Monday 7 September 2009

Returning To The Strudlhof Steps

In the Ninth District of Vienna,
not far from the university
and from the Berggasse address
where Freud lived,

a public staircase on the Strudlhofgasse
connects the Boltzmanngasse
to an older residential district below.

Building a novel around this staircase
(and its genius loci)
was Doderer's way of
recovering the link

between the interwar years
and his experience as a young man
before and during the war -
a sense of the deeper structure of historical time
and of the writer's memory.

Quoted from
"Eros and inwardness in Vienna
Weininger, Musil, Doderer"
By David S. Luft
University of Chicago Press

David S. Luft refers to
Heimito von Doderer's novel "The Strudlhof Steps".
I read this novel long before I ever
set foot in Vienna.

Since I moved here,
I have walked up and down
these steps many times,
and each time
it is as if
I were stepping back
to a period
long before I was born,
but that feels present
all the same.


Photographs by Merisi
7 September 2009

For more images and information
about Doderer's novel,
click here and here.


  1. Merisi, beautiful crisp images once again... very much looking forward to seeing Vienna in autumn through your eyes/lens.

  2. Beautiful pictures Merisi. The colour in some of those leaves suggests that Autumn is nearly upon you.

  3. .

    @ oiasantorini:
    Thank you - I am looking forward to share these gorgeous late summer days and then the walk into autumn with you! :-)

    @ Wandring Star:
    Those leaves are turning colour because of desease - the chestnut trees are suffering from a blight that robs them of their leaves prematurely, unfortunately.


  4. Since I will probably never be able to visit Vienna, I will do the next best thing and continue to visit your wonderful blog.

    An Arkies Musings

  5. What elegant steps! But I'm sorry to hear that your chestnuts have the blight -- the American chestnuts -- whole forests of them --were destroyed entirely by a blight in the Thirties -- a great loss. I hope that yours is not so devastating.

  6. How lovely it is there.

  7. I am quite excited...not sure if this will come many plans do not...but a work pal and I ave a dream to visit Vienna and would like to next year....

    any hints on a good time, not summer...? we would like 2-4 day trip, so havent a clue where to start...any ideas??

    saz x

  8. Hello Merisi,

    You have given us another beauty of a post. I also love steps, and think of them as links. I find myself counting steps, admiring the design of steps, love to reach the stop of a flight of steps (and prefer that to an elevator.)

    I am going to try to see if I might find that book, The Strudhof Steps. Thank you for the intruduction. xo

  9. I especially love the first photo with the shadow against the building.


  10. Ah, such history and elegance, you have gathered together yet another fine collection of unique photographs for us to feast on. I always enjoy the strolls you take us on.

  11. I have never seen the Strudlhofstiege... how marvellous. Very much looking forward to seeing Vienna become shrouded in winter.

  12. Very interesting post. I liked it and ended up ordering the book from Amazon.

    Eros and inwardness in Vienna
    Weininger, Musil, Doderer"
    By David S. Luft

    Thanks for visiting and helping me to make history.
    Pick a Peck of Pixels

  13. beautiful! i visited vienna waaay back in 1995 in the middle of winter. actually saw a snow bunny running across the landing strip as we were coming in to land...

    and you have a stunning blog here by the way, i'll be sure to come back!

  14. You are surrounded by beauty! enJOY the day!

  15. Love the contrast of the green and white.


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