“The Multicultural Dream in Europe and the United States”
Peter Schneider, one of today’s foremost German novelists of international recognition, is a chronicler of his own West German generation that came of age during the 1960s, and later had to come to terms with the radical transformations of German unification. Schneider’s works are directly informed by his involvement in the student movement in the 1960s, and close observations of his adopted home of Berlin. Like many of his generation who sought to confront their parents’ complicity with Nazism, Schneider’s key preoccupation is with individual motivation, and his oeuvre reflects shifting understandings of what impels human action. While his early work examines individual challenges to authoritarian structures, he later explores the personal effects on his generation of Germany’s division and unification. Most recently he has sought examples of free will in German history, including the Third Reich.