Wolfgang Koeppen


Wolfgang Koeppen was born in 1906 in Greifswald and died in 1996 in Munich. After living in East Prussia for 11 years, he returned to Greifswald in 1919. He couldn’t afford to study at a gymnasium, so he transferred to a middle school which he later dropped out of. He worked in various professions: in a bookstore, in a theatre in Greifswald, as a assistant cook in Sweden and Finland, and as a dramaturg in Würzburg. He moved to Berlin in 1927 and started working for the Berliner Börsen-Courier newspaper in 1931. In 1934, his first novel Eine unglückliche Liebe was published. In the same year, he moved to Holland. In 1938, he moved back to Germany and started to work for the Bavaria Film Company in Feldafing at the Starnberger lake, before finally moving to Munich in 1945. In the years 1951, 1953 and 1954 he wrote three novels that are considered the best literary depiction of the atmosphere of Germany in the Adenauer era: Pigeons on the Grass, The Hothouse and Death in Rome.