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Generally speaking, I don't think it makes much sense to get excited about derivative works, and this collection of (mostly) academic articles is no exception. I picked up this book immediately after reading The Magic Mountain. I found the latter work fascinating, powerful, at times both deeply affecting and immensely funny. But the depth of symbolism, and philosophical and historical context often left me baffled. So I turned to the experts for some illumniation. The book contains 11 essays, wh...
helped a great deal to outline some interpretations of Mann's gigantic novel of ideas
Every one of these 10 essays* is pretty much like, "Mann's ironic distance makes it impossible to say x about y but here is my argument anyway."There are several arcs of scholarly debate running through the essays here, and that's always fun to trace. My favorite one is whether or not the English translation from the German text should render the French interlude between Hans and Clavdia in English, or just leave the original French to preserve Mann's "intended effect." Don't forget to check the...
Thomas Mann's Magic Mountain is one of my favorite novels. Rather than re-read the novel for a book club, I decided instead to read this collection of critical essays. However I confess that I was only able to finish reading about half of the essays. Most of the topics were interesting, however the articles were too academic, some quite difficult to absorb. I think my problem was that I did not originally connect with this novel on an academic level, and I was somehow losing the essence of what
The Magic Mountain invites discussion and further study. I read this book because I enjoyed the novel so much, and I wanted to hear what the critics might say about it. I'd recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn more about the novel.
Several excellent essays that enlighten this masterful book.