröger". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 12 February 2004
[, accessed 25 September 2016.]