Since the death of Thomas Bernhard in 1989, the literary reputation of this complex and unique writer has risen to the point that he is now regarded as a major European figure. Bernhard emerged in the 1960s as one of Austria's major writers, challenging the popularity of such established writers as Heinrich Böll and Günter Grass on the German literary scene. His idiosyncratic prose consists of a tragic-comic blend of themes such as suicide, madness, and isolation combined with highly satirical and histrionic invectives against culture, tradition, and society. As a skillful impresario of public scandals by means of verbal assaults upon Austrian elite culture, Bernhard also earned himself the epithet of Übertreibungskünstler (artist of exaggeration). In this art of cultural and political provocation Bernhard remains unmatched to the present day. This volume of essays provides contributions by well-known critics that examine the most salient aspects of Bernhard's work, offering insights into literary strategies and public themes that made Bernhard one of Europe's masters of modern prose and drama. Essays examine Bernhard's complex artistic sensibility, his impact on Austria's critical memory, his relation to the legacy of Austrian Jewish culture, his representative value as Austria's prime literary export, and his cosmopolitanism and its significance for the rapidly changing multicultural landscape of Europe.
Matthias Konzett is associate professor of German at Yale University. He is the author of The Rhetoric of National Dissent in Thomas Bernhard, Peter Handke, and Elfriede Jelinek (Camden House, 2000).
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|Publisher:||Boydell & Brewer, Limited|
|Series:||Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture Series|
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 9.00(d)|
About the Author
Matthias Konzett is associate professor of German at Yale University.Dept of German Languages and Literatures, P.O. Box 208210Yale University100 Wall Street, WLHNew Haven, CT 06520-8210
Table of ContentsIntroduction: National Iconoclasm: Thomas Bernhard and the Austrian Avant-garde - Matthias KonzettPerverted Attitudes of Mourning in the Wake of Thomas Bernhard's Death - Marlene StreeruwitzThe Established Outsider: Thomas Bernhard - Dagmar C. G. LorenzA Testament Betrayed: Bernhard and His Legacy - Stephen D. DowdenHomeland, Death, and Otherness in Thomas Bernhard's Early Lyrical Works - Paola BozziThe Broken Window Handle: Thomas Bernhard's Notion of Weltbezug - Ruediger GoernerThomas Bernhard's Poetics of Comedy - Wendelin Schmidt-DenglerFragments of a Deluge: The Theater of Thomas Bernhard's Prose - Mark M. AndersonThe Stranger Inside the Word: From Thomas Bernhard's Plays to the Anatomical Theater of Elfriede Jelinek - Gitta HoneggerCostume Drama: Performance and Identity in Bernhard's Works - Andrew J. WebberLanguage Speaks: Anglo-Bernhard: Thomas Bernhard in Translation - Gitta HoneggerUngleichzeitigkeiten: Class Relationships in Bernhard's Fiction - Jonathan LongThomas Bernhard's Der Untergeher: Newtonian Realities and Deterministic Chaos - Willy RiemerMy Latest Encounter with Bernhard - Marlene Streeruwitz