The Faustian Century: German Literature and Culture in the Age of Luther and Faustus

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James M. Van der Laan, Andrew Weeks
Camden House, 2013 - Literary Criticism - 399 pages
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The Reformation and Renaissance, though segregated into distinct disciplines today, interacted and clashed intimately in Faust, the great figure that attained European prominence in the anonymous 1587 Historia von D. Johann Fausten. The original Faust behind Goethe's great drama embodies a remote culture. In his century, Faust evolved from an obscure cipher to a universal symbol. The age explored here as "the Faustian century" invested the Faustbuch and its theme with a symbolic significance still of exceptional relevance today. The new essays in this volume complement one another, providing insights into the tensions and forces that gave the century its distinct character. Several essays seek Faust's prototypes. Others elaborate the symbolic function of his figure and discern the resonance of his tale in conflicting allegiances. This volume focuses on the intersection of historical accounts and literary imaginings, on shared aspects of the work and its times, on concerns with obedience and transgression, obsessions with the devil and curiosity about magic, and quandaries created by shifting religious and worldly authorities. Contributors: Marguerite de Huszar Allen, Kresten Thue Andersen, Frank Baron, GŁnther Bonheim, Albrecht Classen, Urs Leo Gantenbein, Karl S. Guthke, Michael Keefer, Paul Ernst Meyer, J. M. van der Laan, Helen Watanabe-O'Kelly, Andrew Weeks. J. M. van der Laan is Professor of German and Andrew Weeks is Professor of German and Comparative Literature, both at Illinois State University.
 

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Contents

Illustrations
11
The German Faustian Century
17
Faustus of the Sixteenth Century His Life Legend and Myth
43
Cornelius Agrippas Double Presence in the Faustian Century
67
Converging Magical Legends Faustus Paracelsus
93
Faust from Cipher to Sign and Pious to Profane
125
The Aesthetics of the 1587 Spies Historid von D 0hdnn
149
The Lutheran Faust Repentance in the Augsburg Confession
177
Sigil
240
Exploring the ThreeFold World Faust as Alchemist
241
Mephistophiles and red magic cape
256
The Devil in the Early Modern World and in SixteenthCentury
257
Beasts rampant and mandrake root
284
Encounters with SchWarZHans Iacob Bohme
285
Page of text from Rosshirt manuscript
304
the Sixteenth Century
305

Marriage in the Historid von D 0hdnn Fdnsten 1 58 7
197
Rooster
214
Antiauthoritarianism and the Problem of Knowledge in
215
Select Bibliography
361
Notes on the Contributors
381
Copyright

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