BD -- Literature and Literary Studies

 An RREO Original Review

Guida allo studio della letteratura italiana [Guide to the Study of Italian Literature]. Ed. Emilio Pasquini. [3d ed.] Bologna: Il Mulino, 1997. ISBN 88-15-05608-4: Lit. 48,000

The field of Italian language and literature offers a wide selection of bibliographic and research guides aimed at the student and teacher. The more useful ones are G. Petrocchi and F. Ulivi (Stile e critica: avviamento allo studio della letteratura italiana, 1968), G. Varanini and G.P. Marchi (Pagine introduttive allo studio della letteratura italiana, 3d ed., 1979), M. Puppo and G. Baroni (Manuale critico-bibliografico per lo studio della letteratura italiana, 4th ed., 1994) and the title which the work under review most closely resembles in structure and scope, G. Barberi Squarotti, ed., L'Italianistica: introduzione allo studio della letteratura e della lingua italiana (1992). The Pasquini Guida, (1st ed., 1985) is not only the most recent of such guides (the preface is dated March 1997) but the most extensive in both scope and bibliographic comprehensiveness. Some minor faults will be mentioned at the end of this review.

The 16 chapters of the Guida are divided into two groups. The first deals with various methodological approaches to the theory and criticism of literature, prosody, and the grammar and history of the language. There are also two chapters of particular interest to librarians, one on general reference works, major periodicals, monographic series and histories of Italian literature, and the other on methodological approaches to critical editions. Each chapter is subdivided into its component subjects, which greatly eases the consultation of particular issues, e.g. the "Questione della lingua" within the chapter on the history of the language. The second group of chapters deals with the history and criticism of Italian literature. These chapters reflect the traditional historical divisions, from the origins to Dante, Petrarch and Boccaccio, Humanism and Renaissance, Baroque era, eighteenth century, Romanticism, Positivism and Decadence, and the 20th century. Each chapter is again subdivided into constituent sections. The one on Humanism and Renaissance, for example, has six: Definitions of the Period; Latin Humanism; Humanism in the Vernacular; Ariosto and the Cinquecento; Machiavelli and Guicciardini; and Tasso.

Under the editorship of Emilio Pasquini, professor at the University of Bologna, 19 specialists have contributed chapters in their fields. Such a professional collaboration obviously raises the scholarly significance of the Guida (the chapter on twentieth-century theory and criticism was written by the well-known scholar Ezio Raimondi).

Of primary importance is also the choice of bibliographic essay or, as the editor puts it, "bibliografia ragionata." This narrative approach allows each author to establish the essential bibliographic universe while providing, according to the editor, a diachronic development of the criticism of a particular writer or topic. With a writer like Dante one can readily see how much more appropriate a bibliographic narrative is than either a critical or annotated bibliography in comparing major interpretations or evaluating the established textual and critical editions.

The section on Dante, by Pasquini and Fabio Marri, is, to my mind, one of the best contributions. In just twelve pages they have managed to indicate and evaluate the indispensable universe of Dante studies. It is an impressive synthesis of the major interpretations from the early commentaries to Croce, Auerbach, Contini, and Singleton, among others; the basic bibliographies, dictionaries, textual and critical editions; the relevant general and specialized titles, periodicals and biographies. Bibliographical materials are not restricted to monographs; articles which have made a fundamental contribution to the field are duly noted, another asset of this work. The authors' discussion of the attempt to reconstruct the "testo-base" of the Commedia, what Dante's contemporaries may have actually read, is highly informative. This goal was achieved by Petrocchi's edition of 1966/67, La Commedia secondo l'antica vulgata (the reprint with corrections was published too late, 1994, to be noted in the Guida).

From the thematic side of the Guida, this reviewer found the chapter on the grammar and history of Italian language one of the best. It provides a full historical and topical development of the language, without neglecting its dialectological aspects. All the indispensable bibliography is here, including linguistic atlases. Indeed, this section could profitably be used by librarians building or strengthening collections on Italian linguistics.

But such an impressive bibliographic synthesis also calls attention to certain shortcomings, or, more correctly, unevenness of treatment. The chapter on the history of language, for example, has 23 pages while the one on metrics and prosody has 31, surely too many, especially when there is no lack of short introductions on the market. Another negative point has to do with the absence of some modern writers (D'Arrigo, Ortese, Malaparte, Testori) and the lack of treatment of popular literature. But such quibbles aside, the authors of this guide have compiled a bibliographic record of Italian language and literature as scholarly as it is useful.

Frank DiTrolio (University of Florida)

  An RREO Original Review

Bibliografía de estudios neogriegos en español y en otras lenguas ibéricas [Bibliography of Modern Greek Studies in Spanish and in Other Iberian Languages]. Moschos Morfakidis. Granada: Athos-Pérgamos, 1998. (Serie neogriega: Estudios, 1) 186 p. 24 cm. ISBN 84-9228-475-7: 1700 Ptas

Moschos Morfakidis's Bibliografía de estudios neogriegos en español y en otras lenguas ibéricas (BENE) is, as its name implies, a bibliography on modern Greek literature and civilization. Anyone currently researching modern Greece will have noticed that there has been an increase in the number of translations, commentaries, and general reading materials on the modern Greek world. This work fills the need for a bibliography for the general Spanish-speaking world of Spain and Latin America with citations also from the Portuguese. The appearance of BENE is a pleasant surprise and its author Morfakidis, a professor at the Universidad de Granada, deserves praise for this enterprise. This reviewer found BENE, a one-volume comprehensive bibliography, to be complete and substantial, demonstrating Morfakidis's expertise in the field.

After a brief prolog, in which the author writes a short history of the work itself and its genesis as an indirect by-product of a Neohellenic congress, he presents the body of the work, 1379 entries divided into 22 general thematic sections, of which the largest two sections cover translations and literary commentary of modern Greek authors. Literary authors are alphabetized according to the Greek alphabet with the names of the authors themselves in Greek characters. Morfakidis's citations for both monographs and articles are as complete bibliographically as possible, including ISBN, publishers, and pagings. Abbreviations for journal titles and for the languages in which the commentary appears (Basque, Catalan, etc.) appear at the beginning of the bibliography. The text closes with two indexes of authors and translators which are extremely helpful, there being no other user guides.

Whether BENE can be recommended for a general North American reference collection is difficult to say. Its scope is much too specialized, of use mainly to the scholar who possesses both a strong knowledge of modern Greek literature and a strong proficiency in Spanish. English-language speakers, however, would do well to consult the somewhat dated Census of Modern Greek Literature: Check-list of English-language Sources Useful in the Study of Modern Greek Literature (1824-1987) by Dia Philippides (New Haven, 1990). BENE, in its next edition, would be improved by the inclusion of annotations for the cited works.

Anthony J. Oddo (Yale University)


Grundriss zur Geschichte der deutschen Dichtung aus den Quellen [Outline of the History of German Literature from Original Sources]. Karl Goedeke. Berlin: Akademie-Verlag. 25 cm.

Vol. 18. Ed. Herbert Jacob. Indexes 1-3. 2d completely rev. ed. 1998. 440 p. ISBN 3-05-002558-1: DM 220.00

Volume 18 of "Goedeke" is the long-awaited cumulative index to this foundational bibliography of German literature. Although individual volumes in the set contain indexes, they cover for the most part only personal names, and many authors are handled in multiple volumes. Part 1 of volume 18 contains three sections: The first is a volume-by-volume outline of the contents of the entire work followed by an alphabetical index to the subject terms in the outline. Second is a listing of all 64 contributors to the "Goedeke" with short biographies and information on editorial responsibilities and authorship of entries. The final (and largest) section is the "main entry index": a name index to all the writers covered in the entire work. Anonymous works are listed by title (e.g. Nibelungenklage). Whether the decision to publish an index of subsidiary authors in a separately published volume makes sense remains to be seen. [sh/bw]


Deutsches Schriftstellerlexikon: 1830-1880; Goedekes Grundriss zur Geschichte der deutschen Dichtung: Fortführung [Dictionary of German Writers: 1830-1880; Goedeke's Outline of the History of German Literature: Continuation]. Ed. Herbert Jacob. Publ. for the Berlin-Brandenburgische Akademie der Wissenschaften. Berlin: Akademie-Verlag. 25 cm.

Vol. 2, part 1. C-D. 1998. 427 p. ISBN 3-05-003192-1: DM 248.00
Vol. 2 , part 2. E-F. 1998. 489 p. ISBN 3-05-003261-8: DM 248.00

The second volume of the continuation into the nineteenth century of the venerable "Goedeke" continues to fulfill the promise of the first (see RREA 1:243) to become a landmark in German studies bibliography. With entries on 1,823 writers (119 covered in extensive bibliographies, all others in shorter articles), the second volume has been split into two parts. This is a work of very high quality indeed, and one need only think of other bibliographic efforts that after two decades have still not passed beyond the letter "A" to appreciate the steady progress being made here. It needs to be emphasized that the writers covered extend well beyond the realm of belles lettres, e.g. philosophy (Dilthey), medicine (Carus), politics (Engels), philology (Delius), historiography (Droysen), and theology (Döllinger). [sh/bw]


Quellenlexikon zur deutschen Literaturgeschichte: Personal- und Einzelwerkbibliographien der internationalen Sekundärliteratur 1945-1990 zur deutschen Literatur von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart = Bibliography of Studies on German Literary History [Bibliography of Scholarship on German Authors and Works from the Beginnings to the Present]. Heiner Schmidt. 3d rev. expanded and updated ed. Duisburg: Verlag für Pädagogische Dokumentation. 25 cm. Original title: Quellenlexikon der Interpretationen und Textanalysen

Vol. 1 (1994)-9 (1996)
Vol. 10. Gua-Hau. 1997. 512 p. ISBN 3-930551-10-1: DM 228.00
Vol. 11. Hau-Hei. 1997. 512 p. ISBN 3-930551-11-X: DM 228.00
Vol. 12. Hei-Hes. 1997. 512 p. ISBN 3-930551-12-8: DM 228.00
Vol. 13. Hes-Hol. 1997. 512 p. ISBN 3-930551-13-6: DM 228.00
Vol. 14. Hol-Jel. 1998. 512 p. ISBN 3-930551-14-4: DM 228.00

Based on the work entitled Quellenlexikon der Interpretationen und Textanalysen in its first and second editions, the publication of this greatly expanded third edition continues to proceed apace. It is more accurately described in its English title (bibliography) than in the German (Lexikon), though its coverage, which extends to philosophers, pedagogues, theologians, and art historians, is much broader than the designation "German literary history" suggests. The entries, which document the secondary literature to German literature and its contexts, cover scholarship published between 1945 and 1990 and even include, as some sampling reveals, titles omitted in comprehensive single-author bibliographies. The longer entries can be difficult to untangle and could stand a more user-friendly presentation. Articles and essays are summarized in mini-abstracts. It is hoped that eventually this work will appear in digitized format. In the meantime, libraries are advised that the print-run is small. [sh/sl]


Internationale Bibliographie zur deutschen Klassik, 1750-1850 [International Bibliography of German Classicism 1750-1850]. Published for the Stiftung Weimarer Klassik, Herzogin-Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek. Microfiche ed. München: Saur. (Bibliographien und Kataloge der Herzogin-Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek zu Weimar)

Vols. 1 (1959 [1960])-41 (1994 [1995]). 1997. 91 microfiches + 3 index vols. ISBN 3-598-32883-4 (diazo): DM 3790.00; ISBN 3-598-32884-2 (silver): DM 4390.00.


Internationale Bibliographie zur deutschen Klassik, 1750-1850. Gesamtregister: Autoren, Herausgeber, Orte, Zeitschriften [International Bibliography of German Classicism, 1750-1850: Cumulative Index; Authors, Editors, Places, Journals. Published for the Stiftung Weimarer Klassik, Herzogin-Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek. Ed. Lothar Wiesmeier. München: Saur. 25 cm. (Bibliographien und Kataloge der Herzogin-Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek zu Weimar)

Vols. 1-41 (1959-94 [1960-96]). 1998. Parts 1-3. xviii, 1145 p. ISBN 3-598-32885-0: DM 834.00 (free with purchase of microfiche ed.)

This serial bibliography was favorably reviewed in RREA 2:138 after it had been taken on by a new publisher (Saur), which has now issued an index to the first 41 volumes of the bibliography (1960-1996), as well as a microfiche edition of the bibliography itself. The microfiche edition is justified by the circumstance that the original edition is now out of print and was published on paper that is already disintegrating. What is more problematical is the publisher's decision to merely reproduce the original serial volumes rather than cumulate them into an integrated whole. This decision makes the cumulative index volumes all the more welcome, although here also compromises are evident (though necessary, given the costs involved). Rather than starting from scratch, the index is built upon the existing indexes in the individual volumes. Entries are therefore limited to the following categories: (1) authors (primary texts); (2) authors of secondary literature (including book reviewers); (3) people mentioned in titles; (5) titles of journals published from the time period (1750-1850); and (5) places "of importance for the literary Enlightenment and Weimar Classicism." Only for Goethe and Schiller are entries further subdivided. Unfortunately, subject index terms were not included in the cumulation. Despite this and other easily avoidable limitations, the index is a valuable help for working with a very important bibliography (listing over 150,000 titles), and the publisher has fortunately made it available for purchase separately from the microfiche edition it accompanies.[sh/bw]


Beruf und Arbeit in deutschsprachiger Prosa seit 1945: ein bibliographisches Lexikon; Ergänzung und chronologische Fortführung des Werkes "Beruf und Arbeit in deutscher Erzählung" von Franz Anselm Schmitt [Professions and Work in German Prose since 1945: A Bibliographical Lexicon; Supplement and Chronological Continuation of Profession and Work in German Prose by Franz Anselm Schmitt]. Hans-Martin Plesske. Stuttgart: Hiersemann, 1997. xiii p., 870 columns. (Hiersemanns bibliographische Handbücher, 14) ISBN 3-7772-9725-9: DM 560.00

Franz Anselm Schmitt's Beruf und Arbeit in deutscher Erzählung (Stuttgart, 1952) is a well-known and frequently consulted title in German literary bibliography, indexing German-language fiction from 1800 to 1951 by profession/job/craft, to which the volume at hand, covering the post-war period, is a worthy successor. It adds several hundred titles and brings the number of professions up to 600. Like its predecessor, it is concerned only with the literary sources themselves (i.e., not with criticism) and is based on the collections of the Deutsche Bücherei in Leipzig. Titles (sometimes with brief annotations) are listed alphabetically under entries from Abt (abbot) to Zwangsarbeiter (forced laborer). Only first editions are listed. There are three indexes (classified listing of professions, personal subjects, authors). [hak/sl]


Goethe-Lexikon. Gero von Wilpert. Stuttgart: Kröner, 1998. x, 1227 p. 18 cm. (Kröners Taschenausgabe, 407) ISBN 3-520-40701-9: DM 60.00

With some 4,000 articles on people, works, and subjects (with particular attention to places), this 1,200 page reference work is a superb source of information on Goethe and his work. It is wonderfully rich in detail. Numerous cross-references make it easy to use and find one's way about. Almost all articles include bibliographic references. [hak/sl]


Hartmann von Aue: mit einer Bibliographie 1976-1997 [Hartmann von Aue: With a Bibliography 1976-1997]. Ed. Petra Hörner. Frankfurt am Main [et al.]: Lang, 1998. 283 p. 21 cm. (Information und Interpretation, 8) ISBN 3-631-33292-0: DM 84.00

Five essays about the great medieval poet Hartmann make up the larger part of this volume, including a comparison with Chrétien de Troyes; the rest is a bibliography of publications from 1976-97 that continues the Hartmann bibliography of 1977 (Bibliographie zu Harmann von der Aue [Berlin]). Listed are 861 monographs and essays, including dissertations, but not reviews. General literature is followed by sections for individual works and genres. The bibliographic information is sufficient, although pagination is not given for monographs. There are no annotations, except that for more general works the pages with information specific to Hartmann are indicated or designated with "passim." Full bibliographic entries appear only once, with references to their number and brief title at other relevant points. Names that appear in titles are not included in the personal name index (to authors, editors, etc.). [sh/mm]


Heine-Bibliographie. Ed. Stiftung Weimarer Klassik, Herzogin-Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek. Stuttgart; Weimar: Metzler. 24 cm. (Personalbibliographien zur neueren deutschen Literatur, . . .)

1983-95. Erdmann von Wilamowitz-Moellendorff and Günther Mühlpfordt. 1998. xiii, 396 p. (. . . , 2) ISBN 3-476-01561-0: DM 248.00

The newest title in the irregularly published Weimar Heine bibliography meets all the high standards set by volume 1 of the "Personalbibliographien" series, published by Metzler (see RREA 1:251), now the leading publisher in Heine scholarship (see also RREA 3:149). It lists about 2,300 titles (over 2,000 represent secondary literature) and follows the clear organization of the earlier volumes. In contrast to previous practice, however, primary texts in anthologies are not included. The bibliography covers works published through 1995, as well as reviews published in 1996 and 1997. The few inconsistencies due to editorial staff changes are minor. This is an exemplary bibliography in every respect, from the single index including personal names, subjects, and titles, to the readability of the typeface. [hak/mm]


Möser-Bibliographie 1730-1990. Ed. Winfried Woesle. Tübingen: Niemeyer, 1997. xxii, 899 p. 24 cm. ISBN 3-484-10713-8: DM 416.00

Justus Möser was an important political essayist and poet of the 18th century. This meticulous bibliography from the Justus Möser Research Center at the University of Osnabrück contains 2,500 bibliographic entries, covering primary and secondary literature (including important newpaper articles and reviews). An overview of works published during his lifetime appears separately from the detailed chronological list. The division between monographs and articles disturbs the chronology; there is also some avoidable duplication. Not everyone will be happy with the appendix listing the "most important" monographs, and the inclusion of general bibliographies is redundant. In terms of comprehensiveness, this bibliography gives us almost too much of a good thing: one annotation alludes to echoes of a theory of Möser's in a particular text, though he himself is not mentioned in the work! The detail accorded to listings of works by Möser is especially commendable, as are the quality of bibliographic description and the annotations.

Comprehensive indexes to Möser's texts and personal names provide thorough access to the richness of the content, although not all names appearing in the annotations are indexed. This will be an indispensable aid to Möser research. It is to be continued in the periodical Möser-Forum. [ss/mm]


Dictionnaire des littératures de langue française: XIXe siècle [Dictionary of Literature in the French Language]. Paris: Encyclopædia Universalis; Albin Michel, 1998. 839 p. 21 cm. ([Les dictionnaires] Encyclopædia universalis) ISBN 2-226-09619-1: FF 170.00

This is a thematic collection of around 365 articles about nineteenth-century French language literature from the Encyclopædia universalis. Emphasis is on people (280 entries), mostly literary figures both major and more obscure. Other articles cover masters of "para-literature" (e.g., Paul de Kock, Gaston Leroux), philosophers, scholars, and artists known to have inspired writers. The remaining articles (about 85) cover a range of subjects from genres and literary forms to groups, movements, institutions, cultural practices and some significant historical events. Length of articles varies, from short entries for concepts, people and places to comprehensive overview articles. The detailed index at the end adds an astonishing depth to the work and reveals connections that don't come through in the alphabetical organization of the dictionary. All longer articles have extensive bibliographies; for author articles these are divided into primary and secondary sources. Coverage is through 1990. There is no timetable, but authors are listed at the end alphabetically and by birth- and death date. This is an exemplary single volume dictionary in its breadth and depth and is recommended without reservation to anyone interested in 19th century French literature who doesn't want just a dry collection of dates and facts. [bk/mm]


Entsiklopediia literaturnykh geroev [Encyclopedia of Literary Figures]. Moskva: Olimp; Izdat. AST. 26 cm. ISBN 5-7390-0272-9 (entire work)

Russkii folklor i drevnerusskaia literatura [Russian Folklore and Old Russian Literature]. Ed. E. B. Rogachevskoi . 1998. 544 p. ISBN 5-7390-0271-0 (Olimp); ISBN 5-237-00425-3 (Izdat. AST)

Russkaia literatura XVII - pervoi poloviny XIX veka [Russian Literature of the 17th through the First Half of the 19th Century]. Ed. A. N. Archangel'skoii. 1997. 764 p. ISBN 5-7390-0164-1 (Olimp); ISBN 5-7841-0175-7 (Izdat. AST)

Russkaia literatura vtoroi poloviny XIX veka [Russian Literature of the Second Half of the 19th Century]. Ed. E. A. Sklovskoii .1997. 672 p. ISBN 5-7390-0271-0 (Olimp); ISBN 5-7841-0175-7 (Izdat. AST)

Together with the printer AST, Olimp (founded in 1990), now one of Moscow's largest publishers, has published several reference works and handbooks. This encyclopedia--published in eight volumes so far since 1997--is unique in its scope, devoted as it is to substantive articles about figures in literature. (Compare it, for example, to the much skimpier information in titles such as Martin Seymour-Smith's Dictionary of Fictional Characters [Boston, 1992], Dictionary of British Literary Characters [New York, 1993], Lexikon literarischer Gestalten: deutschsprachige Literatur [Stuttgart, 1993], and Lexikon literarischer Gestalten: fremdisprachige Literatur [Stuttgart, 1990].) Four volumes cover Russian literature, four non-Russian literatures.

Organized alphabetically by author, the articles are written for both scholars and lay readers and represent no particular theoretical commitment. The "character index" refers the reader to articles beyond just the main article about a particular figure. (It is time, however, for Russian indexes to include Western names in their untransliterated form as well as in Cyrillic transliteration.)

The volume on Russian literature of the second half of the nineteenth century, for example, presents 2,500 characters from about 575 novels, stories, and plays by 48 authors. Some of the articles are by scholars who have written monographs on the authors in question, though it is not always easy to determine who has written what. The inclusion of less-famous Russian writers is commendable. The length of articles varies from five lines to five columns.

Altogether, a most useful reference work, best consulted in conjunction with standard sources. [wk/sl]


Valerii Perelesin (1913-1992); Catalogue of His Papers and Books in Leiden University Library. Jan Paul Hinrichs. Leiden: Leiden University Library, 1997. 184 p. 25 cm. (Codices manuscripti, Bibliotheca Universitatis Leidensis, 27) ISBN 90-74204-07-4

The University of Leiden is the holder of the largest of three archival collections pertaining to the poet and erstwhile Russian Orthodox monk Valerii Pereleshin. (The other two are in Russia.) This exemplary catalog lists correspondence, manuscripts, diaries, biographical documents, etc., with English annotations when necessary. [wk/sl]

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