Harry Mulisch

Harry Kurt Victor Mulisch was a Dutch author. He wrote more than 30 novels, plays, essays, poems and philosophical reflections. These have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Along with Willem Frederik Hermans and Gerard Reve, Mulisch is considered one of the "Great Three" of Dutch postwar literature. His novel The Assault became a 1986 film, which won both a Golden Globe and an Academy Award. A 2007 poll revealed his 1992 novel The Discovery of Heaven as the "Best Dutch Book Ever". He was regularly thought of as a possible future Nobel laureate.

A frequent theme in his work is the Second World War. His father had worked for the Germans during the war and went to prison for three years afterwards. As the war spanned most of Mulisch's formative phase, it had a defining influence on his life and work. In 1963, he wrote a non-fiction work about the Eichmann case: Criminal Case 40/61. Major works set against the backdrop of the Second World War are De Aanslag (The Assault), Het stenen bruidsbed, and Siegfried, the latter an attempt to examine why so many Germans responded to Hitler's charisma.

Mulisch often incorporated ancient legends or myths in his writings, drawing on Greek mythology (e.g. in De Elementen), Jewish mysticism (in De ontdekking van de Hemel and De Procedure), well known urban legends and politics (Mulisch was politically left-wing, once signing a book "dedicated in admiration" to Fidel Castro). Mulisch's works are widely read.

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