Michael Hofmann performs a Gatling gun murder of Stefan Zweig that you won’t want to miss. The review also gave me the rare opportunity to use “zootomy.”
[A]ll his life, Zweig prided himself on his lack of any political nous. He is in Belgium in July 1914, and so sure that the Germans won’t invade that he offers to hang himself from a lamp post if they do. A few hours later they do, and he doesn’t.
By that point (the quotation above) in the essay, it’s palpable how much Hofmann wanted Zweig to use that lamp post.
If you don’t think you’re familiar with Zweig, you likely are, because you have probably heard of, or seen, this film: