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Why Don’t You Write Some Hard Facts About Yourself

Letters 1939-1975

by Anders, GüntherArendt, Hannah

This is the first published correspondence between Hannah Arendt and Günther Anders. Related essays and other writings have been included. The correspondence sheds light on the relationship between the former lovers, both on an intellectual and personal level. Anecdotes about contemporaries such as Walter Benjamin, Theodor W. Adorno and Martin Heidegger make this volume especially appealing. Last but not least, the letters document the escape and emigration of two Jewish intellectuals from Germany.

New York, May, 1941: „ARE SAFE STAYING AT 317 WEST 95 = HANNAH“: this is the telegram sent by Hannah Arendt to her ex-husband, who was staying in Hollywood at the time. Günther Anders, who had emigrated to the US in 1936, had sent cash and the required papers for immigration, allowing Arendt and her family to escape from Europe. Their divorce was finalised by letter in 1937. Whereas Arendt spent the rest of her life in New York, Anders returned to Europe in 1950, settling in Vienna. Despite their differences in philosophical outlook, the experience of escape and antisemitism strengthened their mutual bond and continued to inform their work.

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