German philosopher, cultural critic, composer, and poet Friedrich Nietzsche has had a profound influence on modern intellectual history. He held the Chair of Classical Philology at the University of Basel. His work spanned philosophical polemics, poetry, cultural criticism, and fiction. He suffered from numerous health problems from a young age and died at the age of 55.
Hannah Arendt was a political theorist. Widely regarded as one of the 20th century's most prominent political thinkers, Hannah Arendt's articles and books have had a significant influence on philosophy and political theory. Her life and work inspired the 2012 biographical drama film, Hannah Arendt. Her work has also inspired several biographies written by popular authors.
Gerhard Schröder is a German retired lawyer, politician, lobbyist, and consultant. From 1998 to 2005, Schröder served as the chancellor of Germany. He is currently serving as chairman of the popular energy company Rosneft. An influential figure, Gerhard Schröder has represented Germany on a couple of occasions, including the funeral services for Fidel Castro and Boris Yeltsin.
Nobel Prize-winning German author Heinrich Böll refused to join the Nazi youth wing and became a bookseller’s apprentice instead. However, he fought for the German Army later. He is best remembered for his works such as The Clown and The Silent Angel, revolving around themes of war.
Though Ernst Jünger was part of the German Army in both the World Wars, he was against the Nazi dictatorship and was accused of being involved in a plot to kill Hitler. He authored the diary-novel The Storm of Steel and also made a mark as an entomologist.
17 Ernst Nolte
Ernst Nolte was a German philosopher and historian. Nolte taught modern history from 1973 to 1991 at the Free University of Berlin. He is best remembered for his work Fascism in Its Epoch, which became a popular book upon its publication in 1963. Over the course of his illustrious career, Nolte received many awards, such as the Konrad Adenauer Prize.
Named the 20th Century Doctor of the Church by Pope Pius XII, Dietrich von Hildebrand was a well-known Catholic philosopher who criticized the Second Vatican Council’s church reforms. Known for works such as Transformation in Christ: On the Christian Attitude, he was part of the phenomenological and continental philosophical school.
19 Bruno Taut
Felix Hoffmann was a German chemist best remembered for re-synthesizing diamorphine, which was later popularized as heroin. Hoffmann is also known for synthesizing aspirin, although it is still unclear whether he synthesized it on his own or under the direction of Arthur Eichengrün. In 2002, Felix Hoffmann was inducted into the US National Inventors Hall of Fame.
Ernest Mandel was a Belgian Trotskyist activist and theorist, Marxian economist, and Holocaust survivor. During the German occupation of Belgium, Mandel fought against the Nazis in the underground resistance. He served as an editor of Het Vrije Woord, an underground newspaper during the Second World War. During his life, Mandel published some 30 books and 2,000 articles in various languages.
25 Jan Assmann
Although best remembered for his discovery of the world's oldest handwritten Bible, known as Codex Sinaiticus or Sinai Bible, Konstantin Von Tischendorf, a renowned Biblical scholar, worked chiefly on recension of the New Testament text. A prolific writer making extensive contributions to biblical textual criticism, he is today best known for his magnum opus, Critical Edition of the New Testament.
Best remembered for establishing the tradition of mysticism at Saint-Victor Abbey in Paris, Hugh of Saint Victor was an eminent twelfth century philosopher, theologian and mystical writer. Author of several renowned works including The Sacraments of the Christian Faith; he was an ardent upholder of secular learning, writing a comprehensive early encyclopedia, holding that art and philosophy can serve theology.
Born to a farmer, Peter Binsfeld grew up to be a bishop. He was also a witch hunter and was known for his classification of demons, which paired each of the seven deadly sins with a particular demon. He was one of the main figures behind the Trier witch trials.
33 Uschi Glas
36 Alfred Kerr
37 Willi Schmid
Hans-Werner Sinn is a German economist best known for his association with the Ifo Institute for Economic Research where he served as the president from 1999 to 2016. Apart from serving on the advisory council of the German economy ministry, Hans-Werner Sinn is also currently serving as Professor Emeritus of Public Finance and Economics at the University of Munich.
A strong supporter of positivism and a critic of Marxism, German philosopher Eugen Dühring was also a qualified lawyer. An eye ailment which took away his sight in the end made him quit law and focus on philosophy instead. A fine writer, too, he penned books such as Capital und Arbeit.