Alfred Hellmuth Andersch: Der Vater eines Mörders [The Father of a Murderer] (623 words)


Der Vater eines Mörders (The Father of a Murderer) was Alfred Andersch’s last major work, written in 1979 and published in 1980, the year of the author’s death. Its German subtitle, Eine Schulgeschichte (A School History), was removed from the English translation by Leila Vennewitz. The novella is semi-autobiographical and takes place during a single Greek lesson at the Wittelsbacher Gymnasium in May 1928. By Andersch’s own admission, the protagonist, Franz Kien, represents his “other self”, a means of allowing the author to distance himself from the events in order to convey the essence, if not the literal facts, of what transpired that day.

The titular “father of a murderer” is Gebhard …

Citation: Horton, Aaron. "Der Vater eines Mörders". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 March 2015 [, accessed 19 June 2021.]

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