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Auerbach, of course, is very much anti-rhetoric. There he wrote Mimesis, publishing it in German after the end of the war. However, I’m sure I’ll come back and finish the book at some point, because it is definitely worth it. Jun 11, sologdin rated it it was ok Shelves: A biggun’ in literary criticism. Still masterly, in the better sense.

I sure am glad I did. I felt like I was prepared to dive into this book based on my high-school curriculum and some more recent “Great Books” remedial reading Dante. This is an amazing book, as fascinating as it is dense, as provocative in its ideas as it is impressive. But this process nearly always also reacts upon the frame, which requires enlarging and modifying.

Mimesis. Il realismo nella letteratura occidentale

The strata of societies and there different ways of life have become inextricably mingled. This book is deservedly a classic of its kind.

Aug 11, Parke rated it it was amazing. Finally, the whole situation of the author, which does influence the nature wuerbach his writing and he even addresses these concerns to a certain pointgives an added edge of intrigue to the reading: And how much wider is the pendulum swing of their lives than that of the Homeric heroes!

Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature by Erich Auerbach

To ask other readers questions about Mimesisplease sign up. Sep 21, Leslie rated it it was amazing Shelves: View all 10 comments. Best of World Literature This becomes increasingly difficult the further our historical envir “If the text of the Biblical narrative, then, is so greatly in need of interpretation on the basis of its own content, its claim to absolute authority forces it still further in the same direction. Rabelais’ reflection of our world provided by the depiction and commentary of a superior world, which is functionally identical except for the fact occidengale it is aware of ours while ours is ignorant of it.


Literary Theory and Criticism: The idea put forth by Auerbach is that literature is an imitation of the contemporary society from which it was spawned. Time can touch the latter only outwardly, and even that change is brought to our observation as little as possible; whereas the stern hand of God is ever upon. Ranging over works in Greek, Latin, Spanish, French, Italian, German, and English, Auerbach used his nflla skills in philology and comparative literature to refute any narrow form of nationalism or chauvinism, in his own day and ours.

Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature by Erich Auerbach | LibraryThing

Readers of the Odyssey will remember the well-prepared and touching scene in book 19, when Odysseus lettrratura at last come home, the scene in which the old housekeeper Euryclea, who had realismoo his nurse, recognizes him by a scar on his thigh. Sep 29, Andrew Sydlik rated it really liked it Shelves: He published several books and many papers on DanteMedieval Latin literature, methods of historical criticism, and the influence of Christian symbolism on literature.

References to this work on external resources. The poor beggar Odysseus is only masquerading, but Adam is really cast down, Jacob really a refugee, Joseph really in the pit and then a slave to be bought and sold. This becomes increasingly difficult the further our historical environment is removed from that of the Biblical books; and if these nevertheless maintain their claim to absolute authority, it is inevitable that they themselves be adapted through interpretative transformation.

Auerbach seems to be arguing for the latter.

His commitment to reading closely for the details that shine is something all too lost in most of today’s quickreads. In the bits and pieces I could understand, he makes some interesting points about realissmo different types of historical consciousness are evinced by different works; that is, the farther back in time one goes, the less sense there is that there is occidejtale past and a future, and that there are historical trends or forces.


And it is most concretely visible now in the unprejudiced, precise, interior and exterior representation of the random moment in the lives of different people. While his text is fairly straightforward probably mostly due to the fact that he relies mostly on the primary texts, having written this while in exile in Istanbul, and not having access to critical resourceshis critical approach is not systematic—something he actually addresses. I’ve read only first two chapters for an exam. What’s really wonderful about the case studies is the way that he manages to approach each of the texts mimesos examines with a degree of assurance, knowledge and affection that would raelismo be enough to convince any reader that occientale could only come from someone who has spent his entire career studying just that period and that author in particular.

Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. This was why I read Mimesis.

Herein lies the reason why the great figures of the Old Testament are so much more fully developed, so much more fraught with their own biographical past, so much more distinct as individuals, than are the Homeric heroes. For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.

Preview — Mimesis by Erich Auerbach. Displaced as he was, Auerbach produced a work of great erudition that contains no footnotes, basing his arguments instead on searching, illuminating readings of key passages from his primary texts.

There are no longer even exotic peoples. While there are aspects of Auerbach’s analysis that can be debated, his overall argument is sound and I believe he demonstrates his thesis. Mimesis is an astonishing look at the history of Western literature, remarkable not only for its discussion of nearly everything between the Odyssey and Proust, but also how he has something original to say about all of these.

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