Ida Herz Lecture:

biennial lecture on an aspect of the life and work of Thomas Mann


Ida Herz (1894-1984) knew and corresponded with Thomas Mann for over thirty years. After her death her papers were incorporated into the Thomas-Mann-Archiv in Zurich. She fled Germany in 1935 and settled in London in 1936. She left a bequest to the English Goethe Society to endow the Ida Herz Lecture and the Thomas Mann Essay Prize. The Lecture is held biennially and is devoted to the works of Thomas Mann.


Past lectures include:

Karolina Watroba (Oxford), ‘Reluctant Readers: Marxists on Mann’s Magic Mountain’ (2020)

Tim Lörke (Berlin), ‘“Lust und Last”: Thomas Manns Idee der Rechtfertigung’ (2018)

Eckart Goebel (Tübingen), ‘Pink Ink: Zur Funktion der Farbe Rosa in Thomas Manns Roman Lotte in Weimar’ (2016)

Thomas Sprecher (Zurich/Fribourg), ‘“Mehr Recht, mehr Glück’: Thomas Mann und das Recht im Exil’ (2014)



Herz contributed two articles on Mann to the Publications of the English Goethe Society: ‘Thomas Mann: A Hundredth Birthday Remembrance 1875–1975’, PEGS, 46 (1976), 65–70 (containing an ‘Autobiographical Note’, pp. 69–70), and ‘Freundschaft und Korrespondenz mit Thomas Mann’, PEGS, 55 (1985), 1–21.

An account of Ida Herz’s life and her relationship to Thomas Mann can be found in: Friedhelm Kröll, Die Archivarin des Zauberers: Ida Herz und Thomas Mann (Cadolzburg: ars vivendi, 2001).