Stefan Zweig


Stefan Zweig : biography

28 November 1881 – 23 February 1942

Zweig’s interest in Russia had also other reasons: as many other western writers he saw the only real power in the Soviet Union, which could resist Nazi. Zweig arrived in the Soviet Union in 1928 on the occasion of centenary since the day of Lev Tolstoy’s death. It should be mentioned that Tolstoy was Stefan Zweig’s favorite Russian writer.

However, Zweig estimated the rough bureaucratic activity of the ruling top of Soviet republics rather skeptically. Generally, his relation to the Soviet Union of that period can be described as friendly but critical curiosity. But years later Zweig’s friendliness gradually diminished and the skepticism increased. Zweig could not accept and understand idolization of the leader. And the falsity of framed up political processes didn’t mislead the writer. He absolutely refused the idea of dictatorship of proletariat that was making legal any acts of violence and terror.



“Letter from an Unknown Woman”- 1948, a film by German film director Max Ophuls. The film was based on Zweig’s novel with the same title; “Beware of pity” – 1979, a film by a French film director, consisting of two parts. The film was based on the writer’s book “Beware of pity” “Burning Secret” – 1988, a film by Andrew Birkin, who got prizes at Brussels and Venetian film festivals; “Letter from an Unknown Woman” – 2001, the last film by French film director Jacques Deray. The film was based on Zweig’s novel “Letter from an Unknown Woman”; “Twenty-Four Hours in the Life of a Woman” – 2002, a film by a French film director, based on the writer’s novel with the same title.

Selected bibliography

“Letter from an Unknown Woman” or “Brief einer Unbekannten”, 1922

“Amok”, 1922

“The Invisible Collection”, 1926

“Downfall of the Heart”, 1927

“Twenty-Four Hours in the Life of a Woman”, 1927

“Star watch humanity”, a circle of novels, 1927

“Marie Antoinette: The Portrait of an Average Woman”, 1932

“Marie Stuart”, 1935

“Triumph and tragedy of Erasmus von Roterodamus”, 1934

“Conscience against of rage”, 1936

“Healing the heart”, 1938

“Chess novel”, 1942

“The world of Yesterday”, 1942

“Rausch der Verwandlung”, 1982