UC Santa Barbara > History Department > Prof. Marcuse > Research Pages > Günther Anders Page
1983 portrait in study, via videolink to Frankfurt Adorno Prize ceremony
Anders accepting the
Adorno Prize, 1987

Günther Anders
(Guenther Anders, Gunther Anders)

Journalist, Philosopher, Essayist, 1902-1992

a page by Harold Marcuse (homepage),
Professor at UC Santa Barbara
contact: marcuse@history.ucsb.edu

page begun Feb. 2000; last updated Sept. 1, 2020

Site News
Page Introduction
Personal Note
Books and Articles about Anders'

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  • Sept. 1, 2020: link to Günther anders' papers at the Austrian National Library in Vienna updated; it is now: https://www.onb.ac.at/bibliothek/sammlungen/literatur/bestaende/personen/anders-guenther-1902-1992/237-details
  • Muller, Promethianism, coverAug. 8, 2016: available soon, a new translation of Anders' key 1956 essay: Prometheanism: Technology, Digital Culture and Human Obsolescence, translated and introduced by Christopher John Müller (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016) ($33 & searchable at amazon; publisher's book page)
    • A translation of the essay ‘On Promethean Shame’ by Günther Anders with a comprehensive introduction and analysis of his work.
    • "Günther Anders's prolific philosophy of technology is undergoing a major revival but has never been translated into English. Prometheanism mobilises Anders's pragmatic thought and current trends in critical theory to rethink the constellations of power that are configuring themselves around our increasingly "smart" machines. The book offers a comprehensive introduction to Anders's philosophy of technology with an annotated translation of his visionary essay 'On Promethean Shame', part of The Obsolescence of Human Beings 1 published in 1956.The essay analyses feelings of curtailment, obsolescence and solitude that become manifest whilst we interact with machines. When technological solutions begin to make humans look embarrassingly limited and flawed, new emotional vulnerabilities are exposed. These need to be thought, because our wavering confidence leaves us unprotected in an ever more (un)transparent, connected yet fractured world."
    • Konrad Paul Liessmann: "Christopher John Müller's comprehensive and sophisticated presentation and his nuanced translation of Anders' crucial writing “On Promethean Shame” ... demonstrates vividly the significance of Anders as a shrewd and original thinker who was able to anticipate a number of recent societal and technological developments."
  • Aug. 8, 2016: Vicente Hernandos 2016, coverCésar de Vicente Hernando has just published Günther Anders, fragmentos de mundo (Madrid: La Ovega Roja, 2016), 304 pages, 18 Euro, ISBN: 978-84-937973-4-8
    • This is a 'complete introduction to the thought and work of Günther Anders, undoubtedly one of the greatest thinkers and activists of the twentieth century with great relevance for the 21st century, which is still marked by the atomic threat, the dominance of machines and the blurring of reality in the spectacle of the media.'
    • Anders' core themes are the 'obsolescence of human beings in a world ruled by machines (television as a producer of reality, image as a matrix of truth, shame before the perfection of devices whose repetition makes them always new, genetic manipulation as a promise of future happiness), and the possibility of the total annihilation of mankind (through the use of atomic bombs, and the technical planning of the murder of thousands of men and women in Nazi death camps).'
    • Vicente Hernando attempts 'to place Anders in the intellectual, moral and political conflicts in which his work intervened and allow readers to participate and form their own opinions of his writing and thinking.'
  • July 24, 2015: Jordan Levinson has translated Wir Eichmannsöhne into English: "We, Sons of Eichmann: An Open Letter to Klaus Eichmann" (1964). The translation is from the Spanish (not the German original), so some concepts are not as close to the original as they might be. Still, this is a serviceable English version.
  • Feb. 2015: New English-language anthology on Anders published:
    Günter Bischof, Jason Dawsey, Bernhard Fetz (eds.), The Life and Work of Günther Anders: Émigré, Iconoclast, Philosopher, Man of Letters (Innsbruck: StudienVerlag, 2014), 202 pp. ($30-47 at amazon)
  • Jan. 20, 2015: New Italian publication about Anders: Alessio Cernicchiaro, Günther Anders, La Cassandra della filosofia: Dall’uomo senza mondo al mondo senza uomo (Petit Plaisance, 2014), 400 pages. 25E at Petit Plaisance); with a preface by Giacomo Pezzano, "Anders e noi." Blurb:
    Profeta di sventura dell’età atomica e della nostra era dominata dalla tecnica moderna, Anders ha strenuamente messo in guardia i suoi contemporanei dalle catastrofi che da lì a poco sarebbero puntualmente accadute: l’avvento al potere di Hitler, la seconda guerra mondiale, Auschwitz, Hiroshima, Chernobyl. Ogni volta la sua voce è rimasta inascoltata, come quella di una novella Cassandra, perché i suoi moniti sono stati ritenuti inverosimili se non addirittura paranoici. Anders sostiene che ormai, di fronte alla tecnica ed al nostro mondo da essa dominato, noi uomini tutti siamo antiquati, perché antiquate sono le nostre dotazioni psichiche e le nostre categorie filosofiche ed etiche non più al passo coi tempi e totalmente inadatte a comprendere, immaginare ed assumersi la responsabilità di fronte agli effetti smisurati che le nostre azioni, individuali e collettive, oggi hanno grazie ai nostri prodotti ed alle nostre macchine. Come ha scritto giustamente Costanzo Preve: «Ci sono i filosofi tranquillizzanti e i filosofi inquietanti. Solo i filosofi inquietanti servono a qualcosa, e Anders è appunto uno di loro». Affinché allora non si avveri mai anche la sua più terribile profezia, ossia l’estinzione della vita sulla terra e la fine dei tempi, sarebbe bene almeno questa volta prestare ascolto alle sue parole.
  • Jan. 5, 2015: The Austrian National Library's page for Anders' papers has a new link [updated again 4/22/2019 and 9/1/2020]; I presume the cataloging is complete, since the funding for it ended on Jan. 1, 2015.
  • Nov. 28-29, 2014: Conference "Schreiben für Übermorgen" (Writing for the Day after Tomorrow), sponsored by the Literature Archive of the Austrian National Library, will be held at the IWK in Vienna. (call for papers, due June 15, 2014)
  • Sept. 2014: Jason Dawsey completed his dissertation, "The Limits of the Human in the Age of Technological Revolution: Gunther Anders, Post-Marxism, and the Emergence of Technology Critique" (University of Chicago, 2013). He has several publications about Anders:
    • "After Hiroshima: Günther Anders and the History of Anti-Nuclear Critique," in: Benjamin Ziemann and Matthew Grant (eds.), Unthinking the Imaginary War: Intellectual Reflections on the Nuclear Age, 1945-1990 (Stanford: Stanford University Press, forthcoming).
    • Günter Bischof, Jason Dawsey, and Bernhard Fetz (eds.), The Life and Work of Günther Anders: Émigré, Iconoclast, Philosopher, Man of Letters (Transatlantica Series, Volume 8). Edited by (Innsbruck: Studien Verlag, forthcoming in 2014).
    • "Where Hitler's Name is Never Spoken: Günther Anders in 1950s Vienna," in: Contemporary Austrian Studies, Vol. 21: Austrian Lives. Edited by Günter Bischof, Fritz Plasser, and Eva Maltschnig (New Orleans: University of New Orleans Press, 2012).
  • Sept. 10, 2014: Now available: a complete English translation of Part II of vol. I of Die Antiquiertheit, namely "The world as phantom and as matrix: Philosophical considerations on radio and television" (the link is https://libcom.org/book/export/html/51647).
    • Translation from the 2011 Spanish edition by Josep Monter Pérez.
    • This prints on over 70 pages as straight text with normal margins.
    • Link courtesy of Anders' nephew David Michalis.
    • As noted in a Dec. 2012 announcement on this webpage, there is a 1956 English translation of a shorter excerpt from "The World as Phantom and as Matrix" in Dissent 3:1(Winter 1956), 14-24. (pdf, web)
    • Does anyone want to compare these two versions and send me a summary explaining which passages and how the translations compare?
  • Apr. 30, 2014: The Internation Guenther Anders Society's website has been launched. For now only in German, but we hope to see an English version soon.
  • Apr. 18, 2014: Now updated: Heinz Scheffelweiser's Anders bibliography now includes about 300 new entries, plus an appendix of Italian publications.
  • March 2, 2014: Several new publications about Anders were brought to my attention::
    • Etica & Politica/Ethics & Politics: Rivista di filosofia/A Review of Philosophy 15:2(2013) has a special section on Anders: "Potere e violenza nel pensiero di Günther Anders / Power and violence in Günther Anders' Thinking" (TOC)
      • Vallori Rasini Guest Editor´s Preface
      • Babette Babich Angels, "The Space of Time, and Apocalyptic Blindness: On Günther Anders' Endzeit - Endtime"
      • "Christian Dries, "Technischer Totalitarismus: Macht, Herrschaft und Gewalt bei Günther Anders"
      • Ubaldo Fadini, "Anders e l'incompleto"
      • Edouard Jolly, "Entre légitime défense et état d'urgence. La pensée andersienne de l'agir politique contre la puissance nucléaire"
      • Micaela Latini, "La distruzione dell'amore. Esilio e letteratura"
      • Francesco Miano, "Günther Anders e la vergogna prometeica"
      • Vallori Rasini, "Il potere della violenza. Su alcune riflessioni di Günther Anders"
      • Nicola Russo, "Sopravvivenza e libertà: il dilemma impossibile"
  • Nov. 2, 2013: Günther Anders ON VIDEO! This 33 minute clip on Vimeo has 3 mins. of Anders introducing his 1987 reading of his story "Die Beweinte Zukunft" ('the Cried-For Future'). It is amazing to see and hear him 20 years after his death (he was 85 at the time of the reading). Many thanks to Stefan Riese for the tip and his kind words about this page.
  • July 29, 2013: poster March 2012 Kurzeder lectureExcellent March 2012, 47 min. German radio program about Anders by Zlatko Valentic: "Zur Philosophie von Günther Anders - Ein Dialog mit Tobias Kurzeder." To listen to the audiostream from Radio Dreyeckland scroll down on that page and click the audioplayer.[link updated 9/20/14]
  • July 25, 2013: I've edited the text of my Personal Note, below, and am adding a 36-page pdf of letters that my grandfather, Herbert Marcuse, wrote to Anders over the years 1947-1978.
    • Also uploaded: 88 page pdf of entire book Burning Conscience: The Case of the Hiroshima Pilot Claude Eatherly, told in his Letters to Günther Anders (New York/London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1961), 135 pages.
    • Another pdf: “Being without Time: On Beckett’s Play Waiting for Godot,” in Samuel Beckett: A Collection of Critical Essays, ed. Martin Esslin (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1965), 140-151. (8 page pdf)
  • May 2013: A graduate student in philosophy at the University of Freiburg in Germany is broadcasting a radio series on Radio Dreyeckland, talking about philosophers for a broad audience.
    • The first installment is a dialog with Tobias Kurzeder, who wrote his
  • March 14-15, 2013: The annual University of Innsbruck symposium will be held at the University of New Orleans on Mar. 14/15 this year. The title is: "The Life and Work of Günther Anders: Émigré, Iconoclast, Philosopher, Literateur." 16 page pdf program brochure
  • Dec. 29, 2012: Dissent 1956 contentsJason Dawsey defended his dissertation "The Limits of the Human in the Age of Technological Revolution: Günther Anders, Post-Marxism, and the Emergence of Technology Critique" at the University of a couple of weeks ago. He noted that shortened versions of three of the chapters of Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen (1956) were published in English in the 1950s/60s:
    • “The World as Phantom and as Matrix.” Dissent 3:1(Winter 1956), 14-24. (pdf, web)
    • “Reflections on the H Bomb.” Dissent 3:2(Spring 1956), 146-155. (pdf)
    • “Being without Time: On Beckett’s Play Waiting for Godot,” in Samuel Beckett: A Collection of Critical Essays, ed. Martin Esslin (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1965), 140-151. (8 page pdf)
  • Dec. 29, 2012: I've scanned to pdf most of Anders' 1968 book Visit Beautiful Vietnam ABC der Aggressionen heute (Cologne: Pahl Rügenstein, 1968): pdf pp. 1-151, 200-209.
  • Feb. 17, 2012: A 2011 French film based on Anders' long-unpublished 1931 novel The Molussian Catacomb was just screened at the Berlin film festival. Titled "anders, Molussien" in German, French and English (thus: "differently, Molussia"), the 81 min. film by young director Nicolas Rey (no relation to other famous Rey filmmakers) is comprised of 9 reels, which are shown in varying order depending on the choice of the projectionist. Berliniale page with director's statement .
  • Oct. 21, 2010: Quotation from Antiquiertheit v. 2After receiving an inquiry about a quotation from Anders' main work, I found a pdf of Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen: Über die Seele im Zeitalter der zweiten industriellen Revolution (vol. 1, 1956; 1961 edition), and re-uploaded it here to make it more easily accessible [removed Apr. 2016 at the request of Beck publishers]. It can also be searched on google books.
    • Vol. 2: Über die Zerstörung des Lebens im Zeitalter der dritten industriellen Revolution (1980; 1992 edition) is also available on google books. The quotation in question:
      "...the fact, that the world, in which we live and which determines us, is a technological one - which extends so far, that we are not allowed to say, that in our historical situation there is among other things technology, rather do we have to say: within the world's status called "technology" history happens, in other words technology has become the subject of history, in which we are only "co-historical."
      is from the Vorwort (preface) of vol. 2, p. 9 (see pdf screenshot).
  • Oct. 6, 2010: New anecdote about a visit in Anders' Vienna apartment in 1986 added. It was recorded by German literary critic Fritz Raddatz in his diaries, which were just published.
  • Sept. 17, 2010: Since this past July (2010) there has been a GuentherAndersInternational email list (a yahoo group). There are currently 13 members, including Raimund Bahr, Gerhard Oberschlick, and myself.
  • Apr. 30, 2010: The Günther Anders Tage 2010, "Zur Aktualität von Günther Anders," will be held on 14.-15. May in Marburg, Germany. For the detailed program, see:
  • Jan. 10, 2010 (updated 1/16/2011) : The Günther Ander Forum website, maintained by Raimund Bahr, is moving from http://www.guentheranders.at to the blog at http://www.guentheranders.com. You can subscribe to the Society's newletter there.
    1/16/2011: both sites appear to have disappeared from the web. Bahr's twitter page doesn't seem to have much to do with Anders.
    Bahr's comprehensive biography of Anders is due out this May:
    • Raimund Bahr, Günther Anders: Leben und Denken im Wort (Edition Art & Science, 2010), 330 Seiten. (amazon.de page)
      Also, on May 14-15 the an Anders symposium will be held in Marburg.
  • Aug. 31, 2009: some corrections and links added after corresponding with Mario Beira, Ph.D. for his study of Hitler and Heidegger. About Anders' name change: the first publications under the name "Anders" were in May 1932, according to the 1995 bibliography:
    • Plafi, der plastische Film. Nr. 221 vom 13.5.1932, S. 5-6. [Günther Anders].
      Der Star der Polizei. Nr. 233 vom 21.5.1932, 6-7. [Günther Anders].
    • The 1935 Amsterdam story "Der Hungermarsch" was published under "Anders," but his reviews for the Zeitschrift für Sozialforschung from 1937 to 1939 were published under "Stern."
    • A 1948 publication used both names:
      On the Pseudo-Concreteness of Heidegger's Philosophy. In: Philosophy and Phenomenological Research Vol. 3, 1948 (unter: Günther Stern-Anders)
  • Sept. 23, 2007: New secondary literature added to Books and Articles section:
  • July 30, 2007: The site Les Amis de Némésis has published, in French, three texts by Anders, and one about him (direct links from my Anders Links page):
    • Pathologie de la liberté, Essai sur la non-identification (1937, by Günther Stern)
    • Une interprétation de l'a posteriori (1934, by Günther Stern)
    • Théorie des besoins, suivies d’une discussion entre Adorno, Anders, Brecht, Eisler, Horkheimer, Marcuse, Reichenbach (August 1942)
    • Jean-Pierre Baudet: Günther Anders, De l'anthropologie négative à la philosophie de la technique (Part I, Part II forthcoming)
  • April 16, 2006: Anders' papers, previously adminstered by Gerhard Oberschlick, were given in 2004 to the Austrian National Library in Vienna, where they are administered by Bernhard Fetz: Bernhard.Fetz@onb.ac.at.
  • August 1, 2005: link to detailed French Wikipedia article by Thierry Simonelli added to links page. Also created web-formatted archive copy of Heinz Scheffelmeier's 1995 bibliography.
  • July 20, 2005: Another book added to the Books and Articles section: Berthold Wiesenberger, Enzyklopädie der apokalyptischen Welt: Kulturphilosophie, Gesellschaftstheorie und Zeitdiagnose bei Günther Anders und Theodor W. Adorno (Munich: Herbert Utz, 2003).
  • May 2005: Site redesigned and reorganized, links updated, vanished pages archived from webarchive.org.
    New publication added to Books and Articles section: Thierry Simonelli, Günther Anders: De la désuétude de l'homme (Paris: Éditions du Jasmin, 2004), 96pp.
  • September 2004: University of Chicago dissertation prospectus by Jason Dawsey: "History after Hiroshima: Günther Anders and the Twentieth Century". This 30-page document outlines Anders' life, with emphasis on his publications and their influence. It is the best English-language biography I have seen.
  • April 2004: new pages on Anders' third wife, Charlotte Zelka; with a description of visit with Anders in 1986; also a link to French edition of the Antiquiertheit

Anders Page Introduction (back to top)

No philosopher has concerned him- or herself with the nuclear age in all of its ramifications as has the late Günther Anders. A Jewish journalist and intellectual who fled Nazi Germany with his wife Hannah Arendt in 1933, Anders returned to Europe in 1950 to become one of the founders of the anti-nuclear movement there. In 1956 he published his magnum opus The Outdatedness of Humankind (my translation, Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen has not yet been translated into English), more than half of which is devoted to "The Bomb and the Roots of Our Blindness toward the Apocalypse." After participating in the "Fourth International Congress against A- and H-Bombs and for Disarmament" in Tokyo in 1958, Anders published his philosophically oriented personal journal as The Man on the Bridge: A Diary from Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1959. Anders published his correspondence with Claude Eatherly, the US pilot who gave the drop command on the Hiroshima mission, in 1961 as Burning Conscience: The Case of the Hiroshima Pilot Claude Eatherly, told in his Letters to Günther Anders. It has been republished several times and translated into 18 languages. After that Anders' published several books of reflections on morality in the atomic age. There has been some criticism of Anders because he openly advocated violence to combat regimes that flagrantly disregard human rights. (See his 1987 texts, below)

A personal note by Harold Marcuse, the author of this page (back to top)

My grandfather Herbert Marcuse (my website about Herbert) and Anders both studied with Martin Heidegger in Freiburg in the late 1920s. As Jews, both fled from Germany to the US in the 1930s. Anders lived in my grandparents' home in the US for a time in the early 1940s. While doing research on the immediate post-1945 period I came across Anders' published diaries during those years (Die Schrift an der Wand, published 1966), which I found fascinating.

After learning about Anders' connection with my family I corresponded with July 1988 letter by Andershim in the early 1980s, while I was living in Germany. Since I had been too young to have had much of a political relationship with my grandfather, Anders at one point jokingly said that he was in a way my Ersatz-Grossvater (surrogate grandfather). (See this July 27, 1988 letter from Anders responding to the birth announcement of my son in 1988.) I have heard that Anders may have been somewhat envious of the fame my grandfather's One-Dimensional Man (1964) had brought Herbert Marcuse during the heady days of the student movement.

Anders told me that much of what Herbert wrote was contained in his own Antiquiertheit (1956)[Christian Fuchs' essay compares their work], but Anders was barely known by the broader public until the 1980s. In any case, when I went to Vienna in April 1983, I visited Anders at his flat in the Lackierergasse. July 1983 inscription to HaroldHe was very cordial, and may have "buried the hatchet" (real or imagined) with my then deceased grandfather by that time. (Compare Nathan Stolzfus' description of his visit with Anders in 1986.) In April 1982 Anders inscribed volume I of his Ketzereien for my parents with the words "für meine drei beinahe-Kinder" ('for my three nearly-children'--I have no idea why three); in July 1983 he wrote into my copy of Die atomare Drohung "in durch die Generationen unerschütterlich reichender Freundschaft." ('in unshakeable friendship that reaches across generations')[click on thumbnail at right to see a scan of the dedication].

In the 1980s I was a U.S. student working towards an M.A. in History of Art in Germany. In 1992, after finishing my dissertation about the post-1945 history of Dachau, I became a professor of German history at UC Santa Barbara. In the late 1990s Routledge was looking for someone to write an article about Anders for its Encyclopedia of Contemporary German Culture (1999, amazon.com page), and I volunteered. My unedited draft of encyclopedia entry (which had to be shortened for publication) forms the core of the biographical text below. In those early days of the web there was almost nothing about Anders available on the internet, so I created this page, and have been updating it at irregular intervals since.

Günther Anders (12 July 1902, Breslau-17 December 1992, Vienna) print version (back to top)
best known as a philosopher and essayist of the anti-nuclear movement
Anders and Arendt ca. 1929
Günther Anders and Hannah Arendt

Anders, born Günther Stern, attained notoriety since the early 1960s as an activist and philosopher of the antinuclear movement. An assimilated German Jew, he studied under Martin Heidegger and Edmund Husserl, completing his dissertation in 1923. After Theodor Adorno at the University of Frankfurt rejected his habilitation, he began work as a cultural critic. When a Berlin editor with too many writers named Stern on his staff suggested he name himself "something different," he responded "then call me 'different'" ("anders"). The name is characteristic of Anders' unsparing bluntness. He emigrated to Paris in 1933 and the United States in 1936, divorcing Hannah Arendt, who found his pessimism "hard to bear," as he later put it. [They were married from 1929 to 1937. The photo is from the Hannah Arendt Trust, and is displayed on the Library of Congress website.][An aside on Arendt, whose 1951 book The Origins of Totalitarianism, and coining of the phrase "the banality of evil" in her 1962 New Yorker reports on the Eichmann trial catapulted her to lasting name recognition: Ron Rosenbaum has this interesting analysis of her closeness to Nazi ideologues like Heidegger: "The Evil of Banality" (Slate, Oct. 30, 2009)]

Anders in the 1950sIn the United States Anders worked at menial jobs, but also wrote for the German-language newspaper Der Aufbau, and later lectured at the New School for Social Research in New York City. His first book of philosophical reflexions, Die Schrift an der Wand: Tagebücher 1941-1966 (The Writing on the Wall: Diaries 1941-1966) (1967), begins with his musings as a laborer in a Hollywood warehouse of historical costumes. Auschwitz and Hiroshima mark turning points in his consciousness. He returned to Europe in 1950 and began work on Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen (The Outdatedness of Human Beings, 1956). In addition to analyzing human feelings of inadequacy in comparison with machines, and to settling scores philosophically with Heidegger, Anders lays out the principles of 'blindness to the apocalypse,' the focus of his later work. Pressured to categorize his ideas, he later coined the term Diskrepanzphilosophie (philosophy of discrepancy) to describe his focus on the increasing divergence between what has become technically feasible (e.g. the nuclear holocaust of the entire globe), and what a human mind is capable of imagining.

Thumbnail of cover of Antiquiertheit, volume 1With Robert Jungk, Anders co-founded the anti-nuclear movement in 1954. He published his philosophical diary of an international conference in Hiroshima (Der Mann auf der Brücke, The Mann on the Bridge, 1959) and his correspondence with a pilot in the Hiroshima squadron (Burning Conscience, 1962). His politically acerbic books from the 1960s include an open letter to the son of Adolf Eichmann, a speech about the victims of the three world wars, and a primer of American warspeak in Vietnam. In 1967 he served as a juror on the Russell tribunal publicizing atrocities in Vietnam. Anders' oeuvre encompasses numerous literary and philosophical works, including books on Kafka (1951, English 1960) and Brecht (1962), essays on the atomic age (Endzeit und Zeitenende, Die atomare Drohung, 1972, 1981), reflections from his diaries (among others Ketzereien, Heresies, 1982), and a second volume of Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen (1980).

Anders in 1983, from Frankfurt Adorno Prize brochure coverFrom 1945 to 1955 Anders was married to the Austrian writer Elizabeth Freundlich; in 1957 he married the Jewish-American pianist Charlotte Lois Zelka. (Charlotte died in 2001; see this page of correspondence with her sister Betty and colleague Al R. Rice: link.)

Anders won numerous awards and honors for his work from 1936 (Novella Prize of the Emigration, for "The Hunger March") to 1978 (Literature Prize of the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts), to 1979 (Austrian State Prize for Cultural Writing) to 1983 (Adorno Prize of the City of Frankfurt) to 1992 (Sigmund-Freud-Prize); others he rejected for political reasons.

His unsparingly critical pessimism may explain why his pathbreaking works have seldom sparked sustained public discussion, with the major exception of his Theses on Violence (scans on this site) during the peace movement of the 1980s. The renaissance of interest in his works in the 1990s indicates that his uncompromising moralism may have been ahead of its time.

Other Anders Biographies (see also "books about section", below) (back to top)

  • Harold Marcuse: a print version of the above English biography Cover of Text and Kritik special issue on Anders(the above version has a few additional details)
  • Text+Kritik special issue, July 1992 (see Books About section, below). This is your one-stop source for everything up to 1992. Unfortunately the texts are NOT on line, except for the vita by Jan Strümpel (table form, in German), which I've scanned.
  • Jason Dawsey: "History after Hiroshima: Günther Anders and the Twentieth Century". This 30-page essay outlines Anders' life, with emphasis on his publications and their influence. The best English-language biography available.

Anders' Publications (back to top)

  • 1924 dissertation (Universität Freiburg): Die Rolle der Situationskategorie bei den logischen Sätzen. Erster Teil einer Untersuchung über die Rolle der Situationskategorie
  • 1928 (edited version of dissertation??): Über das Haben: Sieben Kapitel zur Ontologie der Erkenntnis
    • Bonn: Cohen
  • 1932 (completed): molussische KatakombeDie molussische Katakombe
  • 1936: "Pathologie de la Liberté"
    • in the journal Recherches Philosophiques
    • Sartre said that this essay was influential in his formulation of Existentialism
  • 1936: Der Hungermarsch
    • novella, won Novella Prize of the Emigration in 1936
  • 1948: "On the Pseudo-Concreteness of Heidegger's Philosophy"
    • in: Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, vol. 3, 1948
    • author's name: Günther Stern-Anders
  • 1951: Kafka Pro und Contra: Die Prozessunterlagen
    • English 1960
  • 1956: Antiquiertheit, vol. 1, 2002 editionAntiquiertheit, vol. 1, 1956 editionDie Antiquiertheit des Menschen
  • 1959: Der Mann auf der Brücke: Tagebuch aus Hiroshima und Nagasaki
    • Munich, C. H. Beck, 2nd edition 1963
    • in: Hiroshima ist überall, 1982, pp. 1-190
    • title translates as: The Mann on the Bridge
  • 1961: George Grosz
    • Zürich, Arche
  • 1961: Burning Conscience: The Case of the Hiroshima Pilot Claude Eatherly, told in his Letters to Günther Anders
    • (New York/London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1961), 135 pages
    • preface by Bertrand Russell and introduction by Robert Jungk.
    • 88 page pdf
    • $10 at amazon.com
    • German: Off Limits für das Gewissen: Der Briefwechsel zwischen dem Hiroshima-Piloten Claude Eatherly und Günther Anders
    • Berlin, Rowohlt
    • also in: Hiroshima ist überall, 1982, pp. 191-360.
    • French: Avoir détruit Hiroshima: Correspondance de Claude Eatherly, le pilote d’Hiroshima, avec Günther Anders 1959, éd. Robert Laffont, 1962.
  • 1962: Bert Brecht: Gespräche und Erinnerungen
    • Zürich, Arche
  • 1964: "Die Toten: Rede über die drei Weltkriege"
    • title translates as "Speech about the Three World Wars"
    • completed October 18, 1964
    • FAZ 1964; Cologne: Pahl-Rügenstein, 1965
    • in: Hiroshima ist überall, 1982, pp. 361-394
    • short excerpt Nous, fils de EichmannNous, fils de Eichmann, covertranslated by Harold Marcuse, for use in the memory to action project [link updated to 2016 Internet Archive, Sept. 1, 2020]
  • 1964: Wir Eichmannsöhne: Offener Brief an Klaus Eichmann
    • title translates as We Sons of Eichmann: Open Letter to Klaus Eichmann
    • in French: Nous, fils d'Eichmann: lettre ouverte à Claude Eichmann (1999, 2003) (amazon.fr EUR 7)(table of contents--scroll down)(bibliothèque Rivages, 1999)
    • in English: Jordan Levinson has translated Wir Eichmannsöhne into English: "We, Sons of Eichmann: An Open Letter to Klaus Eichmann". The translation is from the Spanish (not the German original), so some concepts are not as close to the original as they might be. Still, this is a very serviceable English version.
  • 1965: Philosophische Stenogramme
  • 1968: Der Blick vom Turm: Fables
    • (Munich: Beck, 1988), with illustrations by A. Paul Weber, €15 at amazon.de
    • fable "freedom", illustratesBlick vom Turm, cover the concept of repressive tolerance, translated by Harold Marcuse
  • 1968: Nürnberg und Vietnam: Synoptisches Mosaik
    • Berlin, Voltaire
  • 1968: Visit beautiful Vietnam
  • 1970: Der Blick vom Mond: Reflexionen über Weltraumflüge
  • 1972: Endzeit und Zeitenende
  • 1978: Kosmologische Humoreske
  • 1979: Besuch im Hades: Auschwitz und Breslau 1966, nach "Holocaust" 1979
  • 1980: antiquiertheit vol. 2, 2002 ed.Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen, vol. II: Über die Zerstörung des Lebens im Zeitalter der dritten industriellen Revolution.
  • 1981: Die atomare Drohung: Radikale Überlegungen zum atomaren Zeitalter
  • 1982: Hiroshima ist überall
    • Munich: Beck
  • 1982: Ketzereien
    • (Munich: Beck, 1982)
    • title translates as Heresies
  • 1984: Mensch ohne Welt: Schriften zur Kunst und Literatur
  • 1984: Das Günther Anders Lesebuch
    • Zurich: Diogenes, 1984), 335 pages
    • edited by Bernhard Lassahn
    • UCLA PT2601.A54 A14 1984
  • 1985: Tagebücher und Gedichte
  • 1986: Lieben gestern
    • Observations about US students in the 1940s, originally titled "Lieben heute"
  • 1987: Günther Anders antwortet: Interviews & Erklärungen
    • (Critica diabolis)(Tiamat, 1987), 203 pages.
  • 1987: Gewalt – ja oder nein: Eine notwendige Diskussion
  • 1987: Mariechen: Eine Gutenachtgeschichte für Liebende, Philosophen, ...
  • 1987: "Reicht der gewaltlose Protest?"
  • 1988: "Die Augenbinde der Justitia"
    • subtitle: Fünf philosophische Überlegungen anläßlich des Prozesses gegen Robert Jungk"
    • in: taz 16. April 1988, p. 3
  • 1988: "Sicherheit durch die Zerstörung der Zerstörungsmittel"
    • title translation: "Security through the destruction of the means of destruction"
    • greeting to the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War
    • text on the IPPNW website
  • 1994: Obdachlose Skulptur: Über Rodin (C.H. Beck, 1994), 124pp. (amazon)
  • 2001: Über Heidegger, edited Anders, Ueber Heideggerby Gerhard Oberschlick (Munich, C. H. Beck, 2001), 480p. €35.
    • posthumous publication of selections from Anders' papers
    • "Die Texte in diesem Band dokumentieren diese Auseinandersetzung und zeichnen den Weg der langsamen Ablösung von Heidegger, dem "heimlichen König" der deutschen Philosophie (Hannah Arendt), nach. Anders kehrte sich von 1930 an ebenso regelmäßig von der Philosophie ab, wie er sich ihr wieder zuwandte; zeitlebens suchte er die politische Intervention. Seine Arbeiten über Heidegger zeugen von kritischer Angriffslust, von stilistischer Schärfe, aber auch von seinem philosophischen Ernst. Denn Anders’ Einwendungen gegen Heidegger sind mehr als äußerliche Ideologiekritik. Es finden sich bei ihm Einwände, die in den Kern von Heideggers Denken selbst eingreifen."
    • perlentaucher.de page with reviews from the FR, Zeit, SZ, NZZ, FAZ
  • 2003: Übertreibungen in Richtung Wahrheit: Stenogramme, Glossen, Aphorismen
    • posthumous publication of selections from Anders' papers

Bibliographies (back to top)

  • Detailed, comprehensive bibliography of Anders' works up to 1995, by Heinz Scheffelmeier, Berlin. This contains a list of unpublished manuscripts in Anders' papers in Vienna:
    1. "Stadt der 100 Götter"; entstanden um 1922.
    2. Museumsführer durch den Louvre; entstanden Ende der 20er Jahre.
    3. Anthropologische Schriften; 1927-1939
    4. Heidegger-Kritiken; 1933-1954.
    5. "Philosophische Untersuchungen über musikalische Situationen"; geplante Habilitationsschrift aus den Jahren 1930/31.
    6. "Die Staffete"; gesammelte Dichtungen.
    7. "SS-Mann Kohn"; Roman, Manuskript auf 1946 datiert.
    8. "Hesternien"; entstanden 1946-1948, ca. 300 Manuskriptseiten.
    9. Vorlesungen "Philosophie der Kunst" und "Philosophische Anthropologie", 1948-49.
    10. Band 2 und 3 der "Ketzereien".
    11. Band 2 und 3 der "Philosophischen Stenogramme"
    12. Buch zum Thema "SDI"
    13. Band 3 zur "Antiquiertheit des Menschen".

Books, articles and on-line texts about Anders (back to top)

  • Gabriele Althaus: Leben zwischen Sein und Nichts. Drei Studien zu Günther Anders (Metropol Verlag, 1989), 136pp. (amazon)
  • Austriaca: Cahiers universitaires d'information sur l'Autriche, Issue 35 (Dec. 1992) is about Günther Anders. (200p; by Université de Rouen)(page on amazon.fr)
  • Detlef Clemens, Günther Anders. Eine Studie über die Ursprünge seiner Philosophie, Frankfurt, Haag und Herchen, 1996.
  • Reinhard Ellensohn, Der Andere Anders: Gunther Anders als Musikphilosoph (Europaische Hochschulschriften: Reihe 20, Philosophie) (Peter Lang, Jan. 2008), 191pp. (amazon page)
  • Mathias Greffrath (ed.): Die Zerstörung einer Zukunft: Gespräche mit emigrierten Sozialwissenschaftlern. Reinbek 1979 (Rowohlt), interview with Anders
  • Handlung Kultur Interpretation: Zeitschrift für Sozial- und Kulturwissenschaften.
    • Issue 3(2003) is devoted to "Die Antiquiertheit des Menschen – Günther Anders" (pp. 198-273)
    • humanities online page [link dead since 2016, not in Internet Archive] with text of preface and abstracts
    • Contents:
      Vorwort 1997
      Ludger Lütkehaus
      , " Von der Aktualität eines »Antiquierten«. Vor hundert Jahren wurde Günther Anders geboren" 207
      Ernst Schraube, "Der Blick vom Turm. Günther Anders und das Problem der Versprachlichung technologischer Praxis" 215
      Volker Kempf, "Unsere tragische Kultur vor Augen. Zur Aktualität von Günther Anders – unter besonderer Berücksichtigung seiner Bezüge zu Georg Simmel" 230
      Christophe David und Dirk Röpcke, "Zweierlei Verantwortungsethik. Günther Anders und Hans Jonas und die Antinomien der heutigen politischen Ökologie" 250
  • Frank Hartmann, "Von der Reproduktion zur Simulation. Günther Anders' Kulturapokalypse." In: Frank Hartmann: Medienphilosophie, Wien 2000 (WUV-Universitätsverlag), pp. 213-236
  • Robert Jungk, "Die Kraft des Menschen: Robert Jungk grüßt Günther Anders, den langjährigen Bundesgenossen mit freundschaftlichen Erinnerungen," in: Der Standard. 11./12.7.1992, p. 9
  • Volker Kempf (Kreisrat im Breisgau, seems to be close to the right-wing AfD party) has several texts about Anders, 1997-2001 on his website
    [9/2020: link updated to 2012 web archive version]
  • Jürgen Langenbach, Günther Anders. Eine Monographie (Vienna: Falter, 1986).
  • Konrad Paul Liessmann (ed.), Günther Anders kontrovers (Munich: Beck, 1992).
  • Konrad Paul Liessmann, Günther Anders zur Einführung (Hannover 1993).
  • Konrad Liessmann, "Moralist und Ketzer: Zu Günther Anders und seiner Philosophie des Monströsen," Text und Kritik 115(July 1992): 3-19.
    • The introductory article in a special journal issue devoted to Anders and his work.
  • Ludger Lütkehaus, Philosophieren nach Hiroshima: Über Günther Anders (Frankfurt/Main: Fischer Tb, 1992).
  • Ludger Lütkehaus,Lutkehaus, Schwarze Ontologie Schwarze Ontologie. Über Günther Anders
  • Nach Tschernobyl - regiert wieder das Vergessen? (Psychosozial-Verlag)
  • Gustav Mechlenburg, "Kultiviere deine Angst! Zu Günther Anders"
    • a post-911 reflection at textem.de, which seems to be a publisher that has essays on its website.
  • Daniel Morat, "Die Aktualität der Antiquiertheit. Günther Anders’ Anthropologie des industriellen Zeitalters," in: Zeithistorische Forschungen/Studies in Contemporary History, Online-Ausgabe, 3 (2006) H. 2, <http://www.zeithistorische-forschungen.de/16126041-Morat-2-2006>
  • Sabine Palandt, Die Kunst der Vorausschau: Günther Anders methodische und psychologische Ansätze zur Technikkritik (Vlg. Wissenschaft & Technik, 1999), 207pp (amazon)
  • Werner Reimann, Verweigerte Versöhnung. Zur Philosophie von Günther Anders (Vlg. Passagen)
  • Dirk Röpcke & Raimund Bahr (eds.), Cover of Roepcke and BAhr (eds.), GeheimagentGeheimagent der Masseneremiten: Günther Anders
  • Elke Schubert, Günther Anders. Mit Selbstzeugnissen und Bilddokumenten (Rowohlt 1992), 154pp.
  • Thierry Simonelli, simonelli 2004 coverGünther Anders: De la désuétude de l'homme (Paris: Éditions du Jasmin, 2004)
  • Jan Strümpel, "Vita, Bibliographie," Text und Kritik 115(July 1992), 86-101.
  • Paul van Dijk, Anthropology in the Age of Technology: The Philosophical Contribution of Gunther Anders, Editions Rodopi, Amsterdam/Atlanta, GA, 2000. (van Dijk in google books)
  • Berthold Wiesenberger, Enzyklopädie der apokalyptischen Welt: Kulturphilosophie, Gesellschaftstheorie und Zeitdiagnose bei Günther Anders und Theodor W. Adorno (Munich: Herbert Utz, 2003).
    • This dissertation examines the connections between Anders' philosophy and Adorno's thought.
    • Costs 49 Euro. See the publisher's page for more information.
  • Eckhard Wittulski, Kein Ort. Nirgends. Zur Gesellschaftskritik Günther Anders, Frankfurt, Haag und Herchen, 1998.

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Data from server statistics package:
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