Günter Grass: Hundejahre [Dog Years]

(4908 words)
  • Sigrid Mayer (Professor Emerita, University of Wyoming)

Dog Years is one of the most influential and important novels written since the Second World War. A work of what Heinrich Böll called “rubble literature” [work to come out of the rubble of German reconstuction], it offers a darkly-brilliant, satiric and comic commentary on the German people's understanding of the rise of fascism and of wartime events. Loosely modelled on Grass's own autobiographical experiences, first as a school boy in National Socialist Germany, then as a member of the Hitler youth and airforce auxiliary, the tale weaves a densely-allusive and complex allegorical thread of oddly-patterned and estranged events that gather around the lives of humans (often allegorised as scarecrows) and dogs (often standing f…

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Citation:
Mayer, Sigrid. "Hundejahre". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 27 June 2002
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=9353, accessed 19 December 2014.]