About this Archive

“Here Comes the Snails” is a digital archive designed to catalog interviews, critical essays, articles, and other documents of interest to scholars and fans of the Kashubian-German Nobel laureate, Günter Grass (1927-2015).

What one may find here:

  • Articles, interviews, videos, transcripts, and essays relating to Grass.
  • Articles, essays, stories, etc. related to concepts Grass found important including, but not limited to, Social Democracy, the Holocaust/Shoah, political theory, writing, diaspora, and language.

What this archive hopes to achieve:

  • This archive hopes to preserve the thought and writings of the esteemed German novelist, but not to idolize him.  Günter Grass was a deeply flawed man whose involvement in the Waffen-SS in his in his late teens deeply traumatized him and inspired his project.  As a result, we hope to address criticism of Grass head-on as a means to understand Grass’ politics and writing in a more nuanced light.

Why snails?

  • Grass considered snails the symbol of his ideal politics.  Snails are slow-going, carry a burden (or shell) on their backs, leave a trail wherever they go and are easily stopped when they go astray.  Grass defines progress in his famous travelogue, From the Diary of the Snail, as “moving faster than the snail but never arriving.”  As a result, this archive uses his imagery to advance knowledge of Grass and of the world Grass loved so dearly.