A young student finds himself drawn ever closer to his passionate and enigmatic English teacher
In the autumn of his days, a privy councillor contemplates his past, looking back at the key moments in his life. He remembers sharing a lodging with a professor and his wife and a close friendship is formed. The professor, however harbours a dark secret which changes both men forever.
‘The rediscovery of this extraordinary writer could well be on a par with last year’s refinding of the long-lost Stoner, by John Williams, and which similarly could pluck his name out of a dusty obscurity.’ Simon Winchester, Telegraph
Confusion is one of his finest and most exemplary works … a marvellously poised account of misunderstood motives, thwarted love, and sublimated desires … a perfect reminder of, or introduction to, Zweig’s economy and subtlety as a writer. –ROBERT MACFARLANE Times Literary Supplement
Passion and dedication … Outside the works of Plato, I don’t think I have ever read a better or more honest account of what ill always remain at the heart of teaching. –GABRIEL JOSIPOVICI, The Jewish Chronicle
Stefan Zweig (1881-1942) was born in Vienna, into a wealthy Austrian-Jewish family. He studied in Berlin and Vienna and was first known as a poet and translator, then as a biographer. Zweig travelled widely, living in Salzburg between the wars, and was an international bestseller with a string of hugely popular novellas including Letter from an Unknown Woman, Amok and Fear.
In 1934, with the rise of Nazism, he moved to London, where he wrote his only novel Beware of Pity. He later moved on to Bath, taking British citizenship after the outbreak of the Second World War. With the fall of France in 1940 Zweig left Britain for New York, before settling in Brazil, where in 1942 he and his wife were found dead in an apparent double suicide.
Much of his work is available from Pushkin Press.