“Every Man Dies Alone” at Iranian bookstores

April 2, 2023 - 14:57

TEHRAN – “Every Man Dies Alone” by German writer Hans Fallada has been published in Persian.

Mohammad Hemmati is the translator of the book first published in 1947. Now is the publisher of the Persian edition. 

Inspired by a true story, “Every Man Dies Alone” is the gripping tale of an ordinary man’s determination to defy the tyranny of Nazi rule. 

The story takes place during World War II in 1940 in Berlin. The book conveys the omnipresent fear and suspicion engulfing Germany at the time caused by the constant threat of arrest, imprisonment, torture and death. Even those not at risk of any of those punishments could be ostracized and unable to find work.

Escherich, a Gestapo inspector, must find the source of hundreds of postcards encouraging Germans to resist Adolf Hitler and the Nazis with personal messages such as “Mother! The Führer has murdered my son. Mother! The Führer will murder your sons too, he will not stop till he has brought sorrow to every home in the world.” Escherich is under pressure from Obergruppenführer Prall to arrest the source or find himself in dire straits.

Nearly all those who find the cards turn them into the Gestapo immediately, terrified they themselves will be discovered having them. 

Eventually, Escherich finds the postcard writer and his wife, who turn out to be a quiet, working-class couple, Otto and Anna Quangel. 

The Quangels’ acts of civil disobedience were prompted by the loss of their only son, who has been killed in action. They are arrested and brought to trial at the Volksgerichtshof, the Nazi “People’s Court”, where Judge Freisler presides. 

The Quangels are sentenced to death; Otto is soon executed, but Anna dies during an Allied bombing raid, while still on death row.

Photo: A combination photo show writer Hans Fallada and the front cover of the Persian edition of “Every Man Dies Alone”.


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