Private Enterprise?

Dear Manfred Rasch (‘Ueberspieler’, ThyssenKrupp Smoke and Mirrors Department),

Congratulations on your latest literary output, but I am confused. When we came to see you in November 1998, you told me that the letters between August Thyssen and his son Heinrich Thyssen-Bornemisza were Baron Heini Thyssen’s private property.

You also told us: ‘We are not a service organisation for the Thyssen family. We are the archive of a company or companies, and have nothing to do with the Thyssen-Bornemisza family.’ Were you lying or has something changed? So: Who owns the copyright to your book and/or to the letters? All very mysterious!

I am certainly looking forward to receiving a copy of the book, not so much because of what it will contain, but what it doesn’t. Fortunately, as we also have copies of all the letters, which were given to us by Heini Thyssen, we can fill in any gaps you might inadvertently have left. We hope nobody has been tempted to forge any additions, as you once accused us of doing.

I have to say that I find the fact that you, and presumably ‘the organisation’, are choosing to do such a book, while ThyssenKrupp is the subject of ‘independent’ academic research, deeply suspicious. Why do I get the feeling that it is all part of the re-writing of corporate and family history in response to the publication of our book ‘Die Thyssen-Dynastie. Die Wahrheit hinter dem Mythos’ (assoVerlag Oberhausen, 2008)?

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  1. […] have waited so long to authorise their archivist and historian, Manfred Rasch, to bring out a book of letters between August Thyssen and his son Heinrich, seems somewhat of a mystery. The two men have, after […]

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