Monday, April 28, 2008

The Golden Pot by E.T.A. Hoffmann

five of nine for the Orbis Terrarum challenge
five of six for the Novella challenge

The Golden Pot. How can I describe you? A novella, to be sure. Translated from the original German. Your author was among the most popular German Romantics of his time. I've had to do some research because, frankly, I didn't get you. Not really at all. You've got some magic (witches, spells, talking animals) in you, and a vague plot, but mostly I was confused. Paragraphs would go by and I might as well not have read, it felt so obscure and poetic. Your descriptions of Dresden are lovely, however. When I was in Dresden, I felt firm ground under my feet and could follow, most of the time. I know you're trying to teach me about the supernatural converging on every day life, since we kept switching between loopy-land and a more modern setting, but in the end, I can't even decide what to get out of that.

It may be that I am not educated or intelligent enough to appreciate you, dear Golden Pot. I gave you my best shot. Perhaps another German novella would've been a better bet. Next time.


Cami said...

Interesting. I'm feeling a little that way with Saramago right now. A whole page and I don't feel any the wiser. But if I skip, I'll miss very important events which happen mid paragraph!

bethany said...

Yeah, i completely understand that feeling. you read the book thinking that at some point everything will come to make sense..but you finish it and it never does. I don't think that it is sometimes meant to be. I think the author is secretly giggling saying: lets see who over-interprets, and over-analizes this to give it meaning! hahah!

That is my feeling, and I was a lit major!!

bethany said...

PS did you ever get that response about the book club? I emailed it to you...I am interested.


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