Hermann Sudermann

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Sudermann, Hermann


Born Sept. 30, 1857, in the small town of Matziken, in East Prussia; died Nov. 21, 1928, in Berlin. German writer.

Sudermann is one of the leading representatives of the naturalist school of German literature. His dramas Honor (1889), The Man and His Picture (1891), and The Fatherland (1893) show the moral decay of fashionable society, the disintegration of the bourgeois family, and the fate of the artist under capitalism. In his later dramas Happiness in the Corner (1896) and The Joy of Living (1902) the socially critical motifs disappear.

Sudermann’s historical and symbolist plays include Morituri (1897), the tragedy John the Baptist (1898), and the drama Children of the Shore (1910). His novels Dame Care (1887) and The Undying Past (1894), erotic story lolanthe’s Wedding (1892), and short stories were no better than bourgeois fiction.


Dramatische Werke, vols. 1–6. Stuttgart, 1923.
Romane and Novellen, vols. 1–2. Stuttgart-Berlin, 1930.
In Russian translation:
Sobr. soch., vols. 1–7. St. Petersburg, 1906.
Sobr. dramatiticheskikh soch., 2nd ed., vols. 1–2. Moscow, 1928.


Brandes, G. Literaturnye portrety. St. Petersburg, 1896.
Plekhanov, G. V. “Otryvok kriticheskoi stat’i o drame Zudermana Sredi tsvetov.” In G. V. Plekhanov—literaturnyi kritik. Moscow, 1933.
Mering, F. Literaturno-kriticheskie stat’i, vol. 2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1934.
Hermann Sudermann: Ein Dichter an der Grenzscheide zweier Welten (1857–1928). Edited by T. Duglor. Dusseldorf, 1958.