The essay focuses on the friendship and collaborative relationship between Heinrich Böll and the founder and mentor of ‘Group 47’, Hans Werner Richter. The subject of the essay not only regards the Group’s role in the career of the future winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, Heinrich Böll, but above all, Böll’s and Richter’s different conceptions of the role of intellectuals in the Bundesrepublik society in the 1950s and 1960s. Their visions become irreconcilable on the issue of politics, for example, in support of the Social Democratic Party of Germany and the then-candidate Willy Brandt. An analysis of their correspondence, diaries and essays clearly shows that they both established a ‘habitus’ (in Bourdieu’s sense of the term) of German intellectuals in the literary field, which would leave its mark on the world for years to come.