Botho Strauss

Botho Strauß (German: [ˈboːtoː ˈʃtʁaʊs] (listen); born 2 December 1944) is a German playwright, novelist and essayist.[1]

Botho Strauss
Strauß by Oliver Mark, 2007
Strauß by Oliver Mark, 2007
Born2 December 1944 (1944-12-02) (age 77)
Naumburg, Germany
  • Playwright
  • novelist
  • essayist
Notable awards


Botho Strauß's father was a chemist. After finishing his secondary education, Strauß studied German, History of the Theatre and Sociology in Cologne and Munich, but never finished his dissertation on Thomas Mann und das Theater. During his studies, he worked as an extra at the Munich Kammerspiele. From 1967 to 1970, he was a critic and editorial journalist for the journal Theater heute (Theater Today). Between 1970 and 1975, he worked as a dramaturgical assistant to Peter Stein at the West Berlin Schaubühne am Halleschen Ufer. After his first attempt as a writer, a Gorky adaptation for the screen, he decided to live and work as a writer. Strauß had his first breakthrough as a dramatist with the 1977 Trilogie des Wiedersehens, five years after the publication of his first work. In 1984 he published his important work Der Junge Mann (The Young Man, translated by Roslyn Theobald in 1995).

With a 1993 Der Spiegel essay, "Anschwellender Bocksgesang" ("Swelling He-Goat Song"[N 1]),[2] a critical examination of modern civilisation, he triggered a major political controversy as his conservative politics was anathema to many.

In his theoretical work, Strauß showed the influence of the ancient classics, Nietzsche, Heidegger as well as Adorno, but his outlook was also radically anti-bourgeois.

His work as a writer has been recognized with numerous international awards and his dramas are among the most performed in German-language theatres.

Strauß presently lives in Berlin as well as in the nearby Uckermark region. In 2017, he switched from his long-time publisher Carl Hanser Verlag to Rowohlt Verlag.[3]


English translationsEdit

Prizes and awardsEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ "He-goat song" is the translation of the Greek "τραγῳδία" ("tragedy")
  1. ^ Adelson, Leslie A. (1984). Crisis of subjectivity: Botho Strauss's challenge to West German prose of the 1970s. Rodopi. pp. 240ff. ISBN 978-90-6203-906-7. Retrieved 25 April 2011.
  2. ^ Strauss, Botho (8 February 1993). "Anschwellender Bocksgesang". Der Spiegel (in German). Retrieved 15 October 2019.
  3. ^ "Botho Strauß künftig bei Rowohlt". (in German). 26 January 2017. Retrieved 6 February 2017.

External linksEdit