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Erika and Klaus Mann

Living with America

Beverley Driver Eddy

Erika and Klaus Mann: Living with America provides new insights into the lives of Thomas Mann’s two eldest children, by focusing on their years in America. It begins with Erika and Klaus Mann’s self-promotional tour of the United States in 1927–1928, and follows up with their return in 1936 as voluntary exiles determined to fight the spread of Nazism in Europe. As children of privilege and considerable personal charm, Erika and Klaus Mann quickly became highly visible representatives of the German exile community.

In examining their lives in America, the United States plays a central role. Just as the Manns’ views of America evolved between 1936 and 1952, so did American public opinion and government policy. This study examines Erika and Klaus Mann’s public and private statements, while also examining statements made about them by American journalists, politicians, book critics, and F.B.I. and immigration officers. It follows the Mann siblings’ rise in America as celebrity representatives of an "other," better Germany, and the forces that began to rally against them even before the outbreak of the war. It shows the many concrete actions the Mann siblings took to persuade Americans to view their country as one linked to European interests, and it describes their various war activities, with Erika becoming a U.S. war correspondent and Klaus an American soldier. Finally, it portrays their fears for America as the war drew to a close, America deployed the atom bomb, and the nation quickly transformed itself from Russian ally to Cold War combatant.

List of Illustrations – Foreword – List of Abbreviations – Erika and Klaus: First Impressions (October 1927–April 1928) – Erika and Klaus: Political Awakening (1928–1936) – Erika and Klaus: Testing the Waters (August–December 1936) – Erika: The Pepper Mill (October 1936–January 1937) –  Erika: Search for a New Path (February–September 1937) – Klaus: Interlude in Europe (January–September 1937) – Klaus: Commitment to America (September 1937–February 1938) – Erika: Finding Her Place (September 1937–May 1938) – Erika and Klaus: Cooperative Efforts in Europe (April–October 1938) – Erika and Klaus: Cooperative Efforts in America (November 1938–April 1939) – Klaus: Life in Prewar America (April 1939–September 1939) – Erika: Facing the Approaching War (March–September 1939) – Klaus: Seeking New Paths (October 1939–March 1940) – Erika: Fighting with the Pen (January–December 1940) – Erika: Speaking Out (January–December 1940) – Mediating Between Cultures (December 1939–February 1941) – Erika: The Warrior (November 1940–December 1941) – Klaus: Death of a Dream (March 1941–January 1942) – Klaus: Hanging On (January–December 1942) – Erika: At War with Germany (December 1941–December 1942) – Klaus: Basic Training (December 1942–April 1943) – Klaus: Specialized Training (April–June 1943) – Erika: Into the Fray (January 1943–May 1944) – Waiting in Limbo (June–December 1943) – Klaus: An American Soldier (January–December 1944) – Erika: Army War Correspondent (June 1944–June 1945) – Klaus: Stars and Stripes Reporter (November 1944–July 1945) – Erika: Taking Tally (June 1945–April 1946) – Klaus: Transitioning to Peace (July 1945–June 1946 – Erika and Klaus: Futile Efforts in America (April 1946–April 1947) – Klaus: Seeking a Foothold in Europe (May 1947–May 1948) – Erika: A Changing Climate (May 1947–December 1948) – Klaus: The Last Year (May 1948–May 1949) – Klaus: Aftermath (May–July 1949) – Erika: Making Adjustments (January 1949–December 1950) – The Final Break (December 1950–June 1952) – Erika: Aftermath (July 1952–August 1969) – Index.