Berlin Alexanderplatz: The Story of Franz Biberkopf

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Alfred Doblin (1878-1957) studied medicine in Berlin and specialized in the treatment of nervous diseases. Along with his experiences as a psychiatrist in the workers’ quarter of Berlin, his writing was inspired by the work of Holderlin, Schopenhauer and Nietzsche and was first published in the literary magazine, Der Sturm.

Associated with the Expressionist literary movement in Germany, he is now recognized as on of the most important modern European novelists. Berlin Alexanderplatz is one of the masterpieces of modern European literature and the first German novel to adopt the technique of James Joyce.

It tells the story of Franz Biberkopf, who, on being released from prison, is confronted with the poverty, unemployment, crime and burgeoning Nazism of 1920s Germany. As Franz struggles to survive in this world, fate teases him with a little pleasure before cruelly turning on him.

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