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Peter Handke, Siegfried Unseld

The Correspondence

Edited by Raimund Fellinger and Katharina Pektor
(Original title: Der Briefwechsel)
ca. 900 pages
Clothbound
2012
Peter Handke
Foto: Peter Handke
© Donata Wenders

Peter Handke, born in 1942 in Griffen (Austria), lives near Paris. His books are translated into more than 35 languages.

»German literature is not conceivable without Peter Handke.« Die Zeit

Siegfried Unseld
Foto: Siegfried Unseld

Siegfried Unseld was born in 1924. From 1959 until his death in 2002 he was the publisher of Suhrkamp Verlag.

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»I am happy to announce that after reading your manuscript closely, we have decided to pub-lish your work at Suhrkamp Verlag.« This letter in August 1965 was the start of a correspon-dence consisting of nearly 600 letters in which Peter Handke finally congratulated the pub-lisher on his 75th birthday.

In their letters that stretched a period of over 35 years, Peter Handke and Siegfried Unseld discussed what was paramount to them both: literature.

Guided by literature itself, this correspondence opens up entirely new perspectives on the conditions of writing and publishing books, and is marked by the intellectual biography of both correspondents, their unremitting work on new forms of expression and their concomitant material, geographical, political and personal circumstances. Conflicts between the two men were inevitable – as were their resolutions. For both Peter Handke and Siegfried Unseld, literature alone creates and created the opportunity of a free life in which phases of happiness can prevail.

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