The May 2022 Princeton Alumni Weekly article on the celebrated German author Thomas Mann was quite interesting.

It was noted that Mann, at Princeton, changed “from arch European conservative to liberal conservative to ardent presenter of democratic socialist ideals.” In fact, he became a spokesman for the political opponents of the House Un-American Activities Committee and its “witch hunts.”  (They netted quite a few witches by the way.)  As he left America to live out the rest of his life in Switzerland, Mann, as his Parthian shot, odiously equivalenced the government of the United States to that of Nazi Germany.

So there would seem to be two possibilities. Either (1) Thomas Mann was a red from the word go, and deployed a curtain of anti-Nazi, pro-democrat sentiment to conceal that fact for some years, or (2) as soon as he hit Princeton, it was intellectually downhill in a hurry.

I’m handicapping that one as even money.

Frank Hurley *65
Chapel Hill, N.C.