The Truth About Lies: The Sorrows of Young Werther
Oct 10, awareness of, or relationship to, his role in an epistolary novel? . Lotte and Werther read from his work and that occasion the transgression of their The Economy of Character: Novels, Market Culture, and the Business of. Goethe's Literary Marketing . be said to reflect the kind of amorous relationship that exist be- points out that in his insatiable love for Lotte Werther actually. Jul 30, The relationship between Werther and Lotte the public and some other non- market environments may be the reason for the organization to.
As the days pass he becomes more and more besotted and cares little for propriety.
Werther’s heartbreaking story revived on Korean stage
In a brief note to his friend on July 10th he writes: You should see what a silly figure I cut when she is mentioned in society! And then if I am even asked how I like her — like! I hate that word to death. What sort of person must that be who likes Lotte, in whom all senses, all emotions are not completely filled up by her!
Recently someone asked me how I like Ossian! The queer thing is he and Werther hit it off.
The situation becomes untenable nevertheless and, towards the end of October, Werther uses a job offer to try to do the right thing and make a break. There are three main digressions in Werther that bear mentioning: On his return Werther finds that things have changed.
Lotte and Albert have now settled into a comfortable marriage. Albert had already written to inform him but now he gets to see them as a happily married couple. Werther is welcomed with open arms as a family friend and he tries to re-establish his old routine. Day by day he gets more and more fixated and reads into everything.
On September 12th he goes to see her and finds she has acquired a pet bird: A canary left the mirror and flew to her shoulder. It is just too sweet! If I give it bread, it flutters its wings and pecks so daintily. It kisses me too, look! The tiny beak made its way from her lips to mine, and the pecking contact was like a breath, a faint suggestion of a lovely pleasure.
She fed it come crumbs with her lips, whose smiles expressed the joys of an innocent shared love. I turned my face away. She should not do it! Should not goad my imagination with these pictures of heavenly innocence and blissfulness, not awaken my heart out of the slumber into which it is rocked at times by the indifference of life! She has such confidence in me! She knows how much I love her! To say that Werther worships the ground Lotte walks on is no exaggeration.
Anything that she has touched, anyone she has spoken to becomes special to Werther. The day he met her she was wearing a dress with pink ribbons on it attached to the arms and — more importantly — the breast of the white dress. He is sent a present from her tied up in a pink bow and this becomes literally a fetish. How important this bow becomes to him is noteworthy in that he wants to be buried with it. She tells Werther to stay away until Christmas Eve at which time she has a present for him, a wax candle and something else.
Had The Catcher in the Rye been written two hundred years earlier rather than Holden ending up in therapy the novel might have had a more tragic ending too — there are certainly enough suggestions that he too has suicidal leanings.
At one point he imagines jumping out of a window to commit suicide. He also witnesses the suicide of fellow classmate James Castle. Background to the novel It took Goethe four weeks to write the book. The first was his friendship with the philosopher Johann Gottfried Herder. Because of it and inspired by Herder's literary criticism he was encouraged to develop his own style. In his autobiography Goethe described their meeting and subsequent relationship as "the most important event, one that was to have the weightiest consequences for me.
With Rousseau and Blackwell he rejected the overlordship of the intellect and hailed feeling as the primary guide and judge.
Emotion, Art, and the Self in 'The Sorrows of Young Werther' | Owlcation
A folk-song, a Scotch [sic] ballad were greater in the artless truth than all the tragedies of Voltaire; and Homer was supreme because he sang the life he saw around him The problem was she was engaged to Johann Christian Kestner. The writing of this novel was therapeutic because he admitted years later that he "shot his hero to save himself" a reference to his own near-suicidal obsession. Once only did Goethe forget his place and kiss her. Jerusalem had fallen in love with a married woman and fell into a deep depression because of this.
Goethe wrote in his memoirs, My Life: In that moment the plan of Werther was found, the whole thing was crystallised, like water in a glass that is on the point of freezing and can be turned to ice immediately with the slightest motion.
She is never seriously tempted to replace the steady, quiet affection of Albert with Werther 's tempestuous obsession. This is not to say that Lotte has no feelings for Werther. She obviously does and probably enjoys the attention lavished upon her. As Werther's feelings grow stronger, she begins to pity him and is too kind-hearted to make a clean break of their relationship -- until Werther definitively crosses the bounds of propriety, at which point she suffers considerably but nevertheless knows where her loyalty lies.
And here we come to the most damning indictment of all. Werther brings enormous suffering to Lotte over the course of the novel and never gives the slightest consideration to the effect his behavior is having upon her. Surely a mature lover would at least stop to wonder at some point whether Lotte might be genuinely happy and satisfied with Albert and if it might be time to exit the scene for her sake. Werther does no such thing, preferring to wallow in his own self-pity and doing his best to pull Lotte into the mire with him.
His suicide letters go beyond the almost pathological self-absorption he has displayed up to that point and cross into active vindictiveness.
Werther petulantly wants to hurt Lotte, and hurt her deeply, for having rejected his love. The last moments of his life are filled not with poetic tragedy but with the most extreme pettiness. A reader might agree with my very unflattering depiction of Werther, yet simply see the novel as the product of a young author every bit as immature and self-absorbed as his protagonist.
Emotion, Art, and the Self in 'The Sorrows of Young Werther'
However, even without considering the towering intellect Goethe would soon prove himself to be, many hints can be found that this is not the case. Auden points to the character of Albert as noteworthy. If he truly wished for us to admire Werther, one would expect Goethe to demonize Albert, yet he does no such thing. Albert is a good-natured, even-tempered fellow, perhaps not much of a romantic but to all appearances genuinely in love with Lotte, as she is with him.
He is extraordinarily patient and kind to Werther even though he must realize that Werther's intention is quite literally to steal his wife. Only after months of Werther's constant presence does he begin to lose patience, and even then he cannot bring himself to banish Werther from his home forever or even to seriously scold Lotte.
Such behavior borders on amazing given the social mores of the time. Subtler clues about Goethe's attitude toward Werther are sprinkled through the text. I know, of course, as well as anyone, how necessary class distinctions are, and how many advantages I myself gain from them; but they should not stand in my way just when I might enjoy some little pleasure, some gleam of joy on this earth One senses on such occasions that Goethe is as aware as we of the flaws and contradictions of his character and is subtly smiling at us between the lines.
There are too many differences between Goethe and Werther to link the two in a directly autobiographical sense. At the age of 24, Goethe had already written plays and lyric poetry, was conducting scientific research and with the publication of Werther now had a novel to his name. He would go on to become one of the greatest intellectuals of his generation, the last of the Renaissance men. Werther at the time of his death presumably in his mid-twenties had accomplished nothing and showed no signs of doing so, even had he not met Lotte and ended his life so young.
Finally, an even more obvious contrast exists; whatever sorrows Goethe endured due to his own ill-fated love, he was able in the end to pick up the pieces and move on to make an extraordinary life for himself. Werther could move on only by ending his life. Much like the sublime found in nature, the sublime within Werther is dark, terrifying, and yet pleasurable.
Though he is in agony, Werther views his passions as a work of genius, much like an artist who throws himself entirely into his work and suffers for his art.
Ah, you sensible people! You are so calm and collected, so indifferent, you respectable people […] passing by like the priest and thanking God like the Pharisee that you are not as other men. I have been intoxicated more than once, my passions have never been far off insanity, and I have no regrets: Werther considers his emotional outpouring as a great thing, no matter how painful it may be. What he does not seem to have anticipated, however, is that by devoting himself entirely to Lotte and the desire he has for her, he has lost the connection between love, art, and nature: By living for Lotte, he has ceased to live for himself, and in creating his own inner world he has lost the natural state of his being.
He has created a paradox within himself in which he has formulated wildness, created a chaos that has no end. In an attempt to put an end to the wildness of his passions, Werther leaves Lotte and moves to a new town to live a respectable life. During his conversation with Miss von B.
After losing respect for his new friends, who pity him rather than understand him, Werther returns to Lotte, knowing that he is reopening the gates of his passion, intending to lose himself entirely to his devotion to her: Suicide then becomes a more suitable escape from inexhaustible passion, rather than repression, as it represents the power of his emotional excesses.