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This summary suggests more of a romp than this long, carefully crafted, deep and thoughtful book actually represents. Rabelais’ reflection of our world provided by the depiction and commentary of a superior world, which is functionally identical except for the fact that it is aware of ours while ours is ignorant of it.
I think a lot of that is because Auerbach grounds all of his chapters in specific, concrete texts. Related works both from the time and from modern scholarship are brought into each discussion. The objection that the biographical element of the Old Testament often springs from the combination of several legendary personages does not apply; for this combination is a part of the development of the text.
Refresh and try again. Feb 27, Haengbok92 rated it it was amazing Shelves: His commitment to reading closely for the details that shine is something all too lost in most of today’s quickreads. Ranging over works in Greek, Latin, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and English, Auerbach used his remarkable skills in philology and comparative literature to refute any narrow form of nationalism or chauvinism, in his own day and ours.
His analysis and comparison of various literary texts and what it reveals about the societies that produced them yield enormous fruit, with much of it out of my reach. So little are the Homeric heroes presented as reslismo or having developed, that most of them—Nestor, Agamemnon, Achilles—appear to be of an age rdalismo from the very first.
Studying the progressive combination of tragic seriousness with the everyday. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. No such thing as flashbacks in the characters’ minds; the narrator leaves aside the present narrative to tell letterstura past narrative. References to this work on external resources.
Auerbach, a German philologist fired by the Nazis for being a Jew, in exile in an Istanbul library as European civilization destroyed itself — re-imagining the auerbacy that had given it birth. The “original language” aspect is a large part of the fun. The result is a masterpiece of close readings with a fascinating common thrust.
Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature by Erich Auerbach | LibraryThing
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page. His aim was to show how from antiquity to the twentieth century literature progressed occjdentale ever more naturalistic and democratic forms of representation. Each of the great figures of the Old Testament, from Adam mimrsis the prophets, embodies a moment of this vertical connection. Books by Erich Auerbach.
Return to Book Page. The part on Odysseus’s scar is legendary excuse the pun. I may or may not return to this; I only I had to read selected chapters for a class: Written while on the run from the NSDAP and without his library though not without a library, as folk history has ithas as its purpose tracing the “complete emancipation” from the doctrine of the ancients regarding literary representation, one which is “more complete, and more significant for later letteeratura forms of the imitation of life, than the mixture of le sublime and le grotesque proclaimed by the contemporary romanticists” Oct 23, Mateo R.
This one, however, does. Not only a monument of literary criticism, but one of the most thrilling adventures of the mind, ever– EA traces the development of the “representation of reality” from Homer and the Old Testament to twentieth century writers. And very often, indeed generally, this element of development gives the Old Testament stories a historical character, even when the subject is purely legendary and traditional. Dante’s Comedy ovcidentale particularly key for Auerbach in this argument.
He is best known for Mimesisa volume on literary criticism written in Turkey, mimeiss published in Berne, Switzerland inand subsequently widely translated. Recently ul by Cheznoustaylor.
Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature
The human condition is contained within the lowest human being and not abstracted into an Everyman. Before reading the final chapter and Woolf’s To the Lighthouse we read several other books from around that time frame that were not covered by Auerbach. He frequently uses passages from the Bible to illustrates his points, and this should be of great interest to those fond of exegesis. View all 10 comments. Readers of the Odyssey will remember the well-prepared and touching scene in book 19, when Odysseus has at last come home, the scene in which the old housekeeper Euryclea, who had been his nurse, recognizes him by a scar on his thigh.
Auerbach proceeds chronologically, starting with Homeric and Hebraic literature and continuing through the modernist novels of Woolf, Proust, and Joyce. This was somewhat over my head.
Displaced as he was, Auerbach produced a work of great erudition that contains no footnotes, basing his arguments instead on searching, illuminating readings of key passages from his primary texts. The greater the separateness and horizontal disconnection of the stories and groups of stories in relation to one another, compared with the Iliad and the Odyssey, the stronger is their general vertical connection, which holds them all together and which is entirely lacking in Homer.
I ended up reading it on Scribd in the English translation by Willard Trask, which is probably not the ideal way, but turned out to be agreeable enough. Even Osric is given individuality despite his being only a plot device. CD Audiobook 0 editions.