Price  £11.95
Format  Hardback
Published  1990
Length  176 pages
ISBN  9781870015363


Yellow Street
Veza Canetti

Set in Vienna in the 1930s, this novel in ‘five scenes’ captures those years of poverty, despair, unemployment and crumbling moral values.

With an astute eye for irony and sardonic humour, Veza Canetti weaves together stories about the people of Yellow Street, the street of the leather-merchants in the Leopolstadt district of Vienna. It is a bustling street where no privacy is respected and no secret possible. The impoverished bourgeoisie, petty profiteers and straightforward criminals live side by side with their victims, usually helpless women and children, reduced by their circumstances and often rendered street-wise by their poverty and experience. And yet all are thoroughly capable of defending their own dignity. Veza Canetti writes incisively with a finely-tuned awareness of the plight of these characters.


About Veza Canetti

Veza Canetti, born Venetiana Taubner-Calderon was born in Vienna in 1897. Her father was a Hungarian Jew and her mother came from a family of Spanish Jews from Bosnia, Ferdinandstrasse, in the Leopoldstadt district of Vienna – the streets of the leather merchants – and based Yellow Street on this experience.

The Viennese newspaper, Arbeiter Zeitung provided Veza Canetti with her most important outlet for publication during 1932-3. This paper, which was closely associated with Austro-Marxism was, in Elias Canetti’s words: ‘the organ of the party that held power in Vienna and governed the city in a new and imaginative way. It was also… Vienna’s best-written paper.’ Veza Canetti wrote under three pseudonyms, because of latent anti-Semitism from 1933. With the defeat of Austro-Marxism in 1934 and the rise of Fascism, her works could no longer be published.

In 1934 she married Elia Canetti– who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1981 – and they settled in London in 1939. Veza Canetti died in 1963.