Enlightenment and Religion in German and Austrian Literature

Ritchie Robertson

Selected Essays 1

Legenda

25 May 2017  •  494pp

ISBN: 978-1-781884-65-2 (hardback)  •  RRP £75, $99, €85

ISBN: 978-1-781884-66-9 (paperback, 30 September 2018)  •  RRP £14.99, $19.99, €19.99

ISBN: 978-1-781884-67-6 (JSTOR ebook)

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Religion and enlightenment, the twin themes of this volume, always exist in tension. The tensions, affinities, and conflicts between the two, as they play out in German literature from Goethe, Schiller and Kleist down to Kafka and Thomas Mann, are explored in this volume, with one section examining their interplay in the neglected Austrian Enlightenment. Thanks to the historical and textual criticism of the Bible, the ‘sea of faith’ began its withdrawal sooner in Germany than in England, and this collection traces its retreat, looking especially at Nietzsche’s militant opposition to Christianity and at the expression in some modernist writing of a distinctly post-Christian and even post-human outlook.

Ritchie Robertson is Taylor Professor of German at the University of Oxford. This book aims to make more widely available some 27 of his essays on the theme of Enlightenment and religion, in both Germany and Austria, which are otherwise widely scattered in journals published over the last twenty years.

Reviews:

  • ‘A tour de force in the study of German-speaking cultures with a range and depth that takes readers from the Classical period in the eighteenth century to twentieth-century Modernism... Here we are confronted with, or rather treated to [...] erudition, insight and unerring logic.’ — Carol Tully, Times Literary Supplement 23 January 2018
  • ‘Any ambitious colleagues wishing to uncover the secret behind Robertson’s talent for producing the appropriate formulation are again referred to his introductory remarks, in which he recalls having learnt to use a typewriter whose roller would only turn in one direction, making it impossible to go back and emend what had been written. The present volume of essays suggests that there could be no better method of training future scholars than by providing them with similarly challenging, character-building implements.’ — Osman Durrani, Modern Language Review 113.2, April 2018, 433-35 (full text online)

Contents:

1-12
Introduction
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Part I: The German Classical Period
15-25
Aspects of Religious Toleration in Eighteenth-Century Germany
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25-38
Virtue versus ‘Schwärmerei’ in Lessing’s Emilia Galotti
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39-59
Literary Techniques and Complex Words in Goethe’s Faust
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60-74
Wallenstein: Man of Destiny?
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75-93
Schiller and the Jesuits
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94-114
Women Warriors and the Origin of the State: Werner’s Wanda and Kleist’s Penthesilea
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115-143
Theophanies in German Classicism
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144-162
Cosmopolitanism, Patriotism, and Nationalism in the German-speaking Enlightenment
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Part II: The Austrian Enlightenment
165-176
Joseph II in Cultural Memory
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177-192
Curiosity in the Austrian Enlightenment
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193-205
Johann Pezzl: Enlightenment in the Satirical Mode
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206-225
Joseph Rohrer and the Bureaucratic Enlightenment
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226-250
Poetry and Scepticism in the Wake of the Austrian Enlightenment: Blumauer, Grillparzer, Lenau
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251-262
The Complexities of Caroline Pichler: Die Schweden in Prag (1827)
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Part III: The Nineteenth Century
265-280
Hoffmann’s Die Elixiere des Teufels and the Lasting Appeal of Conspiracy Theories
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281-290
Faith and Fossils: Annette von Droste-Hülshoff’s Poem ‘Die Mergelgrube’
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291-303
Mörike and the Higher Criticism
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304-317
‘Conversations with Jehovah’: Heine’s Quarrel with God
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318-333
Nestroy’s Dickensian Realism
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334-347
The Limits of Metaphor in Nietzsche’s Genealogy of Morals
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348-364
Jesuits, Jews and Thugs: Myths of Conspiracy and Infiltration from Dickens to Thomas Mann
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Part IV: Modernism
367-383
Schnitzler’s Honesty
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384-400
Savonarola in Munich: A Reappraisal of Thomas Mann’s Fiorenza
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401-413
Sacrifice and Sacrament in The Magic Mountain
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414-430
Kafka as Anti-Christian: The Judgement, The Metamorphosis, and the Aphorisms
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431-443
Alfred Döblin’s Feeling for Snow: The Poetry of Fact in Berge Meere und Giganten
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444-454
‘My True Enemy’: Freud and the Catholic Church, 1927-1939
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455-464
List of Publications
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Bibliography entry:

Robertson, Ritchie, Enlightenment and Religion in German and Austrian Literature, Selected Essays, 1 (Cambridge: Legenda, 2017)

First footnote reference: 35 Enlightenment and Religion in German and Austrian Literature, ritchie Robertson, Selected Essays, 1 (Cambridge: Legenda, 2017), p. 21.

Subsequent footnote reference: 37 Robertson, p. 47.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)

Bibliography entry:

Robertson, Ritchie. 2017. Enlightenment and Religion in German and Austrian Literature, Selected Essays, 1 (Cambridge: Legenda)

Example citation: ‘A quotation occurring on page 21 of this work’ (Robertson 2017: 21).

Example footnote reference: 35 Robertson 2017: 21.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)


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