Thomas Mann (1875-1955) won the Nobel Prize for literature in 1929. This is a collection of his shorter works. "Death in Venice", later filmed by Lucion Visconti starring Dirk Bogarde, was published in 1911. It is a poetic meditation on art and beauty, where the dying composer Aschenbach (modelled on Gustav Mahler) becomes fixated by the young boy Tadzio. The other stories are: "Tonio Kroger"; the collection entitled "Tristan"; "The Blood of the Walsungs"; "Mario the Magician"; and "The Tables of the Law". A number of essays are also included.
Harold Bloom (b. 1930) is Sterling Professor of Humanities at Yale University, Berg Professor at New York University, and a former Charles Eliot Norton Professor at Harvard. He is the author of more than twenty books, including The Anxiety of Influence; Deconstruction and Criticism; The Book of J; The Western Canon; Shakespeare: The Invention of the Human; and Where Shall Wisdom Be Found?