Coleridge, Schiller and Aesthetic Education by Michael John Kooy

By Michael John Kooy

Employing principles drawn from modern severe concept, this e-book historicizes psychoanalysis via a brand new and critical theorization of the Gothic. The critical premise is that the nineteenth-century Gothic produced an intensive critique of money owed of sublimity and Freudian psychoanalysis. This e-book makes an incredible contribution to an figuring out of either the 19th century and the Gothic discourse which challenged the dominant principles of that interval. Writers explored contain Mary Shelley, Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Louis Stevenson, and Bram Stoker.

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At one point the Armenian tells the story of two brothers, the younger of whom, Lorenzo, has his older brother murdered in order to steal both his betrothed and his inheritance. At the wedding, though, his evil plans are spoiled when the ghost of the dead brother appears before the assembled guests and exposes the crime. Is this divine justice, by which family wrongs are revenged, or simply an invention by the Armenian to mislead further his enraptured audience? Part of the interest of Schiller’s tale within a tale is that it raises the problem of belief in the supernatural: the narration of unusual events demands some credence from the readers, and yet the abandonment of our natural scepticism exposes us to the chicanery of charlatans and mountebanks.

Coleridge worked hard, translating the second and third parts of the trilogy, The Piccolomini (Die Piccolomini) and Wallenstein’s Death (Wallensteins Tod), in a matter of months, complaining all the while about the great effort of composing and the pressure of the publisher’s deadline. He was driven to some extent by the threat of a rival translation being published before his own (this did in fact appear though not until 18053). Equally unforeseen, though at a much higher cost, was the growing anti-German backlash.

That meant above all the creation of a new canon. From 1796 Schiller was engaged in writing a new historical tragedy based on the rebellion of the Bohemian general Wallenstein against the Holy Roman Emperor during the Thirty Years War. Though, as he admitted at the time, years spent theorizing about tragedy did not help him actually to write one, Schiller conceived and wrote the play as a model of the high drama of which he felt the German language was capable. It grew into a six-hour trilogy and was consequently performed in instalments between October 1798 and April 1799 in the court theatre at Weimar that Goethe had been managing since 1791.

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