Adolf Frisé

It is mainly thanks to Adolf Frisé that we know the works of Musil as we do today. He was a critic, essayist and a play-write. From 1951 to 1957 he laboured on the first edition of Musils’ complete works. From 1967 to 1975 he worked on the publication of Musils’ diaries. In 1981 the Letters of Musil were published. In 1982 he published what he called ‘a life with Musil’ in “Plädoyer für Robert Musil”

In 1931 the 20 year old student Adolf Frisé wrote a letter to Robert Musil. The cause was the release of “Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften”. Musil and Frise would meet twice, in 1933 and 1935. After 1945 the work of Musil had all but disappeared from the literary conciousness of the German speaking peoples. Frisé took it upon him to make sure that Musil would find his place in the literary pantheon, that Frisé thought he deserved.

First and foremost Frisé’s aim was to rediscover Musil, to research his life and works. Through Martha Musil he had acces to the unpublished works of Musil and gave it a place in the Collected Works. All aphorisms, letters, diaries en above all the notes on the unfinished “Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften” were studied and indexed.

This site too ows a great deal to the work (and life) of Frisé. Parts of his “Plädoyer für Robert Musil” have been of value. Some of them will be published here …

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