Joseph Roth (1894-1939) was the great elegist of the cosmopolitan, tolerant and doomed Central European culture that flourished in the dying days of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Born into a Jewish family in Galicia, on the eastern edge of the empire, he was a prolific political journalist and novelist. On Hitler's assumption of power, he was obliged to leave Germany and he died in poverty in Paris. His novels include What I Saw, The Legend of the Holy Drinker, Right and Left, The Emperor's Tomb, The String of Pearls and The Radetzky March, all published by Granta Books. Michael Hofmann is a poet. He has translated the works of many writers, including Brecht, Kafka, Fallada and Roth. He teaches at the University of Florida in Gainesville.