Events | "Thomas Mann: Democracy Will Win!" – Traveling Exhibition at Princeton University

Princeton University | November 6, 2023 – November 28, 2023

After previous stops at the University of Kansas and the University of Notre Dame, we are thrilled to announce that the traveling exhibition Thomas Mann: Democracy Will Win! is now on display at Princeton University from November 6th to 28th, 2023!

“It is a terrible spectacle when the irrational becomes popular,” said Thomas Mann in his famous speech at the Library of Congress in 1943. The resistance of this famous German author is both inspiring and, alas, deeply relevant today, as we witness the fundamental values of democracy once again being called into question by an increasingly virulent populism and nationalism on both sides of the Atlantic that are putting democratic society under massive pressure.

As a polemical contribution to these current debates, the Princeton German Department is hosting the touring exhibition Thomas Mann: Democracy Will Win! whose spatial and metaphorical center is the Thomas Mann House in Pacific Palisades, California. For it was from this sanctuary in exile that Mann campaigned tirelessly for a new understanding of democracy. Today, Mann’s West Coast residence is once again at the service of intellectual exchange and transatlantic understanding.

The exhibition is structured around the terms Beginnings, Zeitgeist, Affirmation, Take Action, and Responsibility which convey some of the ambivalences that even a democratic system cannot eliminate. Thomas Mann’s life offers numerous points of departure for examining the current state, the fragility, and the future of democracy – inspired by Mann’s dictum: “DEMOCRACY WILL WIN!”

The exhibition, which is free and open to the public, will be on view November 6-28 in the Lower Hyphen of the East Pyne Building on the Princeton University Campus.

Visit Princeton's event page to learn more.


An exhibition by Villa Aurora & Thomas Mann House e. V., in cooperation with the German Department at Princeton University

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