Celebrities in Switzerland: Thomas Mann
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Mann, Thomas (1875 - 1955) Germany / Writer / ZH

The German author and Nobel Prize winner lived in Switzerland for 8 years. Thomas Mann, born in 1875, came from old Lübeck patrician stock. After his father's death, the family moved to Munich. He made his debut in the avant-garde movement of the time, Berlin's naturalist movement and the well-known satirical weekly, Simplicissimus.

Influenced by philosophers Arthur Schopenhauer and Friedrich Nietzsche, he wrote his first short story, Vision, in 1893 under the pen name Paul Thomas. After numerous short stories, his first international success came with the novel Buddenbrooks, in which a character from the middle-class battles with inner conflict. This was a recurring theme of Thomas Mann's, particularly in Tonio Kröger, which was published in 1903.

The writer won fame with Death in Venice in 1912 and The Magic Mountain in 1924, a novel set in a Swiss village similar to Davos. In 1929, Thomas Mann received the Nobel Prize in Literature for his work. In 1933, he was forced into exile due to his critical writings on the Nazi regime.

Thomas Mann thus settled with his wife Katja in Küsnacht, near Zurich, where they lived from 1933 to 1938 and where he began his series of novels Joseph and his Brothers. Then the writer left for the United States to work as a university professor, although he still continued to write. He completed The Beloved Returns in 1939, and adopted American citizenship in 1944.

In 1952, at the age of 77, Thomas Mann returned to Erlenbach in Switzerland. Two years later, he bought a house in Kilchberg, near Zurich, where he finished his novel Confessions of Felix Krull, Confidence Man. The writer passed away in 1955 at the cantonal hospital in Zurich.

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