Author

Peter Weiss cover

photo credits: Wikimedia Commons

Peter Weiss

Swedish-German playwright and author

1916   -   1982

country of citizenship: Germany, Sweden
language of expression: Swedish, German
educated at: University of Westminster, Academy of Fine Arts, Prague
occupation: playwright, writer, painter, director, film director, author, illustrator
award received: Georg Büchner Prize, Heinrich Mann Prize, Charles Veillon prize in the German language, Preis der SWR-Bestenliste, Heinrich-Böll-Preis, Literaturpreis der Stadt Bremen

Peter Ulrich Weiss (8 November 1916 – 10 May 1982) was a German writer, painter, graphic artist, and experimental filmmaker of adopted Swedish nationality. He is particularly known for his plays Marat/Sade and The Investigation and his novel The Aesthetics of Resistance. Peter Weiss earned his reputation in the post-war German literary world as the proponent of an avant-garde, meticulously descriptive writing, as an exponent of autobiographical prose, and also as a politically engaged dramatist. He gained international success with Marat/Sade, the American production of which was awarded a Tony Award and its subsequent film adaptation directed by Peter Brook. His "Auschwitz Oratorium," The Investigation, served to broaden the debates over the so-called "Aufarbeitung der Vergangenheit" (or formerly) "Vergangenheitsbewältigung" or "politics of history." Weiss' magnum opus was The Aesthetics of Resistance, called the "most important German-language work of the 70s and 80s." His early, surrealist-inspired work as a painter and experimental filmmaker remains less well known.
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