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Distributed for Seagull Books

Comedies

Translated by Daniele Pantano and James Reidel
With an Afterword by Reto Sorg

Distributed for Seagull Books

Comedies

Translated by Daniele Pantano and James Reidel
With an Afterword by Reto Sorg
This book brings English-language readers works by Walser in a rare form: dramolette.

Few writers have ever experienced such a steady rise in their reputation and public profile as Swiss writer Robert Walser (1878–1956) has seen in recent years. As more of his previously little-known work has been translated into English, readers have discovered a unique writer whose off-kilter sensibility and innovations in form are perfectly suited to our fragmented, distracted, bewildering era.

The short plays presented here, inspired by the German theater Walser enjoyed in his youth, while never meant to be performed, present scenes, characters, and situations that comment on the brutality of fairy tales, the impossibilities of love, the dark fate of the Christ child (and Walser himself), and more. At the same time, like all of Walser’s work they are shot through with a humor that is wholly genuine despite its shades of darkness. Gathering all of Walser’s plays, as well as his later, fragmentary dramatic writings, Comedies will be celebrated by the many devoted fans of this lately rediscovered master.

224 pages | 6 x 7 1/2 | © 2018

The Seagull Library of German Literature

Literature and Literary Criticism: Dramatic Works


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Table of Contents

Translator’s Note
 
Part I- The Pond
The Pond (1898)
 
Part II- Early Dramolettes
The Boys (1900)
Poets (1901)
 
Part III- Fairy Tales
Cinderella (1901)
Snow White (1901)
Thorn Rose, or the Sleeping Beauty (1920)
 
Part IV- Later Dramolettes
The Christ Child (1920)
The Lovers (1921)
The Good-for-Nothing (1922)
 
Part V- Felix
The ‘Felix’ Scenes (1925)
 
Afterword
No Standing Room:
Robert Walser’s Theatre of Poetry and Fairy Tale
Reto Sorg
 

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