Lion Feuchtwanger

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Lion Feuchtwanger (7 July 1884 in Germany – 21 December 1958, U.S.A.) was a Jewish novelist and playwright, who eventually emigrated to the United States. He is best known as author of the book Jud Süß which was made into two films after publication, the 1934 British film, and more notably the famous 1940 German version.

He himself made various grandiose claims regarding his own importance, such as supposedly being the "Enemy of the state number one" of National Socialist Germany. Sources such as the leftist Wikipedia accept these claims uncritically.

After some success as a playwright, Feuchtwanger shifted his emphasis to the historical novel. His most successful work in this genre was the faction novel Jud Süß (Jew Süss) (written 1921-22, first published in Munich in 1925), and later published in numerous languages. The July 1929 English language reprint boasted it had sold 98,000 copies. Jud Süß was a faction story based upon the life of the real "Court Jew" Joseph Süß Oppenheimer, who was executed in 1738.

Feuchtwanger left Germany for France following the NSDAP being elected to power in January 1933. His citizenship was revoked.

He was interested in Soviet Communism, visited the Soviet Union briefly, and in his book Moskau 1937, he praised life under Joseph Stalin, defending the Great Purge and the show trials that were then taking place.

When Germany invaded France in 1940, he supposedly had a dramatic escape from France, as told in his book The Devil in France.

During "'McCarthyism" in the USA, he became the target of suspicion as a pro-Soviet intellectual.

He later became a Zionist.

See also