Several authors’ libraries preserved in the DLA Marbach, whose owners had to leave Germany under the Nazi regime, are described as »exile libraries«. The outer appearance of these libraries is already marked by exile: transports in containers, climate fluctuations and temporary storage in locations unsuitable for books have left their visible traces behind. Structural changes through the forced sale of entire sections of libraries and rebalancing of their contents are the consequences of existential constraints. Even the current profile of the collections documents changed possibilities of reception and publication, language shifts and professional changes. In many cases an attempt to grapple with the violent experiences of displacement and the Holocaust is apparent, as well as with the literatures of their new countries.
In spite of the commonalities provided by their shared experience of history, these (partial) libraries – of H. G. Adler, Alfred Döblin, Hilde Domin, Walter Hasenclever, Siegfried Kracauer, Werner Kraft, Karl Lieblich, Konrad Merz, Karl Otten, Kurt Pinthus, Hans Sahl, Kurt Tucholsky and others – all have an individual character, and the reasons for and circumstances of their return are varied. Traces of their provenance, such as labels from book stores, dates, dedications and inserted objects provide information about where and when they were in a location, about social networks and various facets of the meaning of owning a book.
Deutsches Literaturarchiv Marbach
Telephone +49 (0) 7144 / 848-301
Telefax +49 (0) 7144 / 848-390
Head of Department: Jutta Bendt