Franz Grillparzer’s Dramatic Heroines: Theatre and Women’s Emancipation in Nineteenth-Century Austria
Matthew McCarthy-Rechowicz
Germanic Literatures 125 May 2018

Sebald's Bachelors: Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life
Helen Finch
Germanic Literatures 23 June 2013

  • ‘An ambitious, thin book that contains a dense, closely argued 'queer reading of Sebald’s work'. The result is one of the most important books on Sebald to date. I am sure that there are a number of Sebald readers, casual and otherwise, who will look askance at a queer reading of his work, but, as Finch demonstrates, the clues – both obvious and coded – are there in plain sight.’ — Terry Pitts, Vertigo online
  • ‘Brillant ist das Buch von Finch überall da, wo es - dem Versprechen des Untertitels getreu - den Themen 'Queer Resistance and the Unconforming Life' bei Sebald nachgeht. Sie identifiziert das Werk durchgehende Motive oder zeigt höchst überzeugend, wie queerness und Erzählform bei 'Schwindel. Gefühle' zusammenhängen.’ — Uwe Schutte, Skug 97.1-3, 2014, 63-64
  • ‘Helen Finch's genuinely ground-breaking study of the work of W. G. Sebald explores the hitherto under-researched dimension of queer affinities and non-conformist lives in both the fictional and, crucially, the critical work of the now canonical writer... This is an important addition to the critical material and will challenge any interested Sebald scholar.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 50.4, 2014, 505-06
  • ‘Finch’s study illuminates the underexplored dimension of Sebald’s oeuvre, sexuality in general and queerness in particular, making an important contribution to Sebald scholarship.’ — Lynn L. Wolff, Modern Language Review 111.1, January 2016, 292-94 (full text online)
  • ‘Despite my reservations, there is much to admire here: finally, the queer dimension of the Sebaldian is comprehensively explored; the book serves as a report on the condition of Sebald scholarship; and in its own way it is consistently argued and tightly phrased. Sebald’s Bachelors is undoubtedly a provocative springboard for students and scholars engaging with Sebald’s oeuvre. But the project of queer Sebald remains radically open to further critical enquiry.’ — Christopher Madden, Textual Practice 29.2, 2015, 396-400
  • ‘Finch’s original and compelling reading of the bachelor trope is a particularly progressive addition, not only to existing scholarship on Sebald’s writing, but also to queer literary theory more broadly... This significant new perspective demonstrates not only how queer figures haunt the works of Sebald, but also how his unconforming bachelors continue to haunt the German queer literary tradition.’ — Hannah O’Connor, Assuming Gender 4.1, 2014, 81-84
  • ‘An early review of W.G. Sebald’s first fictional work published in English, The Emigrants (1996), contained the observation that his narrators and his other significant characters are 'always male'... Yet until Helen Finch’s study of Bachelors in Sebald, there has been no satisfactory or truly systematic study of male characters and homoerotic undercurrents in Sebald.’ — Mark R. McCulloh, Monatshefte 108.1, 2016, 150-52

Goethe's Visual World
Pamela Currie
Germanic Literatures 33 June 2013

  • ‘This volume is a marvelous study of how Goethe participated in perception theory, physics, cognition studies, and psychology. Currie’s work is a significant step toward uncovering and clarifying some of the mental images and cognitive elements that are already critically reflected in Goethe’s perceptive writings.’ — Beate Allert, Monatshefte 105.4, 2013, 716-18
  • ‘Goethe himself would surely have found this volume impressive, spanning as it does a multitude of disciplines with equal facility... The impression one carries away on closing the book is of the immense sense of intellectual ferment which characterised Goethe’s age, and a search for ways of reappraising human beings’ relationship to their environment in both spiritual and physical terms.’ — Susan Halstead, The Brown Book (Lady Margaret Hall) 2014, 132-34
  • ‘Pamela Currie’s arguments never fail to challenge the reader, but are crafted with a lightness of touch, and display a sustained resistance to theoretical excess. The book works across genres and disciplines—and it works beautifully. It is a fitting way to remember a much-respected scholar, who died as the book was in preparation.’ — Charlotte Lee, Modern Language Review 109.4, October 2014, 1122-23 (full text online)
  • ‘T. J. Reed refers to this volume as the 'product of a remarkable and coherent research interest'. It is also the product of a remarkable intellect that fearlessly sought unexplored regions of literary inquiry and unhesitatingly made connections where others might not. In sum, this is a volume that is not merely worthwhile to read but one whose intellectual esprit is worthy of emulation.’ — Walter K. Stewart, Goethe Yearbook 2015, 284-86
  • ‘Currie besticht durch ihr virtuos gehandhabtes, interdisziplinäres Vorgehen, ihre Gedankenschärfe und Entdeckerfreude, ihren Blick in die Tiefe und in die Ferne. Offensichtlich war auch sie—die reich bebilderte Aufsatzsammlung ist eine postume Hommage—ein ausgeprägter Augenmensch.’ — Franz R. Kempf, German Studies Review 38.2, May 2015, 416-18

German Narratives of Belonging: Writing Generation and Place in the Twenty-First Century
Linda Shortt
Germanic Literatures 48 June 2015

  • ‘The texts are frequently autobiographical, consisting of diary entries and lived family experience. Methodological approaches range from feminist, memory and cultural studies to humanist geography, engaging with the writers’ often experimental use of language. This book will appeal to all those interested in contemporary German literature and identity.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 52.2, 2016, 239-40
  • ‘A helpful overview and nuanced discussion of literary, essayistic, and autobiographical texts that explore the multiple obstacles — historical, social, political, familial, global — complicating or curtailing the human desire to belong, but that also ponder new forms of fluid or changing attachments in contemporary society.’ — Friederike Eigler, GegenwartsLiteratur 16, 2016, 350-51
  • ‘In this slim and rich volume, Linda Shortt analyzes narratives of belonging in post-Wende German literature that represent a variety of generations, attitudes towards belonging (e.g., longing or anxiety), and relationships with German-speaking regions... This excellent book provides much food for thought.’ — Alexandra M. Hill, Monatshefte 109.1, 2017, 175-77
  • ‘Shortt offers an engaging and convincing interrogation of belonging as a flexible and resilient concept in contemporary literature. In addressing how belonging shifts across generations and responds to change, she demonstrates new negotiations of belonging that move beyond the conceptual constraints imposed by Heimat. In doing so, Shortt articulates a concept that undoubtedly has a greater relevance beyond the texts under consideration and the immediate concerns of contemporary German Studies.’ — Richard McLelland, Modern Language Review 112.3, July 2017, 753-54 (full text online)

The Very Late Goethe: Self-Consciousness and the Art of Ageing
Charlotte Lee
Germanic Literatures 523 April 2014

  • ‘The major achievement of this study is to show how simplistic it is to distinguish between clarity and chaos as two distinct types of late style. Neither will serve as an adequate descriptor of Goethe’s late-late writing, which is simultaneously highly patterned and controlled, yet ultimately also inchoate and at times bafflingly lacking in transparency.’ — Osman Durrani, Modern Language Review 110.2, April 2015, 587-88 (full text online)
  • ‘A subtle and complex reflection on the distinctive character of Goethe’s writing in various genres during the last ten years of his life, which is characterized by a tendency towards retrospection, seen in the way that he revisits earlier experiences and earlier writing.’ — David Hill, The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies 77, 2017, 272

Women, Emancipation and the German Novel 1871-1910: Protest Fiction in its Cultural Context
Charlotte Woodford
Germanic Literatures 61 November 2014

  • ‘This substantial, illuminating, and crisply written study looks once again at women’s writing in Germany and Austria in the period of its major impact on a wide reading public between the Franco-Prussian and First World Wars... The book is not only a nuanced contribution to feminist scholarship but also a significant intervention in the wider debate about committed literature. Woodford argues unambiguously for literature’s capacity to function as a driver of social change.’ — Helen Chambers, Modern Language Review 110.4, October 2015, 1161-62 (full text online)
  • ‘It has been estimated that women constituted one-third of the authors of the century. However, women’s protest writing encountered a backlash around the time of World War I: it was viewed as contrary to the true German attitude to gender relations, despised as a foreign implant from France and Scandinavia, and somehow Jewish. The women writers disappeared from the literary histories, and most of them remained invisible until the time I was a student... Woodford’s book is recommendable to teachers and students working in this period because it is full of indicators of how one might enrich the fabric of literary life of the time.’ — Jeffrey L. Sammons, Monatshefte 107.4, December 2015, 673-76

Goethe's Poetry and the Philosophy of Nature: Gott und Welt 1798-1827
Regina Sachers
Germanic Literatures 722 July 2015

  • ‘Although the twenty-one poems of the original collection were composed over as many years or more, Regina Sachers rejects the ‘autonomous’ approach taken by Theodor Adorno, David Wellbery, and others, pointing out that by deliberately placing them together, Goethe must have wished the reader to view them as a single entity.’ — Osman Durrani, Modern Language Review 112.1, January 2017, 279-80 (full text online)
  • ‘Each of these poems has a history, and the combination of histories sheds new light on Goethe’s intellectual development, in particular the increased awareness of the image of a self that he was projecting.’ — David Hill, The Year's Work in Modern Language Studies 77, 2017, 269

Fontane and Cultural Mediation: Translation and Reception in Nineteenth-Century German Literature
Edited by Ritchie Robertson and Michael White
Germanic Literatures 811 September 2015

  • ‘This volume contains thirteen varied contributions which the editors successfully present as a coherent group of essays in honour of a distinguished Fontane scholar, whose own work provides an implicit point of reference... The strengths of this volume lie for the most part in the expository sections, the light that is thrown on unfamiliar corners of nineteenth-century German literary life, and the commitment shown by this group of commentators to its preservation as an object of study.’ — John Osborne, Modern Language Review 112.1, January 2017, 284-86 (full text online)
  • ‘This expertly edited, wide-ranging and engaging collection of essays admirably fulfils its aim of putting Fontane’s oeuvre in a European context, thus challenging a narrow view of his work and implicitly of late nineteenth-century German realism as a whole... This is an appropriately eclectic and com- prehensive volume and as such a fitting tribute to its dedicatee, Professor Emerita Helen Chambers, who has done so much to make the German department at St Andrews a centre of intercultural German Studies.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 53.2, April 2017
  • ‘A rich panorama of case studies on Anglo-German, trilateral, and multilateral cultural exchange and dialogue (mostly) in the nineteenth century. It will be of particular interest to those who wish to look beyond canonical works and established knowledge.’ — Dirk Göttsche, Translation and Literature 26, 2017, 231-37
  • ‘Represents British Germanistik at its broadest, best, and most inter-connected... In overcoming prejudices both against the nineteenth century and against the genre which originated in it, this book really does accomplish the ‘Great Festschrift Makeover’.’ — David Gillett, Angermion 2017, 202-06
  • ‘The scope and ambition of the thirteen essays that make up this volume are impressive. Each contribution displays a captivating commitment to detailed study of the primary texts in question, yet, at the same time, never restricting itself to simply textual microanalysis.’ — Paul Whitehead, Comparative Critical Studies 14, 2018, 397-401

Metamorphosis in Modern German Literature: Transforming Bodies, Identities and Affects
Tara Beaney
Germanic Literatures 919 December 2016

  • ‘In conclusion, this monograph is recommended to an academic readership with a general interest in the role of affect in fictional transformations, and in multidisciplinary, comparative approaches to transformative phenomena.’ — Elisabetta Leopardi, Modern Language Review 113.2, April 2018, 436-39 (full text online)
  • ‘What is innovative is that the author links transformation to affect. Her corpus entails (as is to be expected) E.T.A. Hoffmann and Franz Kafka, discussing e.g. metamorphosis and utopia/dystopia. More original in this context are the case studies on Marie Luise Kaschnitz, Jenny Erpenbeck, and the trans-cultural Japanese German author Yoko Tawada.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 54.3, July 2018, 371-72
  • ‘The book’s great merit is that it shows in close readings the prevalence of metamorphosis as a concept in German literature, and how metamorphosis in all its different iterations always questions stable identities and disrupts affective structures.’ — Tanja Nusser, German Studies Review 41.2, May 2018, 396-98 (full text online)

Comedy and Trauma in Germany and Austria after 1945: The Inner Side of Mourning
Stephanie Bird
Germanic Literatures 1019 December 2016

  • ‘This study offers an original and distinctive approach which illuminates key aspects of the chosen works while also enhancing the highly complex nature of mourning.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 54.4, October 2018, 506 (full text online)
  • ‘A fresh perspective on comedy and the complex roles comedic devices have played in postwar German-language literature and lm and in discussions of trauma.’ — Corey L. Twitchell, German Studies Review 42.1, February 2019, 176-178 (full text online)

E.T.A. Hoffmann’s Orient: Romantic Aesthetics and the German Imagination
Joanna Neilly
Germanic Literatures 1119 December 2016

  • ‘A thorough and innovative monograph... E.T.A. Hoffmann’s Orient is a well-written study that serves an indispensable function as a comprehensive and careful survey of the theme of orientalism in Hoffmann’s works. Neilly is ready to criticize Hoffmann’s orientalism when necessary, but what is more important, she is also receptive to those aspects of Hoffmann that cannot be reduced to orientalist discourse or are even critical of orientalism.’ — Asko Nivala, European Romantic Review August 2018 (full text online)
  • ‘The book is written in a clear, crisp style... It is rich, dense, and full of insight and overall an important and original addition not only to the body of Hoffmann scholarship; it also adds an important facet to our understanding of the Romantic preoccupation with the Orient.’ — Juergen Barkhoff, Modern Language Review 114.4, October 2019, 886-87 (full text online)
  • ‘Hoffmann has until now been presented as something of a peripheral Orientalist, with more attention typically being paid to Schlegel and Novalis. Neilly’s searching study serves as a thoughtful corrective, revealing across a series of close readings the range and variety of Eastern motifs that are implied and appropriated in Hoffmann’s fictions, or—as is most often, and most intriguingly, the case—critically reflected upon, in a way that turns his ironic mirror back onto German aesthetics and indeed onto the notion of the fixed self.’ — Polly Dickson, German Studies Review 43.3, October 2020, 607-10 (full text online)

Structures of Subjugation in Dutch Literature
Judit Gera
Germanic Literatures 1219 December 2016

  • ‘This informative, insightful, confident, and provocative account of Dutch literature, which focuses on the complex ways in which it embodies and embeds subjugation, deserves to be read by any scholar of European literature interested in an intersectional approach to reading literature. To those teaching and studying Dutch literature, Structures of Subjugation in Dutch Literature provides a worthwhile and lively addition to the literary histories available in English.’ — Jane Fenoulhet, Modern Language Review 113.3, July 2018, 675-77 (full text online)
  • ‘Above all, Gera’s analyses are impressive examples of the development and use of new reading strategies. Her analyses gave me a sense of liberation. The fact that messages can be so hidden in the language of social and literary reality gives an explanation of the persistence of the established order in gender and race-biased inequalities. With a growing awareness of our literary heritage, a critical attitude towards ingrained ideas and their wording becomes possible. We enter a new era.’ — Den Haag Agnes Sneller, Dutch Crossing Online, 2018 (full text online)

Isak Dinesen Reading Søren Kierkegaard: On Christianity, Seduction, Gender, and Repetition
Mads Bunch
Germanic Literatures 133 April 2017

  • ‘The claim is that Dinesen’s reading of and interest in Kierkegaard are neglected within Dinesen research. Although various scholars have analysed certain texts in the light of Kierkegaard, I think Bunch is right. There has been no in-depth study of Kierkegaard’s significance for Dinesen prior to his book. Hence, [this book] is a valuable contribution to a more extensive understanding and documentation of the textual relation between the two Danish authors.’ — Tone Selboe, Modern Language Review 113.4, October 2018, 904-06 (full text online)

Foreign Parts: German and Austrian Actors on the British Stage 1933-1960
Richard Dove
Germanic Literatures 1529 September 2017

  • ‘Readers with high expectations will not be disappointed by Foreign Parts. It is a fascinating presentation of the careers of five actors who, forced to leave Germany and Austria by Hitler, set about plying their trade on the stage in Britain... Dove’s account of the actors’ careers in pre-war and wartime Britain is exemplary.’ — Anthony Grenville, AJR Journal 2018
  • ‘The stories that unfold are engaging when viewed as biographies, because of the different challenges and problems each of the actors had to confront. Their different treatment when Britain decided to intern ‘enemy aliens’ reflects the chaotic and sometimes extreme nature of wartime bureaucracy, and their choices after the war are fascinating, with only Mannheim choosing to return to Germany.’ — David Barnett, Modern Language Review 114.2, April 2019, 411-12 (full text online)

Paul Celan’s Unfinished Poetics: Readings in the Sous-Oeuvre
Thomas C. Connolly
Germanic Literatures 1626 February 2018

  • ‘It would exceed the limits of this review to enter further into the many merits of Connolly’s monograph, from his impressive discoveries within an “oeuvre” so thoroughly examined as Celan’s, to the judiciousness of his writing... The “sous-oeuvre” that Connolly broaches can “never” be entirely disclosed: every disclosure leaves traces to be read otherwise. It is for this reason that Paul Celan’s Un nished Poetics: Readings in the Sous-Oeuvre calls for further readings, in every sense.’ — Kristina Mendicino, German Studies Review 42.2, May 2019, 402-404 (full text online)
  • ‘This book constitutes a refreshing approach to the work of Paul Celan... constitutes a sharp and compelling update to Celan criticism.’ — unsigned notice, Forum for Modern Language Studies 55.3, July 2019, 355
  • ‘Paul Celan’s Unfinished Poetics is highly recommended, as it demonstrates that a sous-œuvre opens up a fabulous new source of interest for poetry lovers. This goes far beyond Celan’s writings.’ — Gerrit-Jan Berendse, Modern Language Review 114.4, October 2019, 894-96 (full text online)

Encounters with Albion: Britain and the British in Texts by Jewish Refugees from Nazism
Anthony Grenville
Germanic Literatures 1722 August 2018

  • ‘Some of the most moving stories, though, are written by less well-known figures: tales of loneliness; the humiliating treatment of domestic servants; stories of loss by children who arrived with the Kindertransport... Grenville has trawled the archives of the AJR and numerous books and diaries for stories which help us understand the experience of refugees. It is hard to think of anyone who has done more to open up their world and bring it to life.’ — David Herman, Jewish Chronicle 26 October 2018
  • ‘By examining the writings of Jews who had escaped to the UK, Grenville has pieced together an invaluable account of the feelings of shock, anger and confusion which those who were interned experienced.’ — Robert Philpot, The Times of Israel 2 December 2018
  • ‘Unusually for an academic publication, Grenville’s book will move its readers in several ways: the plight of the refugees in a strange country; their differing degrees of success; the crude and unfeeling ways in which the British authorities dealt with so many internees; the incomprehension towards refugees that was displayed by a large number of British citizens; and, conversely, the kindness, generosity and warm-heartedness that was shown by so many ordinary people to total strangers whose language they did not speak and for whose culture they often had little comprehension.’ — Richard Sheppard, Journal of European Studies 51.2, June 2021, 157-59 (full text online)

The Law of Poetry: Studies in Hölderlin’s Poetics
Charles Lewis
Germanic Literatures 1823 September 2019

Georg Hermann: A Writer’s Life
John Craig-Sharples
Germanic Literatures 1928 August 2019

Alfred Döblin: Monsters, Cyborgs and Berliners 1900-1933
Robert Craig 
Germanic Literatures 2010 September 2021

Confrontational Readings: Literary Neo-Avant-Gardes in Dutch and German
Edited by Inge Arteel, Lars Bernaerts and Olivier Couder 
Germanic Literatures 2128 September 2020

Poetry, Painting, Park: Goethe and Claude Lorrain
Franz R. Kempf
Germanic Literatures 227 January 2020

  • ‘Few are the writers who have the competence truly to be interdisciplinary and Franz Kempf is one of them. In Poetry, Painting, Park (Legenda) he carefully lays out the complex intellectual links forged by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe from his life-long considerations of Claude’s landscapes. Kempf fluently ranges over the consequences of Goethe’s encounter with Claude— literature and literary theory, painting and drawing, horticulture and garden design, philosophy, natural science and optics, reality and spirituality—to arrive at striking a double portrait.’ — Donald Lee, The Art Newspaper Blog Books of the Year, 25 December 2020
  • ‘This long overdue task [of studying Goethe and Claude Lorrain] has been accomplished in a near exemplary monograph by Franz Kempf, in a finely produced volume that does elegant justice to its subject... It will doubtless become a standard work and will open up broad vistas for future research.’ — Jeremy Adler, The Art Newspaper 334, May 2021

Childhood, Memory, and the Nation: Young Lives under Nazism in Contemporary German Culture
Alexandra Lloyd 
Germanic Literatures 2328 September 2020

Affective Spaces: Migration in Scandinavian and German Transnational Narratives
Anja Tröger 
Germanic Literatures 2426 July 2021