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Approaches to Teaching Mann's Death in Venice and Other Short Fiction

Editor(s): Jeffrey B. Berlin

Pages: x & 199 pp.
Published: 1992
ISBN: 9780873527101 (paperback)
ISBN: 9780873527095 (hardcover)

"Jeffrey Berlin has put together a useful volume for instructors of undergraduate and graduate courses, not only in German literature, but also in world literature, literature in translation, cultural history, humanities and psychoanalysis, and film.... The 35 pages of 'Works Cited' offer a rich selection of critical material in both English and German."

Widely taught in undergraduate and graduate courses, the works of Thomas Mann, the 1929 Nobel Prize laureate for literature, continue to fascinate readers. This collection of essays for teachers focuses primarily on Death in Venice, Tonio Kröger, and Tristan, which, on the basis of responses to an international survey conducted to prepare this volume, are Mann's most frequently taught works of short fiction.

Like other books in the MLA's Approaches to Teaching World Literature series, this one is divided into two parts. The first part, "Materials," is a comprehensive overview of instruction resources: editions and translations, reference works, background materials, general introductions and critical studies, and audiovisual materials. In the second part, "Approaches," fourteen scholars provide illuminating descriptions of effective ways to teach Mann's work, whether in translation or in the original German. Essays discuss the literary importance of Death in Venice, Tonio Kröger, and Tristan and examine Mann's fiction from historical, cultural, psychoanalytic, feminist, and philosophical viewpoints.

Table of Contents

Approaches to Teaching Mann's Death in Venice and Other Short Fiction

Jeffrey B. Berlin

Editions and Translations

Reference Works

Background Materials

General Introductions and Critical Studies

Audiovisual Aids


General Issues

Teaching Mann's Short Fiction: A Historian's Perspective
Roderick Stackelberg

Philosophizing and Poetic License in Mann's Early Fiction
Adrian Del Caro

Mann and Wagner
Steven R. Cerf

Gender, Sexuality, and Identity in Mann's Short Fiction
Robert K. Martin

Humor and Comedy in Mann's Short Fiction
Werner Hoffmeister

Jugendstil in Mann's Early Short Fiction
Edith Potter

Death in Venice and the Tradition of European Decadence
Naomi Ritter

Mann and the Modernist Tradition
Gerald Gillespie

Psychoanalysis, Freud, and Thomas Mann
Jeffrey B. Berlin

Teaching Individual Texts

Teaching Tonio Kröger as Literature about Literature
Beverley Driver Eddy

Tonio Kröger's Conversations with Lisaweta Iwanowna: Difficulties and Solutions
Rodney Symington

Death in Venice as Psychohistory
Edward Timms

Plato and Nietzsche in Death in Venice
Susan von Rohr Scaff

Visconti's Cinematic Version of Death in Venice
John Francis Fetzer

Works Cited


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