Victor Klemperer

Portrait: Victor Klemperer
Portrait photo of Victor Klemperer taken by Ursula Richter, about 1930
SLUB Dresden / Abt. Deutsche Fotothek, Ursula Richter

Victor Klemperer

Working as a censor in the Deutsche Bücherei

…, I was now working for the censor purely mechanically, and bans and approvals issued from me as regularly as chocolate and burnt almonds from a vending machine.

Victor Klemperer, Curriculum vitae, 1989

The writer and novelist Victor Klemperer, after a stay in military hospital, succeeded in not returning to the front but, arranged for by his brother, was posted instead to the Book Assessment Office of the Eastern Command. After a short tour in Kaunas, Lithuania, he arrived in Leipzig in August 1916. The Book Assessment Office in Leipzig rented rooms in the newly built Deutsche Bücherei, for the checking and approval of the export of books, picture postcards and other printed matter to the Eastern Command region. Klemperer worked here as a censor until the end of the War. His duties included the assessment of political and historical literature.