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Indeed, Goethe was hostile to both the French Revolution and the German nationalist movement that sprang up in reaction to it. More radical and Romantic spirits especially disdained the way this titan seemed content to be a servant to princes—and Grand Duke Karl August of Weimar, despite his title, was a fairly minor prince—in an age of revolution. One famous anecdote concerns Goethe and Beethoven, who were together at a spa resort when they unexpectedly met a party of German royalty on the street. Goethe deferentially stood aside and removed his hat, while Beethoven kept his hat firmly on his head and plowed through the royal group, forcing them to make way—which they did, while offering the composer friendly greetings.

Here was a contrast of temperaments, but also of generations. Goethe belonged to the courtly past, when artists were the clients of princes, while Beethoven represented the Romantic future, when princes would clamor to associate with artists. This is partly because Goethe so often cloaks his sophistication in deceptively simple language. Nims reproduces the rhythm of the original precisely.

The result is clumsy and charmless. These books have a good claim to have founded two of the major genres of the modern novel—respectively, the Bildungsroman and the novel of adultery. But in English it remains a book more famous than read.

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Victorian intellectuals revered Goethe as the venerable Sage of Weimar. It was this very quality that led to his fall from favor in the post-Victorian age. For the modernists, being spiritually sick was a condition of intellectual respectability, and T. This short novel tells the story of an unhappy love affair. Through letters written by Werther to a friend, we learn about his hopeless love for Charlotte, an affectionate and virtuous young woman who is already engaged to a worthy man, Albert. Your hand gave it to me, and I do not tremble.

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All, all the wishes and the hopes of my life are fulfilled. Cold and stiff I knock at the brazen gates of death. One young woman, a Weimar courtier named Christel von Lassberg, drowned herself in the River Ilm with a copy of the novel in her pocket. Goethe must have felt much as one might imagine J. What kills Werther is not disappointed love but toxic self-centeredness, subjectivity run wild. Whether he is enjoying the sublimity of a landscape or the company of Charlotte, Werther is always really only involved with himself, his own ideas and emotions.

The fatal complication of his illness is pride. Werther is not just miserable but proud of his misery, which he takes as proof that he is exceptionally sensitive—finer than the world that disappoints him. Having identified himself with the universe, he finds that when he is unhappy the universe becomes a prison. Werther, on the other hand, is never ready for action, because he has no momentous deed waiting to be performed. In this, he is a more modern figure than Hamlet, who, after all, was summoned by a ghost. Werther, like us, gets no help from the other world in directing his steps in this one.

In fact, the book became scandalous for its resemblance to real people and events. The crucial difference between Goethe and his creation was that the poet found a way out of his labyrinth. During his first ten years in Weimar, Goethe finished none of the major literary projects he had in hand—he was too busy with paperwork.

Instead of remaining focussed on his own passions and desires, he subdued his mind to the discipline of the objective, of work and responsibility. He turned toward objectivity in other ways as well, particularly in his study of science. But, while he failed to overthrow the Newtonian understanding of optics, Goethe found in science a necessary distraction from self. At the same time, he developed a conception of nature that provided an alternative to the mathematical and spiritless mechanism that the Enlightenment seemed to offer.

In this way, science performed something like the office of religion, turning Goethe into a kind of modern, rational pagan. Ten years of office work, of literary projects left incomplete, finally took their toll. In , in a spirit of adventure characteristic more of a young poet than of a middle-aged civil servant, Goethe abruptly threw aside his work and left Weimar without telling friends and colleagues where he was going. He was thirty-seven. And so I love her and it's for real.

Reading this collections of love stories reminds me that there are dozens, hundreds, even millions kind of love. You have to believe that love matters as the more it can hurt you the more you realise that you're alive. Satu hal yang pasti kita membutuhkan cinta dan menyadari cinta itu penting. Terkadang cinta bisa begitu menyakitkan tapi bukankah dengan demikian kita juga sadar bahwa kita masih hidup?

Bersulang untuk cinta Has some stellar names, some classic stories. Have mixed feelings about the collection, but liked it overall.

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Longer review soon. Jul 14, Adam rated it liked it Shelves: , prose , present. Mixed bag. Others are by hugely famous authors like Kundera and Nabokov, but not nearly as frequently anthologized as far as I know.

Those two stories, "The Hitch-Hiking Game" and "Spring in Fialta" respectively are probably the two best stories here excepting "The Dead," which is so perfect it's hard to believe. The more contemporary stuff I thought wa Mixed bag. The more contemporary stuff I thought was well-selected, if again a bit too Stuff like "Natasha" by David Bezmozgis is really fucking good.

LIFE IS NOT A BED OF ROSES

To a fault, it's good. It's so good it can come off as sterile. A bit more dangerous is Denis Johnson's fabulously ugly "Dirty Wedding. Somewhere other than all the sorts of stuff I've mentioned is Gilbert Sorrentino's "The Moon in its Flight," which is excellent. I don't know what the fuck Harold Brodkey was up to, or why Eugenides likes him so much, but his story "Innocence" occasionally seems like it should be here, but mostly is almost intolerable. Which is okay.

Hey, I think Eugenides' The Virgin Suicides is a fucking masterpiece, and that's all suburban white boy lust. But it's not exactly a really diverse collection. Apr 17, MK is currently reading it. How could this book not be good? I saw it in the bookstore and thought the design was so kick-ass- no book sleeve! We all hate those anyways. The design is ON the hard back.


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Good decision 1. I never finished Middlesex because I left it on a plane to Italy. But I was super enthralled during the first 80 pages. I also love the Virgin Suicides. Josh Hartnett, and Sophia Coppola.

What’s great about Goethe?

The stories, so far, are incredible. And they're not all Dave Egger's-ish in approach How could this book not be good?


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And they're not all Dave Egger's-ish in approach. Like the cover says- Chekhov to Munro. I think I like Grace Paley's the most so far. But the one that's sticking real good in my mind is Natasha it's sordid. Check it out. Sep 30, Adair rated it it was amazing. Read these love stories not to confirm the brutal realities of love, but to experience its many variegated, compensatory pleasures.

When the sparrow dies and fortune seems to be going his way, he is really no better off; her grief becomes the new rival. Driven by passion, in pursuit of fulfilment, these characters are as often surprised as devastated by love.

life is not a bed of roses a second set of short stories life is not anthologies book 2 Manual

View 1 comment. Jul 10, Magill rated it it was ok. Opinions on the quality of the writing aside, the apparent definition of love by the compiler and the authors tells me more about them than I wish to know. Apart from a fraction of the stories, the stories have nothing to do with love and more to do with infatuation if the reader is lucky , lust, narcissism, unadulterated selfishness, and a complete lack of awareness of the other person in their "relationship".

Immaturity as a characteristic is a relief in these essentially unrelenting depressi Opinions on the quality of the writing aside, the apparent definition of love by the compiler and the authors tells me more about them than I wish to know. Immaturity as a characteristic is a relief in these essentially unrelenting depressing stories. Throw the names of Chekhov and de Maupassant, etc. Finishing this book was NOT a labour of love. I will also point out that "Innocence" was a 34 page story, of which 20 was the mechanics of a single sex Aug 11, Becky Stone rated it it was amazing Shelves: love-story , beautiful-writing , literary-fiction , short-stories.

I love this collection. Don't be mislead by the idea of "great love stories" - this is not a sugary book. These are painful, moving, messy stories about imperfect people. I highly recommend it. Jan 10, Brian Solem rated it liked it. This is, overall, a well-curated collection of love-related stories, or as Jeffrey Eugenides dubs it to paraphrase , "stories about when the sparrow is alive, and stories about when the sparrow is dead. I'm glad I was reminded of authors like Raymond Carver, whose unsettling "What We Talk About When We Talk About Love" addresses moribund domestic l This is, overall, a well-curated collection of love-related stories, or as Jeffrey Eugenides dubs it to paraphrase , "stories about when the sparrow is alive, and stories about when the sparrow is dead.