Pardaad Chamsaz, a twice visiting researcher to the Stefan Zweig Collection at Fredonia, is a Zweig scholar currently completing his PhD via an AHRC Collaborative Doctoral Partnerships Programme between the University of Bristol and the British Library. His research examines not only the persona of Zweig as collector (the British Library holds an extensive collection of both literary and musical manuscripts once owned by Zweig) but also Zweig’s fascination with the creative impetus in general. Chamsaz’s recent article, “Spectres of Balzac: Stefan Zweig’s Collection of Manuscripts and his Rewriting of the Unfinished Balzac” (Working Papers in the Humanities, vol. 11, 2017), sheds significant light on these matters using Zweig’s posthumously published work about the French author to illustrate Zweig’s own process. Fredonia’s collection, known for its vast (over 6,000 items) array of correspondence to Zweig from eminent writers, artists, musicians and others of his time, also contains drafts, notes and other materials for many of Zweig’s works. The holdings pertinent to Balzac prove critical fodder for such studies as Chamsaz’s.
In addition to his own research, Chamsaz is directly involved in numerous activities at the British Library commemorating the 75th anniversary of Zweig’s death, including an exhibit (“Stefan Zweig: the Magic of Manuscripts”, now through 11 June 2017), a full day of events on Monday, 20 March 2017 (“Stefan Zweig: European, Humanist, Collector” and “Music and Poetry from the Zweig Collection”), and, not least, writing the introduction for a forthcoming catalog highlighting Zweig’s literary manuscript collection held by the British Library. An interview with Chamsaz and Susan Reed, Lead Curator for Germanic Collections at the British Library, in which they discuss Zweig’s continuing relevance in contemporary society using the backdrop of Simon McBurney’s much lauded stage adaptation of Zweig’s Beware of Pity can be heard on Complicite’s YouTube channel here.