Emanuel Lasker Society
Lasker: Life and Work
Emanuel Lasker (1868-1941) is best known as a world wide renowned chess player and
was one of the best known Germans abroad in the early part of the 20th century.
No chess player since then has been able to match Lasker's
27 year run as chess world champion (from 1894 to 1921).
Lasker had an extremely versatile personality.
He received a doctorate in Mathematics in 1900,
published philosophical and political works,
was editor of Lasker's Chess Magazine,
and contributed to many other journals on chess.
He wrote not only about chess but also other games,
which he played masterfully as well;
he was interested in Bridge and especially
fascinated by Go, a Japanese board game.
Furthermore, he contributed to literature the narrative
Wie Wanja Meister wurde (How Wanja Became Champion) and,
together with his brother Berthold Lasker,
the drama Vom Menschen die Geschichte (Human's History).
After the Nazis' rise to power, Lasker, a German Jew,
recognized early on that his homeland
would no longer be a safe place to live.
He abandoned most of his material possessions and
emigrated from Germany in 1933.
His stations of exile were the Netherlands,
England, Switzerland, the Soviet Union,
and the United States, where he died in 1941.
The Emanuel Lasker Society was founded
in Berlin on January 11th 2001,
sixty years to the day after Lasker's death,
during the prelude to the highly respected Potsdam
international conference Homo ludens Homo politicus.
The conference instigator, cultural scientist Paul Werner Wagner,
was elected as the Society's chairman.
Among the approximately 130 members are former world champions Garry Kasparov (Russia), Anatoly Karpov (Russia); chess grand masters
Viktor Kortschnoi (Switzerland), Wolfgang Unzicker,
Lothar Schmid, Juri Awerbach (Russia), Wolfgang Uhlmann
and Rainer Knaak; former correspondence chess champion
Dr. Fritz Baumbach; politician Otto Schily;
chess historian Dr. Isaak Linder (Russia);
and the German Chess Association with its honorary
presidents Egon Ditt and Alfred Kinzel.
The eldest living chess grand master
André Lilienthal (Hungary, born 1911)
and Germany's multiple women's master
Edith Keller-Herrmann were appointed honorary members.
Whether they are prominent or not, chess masters or hobby players, the Society's
members are united by a common interest in the life and work of the
cosmopolitan Emanuel Lasker. This has resulted in manifold contacts
and friendships which transcend the borders of countries, cultures, and
Goals and Activities
The Emanuel Lasker Society's task is to preserve,
explore, and popularise the spiritual and
cultural legacy of Emanuel Lasker.
To achieve this aim, it is required that Lasker's remaining original documents,
manuscripts, photographies, books, etc. be brought together
The Society's objective,
beyond the preservation of Lasker's legacy,
is to organise scientific symposia
on the history and culture of chess and
to present them in the form of publications.
An important concern of the Society is
to increase the social recognition of chess,
as both a contributor to cultural history
and an ideal leisure activity.
Lasker-Treffs (Lasker meetings),
which take place monthly in Berlin, attended by a wide array of guests and speakers,
and the Schachcafé (chess café), which are held on the last Tuesday of every month,
have become fixed dates for friends
of chess culture and that of other games.
Emanuel Lasker Society
Phone +49-30-616 84 150
Fax +49-30-616 84 166
Bank account 40 50 63 57 00
Bank code 120 800 00
Paul Werner Wagner (Chairman)
Stefan Hansen (Executive Chairman)
Thomas Weischede (Vice Chairman)
Dr. Thomas Thomsen
Version: September 2008
Translated by Dr. Sönke Kannapinn,
Wincor Nixdorf International GmbH Berlin
Reviewed by Robert Leonard, Montreal, Canada
and Emanuel Wagner