GRMN 6681

Goethe's "Faust"

Goethes Faust: text – interpretation - reception

Goethe’s Faust is considered to be a pivotal work of German literature. For about 200 years it has remained in the public consciousness and has retained an amazing vigor and relevance, making it a foundational text in German thought and culture. Faust, a self-determined hero on an eternal quest for the perfect moment, engages productively with the world of ideas, of technology, of progress—this tragedy’s protagonist represented nothing less than an exemplary man well into the 20th century. As modern Western societies now struggle with the demands and effects of such restlessness, Faust’s fate is no longer read as a model but as a cautionary tale about man’s inability to pause and recalibrate through contemplation.

The major focus of this seminar about Faust I is a careful analysis of the text which will consider structure, style, language as well as aspects of versification and dramaturgy. Origin and sources will be discussed as well biographical and historical background and the place of the drama in Goethe’s Gesamtwerk. We will compare film versions of famous Faust productions, and explore different critical responses to Faust, which will help contextualize the play and cast light on its ongoing relevance and modernity.
Language School
Requirements Fulfilled:
Equivalent Courses:

Sections in Summer 2014 Language Schools, LS 3 Week Session I

Summer 2014 Language Schools, LS 6 Week Session

GRMN6681A-L14 Lecture (Speier)