Death in Venice: A New Translation Backgrounds and Contexts Criticism / Edition 1

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Overview

Thomas Mann is widely acknowledged as the greatest German novelist of this century. His 1912 novella Death in Venice is the most frequently read example of Mann's early work.
Clayton Koelb's masterful translation improves upon its predecessors in two ways: it renders Mann into American (not British) English, and it remains true to Mann's original text without sacrificing fluency. For American readers, this is the translation of choice.
"Backgrounds and Contexts" includes Mann's working notes, which allow students to observe the author's creative process. The notes are available here for the first time in English.
Illuminating selections from Mann's essays and letters are also reprinted, as are period maps of Munich, Venice, and the Lido.
"Criticism" includes six essays—by Andre von Gronicka, Manfred Dierks, T. J. Reed, Dorrit Cohn, David Luke, and Robert Tobin—sure to stimulate classroom discussion.
A Chronology and Selected Bibliography are also included.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Mann's classic here gets a fresh interpretation from PEN Award-winning translator Neugroschel, who brings out more of the work's sensuality. Along with the title story, this edition includes "The Will for Happiness," "Tobias Mindernickel," "Tristan," "The Starvelings," and "Harsh Hour," among others.
Booknews
This critical edition of Thomas Mann's 1912 German modernist novella reprints the widely praised translation by David Luke together with five critical essays from psychoanalytic, reader-response, cultural, gender, and new historicist perspectives. Each essay is accompanied by an introduction to the history, principles, and practice of the perspective and by a bibliography that promotes further exploration of that approach. A glossary of critical and theoretical terms and an introduction by the editor are also included. Distributed by St. Martin's Press. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Kirkus Reviews
New versions of 12 celebrated stories, including the famous title novella, many previously collected in Mann's seminal Stories of Three Decades. Neugroschel's persuasive "Preface" makes a strong case for fresh translations, given both this century's inevitable linguistic shifts and Mann's employment within individual works of specific vocabularies and styles (e.g., those of Wagnerian opera in the hair-raising "The Blood of the Walsungs"). And Neugr"schel essentially finesses the issue of revealing the stories' inherent sexuality; their author was, after all, a master of elegant indirection dedicated to muted presentations of matters that were anathema to both his public and his own sedulously respectable persona. That said, it's wonderful to have vivid, lucid English versions of Mann's sophisticated portrayals of sexual obsession and humiliation ("Little Herr Friedemann"), illness- as-metaphor in a tale ("Tristan") that concisely prefigures The Magic Mountain, and the transfiguring intersection of artistic with homosexual passion (Death in Venice, Tonio Kr"ger). Brilliant work, in any case, from one of the century's great writers.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780393960136
  • Publisher: Norton, W. W. & Company, Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/28/1994
  • Series: Norton Critical Editions Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 256
  • Sales rank: 383,083
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Clayton Koelb is Guy B. Johnson Professor of German and Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is the recipient of Guggenheim, Woodrow Wilson, and Danforth fellowships and the author of Thomas Mann’s "Goethe and Tolstoy," The Incredulous Reader: Literature and the Function of Disbelief, Kafka’s Rhetoric: The Passion of Reading, and Inventions of Reading: Rhetoric and the Literary Imagination. He has also edited several volumes of critical readings.

Clayton Koelb is Guy B. Johnson Professor of German and Comparative Literature at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. He is the recipient of Guggenheim, Woodrow Wilson, and Danforth fellowships and the author of Thomas Mann’s "Goethe and Tolstoy," The Incredulous Reader: Literature and the Function of Disbelief, Kafka’s Rhetoric: The Passion of Reading, and Inventions of Reading: Rhetoric and the Literary Imagination. He has also edited several volumes of critical readings.

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Table of Contents

Translator's Preface
The Will for Happiness 1
Little Herr Friedemann 21
Tobias Mindernickel 51
Little Lizzy 63
Gladius Dei 83
Tristan 103
The Starvelings: A Study 151
Tonio Kroger 161
The Wunderkind 221
Harsh Hour 241
The Blood of the Walsungs 253
Death in Venice 285
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