The art of "reading-to" and the post-Holocaust suicide in Schlink's the reader

Michael Lackey

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Abstract

    In Bernhard Schlink's The Reader, former Nazi perpetrator Hanna Schmitz commits suicide, and scholars have not yet answered the question why. When Michael visits Hanna's cell after her death, he notices books on her shelf by Primo Levi, Elie Wiesel, Tadeusz Borowski, Jean Améry, Rudolf Höss, and Hannah Arendt. By citing works from these authors, I argue that Hanna kills herself because she discovers that Michael has become what she once was. I also demonstrate that through her suicide, Hanna fulfills a major demand found in the works of Améry, and by fulfilling that demand, Améry and Hanna are united.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)145-164
    Number of pages20
    JournalPhilosophy and Literature
    Volume42
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    StatePublished - Apr 2018

    Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The art of "reading-to" and the post-Holocaust suicide in Schlink's the reader'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this