A study of Shakespeare criticism in the Jahrbuch 1865-1914

Westlake, John H.J. (1966). A study of Shakespeare criticism in the Jahrbuch 1865-1914. University of Birmingham. M.A.

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This thesis outlines the early history and aims of the Deutsche Shakespeare-Gesellschaft and surveys the different types of contributions found in volumes 1-50 of the Shakespeare-Jahrbuch. It also considers a few critical works outside the Jahrbuch. Purely academic scholarship is distinguished from general criticism and special attention is paid to particular aspects of this criticism. Political interpretations of the plays are related to the political situation and beliefs in Germany at that time, and a parallel is drawn between Elizabethan England and 'Bismarck' Germany. Similarly it is suggested that the somewhat Humanistic approach to Shakespeare's religious beliefs is influenced by German religious attitudes. The German preoccupation with psychological character studies is shown as sometimes going to unreal extremes, and as symptomatic of German Romanticism. The contracts drawn between England and Germany are also related to the political background of the times and to German ideas concerning the "Nordic culture", and the German concern with the moral and educations value of Shakespeare is examined. The current theories of literary criticism and scholarship are explained in their historical and philosophical context, and the significance is assessed of the German criticism of this period in the history of Shakespeare criticism in general.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.A.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.A.
College/Faculty: Faculties (to 1997) > Faculty of Arts
School or Department: School of English, Drama and American & Canadian Studies, Department of English Literature
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PR English literature
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/4459


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