A Capri love story: writers Thomas & Monika Mann

A Story a Day: Writers, Artists and Aristocrats Who Loved Capri

Our protagonists of the day are both members of the Mann family:

Thomas Mann, novelist, short story writer, social critic, philanthropist, essayist, and the 1929 Nobel laureate.

File:Bundesarchiv Bild 183-R15883, Thomas Mann.jpg - Wikimedia Commons
Thomas Mann, 1932

Thomas Mann undoubtfully was one of the most important figures in the history of German literature. He was an enthusiastic traveler, as he is one of the best-known exponents of the so-called Exilliteratur, German literature written in exile by those who opposed the Third Reich regime. In 1885, he gave up his previous employment at the South German Fire Insurance Company to dedicate all his time to his true passion: writing. Thomas Mann once lived in Italy and loved the territory, one of his most well-known novels, Death in Venice, was set in Italy, apparently. His love for Italy also attracted the attention of modern scholars, if you are interested in Mann’s itinerary of Italy, please read Thomas Mann and Italy by Isadore Jonas.

Interestingly, since he left Germany in 1933, Thomas Mann never returned to the country, even when he was indicated as the candidate president of the post-war republic.

Monika Mann, daughter of Thomas Mann, author, feature writer.

Belvedere di Pizzolungo acquisito dal Comune, sarà intitolato a Monika Mann  - Capri Press
Monika Mann and husband Antonio Spadaro

Monika was first trained as a pianist, as her promising early steps as a musician were not met with success, she decided to pursue a career as a writer. She married in 1939 but lost her husband the following year. When the newlywed was traveling to Canada, their ship was sunk by a German submarine. Later that year, she joined her family in Princeton, and was granted US citizenship in 1952.

Between 1954 and 1986, Monika became a dweller in Capri. She was living with her partner Antonio Spadaro in Villa Monacone This period of her life was considered as her most productive time as a writer, as most of her books and several magazine articles were written during this period. Only after the death of her partner, she left Capri.

Wannabe writers, would you like to follow the steps of famous writers and seek productivity in the heavenly island called Capri? Visit the island with us! Learn why it was home to so many intellectuals and aristocrats in our introductory tour! We can arrange your holiday in the very same villa where the german writer used to live.