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Episode 11: Art at the End of the World

The Story of Joseph Roth and Stefan Zweig

Joseph Roth and Stefan Zweig are two of the most celebrated Austrian writers of their time. Despite their contrasting lives and demeanors, they become fast friends and develop a brotherly bond. But when Hitler comes into power, tensions loom over their friendship. In the end, both men can’t save each other from hopelessness in exile.

After his death in Paris in 1939, a group of Joseph Roth’s friends collected his meager belongings from his hotel room. His belongings eventually ended up with Roth’s French translator. Among the papers were manuscripts, correspondence, and hundreds of photographs. These materials now form the basis of the Joseph Roth Collection in the LBI Archives.

Exile is a production of LBI New York | Berlin and Antica Productions.

It’s narrated by Mandy Patinkin.

Executive Producers include Katrina Onstad, Stuart Coxe, and Bernie Blum. Senior Producer is Debbie Pacheco. Produced by Anthony Cantor. Associate Producers are Hailey Choi and Emily Morantz. Research and translation by Isabella Kempf. Sound design and audio mix by Philip Wilson, with help from Cameron McIver. Theme music by Oliver Wickham. Voice acting by Rodrigo Fernandez-Stoll and Blair Williams.

Special thanks to Volker Weidermann and his book Summer Before the Dark, Hermann Kesten’s Joseph Roth Briefe: 1911-1939, Michael Hofmann’s Joseph Roth: A Life in Letters, the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, and Soundtrack New York. The photo of Joseph Roth and Stefan Zweig in Ostend, Belgium was taken by Lotte Altmann.

Want more about Joseph Roth and Stefan Zweig?

Earlier this year, Keiron Pim, author of Endless Flight: The Life of Joseph Roth, joined LBI's Book Club to discuss Roth's most infamous work, The Radetzky March.