Theodor Fontane: Literature and History in the Bismarck Reich

Hardcover | November 15, 1999

byGordon A. Craig

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First published in Germany to popular and critical acclaim, this is a unique portrait of the life and work of Theodor Fontane, the greatest German novelist of his age, as well as a major poet and theater critic and much loved travel writer. Gordon A. Craig, one of the foremost scholars ofGerman history, interpolates a cohesive historical biography of Fontane with his own reflections on the art, culture, and politics of Fontane's world. The ideas and impressions of Fontane and Craig echo one another throughout the book in compelling and fascinating ways. Fontane's travel accounts of Scotland and Prussia are enriched by Craig's discussion of Germany's increasingly national vision of itself and the world at the time of unification.Similarly, Craig's mastery of German military history dovetails remarkably well with Fontane's reportage on Germany's wars with Denmark, Austria, and France. Interesting are Fontane's ruminations over his great contemporary Otto von Bismarck, whom he revered as founder of the Reich but whosepolicies he feared would in the end be self-defeating. Although Fontane's Wanderings through the Mark Brandenburg and his novels are more widely read in Germany today than they were in his own time, and although his masterpiece Effi Briest was the basis for a famous Fassbinder film, Fontane remains little known in the English-speaking world. TheodorFontane is the ideal introduction to this major European writer, a master of social analysis and one of the great letter writers of his age.

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First published in Germany to popular and critical acclaim, this is a unique portrait of the life and work of Theodor Fontane, the greatest German novelist of his age, as well as a major poet and theater critic and much loved travel writer. Gordon A. Craig, one of the foremost scholars ofGerman history, interpolates a cohesive historic...

Gordon A. Craig is J. E. Wallace Sterling Professor Emeritus of Humanities at Stanford University. His several highly regarded books include Germany, 1866-1945, The End of Prussia, and Politics of the Unpolitical. He is a frequent contributor to The New York Review of Books.

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Format:HardcoverDimensions:256 pages, 9.29 × 6.18 × 1.1 inPublished:November 15, 1999Publisher:Oxford University Press

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195128370

ISBN - 13:9780195128376

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Table of Contents

Foreword1. History2. Scotland3. Wanderings4. War5. Bismarck6. Theater7. Historical Novels8. Novels of SocietyBibliographyIndex

Editorial Reviews

"As lively in its narrative style as it is instructive in its interpretation, this is the best Fontane book for an audience that, with all of its desire for knowledge, does not want to be bored, and it is written, in addition, in the Fontane conversational style." --Welt am Sonntag