Max Tau

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Max Tau
Max Tau, the lithograph by Emil Stumpp, 1929
Born(1897-01-19)19 January 1897
Died13 March 1976(1976-03-13) (aged 79)
Oslo, Norway
NationalityNorwegian and German
Alma materUniversity of Kiel
Occupation(s)Publisher and writer
Years active1928–1976
Employer(s)Grundt Tanum, Aschehoug
Known forBuilding cultural relations between Norway and Germany
SpouseTove Filseth
Parent(s)Nathan Tau (1870–1941) and Julie Julius (1874–1942

Max Tau was a German–Norwegian writer, editor, and publisher.


Max Tau (left) at the ceremony for Friedenspreis des Deutschen Buchhandels for Frère Roger (in white) in St. Paul's Church, Frankfurt am Main 1974. West-German president Walter Scheel is seated next to Tau.
Credit: Deutsche Bundearchiv

Tau grew up in an environment characterized by what he later termed the "Jewish-German" symbiosis, in a Jewish household heavily influenced by the Jewish enlightenment. He studied literature, art history, philosophy, and psychology at universities in Berlin, Hamburg, and Kiel. He earned his doctorate at the University of Kiel, defending a dissertation on the German writer Theodor Fontane. With the assistance of Mildred Fish Harnack, an American active in the Red Orchestra anti-Nazi resistance group, Tau emigrated to Norway in 1935.[1] During the Nazi-German occupation of Norway, he was a refugee in Sweden and returned to Norway after the war. He was noted for his contribution to promoting literary exchange between Germany and Norway, especially in the context of reconciliation after World War II. He obtained Norwegian citizenship while in exile in Sweden in 1944.[2]




  1. ^ Rebecca Donner (5 August 2021). All the Frequent Troubles of Our Days: The True Story of the American Woman at the Heart of the German Resistance to Hitler. Canongate Books. p. 212. ISBN 9781-78-6892201. Retrieved 8 August 2021.
  2. ^ Lorenz, Einhart (2000). "Max Tau". In Helle, Knut (ed.). Norsk biografisk leksikon (in Norwegian). Vol. 2. Oslo: Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 21 April 2009.

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