Carole Angier

  • fiction October 12, 2021

    Into the Mystic

    So, as he always said himself, W. G. Sebald is not a novelist. Nor a travel writer, since his journeys and landscapes are more inward than outward. He is a historian, biographer and autobiographer. But beneath these, he is at heart a visionary and a mystic. That is why there is no one like him in modern literature.

    And that is why Austerlitz is, after all, his masterpiece. For it is not only the peak of his imaginative identification with the victims of the Holocaust and of his psychological investigation of trauma. It is also where the mystical vision he has pursued from the start, then hidden