Heinrich Heine: Germany's multi-facetted literary genius
Feb. 17, 2006 marks the 150th anniversary of the death of Heinrich Heine. While he's internationally regarded as one of Germany's greatest poets, his countrymen have struggled to come to terms with the "difficult poet," as he is often referred to.
Heine's poignant critiques of his homeland clouded his reputation in Germany for many years. The beauty of his poems -- many of which have been set to music -- even defeated the Nazis, who included some of them in national collections while burning Heine's other works.
While his genius is undoubted and his birthplace Düsseldorf will ring in a Heine Year on Friday, he remains controversial: Some experts see him as an intellectual cosmopolitan while others point to his disdain for other nations.
Find out more about the controversial poet in DW-WORLD's dossier.