The contributions to this volume have been commissioned in honour of Michael Butler, Professor of Modern German Literature at the University of Birmingham, on the occasion of his 65th birthday. Professor Butler has distinguished himself as an editor, interpreter and critic of post war German literature, most particularly in the area of German-Swiss writing. His three monographs on Max Frisch and the edited volumes Rejection and Emancipation. Writing in German-speaking Switzerland 1945-91, The Making of Modern Switzerland 1848-1995, and The Narrative Fiction of Heinrich Böll. Social Conscience and Narrative Achievement, all share the same concern with the moral dimension of imaginative literature, a focus which also unites the contributions to this celebratory volume. Michael Butler’s signal contributions to German Studies have earned him a LittD from the University of Cambridge, the Bundesverdienstkreuz of the Federal Republic of Germany and the Presidency from 1995 to 1998 of the Conference of University Teachers of German.