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German Literature Month

My first post for German Literature Month hosted by Lizzy’s Literary Life. It is the first time I participate and since I am following another two challenges, I try to combine reading where possible.

Week 1 – First time for everything - The Sandman by E.T.A. Hoffmann - I really loved this book and Hoffmann's writing. A mystery, dark and spooky tale. The Sandman is a folklore character who is said to throw sand in the eyes of children to help them fall asleep. The protagonist and narrator is Nathanael, most likely suffering from post traumatic stress due to an encounter with the sandman in his childhood. The whole story has a dark, psychological and unreal touch taking us into another world. What is real and what is suggested by our thoughts?

Week 2 – Second Helpings - I rarely re-read books and since I have not read that many novellas. I wanted to read Hesse for some time, so will choose (a novella) Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse - I am still reading this book, and I have a feeling I have already read it. Totally suitable for this the second week in other words.

Week 3 – Firm Favourites - Rainer Maria Rilke, I will choose one book with his poems. Have not got to this yet. It seems he is Austrian, but I presume it is all right since he wrote in German.

Week 4 – Something Different - Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka - already read this for Novellas in November. For someone like me who do not like insects it was a rather terrifying read. What does Kafka want to say with the novel? Alienation: people who are different are looked down upon? Work - the employer takes out everything they can from you? Family - he worries about the family which he supports. Once the family realises he can not work anymore, they take their act together and start working themselves, and manage very well. Using other people for their own means?

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