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It includes on its back cover a quote from Thomas Mann that includes an anecdote indicating that Napoleon Bonaparte was a tremendous fan of Werther. Well, we won't hold against poor Goethe the fact that one of history's premier monsters was practically president of his fan club. Think back, if you can, to the year ! The place, Germany!

The letters in Book One 73 pages in this edition are to Wilhelm, a friend of Werther's.

ISBN 13: 9780812969900

Werther is spending the summer in some little country town to run some trifling legal errand for his mother some aunt is trying to keep Mom from getting her share of an inheritance or something and, it seems, to get away from some love triangle mess back home. And yet I was blameless. Was it my fault that, while the capricious charms of her sister provided me with a pleasant entertainment, her poor heart built up a passion for me?

The Sorrows of Young Werther - Book Animatic (Suicide mention)

Out in this little town Werther meets and falls in love with a pretty girl, Charlotte, whom he calls "Lotte. But Lotte is not on the market!


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The girl of Werther's dreams is engaged to Albert, an honest, decent, level-headed and productive citizen! In the intro to this edition modern English poet W.

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Auden declares that Albert is a "square! A ringing endorsement from the Corsican Ogre In Book Two of the novel just 17 pages it is autumn and winter, and Werner has left the country to take some kind of diplomatic or civil service job at court, working with an "envoy," a "Count," and a "Minister," drafting documents. In letters to Wilhelm and Lotte he complains that the people at court are obsessed with status and the rat race, and ruin every day with their bad attitudes. Due to an embarrassing faux pas at a party, in the spring Werther quits his job and moves back to Lotte and Albert's environs.

In Werther's absence Lotte and Albert have married.

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The last section of the novel, entitled "Postscript" and running 70 pages, is a conglomeration of documents written by Werther and narration by a nameless editor who has investigated Werther's last days. Werther hangs around Lotte, putting strain on her marriage to Albert, and he gets upset when some guys want to chop down some trees he likes and when a guy with whom Werther identifies, a component of one of the novel's ubiquitous love triangles, commits murder. Werther finally goes off the deep end and commits suicide with some pistols he borrows from Albert.

A friend in need The novel takes the form of a briefmarken, allowing the reader acquaint his or herself with Werther's ruminations predominantly ethical and aesthetic , which become increasingly despairing as the novel progresses, and the development of his affections toward Lotte. Werther is a disaffected youth, lofty and sincere - a romantic - who struggles to come to terms with the rather uninspired world of petite-bourgeois aspirations and conventions he encounters throughout the novel.

The Sorrows of Young Werther

Goethe's depiction of Werther's descent from a loftly-minded pollyanna to a disaffected outsider is subtle, poignant and thought provoking. For being written in , this German novella is a timeless classic. It is often described as a romance or tragic love story, but I'd have to disagree with that description. What I experienced was a case study in severe depression and angst, not "love. Goethe wrote the book as a series of letters from Werther to his friend Wilhelm.

Werther finds himself "in love" obsessed with a girl, Charlotte, who is engaged to another man, Albert. He is consumed with complex and extreme emotions, loneliness, frustration, and constant thoughts of death. The majority of the time, he comes across as overly dramatic and extremely whiny, and the reader finds herself wishing that he would just "get a grip. Even though Werther comes across as pathological, anyone who has ever experienced a broken heart or a situation of unrequited love will be able to relate to his experience.

This is one of the must read fictional masterpieces, but be warned that it is very dark and very disturbing and probably isn't a good choice post break-up.

By J.W. von Goethe

Yes, such is the frailty of man, that even there, where he has the greatest consciousness of his own being, where he makes the strongest and most forcible impression, even in the memory, in the heart of his beloved, there also he must perish,-vanish,-and that quickly. It is often difficult to parse someone becoming unhinged in an epistolary novel. It is at the point of dissolution that the reader is forced to accept that the ongoing narrative is actually what someone in such straits would be able to emote through writing. I give Goethe a pass, he was Goethe after all. The next great German would hug a horse and he didn't write many letters, those he did he signed The Crucified.

This was a cautionary tale. Like the Quixote--we learn that reading too many books softens the faculties.


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One then shouldn't woo women already engaged. Or at least accept the inevitable. I liked the interlude towards the end with the recitation of poetry. Romanticism is shorn of its ideals and forced to kneel in all-too-human failure. Here at Walmart. Your email address will never be sold or distributed to a third party for any reason. Due to the high volume of feedback, we are unable to respond to individual comments.

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The sorrows of young Werther

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See our disclaimer. The Sorrows of Young Werther A major work of German romanticism in a translation that is acknowledged as the definitive English language version. Customer Reviews. Average rating: 3. See all reviews. Write a review. Average rating: 5 out of 5 stars, based on reviews. See more. Most helpful negative review. See All Customer Reviews. Shop Books. Add to Wishlist. USD Buy Online, Pick up in Store is currently unavailable, but this item may be available for in-store purchase.