By Stefan Zweig
Translated by Joel Rotenberg
“[Zweig is a] writer who understands perfectly the life he is describing, and who has great analytic gifts . . . . He has achieved the very considerable feat of inventing, in his description of the game of chess, a metaphor for the terribly grim game he is playing with his Nazi tormentors . . . the case history here is no longer that of individuals; it is the case history of Europe.” —Stephen Spender, The New York Review of Books
“His writing reveals his sympathy for fellow human beings.” —Ruth Franklin, London Review of Books
Chess Story, also known as The Royal Game is the Austrian master Stefan Zweig’s final achievement, completed in his Brazilian exile and sent off to his American publisher only days before his suicide in 1942. It is the only story in which Zweig looks at Nazism, and he does so with characteristic emphasis on its psychological damage. He dramatizes the internal destruction inflicted by tyranny. The work is also one of the rare pieces of literature to bring alive the complex and overpowering feelings associated with the great game of chess.
Also available in German.
NYRB Classics, 2005
Originally published in 1942
5 x 0.3 x 8 inches