Bibliographie du dix-neuvième siècle: lettres, arts, sciences, histoire: année 1998 [Bibliography of the 19th Century: Literature, Arts, Science, History, for the Year 1998]. Florence de Chalonge and Claude Duchet. Paris: Sedes, 1999. 227 p. 25 cm. ISBN 2718192720: FF 140.00
An RREO Original Review
The authors present this bibliography as experimental: an effort to produce "something different" (p. 7.)--it is not perfectly clear in what way--from other existing bibliographies. They want to fulfill the requirements of scholarly information as well as satisfy the interest of the general public. They also wish to place literature into its context: they list works on the arts, sciences, history, and society in the catalog. The index of the volume is meant to cover a maximum of categories in order to facilitate searching.
Two-thirds of the bibliography was published in issues 27 and 28 of Dix-neuvième siècle, the bulletin of the Société des études romantiques et dix-neuviémistes. The structure of the book as well as the marking of the different items and the typography of the text are identical with the way the material was presented in the periodical. A real addition is a list of reliable Internet sites covering the 19th century. The bulletin has two types of indexes: one for 19th-century authors, and another for contemporary critiques. The new bibliography in book form expands the index of contemporary critiques by including authors of journal articles and adding a third category: a thematic index. In other words: the volume is an enriched version of the bulletin's bibliography. Both strengths and weaknesses of the compilation originate in this transformation.
The introduction enters into a long meditation about the possible rivalry between electronic and paper forms of bibliographies, and maintains that they complement rather than compete with each other. But the problem with this bibliography is not its comparative value vis-à-vis electronic resources; it is that the authors have failed to clarify what the coverage of their bibliography would be. The bulletin Dix-neuvième siècle might have constituted a natural context for the focus and boundaries, but presenting the material in the form of an independent volume requires clear-cut definition and limits. The user wants to know what he or she has in hand.
Looking at the information given by the title on the cover, one would expect a bibliography of materials on 19th-century literature, arts, sciences, and history published in 1998 in all areas of the world. The introduction, quite vaguely, restricts this expectation, saying: "the perspective [of the bibliography] is at least European regarding the authors and phenomena of international stature" (p. 7). However, what the authors mean by this definition remains to be explained. The principles of selection are not articulated. One thing is certain: neither the title nor the introduction affirm that we actually have a bibliography on the French 19th century at hand, complemented by a few extraneous materials incidentally collected from other areas.
The first chapter is a list of 191 editions of 19th-century literary texts (including correspondence) arranged by author, all published in 1998. Print and CD-ROM editions are also noted. The annotations provide such details as dates, versions, titles, names of editors, etc. Included are French editions of French 19th-century authors; French editions of non-French authors; and, surprisingly, a collection of Leopardi's correspondence in Italian; an English-language collection of Victorian novels; an English translation of Jules Verne's Vingt mille lieues sous les mers; and two collections of Joseph Freiherr von Eichendorff in German. Why those? Why only those?
The second chapter covers a selection of scholarly monographs on 19th-century topics by individual scholars. The annotations selectively detail the contents of the monographs. Here are listed 535 items; 127 of them are written in languages other than French: 89 in English, 29 in German, 4 in Spanish, 3 in Italian, 1 in Norwegian, and 1 in Portuguese; certainly not a reflection of the proportions of 1998 European publication. The English-language volumes are about Pushkin, Oscar Wilde, letter writing in America, etc.--a variety of 19th-century topics, not suggesting any specific selectional criteria. Why are only these included? Why are others left out? Either by imprint or by subject, it is impossible to discern why these and not other books were listed.
Under Ouvrages collectifs in the third chapter, the authors list collections of papers and works written by several authors. The annotations list authors and titles of the papers included in each volume. The fourth chapter, indexing journals, presents the contents under a heading for each periodical issue. Both of these chapters raise the same questions of selective coverage as do their predecessors.
The fifth chapter, written by Marianne Pernoo-Bécache, formerly of the Bibliothèque Nationale de France and now research professor at the Ecole nationale supérieure des sciences de l'information et des bibliothèques in Villeurbanne (Rhône), lists and characterizes Internet sites on the 19th century in the following categories: information on cultural heritage (e.g., pictures, monuments); electronic discussion groups and listservs; digitized texts; "webliographies" (i.e., gateways to web resources); and web sites focusing on one literary personality.
Despite its coverage problem, the book is still useful for bibliographic information about 19th-century French literature in printed and electronic forms. All in all, it would have been better to restrict the lists to works covering only 19th-century France, and leave out those items out that cover a whole range of miscellaneous subjects. The list of web-based resources is handy and includes practical details on the different sites; but given the dynamic nature of web gateways, one may as well have direct recourse to Mme Pernoo's web site at <http://membres.tripod.fr/Marianne/dixneuf.html>.
Katalin Radics (University of California, Los Angeles)
Dictionnaire de Don Juan [Dictionary of Don Juan]. Ed. Pierre Brunel. Paris: R. Laffont, 1999. xli, 1,025 p. 20 cm. (Bouquins). ISBN 2221078667: FF 189.00
An RREO Original Review
While there is debate about the origins of the Don Juan figure, Tirso de Molina's El Burlador de Sevilla (1630) is taken as the literary point of origin in the exploration of the far-ranging influence of Don Juan in novels, plays, poems, operas, films, and paintings by such authors as Byron, Molière, and Mozart. Pierre Brunel's encyclopedic approach explores the basis and nature of the Don Juan literary myth, its variations, its psychoanalytical, metaphysical, even religious implications, and the Don Juan figure's continuing relevance in Western culture.
Editor Pierre Brunel, professor at the Sorbonne, is a prolific literary critic who has written extensively on the intersections of myth and literature, editing a major reference work on the topic, Dictionnaire des Mythes Littéraires (1988, 1994). Brunel previously contributed to or edited several works on the Don Juan theme, but the Dictionnaire de Don Juan is a much more substantial project, with over 300 articles solicited from well-known French and international literary critics.
The major challenge in putting together a dictionary on a literary character with such extensive influence on literature and the arts is that of scope: which works should be included as true variations on the Don Juan theme? Pierre Brunel devotes his preface to defining the subject to be addressed: the work is to be "a dictionary of Don Juan, not a dictionary of don juans" (p. VII). For Brunel, the defining element of Don Juan as literary myth, first seen in El Burlador de Sevilla, is the character's encounter with the statue of the commander, a representation of death appearing to punish the living. This mythical Don Juan is uniquely western and rooted in a Christian tradition. The designation of a monolithic though bipolar Don Juan and the exclusion of variations that do not include the commander figure make the Dictionnaire a manageable project, allowing greater depth in the treatment of selected works and themes. However, the limits in scope seem somewhat artificial in an encyclopedic work, and may be a frustration to scholars who wish to extend their study of the theme beyond Don Juan as a creation of the western literary imagination.
Individual articles, ranging in extent from a single paragraph to a dozen pages, are offered on themes, authors, literary titles, characters, and media. The simple alphabetic arrangement ranges from "abandon" to "Zorilla y Moral," with entries such as "Cinéma," "Kundera," and "Origines de la Légende" in between. The article on cinema shows the Dictionnaire at its best, with analysis and detailed listing of cinematic productions. Each signed article ends with a short, often annotated bibliography, and cross-references are indicated throughout the text with asterisks. The work lacks an index or table of contents; instead a three-page "Itinéraires Thématiques" offers listings of articles (without page numbers) under selected categories. The lack of index or cross-references outside the text of the articles will impede the use of the Dictionnaire as a ready-reference book and make extended browsing necessary to find all the articles relevant to a particular area of inquiry.
In the preface, Pierre Brunel contends that the Dictionnaire is selective, because exhaustive treatment is the realm of bibliography. In addition to individual article bibliographies, the Dictionnaire includes a final two-page "bibliographie pratique," listing only a few seminal thematic and bibliographic studies of the Don Juan theme. This arrangement can be problematic, as it is difficult to guess which article might cite a particular study of Don Juan. For this reason, it would be beneficial to supplement the work with an exhaustive bibliography such as Singer's The Don Juan Theme: An Annotated Bibliography of Versions, Analogues, Uses and Adaptations (1954, 1993) or Bibliography of the Myth of Don Juan in Literary History (1997), edited by Dictionnaire contributor José-Manuel Losada-Goya.
The Dictionnaire de Don Juan represents an impressive compilation of expertise on Don Juan, offering a convenient reference on works, authors, themes and historical information. The volume will be an important addition to any collection for both students and scholars seeking a starting point for thematic research or a convenient compendium of factual information on the complex literary history of the Don Juan figure in the western literary tradition. While the Dictionnaire does not constitute the single definitive reference book on the topic, it does offer many useful points of entry to a complex literary myth that has retained its significance in our culture, continuing to be studied, produced, and adapted anew 400 years after its creation.
Sarah McDaniel (University of Southern California)
Kritisches Lexikon zur fremdsprachigen Gegenwartsliteratur (KLfG) [Critical Dictionary of Non-German-Language Contemporary Literature]. Ed. Heinz Ludwig Arnold. Loose-leaf ed. München: Edition Text + Kritik. 22 cm. [00-1/4-153]
51st installment, 2000. 9 Binders. DM 390.00. Future installments at ca. 220 p. each, ca. DM 35.00. ISBN 3-88377-637-8 (set)
The KLfG, which began publication in 1983, is back in print after several years'
hiatus. Its declared intention is to inform about the "biography, works, and
influence of those non-German authors who have left their mark on the contemporary
literature of their own linguistic and cultural areas." The contributors are held to
a high standard and are expected to be familiar with the texts in their original language
and with their historical, social, and cultural contexts. The main problem seems to be the
choice of authors for inclusion. The preface indicates that the 500 most important authors
will be covered thoroughly, rather than supplying superficial generalities about 6,000.
However, many familiar authors seem to be missing--Karen Blixen, Sylvia Plath, Julien
Green, Tennessee Willams, and John Steinbeck, to name only a few. The extensive
bibliographical apparatus covers books in their original languages, German translations,
information about theater productions, radio plays and films in which the authors were
involved, and secondary literature (not including journal articles). The loose-leaf format
actually relieves the time pressure normally exerted on handbooks of this kind; one hopes
it will permit the continuation and expansion of the KLfG. [hak/vh]
Die deutsche Literatur des Mittelalters: Verfasserlexikon[German Literature of the Middle Ages: Encyclopedia of Authors]. Founded by Wolfgang Stammler, continued by Karl Langosch. Ed. Burghart Wachinger with Gundolf Keil. 2d totally rev. ed. Berlin [et al.]: de Gruyter. 25 cm. (Veröffentlichungen der Kommission für Deutsche Literatur des Mittelalters der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften). [00-1/4-155]
Vol. 10. Ulrich von Lilienfeld, 'Das zwölfjährige Mönchlein' [Ulrich von Lilienfeld: 'The Twelve-Year-Old Monk']. 1999. ix, 1,652 columns. Originally published in 5 installments 1996-1999. ISBN 3-11-015606-7: DM 562.00
While volume 10 completes the alphabet, an additional volume containing indexes,
corrections, and supplements has been announced. Compared to similar endeavors world-wide,
this set can be considered qualitatively above the others. Articles are consistently of
high quality and are readable. Writers are featured who cannot be found anywhere else;
scholarly controversies are included, as are non-print sources. An improvement over the
first edition and other similar works is the judicious balance between Latin and folk
literature. Criticisms of the first edition have generally been addressed in this second
edition. One flaw remains: Old French writers who influenced German medieval literature
are excluded, while important classical authors are included (for instance: Cicero
appears, Chretien de Troyes does not). The articles in volume 10 clearly reflect changing
perspectives and new research. It is hoped that an affordable study edition will be made
available for the benefit of researchers and students. In short, this essential reference
work should not be missing in any research library. [jom/hsb]
Kürschners deutscher Literatur-Kalender. Nekrolog [Kürschner's German Literary Calendar: Necrologies]. Ed. Andreas Klimt. München; Leipzig: Saur. 21 cm. Previously published by de Gruyter, Berlin. [00-1/4-156]
1971/98. 1999. xxxvi, 770 p. ISBN 3-598-23687-5: DM 398.00
This volume follows the two published by de Gruyter: one in 1936, that included writers
who died between 1901 and 1935, and one in 1973, that covered those who died between 1936
and 1970. The present volume adds 4,573 writers to some 9,000 names in the earlier works,
updating it to 1998 and including some names that had been left out earlier. The articles
include bibliographies, even secondary literature for many writers. Especially useful is
the information on the location of a writer's archive (a feature added for more than 1,100
authors) listing library, contact names, and addresses. Like its predecessors, the latest
volume features a chronological index of birth and death dates. [sh/hsb]
Deutsches Literatur-Lexikon. Das 20. Jahrhundert: biographisches -bibliographisches Handbuch [German Literary Encyclopedia: The 20th Century: Bio-Bibliographical Handbook]. Founded by Wilhelm Kosch. Ed. Carl Ludwig Lang. Bern; München: Saur. 25 cm. [00-1/4-157]
Vol. 1. Aab-Bauer. 2000. xv p., 736 columns. ISBN 3-908255-01-5: DM 368.00
The Deutsches Literatur-Lexikon (known as Kosch) has been in progress
since 1968, but is still not complete. Six supplementary volumes appeared between 1994 and
1998 to cover authors and anonymous works that were missed in earlier volumes, but they
did not provide updates for earlier articles. These supplementary volumes were reviewed in
IFB 94-3/4-434. The new subseries promises to add scholars of German and German writers
living abroad, and to update earlier articles. One-third of the authors appear in the work
for the first time. A sampling of 22 entries confirms this is the case. The additional
information makes the new subseries an indispensable purchase. [sh/jpn]
Deutschsprachige Exilliteratur seit 1933 [German-Language Exile Literature since 1933]. Bern; München: Saur. 24 cm. Vol. 1 title: Deutsche Exilliteratur seit 1933 [German Exile Literature since 1933]. ISBN 3-907820-43-6 [00-1/4-158]
Vol. 3. USA. Ed. John M. Spalek. Pt. 1. 2000. x, 471 p. ISBN 3-908255-16-3: DM 248.00
This is the latest volume of a work on German exile literature in the USA. It contains
articles by American and German writers on 28 authors, of whom nine were poets, novelists,
or playwrights; six, scriptwriters or directors; four, non-fiction writers; two, political
journalists; and one, a philosopher, Ernst Bloch. This is only a reference work in the
broadest sense, but it is included because volume 4, which appeared in 1994, really was
relevant and was reviewed in detail (see IFB 94-3/4-441). The reviewer's remark then that
the work's "concept
as well as its publishing history back to 1976" were
rather irregular, applies now as well. This third volume contains authors not found in
volume 1 (1976) or volume 2 (1989), and includes some writers who were left out of those
particular volumes, which cover California and New York. [sh/jpn]
Metzler-Lexikon der deutsch-jüdischen Literatur: jüdische Autorinnen und Autoren deutscher Sprache von der Aufklärung bis zur Gegenwart [Metzler Encyclopedia of German-Jewish Literature: Jewish Authors Writing in the German Language from the Enlightenment to the Present]. Ed. Andreas B. Kilcher. Stuttgart; Weimar: Metzler, 2000. xx, 664 p. ill. ISBN 3-476-01682-X: DM 78.00 [00-1/4-159]
This encyclopedia contains 300 articles of 2 to 3 pages in length on Jewish authors who
wrote in German. The articles are signed, and most of the contributors are well-known
specialists. Only writers of literary merit are included, and not those known primarily
for their activity in other realms such as political theory or criticism. Hence, such
outstanding Jewish writers as Leopold von Andrian, Hugo von Hofmannsthal, and Martin
Beradt are omitted. The references to textual editions and secondary literature are
inconsistent in that important works of recent years, and of the 1980s, are missing.
Faulty proofreading is evident in many of the articles. [hak/jpn]
Rußlanddeutsche Schriftsteller: von den Anfängen bis zur Gegenwart; Biographien und Werkübersichten [Russian-German Writers: From the Beginnings to the Present--Biographies and Overviews of Works]. Herold Belger. Trans. into German and augmented by Erika Voigt. Berlin: Edition Ost, 1999. 201, xii p. ill. 22 cm. Uniform title: Rossiiskie nemetskie pisateli. ISBN 3-932180-54-2: DM 39.80 [00-1/4-160]
This German translation of Herold Belger's Rossiiskie nemetskie pisateli (1996)
has been updated and expanded. Thirty biographies, as well as a pictorial appendix with
authors' portraits, have been added to the 240 names in the Russian original. Despite the
"Beginnings" in the title, almost all the writers included were born in the last
quarter of the 19th century or later. The amount of detail in the articles varies greatly;
in most cases it is brief, and often neither exact dates nor other biographical details
could be determined. Writers from all lands of the former Soviet Union are included, along
with brief citations to German and Russian editions of their works. Works from anthologies
and selected periodicals are also included. [sh/jpn]
Literatur der Rußlanddeutschen [Literature of the Russian-Germans]. Annelore Engel-Braunschmidt. In: Interkulturelle Literatur in Deutschland: ein Handbuch [Intercultural Literature in Germany: A Handbook]. Ed. Carmine Chiellino. Stuttgart; Weimar: Metzler, 2000, p. 153-176 and 471-480: ill. ISBN 3-476-01618-8: DM 98.00 [00-1/4-161]
This work is reviewed here in light of the inadequacy of Rußlanddeutsche
Schriftsteller (see RREA 6:118 above). It appeared in October 2000 in the handbook Interkulturelle
Literatur in Deutschland, which will be the subject of a forthcoming review in IFB.
The article begins with an introduction about the writers' living conditions in Russia
and, after their emigration, in Germany. There are articles of up to a page in length on
selected authors, many with illustrations. It is a weakness of the entire volume's
organization that personal biographical information is reserved mainly for the entries in
the appendix, while the entries in the articles primarily characterize the author's
literary output. Bibliographic references are also banned to the appendix of the volume.
But for an overview of Russian-German literature and its most significant authors, this
work is a better source of information than Rußlanddeutsche Schriftsteller.
Literatur und Wende: Ostdeutsche Autorinnen und Autoren nach 1989 [Literature and the Turning Point: East German Authors after 1989]. Julia Kormann. Wiesbaden: Deutscher Universitäts-Verlag, 1999. 511 p. 21 cm. (Literaturwissenschaft / Kulturwissenschaft). Also appears as: University of Duisberg Diss., 1999, with title: Abschied und Anfang in der Literatur nach 1989 [Leave-Taking and Beginning in Literature after 1989]. ISBN 3-8244-4376-7: DM 118.00 [00-1/4-162]
This work is primarily a narrative treatment rather than a lexicon. It contains a
useful chapter about research on the literature of the German Democratic Republic. Its
major fault is that analysis is limited to the works of GDR authors published before the
demise of that state, while there is no attempt to provide the critical assessment of
literary life in the GDR that is only now possible. But the roughly hundred-page
bibliography (one-third primary texts, two-thirds secondary works) is of great value.
Wende-Literatur: Bibliographie und Materialien zur Literatur der deutschen Einheit [Literature of the Wende: Bibliography and Background Materials on the Literature of German Unification]. Ed. Jörg Fröhling. 3d, rev. and enl. ed. Frankfurt am Main; Bern [et al.]: Lang, 1999. 255 p. 23 cm. (Bibliographien zur Literatur- und Mediengeschichte, 6). ISBN 3-631-35150-X: DM 84.00 [00-1/4-163]
The first edition (1996) of this work (see RREA 2:160) covered ca. 1,300 works
published up to 1994, while the second edition (1997) (see RREA 3:163) added ca. 500
titles that appeared between 1995 and 1997. This edition assembles all of them, ca. 9,000
entries in a single alphabet. According to the foreword, the subject matter has shifted in
later works from the Wende (turning point) itself to the preparation for the Wende
and its consequences. Because the number of titles has increased only slightly over the
second edition, the main justification for purchasing this edition would be its improved
ease of use. [sh/jpn]
Elektronisches Sachwörterbuch zur deutschen Literatur[Electronic Dictionary of Terms in German Literature]. Volker Meid. Stuttgart: Reclam, 2000. 1 CD-ROM. (Tools fürs Literaturstudium). Title of print ed.: Sachwörterbuch zur deutschen Literatur. ISBN 3-15-100214-5: DM 39.90 [00-1/4-165]
Although this electronic version is described by the publishers as a revision of the 1999 print edition (see RREA 5:111), there seem to be no changes from that edition. Given the short interval since the publication of the original work, the need for updating was likely to be minimal in any case. Reference to the competition--Otto F. Best's Handbuch literarischer Fachbegriffe (1994)--was missing from the print edition, and it is missing here. The favorable review of the original edition from 1999 still holds.
That electronic searching of a multivolume reference work has much to offer the user is
apparent from the Kritisches Lexikon der Gegenwartsliteratur (KLG) (see RREA
5:109). The advantages are less clear for a relatively small book such as this one.
Further, works such as this can be profitably browsed--an activity that is much more
feasible in a print than in an electronic format. [hak/sl]
Die Dramen der Fürstlichen Bibliothek Corvey 1805-1832[Dramas in the Library of the Princes of Corvey, 1805-1832]. Ulrike Brandt-Schwarze and Norbert Oellers. München: Fink, 2000. 558 p. 24 cm. (Corvey-Studien zur Literatur- und Kulturgeschichte des 19. Jahrhunderts, 6). ISBN 3-7705-3404-2: DM 180.00 [00-1/4-174]
With holdings of over 73,000 volumes, the collection of the Corvey Library, accessible since 1985, focuses on novels and dramas of the period of the early post-Napoleonic restoration. While a team at the University of Paderborn is working on the novels, preparation for a bibliography of the library's dramas has been assigned to the University of Bonn, whose strong collection on the theater of this period was able to support the necessary research.
The bibliography lists 470 dramas (with selected holding libraries) published between
1805 and 1832 (including opera libretti and Singspiele, but not the numerous
translations of foreign-language dramas into German). A summary of the contents is
provided for 401 of the dramas listed, along with information on the history of their
performance and reception, and references to the history of relevant motifs. There are six
indexes (e.g., author, title, chronology, motifs). [sh/sl]
Augsburger Brecht-Lexikon: Personen, Institutionen, Schauplätze[Augsburg Brecht Lexicon: People, Institutions, Locales]. Jürgen Hillesheim. Würzburg: Königshausen & Neumann, 2000. 192 p. ill. 24 cm. ISBN 3-8260-1276-3: DM 39.80 [00-1/4-176]
Intended to complement Brecht in Augsburg, a collection of source materials
documenting Brecht's childhood and youth that was published first in 1975 and in an
expanded edition in 1997, this lexicon expands the scope of the earlier work by drawing on
sources (e.g., letters, diaries, posthumously discovered writings) that were not
previously available. With over 150 articles, it is purely biographical--there are no
analyses of Brecht's writings--although it also attempts to document the vicissitudes of
Augsburg's interest in and memorializations of one of its most famous and controversial
native sons. Attempting to be exhaustive within the scope of his project, the author
acknowledges the risk of redundancy. This is especially apparent in the entries for
authors such as Heine, Hauptmann, and Wedekind, which should have been limited to details
relevant to Brecht. [gr/sl]
Goethe-Bibliographie 1950-1990. Siegfried Seifert. München: Saur, 2000. 3 vols. xxiii, 1,565 p. 31 cm. ISBN 3-598-11286-6: DM 780.00 [00-1/4-177]
Between 1950 and 1990, approximately 21,000 works by or about Goethe were
published--more than one a day. A seventh of these comprise editions of works by Goethe
(including translations), while the remainder are about him. This exhaustive and
comprehensive bibliography (selective only in its choice of reviews, and omitting
newspaper articles), which is largely based on the holdings of the Anna-Amalia-Bibliothek
in Weimar, picks up where the Grundriß zur Geschichte der deutschen Dichtung
("Goedeke"), last published in 1950, left off. Translations are listed in 60
languages, mainly of single works. No major translated editions were published in France,
the U.S., or England during this entire period. It is a shame that volume contents of
works such as the large Italian edition published by Sansoni are not listed. Many of the
items included are of very, very marginal interest, even to the specialist. What is needed
is an evaluative and selective Goethe bibliography written by an experienced scholar, on
the model of the Goethe-Bibliographie begun by Hans Pyritz and continued by Heinz
Nicolai and Gerhard Burkhardt (1965, 1968). [hak/sl]
Notker der Deutsche von Sankt Gallen (950-1022): ausführliche Bibliographie [Notker the German from Saint Gall (950-1022): Extensive Bibliography]. Evelyn Scherabon-Firchow. Göttingen: Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, 2000. 123 p. 25 cm. (Studien zum Althochdeutschen, 38). ISBN 3-525-20353-5: DM 45.00 [00-1/4-178]
Notker the German (not to be confused with Notker Balbulus--the Stammerer--or Notker
the Doctor, aka Notker III) came to his moniker through his fame as translator from Latin
into Old High German. The compiler, a scholar from Minneapolis who has already published
two Notker bibliographies in Festschriften (1968, 1983), consciously uses the word
"ausführlich" (here best translated as "extensive") in her subtitle
in order to emphasize the fact that her bibliography does not strive for
comprehensiveness, an unrealistic ambition given the unavailability of some of the older
specialized titles in the U.S. The bibliography lists 734 works, including numerous
references to Notker-relevant passages in studies that are otherwise not about Notker
specifically. These are divided into four sections (editions, dictionaries, general,
secondary literature). Subject access (classified or by means of an index) is,
unfortunately, not an option. The consistent use of annotations would also have been
desirable. As it is, specialists will find this a useful tool; beginners and students,
less so. [ch/sl]
Bibliographie Heinz Piontek. Martin Hollender. Bielefeld: Aisthesis-Verlag, 2000. 450 p. 21 cm. (Archivreihe der Stiftung Haus Oberschlesien, 3) (Bibliographien zur deutschen Literaturgeschichte, 8). ISBN 3-89528-255-3: DM 158.00 [00-1/4-179]
Unlike many other German authors of his generation (e.g., Lenz, Böll, Grass, Hochhuth,
etc.), Heinz Piontek has steadfastly refused to involve his fiction in contemporary
political issues or concerns. His subjects are past times, disappeared streets, dying
professions--in other words, transitoriness, death, and nostalgia--leaving him with a
great deal of popular success but very little scholarly attention. The neglect is
unwarranted. This bibliography consists of over 3,500 items both by and about Piontek,
including a 12-page addendum of recent publications, for which the editors and publisher,
recognizing that a bibliography such as this is always a work in progress, deserve
recognition. It is in every regard an exemplary effort. [hak/sl]
Bibliographie Robert Wolfgang Schnell. Michael Fisch. Bielefeld: Aisthesis-Verlag, 1999. 71 p. 21 cm. (Bibliographien zur deutschen Literaturgeschichte, 9). ISBN 3-89528-262-6: DM 58.00 [00-1/4-180]
Once esteemed for his short stories, Robert Wolfgang Schnell (1916-1986) is now hardly known, and most of what has been written about him is of an occasional rather than a scholarly nature. This bibliography, compiled in an effort to revive Schnell's reputation, lists 253 works by him and 203 about him. The index, unfortunately, does not contain the titles of individual stories and poems in anthologies.
Given that it is not always the case with this publisher, it should be noted that the
typography employed in this volume makes for a clearly presented text. [hak/sl]
Reclams Romanlexikon [Reclam's Dictionary of the Novel]. Ed. Frank Rainer Max and Christine Ruhrberg. Stuttgart: Reclam. 15 cm. (Universal-Bibliothek, ). [00-1/4-181]
Vol. 4. 20. Jahrhundert [20th Century]. 1999. 579 p. (Universal-Bibliothek, 18004). ISBN 3-15-018004-X: DM 24.00
Vol. 5. 20. Jahrhundert [20th Century]. 2000. 572 p. (Universal-Bibliothek, 18005). ISBN 3-15-018005-8: DM 24.00
Reclams Romanlexikon: deutschsprachige erzählende Literatur vom Mittelalter bis zur Gegenwart [Reclam's Dictionary of the Novel: German Narrative Literature from the Middle Ages to the Present]. Ed. Frank Rainer Max and Christine Ruhrberg. Stuttgart: Reclam, 2000. 1,183 p. 25 cm. ISBN 3-15-010474-2: DM 98.00 [00-1/4-182]
These volumes continue the coverage of German fiction (very broadly defined), arranged chronologically by author's birth year, that was reviewed in RREA 5:126. Volume 4 reaches from Hans Fallada (born 1893) to Hermann Kant (born 1926); volume 5 from Siegfried Lenz (1926) to Jenny Zoë (1974). Works published as recently as 1999 are included. Among the authors whose works the fourth volume addresses are Joseph Roth, Heimito von Doderer, Ernst Jünger, Elias Canetti, Max Frisch, and Friedrich Dürrenmatt. The entries, generally written by experts, are highly informative, each giving a plot summary, a short interpretation, and critical valuations. This work's greatest contribution is in its coverage of writers who have unjustly sunk into obscurity, e.g., Ernst Kreuder. (Too bad that Jörg Mauthe was omitted.) [hak/sl]
In September 2000, a bound, single-volume edition of the Romanlexikon was made
available that cumulates the chronological entries into one alphabetical sequence (by
author). It is described as an "updated" edition, but with no further indication
of what specifically is different in terms of content. [sh/sl]
Europäische Reiseberichte des späten Mittelalters: eine analytische Bibliographie [European Travel Accounts of the Late Middle Ages: An Analytical Bibliography]. Ed. Werner Paravicini. Frankfurt am Main [et al.]: Lang. 23 cm. (Kieler Werkstücke: Reihe D, Beiträge zur europäischen Geschichte des späten Mittelalters, ...). [00-1/4-191]
Part 2: Französische Reiseberichte (French Travel Accounts). Ed. Jörg Wettlaufer. 1999. 270 p. (Kieler Werkstücke..., 12). ISBN 3-631-47685-X: DM 79.00.
Saintes pérégrinations: récits de voyage en Terre Sainte de la Collection L'Escalopier; 16 septembre-16 novembre 1996, Bibliothèque Municipale d'Amiens [Holy Pilgrimages: Accounts of Travel to the Holy Land in the Collection L'Escalopier]. Ed. Jean Vilbas. Paris: Fédération Française de Coopération entre Bibliothèques, 1996. 83 p. ill. 20 cm. (Collection "(Re)découvertes," 30). ISBN 2-907420-39-9: FF 45.00 [00-1/4-192]
For several years now, the perception of the foreign and its often unsettling effects upon one's own sense of identity have attracted considerable attention among historians and literary scholars. Within this context, the travel writing of late medieval and early modern times has become an especially fruitful area of study. These reports range from 13th-century accounts by Italian merchants and mendicant clerics of their journeys to the Mongols to the portrayals of the great journeys of discovery and conquest from the 16th through 18th centuries.
In 1995, Deutsche Reiseberichte, an analytical bibliography of late medieval travel accounts from German-speaking Europe, was published under the editorship of Christian Halm (see IFB 95-2-268). It began, however, as the project of Werner Paravicini, who until 1993 was professor for medieval history at the University of Kiel, and since then has been director of the German Historical Institute in Paris. This is now the second part of that work, comprising 41 accounts by French travelers, either in Latin or in French, from the period 1300 to 1530--whereby "French" is taken to mean a place of birth within the borders of France in 1477, i.e., the year in which Charles the Bold died. Of the 41 authors, 36 are known by name, while 5 remain anonymous. Additionally, Jacques Paviot covers 12 reports of French travelers to the Ottoman Empire during the 1530s and 40s, when Francis I sought a Turkish alliance against his Habsburg adversaries.
Most accounts are of pilgrimages to the Holy Land, while others cover destinations within Europe: Rome, Santiago, Naples, Prussia, Aachen. Two early 14th-century reports describe the journeys of Dominican missionaries to India. Accounts of journeys into the Atlantic or to the New World have been excluded.
Selection criteria are more restrictive than in the first volume. The introduction provides considerable detail on texts that were omitted (fictional accounts, anonymous guides for pilgrims, crusade exhortations, etc.), but also a concise survey of research into travel literature and a recapitulation of the structure of individual articles, all written to conform to the same analytical guidelines.
Each article consists of a general description, elaborating the goal of the journey, its duration, biographical details pertaining to the author, information where applicable regarding the author's other journeys, and information on accounts of travel to the same destination at about the same time. Seven areas of bibliographic description follow: (1) a detailed description of the manuscript tradition; (2) incunabula and other pre-1800 printed works; (3) editions of the 19th and 20th centuries; (4) inclusion in repertories, indexes, compendia, bibliographies, anthologies, etc.; (5) critical literature; (6) commentary (usually regarding the areas of the author's special interests); and (7) itinerary, to the extent it can be reconstructed. The volume concludes with indexes of abbreviated titles, manuscript catalogs, authors and their contemporaries, also including (much appreciated) the names of scholars who have researched these travel accounts, and finally all destinations and places visited along the way.
Covering as it does historical figures and their journeys not often mentioned in the usual reference works and hard-to-locate texts, this is a welcome survey and a valuable aid for researchers of this material. [ch/jg]
In connection with the above title, let us also mention a small exhibit catalog
published in 1996, presenting brief descriptions of works mainly by French travelers to
the Orient and especially the Holy Land. The manuscripts and printed works belong to the
library of Marie-Joseph-Charles, Comte de L'Escalopier (1812-1861), a private scholar and
bibliophile whose collection came as a gift to the city of Amiens. They range from
manuscripts of the 14th and 15th centuries (Jean de Mandeville) and 15th- and 16th-century
printed works to works of the mid-19th century. [sh/jg]
Tout Racine [The Complete Racine]. Jean-Pierre Battesti and Jean-Charles Chauvet. Paris: Larousse, 1999. xxxi, 663 p. ill. 25 cm. ISBN 2-035-08014-2: FF 250.00
An RREO Original Review
Tout Racine is not, as its title suggests, a collected edition of his works, but a comprehensive reference source on the life, times, and work of Racine. This work consists of three "dictionaries" in one volume, with over 400 entries. The authors, both French literature professors, have created an authoritative resource that captures all aspects of Racine's life and literary career, with entries varying in length from a few lines to many pages.
The first section or "dictionary," titled Racine et son siècle [Racine and His Century], contains brief entries and longer articles about Racine's contemporaries, family, friends and even enemies, major movements and events of Racine's era including Jansenism, various theatre groups, and voyages Racine made. The lengthy entry about Racine's education (Études) outlines the curriculum of a student in a 17th-century Jansenist establishment, thus providing an excellent background to what literary resources could have inspired Racine as a poet and dramatist.
The second "dictionary," titled L'oeuvre, les thèmes, les personnages [Works, Themes, Characters], has fewer but longer articles including detailed summaries of each work by Racine and entries on the major characters and themes in his plays. The authors also provide a historical list of the various actors who played the major roles. Sarah Bernhardt's portrayal of Phèdre includes descriptions of theatre critics' reviews of her performances.
These entries on the works also include lists of the major 20th-century stagings, followed by more detailed accounts of selected productions that comprise lists of the main actors, costume makers, set designers, and critical receptions of these performances. Each article concludes with analyses of the play by commentators who include Voltaire, Gautier, Gide, and Barthes. The analyses vary in length and include no more than a few paragraphs. Although this material serves as an excellent starting point for researching Racinian criticism, its placement in the section on Racine's work, rather than in the section on its posterity, is confusing.
The third "dictionary," La réception de l'oeuvre [Reception of Work], offers critical analysis of Racine's work by major writers and scholars. It organizes the criticism by century and presents how Racine was judged from one era to the next. This part also contains a subsection that describes Racinian theatre as it was staged in each century. Another subsection, titled L'Ecole et Racine [The School and Racine], traces the evolution of Racine as part of the national scholastic canon. The last subsection provides an alphabetical list of Racinian literary analysts and critics, briefly describing each critic's background and his/her major interpretation of Racine, including selected quotations.
Four appendixes provide a wealth of information, including a detailed chronology of Racine's life, a list of characters found in his plays, and a table showing the number of times each play has been produced in each century since its first production, with overall totals and ranks. The last appendix consists of a lengthy classed bibliography. The authors have also included two sections of illustrations: one of photographs and paintings of various theatre productions, and the second illustrating different interpretations of Néron and Phèdre by various actors.
Tout Racine provides a variety of ways to access research topics. The three "dictionaries" allow users to search for specific topics in a particular section. This arrangement, however, can cause confusion, especially when users refer to the list of entries at the beginning of the work, which contains a number of entries that appear in more than one "dictionary;" the list, however, does not provide page numbers but only the "dictionary" numbers. To add to this confusion, in the second "dictionary," lengthy articles on the plays are inserted in only gross alphabetical order, sometimes splitting shorter articles in two. The first fragment of a shorter article (e.g., "Alexandrin" or "Bienséances") may end with an indication of where the continuation is to be located. But if one has already found the final three-fourths of "Bienséances" (p. 308)--sandwiched between the articles on Bérénice and Britannicus--it is very difficult, in the absence of any "continued-from" note, to find the beginning of the article (p. 238), from which it is separated by the lengthy articles on three plays, whose running heads, moreover, keep the reader from discerning the actual arrangement of the two series of articles, long and short. Rather than splitting the resource into different "dictionaries" the authors should have merged all the entries into one source, which would render it easier to use.
French-speaking students of French literature, history, and theatre arts will recognize the importance of Tout Racine for their research. No other equivalent resource currently exists that is as comprehensive. The appendixes alone provide useful information. Unfortunately, the setup makes it difficult to use. Despite this flaw, this resource should serve any library that supports a French literature and theatre arts curriculum.
Erica Swenson Danowitz (American University)
Das Marcel-Proust-Lexikon [Marcel Proust Encyclopedia]. Philippe Michel-Thiriet. Transl. from the French by Rolf Wintermeyer. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp-Taschenbuch-Verlag, 1999. 514 p. ill. 21 cm. (Suhrkamp-Taschenbuch, 3049). Original work: "Quid de Marcel Proust" (rev. and expanded version contained in p. 1-313 of vol. 1 of the 3-vol. edition of A la recherche du temps perdu, publ. by R. Laffont, 1987). ISBN 3-518-39549-1: DM 27.80 [00-1/4-196]
L'ABCdaire de Proust [Proust ABC]. Thierry Laget. Paris: Flammarion, 1998. 199 p. ill. 22 cm. (L'ABCdaire, 62: Série littérature). ISBN 2-08-011798-X: FF 63.00 [00-1/4-197]
Proust-ABC. Ulrike Sprenger. Leipzig: Reclam, 1997. 222 p. ill. 19 cm. (Reclam-Bibliothek, 1601). ISBN 3-379-01601-2: DM 18.00 [00-1/4-198]
Proust encyclopedias seem to be much in fashion these days. How else can one explain the recent paperback republication of Das Marcel-Proust-Lexikon, the 1992 German translation of Philippe Michel-Thiriet's 1987 "Quid de Marcel Proust," following so close upon the release of similarly conceived works by Flammarion in France and Reclam in Germany? Yet despite its title, the Marcel-Proust-Lexikon is not at all encyclopedic in nature. Indeed, apart from the two-column layout typical of reference books, its two principal parts, "Das Werk" and "Die Person," could just as well have appeared monographically. Only the more minor sections of the Lexikon, covering respectively Proust's acquaintances, his works, the characters, and, separately, the places that occur in A la recherche du temps perdu, are alphabetically arranged and justify consideration of this book as a reference work.
At the same time, however, although the book doesn't qualify as an encyclopedia, it also disappoints as a monographic treatment, since it often lacks the scholarly depth and sophisticated perspective readers might have hoped for. There is, for example, a chapter entitled "Proust--und danach" [Proust--and Thereafter] where we might have expected an overview of Proust's critical reception. But these 25 pages present only a survey of the honors Proust received, the exhibits, museums, plaques, even streets, and postage stamps that have been named or created in his honor. At least we do also learn in this section the names of scholarly societies and research initiatives that occupy themselves with his oeuvre, along with a chronology of translations in 15 countries. But generally, the presentation lacks depth, as characterized by this statement reprinted here and attributed to Charles Du Bos: "His oeuvre constitutes one of the most significant contributions to French literature in a long time."
The first 250 pages of the work are devoted to an exposition of Proust's life. Following an initial biography, there are sections on his person, physical appearance, health, doctors, psyche, life milestones, and death. Then much of the same information is expanded upon in chapters on his childhood, military service, literary beginnings, and entry into society. The "Lexikon der Bekanntschaften" [Lexicon of Acquaintances] that closes this biographical section encompasses about 80 pages and recapitulates yet again many details already presented. Sprinkled throughout these pages are boxed texts, usually recounting anecdotes or incidents whose (assumed) relevance for the oeuvre are made explicit--whereby it seems that literature is always conceived of as a mirror image of "reality."
That the work is neither a true lexicon nor a consistent, coherent biography is one cause for criticism. That it is prone to superficial statements about its subject delivered in an adulatory tone leads, however, to another and perhaps more serious complaint, for in this work Proust becomes the object of the same kind of cultic worship usually reserved for soccer stars, rock musicians, and other popular culture heroes. In the chapter on meals ("Die Mahlzeiten"), for example, we discover what the star's favorite brands of coffee and mineral water were, where he got his croissants, and how exactly he behaved at meals--the reader is not spared frequent repetitions and contradictions.
Following this, 145 pages are devoted to Proust's oeuvre, whereby we can consider ourselves fortunate that his principal work, A la recherche du temps perdu, is at the beginning of the alphabet. After a short introduction to this work--often reading like a publisher's blurb--we reach what are probably the most useful parts of the section, the alphabetically arranged presentation of characters and places that occur in Proust's magnum opus. Here, too, however, and in the recapitulation of articles by well-known commentators (e.g., Adorno, Benjamin, Curtius, Spitzer), the approach is conservative and historical, and we receive little that might illuminate the current state of Proust research.
In light of the shortcomings of the Marcel-Proust-Lexikon, we look with even greater interest upon the other two works under review. Thierry Laget's brief ABCdaire de Proust is a kind of travel guide through the vast land of Proust. Thanks to its numerous, mostly color illustrations, it lends itself to pleasant browsing. The Proust biography is kept to a bare 15 pages, but it contains numerous cross-references to articles in the encyclopedia that makes up the greater part of the work. There, the articles are also marked to show whether they relate to oeuvre, biography, or historical context. As in the Marcel-Proust-Lexikon, there are also short introductions to the individual segments of A la recherche, but unlike in the Lexikon, these articles actually invite their readers to read on and to explore.
Entries in the Proust-ABC tend to be significantly longer than in the ABCdaire
de Proust, but they still fall far short of the length of entries in the Proust-Lexikon.
Unlike the fulsome self-praise of the Lexikon, however, the Proust-ABC makes
no claim to be the "key" to an understanding of Proust's work. In fact, it
largely omits biographical detail and anecdotes, referring readers instead to the numerous
biographies that already exist. (A life chronology would have been appreciated, however.)
Also, it carefully avoids asserting any direct connection between life and work, stating
instead that "every image is woven into a web of ambiguous references and every
reading brings forth new discoveries." It is, for this and other reasons, a far
better guide through Proust's work than the Marcel-Proust-Lexikon, which the
publisher would have done well not to reprint. [bk/jg]
Il dizionario della Commedia [The Dictionary of the Commedia]. Riccardo Merlante. Bologna: Zanichelli, 1999. 320 p. ill. 21 cm. ISBN 88-08-09425-1: Lit. 24,000 [00-1/4-206]
Anyone in need of quick orientation on a particular problem in Dante turns naturally to the six-volume Enciclopedia dantesca (ed. Umberto Bosco, Rome, 1970-78). But since this work is usually only found in larger research libraries, it has been a not unreasonable wish of "normal" Dante readers that there might someday be an analogous work in a single volume. All on his own, Riccardo Merlante has now created just such a work, which presents the most important information anyone might need for an understanding of the Divina Commedia in an economically priced single-volume lexicon. Rubrics exist for all individuals who appear in Dante's epic poem, likewise for all mythological figures, place names, and scientific terms. Furthermore, we find information on the structure of the journey to Paradise, Purgatory, and the Inferno, on Dante's life and writing, the sources he used, philosophical concepts central to an understanding of the work, the names of the most important commentators and illustrators over the centuries, as well as elucidations of problems revolving around meter and rhetoric. All in all, there are 1,900 lemmata in this Dizionario. Where appropriate, articles make reference to passages in the Commedia, though not to the critical literature. This need is met by a 26-page subject bibliography at the end of the work that focuses on more recent research.
The principal shortcoming of Merlante's work is that it makes virtually no reference to
Dante editions or to Dante scholarship published outside Italy. Only critical works that
have appeared in Italian translation are taken into account, among these studies by E. H.
Kantorowicz, A. Maier, and F. Ohly. Therefore excluded, for example, are Auerbach's great
study, Dante als Dichter der irdischen Welt (published in English as Dante, Poet
of the Secular World), as well as other important recent works, such as those by
German scholars Manfred Hardt, Marcella Roddewig, and Peter Kuon. Despite this unfortunate
limitation, the work remains of undeniable value for both Italian and non-Italian readers
of the Commedia, but only for those who are content to remain within the context of
Italian--rather than international--Dante scholarship. [frh/jg]
Dante dans le monde slave: corpus bibliographique [Dante in the Slavic World: The Bibliographic Corpus]. Milivoje Pejovic. Paris: Éditions du Titre, 1997. 96 leaves. 25 cm. ISBN 2-907324-11-X: FF 100.00 [00-1/4-207]
This slight volume does not deliver on the promise made in its title. Instead it merely
reproduces the results of a 1986 survey the author conducted among the national libraries
of Czechoslovakia, Poland, Yugoslavia, Bulgaria, and the USSR. These results are organized
thematically, namely into Dante editions and secondary literature each library held as of
1986, but no further intellectual effort has been invested. The survey results were
supposed to result in a book on Dante and Dante research in Slavic countries, but such a
work was never published. The titles cited, e.g., 262 from Czechoslovakia, 165 for Poland,
none (!) for Yugoslavia, and a paltry three dozen each for Bulgaria and the USSR, do not
go beyond and sometimes lag far behind existing Dante bibliographies from these countries,
such as Dante i jego dziela w Polsce by Walerian Preisner (1957), Sonja Roic's
"Bibliografia 'Dante nelle letterature jugoslave'" (in Studia romanica et
anglica zagrabiensia, 1982-83), and V. T. Dancenko's Dante Alig'eri:
bibliograficeskij ukazatel' russkich perevodov i kriticeskoj literatury na russkom jazyke
1762-1972 (1973). [sh/jg]
Bibliographisches Handbuch der Calderón-Forschung = Manual bibliográfico Calderóniano [Bibliographical Handbook of Calderón Research]. Kurt and Roswitha Reichenberger. Kassel: Reichenberger. 30 cm. (Vols. 1 and 3 publ. by Verlag Thiele und Schwarz, Kassel, 1979-81) [00-1/4-208]
Vol. 2. Die Literatur über Calderón und seine Werke 1680-1980 [The Literature on Calderón and His Works, 1680-1980]. Pt. 1. 1999. xxiii, 604 p. ISBN 3-931887-74-X: DM 480.00
More than 20 years after publication of the first volume, this work may now be approaching completion--although the hope (and the publisher's promise) to have the second part of volume 2 on the market by Calderón's 400th birthday in 2000 has not been fulfilled. The reasons for this delay are not presented in Luis Alberto de Cuenca's Spanish-language introduction to the present half-volume, but they probably have something to do with the fact that the two authors also run their own publishing house, Edition Reichenberger, founded in 1982. This publisher has an emphasis on Spanish siglo de oro literature, especially Calderón, whose works are gradually being published in their series "Ediciones críticas." Other relevant series of Edition Reichenberger are the "Estudios de literatura" (with six titles on Calderón to date) and "Bibliografías y catálogos."
This bibliography is structured in a conservative but proven manner. The first eight sections are devoted to: (1) bibliographies; (2) life and work; (3) biography and environment; (4) Calderón in world literature; (5) the poet in his age; (6) language, style, meter; (7) Calderón's subject matter; and (8) textual and editorial history. These eight sections take up only 160 pages, while the ninth section, on Calderón's comedias, fills 400, and is then followed by the author index (p. 577-604). The ninth section begins with three general rubrics, leaving the vast bulk of the section for alphabetically arranged comedy-by-comedy coverage. For each comedy, there is a brief content characterization in German and Spanish and a note on the location of the manuscripts. Then the secondary literature and modern text editions are listed chronologically through 1979 (which is the actual closing date of this work's coverage--not 1980, as stated in the introduction). With the notable exception of several major treatments, titles are not annotated, though reviews are marked as such. The exceptions are mainly large German monographs of the 19th century, e.g., those of Schack, Schmidt, Rapp, and Schaeffer. For these, annotations are provided to give page numbers where individual works are discussed. Every mention of each of these large omnibus works is accompanied redundantly by complete bibliographic data--one wonders what would have been lost by introducing simple abbreviations instead.
The table of contents gives us an idea of what will be contained in part 2. Chapter 10
will cover the autos sacramentales; 11, teatro breve; 12, miscellaneous
writings; and chapter 13, works attributed to Calderón. Chapter 14 will contain a major
discussion of Calderón's literary legacy. A supplement for the years 1980-1997, compiled
by Eva Reichenberger, is announced in the introduction, to appear in the series
"Bibliografías y catálogos." [sh/jg]
Cátalogo de Pliegos Sueltos poéticos de la Biblioteca Nacional, siglo XVII [Catalog of Poetical Chapbooks in the National Library, 17th Century]. Maria Cruz García de Enterría. Madrid: Biblioteca Nacional, 1998. 882 p. 28 cm. ISBN 848138285X: Ptas. 10,400
An RREO Original Review
When Arthur L.F. Askins and Victor Infantes noted in the introduction to their Nuevo diccionario bibliográfico de Pliegos Sueltos poéticos, siglo XVI (see RREA 5:131) that a steady stream of research in the history of pliegos sueltos started in the 1950s, they were speaking of the existing collections in various libraries around the world, but especially those of the Biblioteca Nacional de Madrid which has one of the richest collections of this genre. As indicated in the review of Askins's and Infantes's work in our previous issue, pliego suelto literally means loose leaf. Rodríguez-Moñino's definition refers to a piece of regular size paper, folded twice to obtain eight leaves. As time went by, the concept of the pliego suelto was extended to include notebooks or chapbooks of 32 pages or more. Peddlers, blind beggars, and street people made the pliegos accessible to the public, generally on street corners, plazas, markets, and shops. The pliegos were bound with a string that held them in the middle and were quite affordable.
The present Cátalogo, covering the 17th century, was compiled under the direction of the renowned scholar María Cruz de Enterría and her team of researchers from the Universidad de Alcalá de Henares and the Biblioteca Nacional de Madrid. It lists some 1,184 pliegos written in Castilian verse. In the introduction, Isabel Ruiz de Elvira of the Biblioteca Nacional notes that a total of 268 items have been publicly described for the first time, including 25 entries that were a part of García Enterría's unpublished dissertation. García Enterría and her team have enriched the Cátalogo with 10 comprehensive indexes: titles, names, authors, printers/publishers/book sellers, imprints (geographical/chronological), incipits, accounts of events (chronological), provenances, and shelf marks. There are also three appendixes, describing (1) pliegos that are not clearly dated, (2) pliegos in prose interspersed with verse, and (3) pliegos in other libraries that are held in later editions in the Biblioteca Nacional. Ruiz de Elvira also proposes a typology of these 17th-century works: (1) pliegos políticos y economiásticos (political and eulogistic broadsides), (2) relaciones de sucesos (accounts of events), which include (3), (4), and (5), relaciones de fiestas (accounts of festivals), otros sucesos (other events), and sucesos legendarios históricos (historical legendary events); (6) pliegos religiosos (religious broadsides); (7) burlescos y satíricos (comic and satirical broadsides); (8) pliegos cultos (learned broadsides); (9) relaciones de comedia (accounts of plays); and (10) pliegos teatrales (theatre broadsides).
The maximum length that García Enterría assigns to the pliego differs from Rodríguez Moñino's and Askins's and Infantes's definitions. Unlike Rodríguez Moñino, who imposed a limit of 20 pages, and Askins and Infantes, who believed that pliegos could vary in length, García de Enterría strictly follows her own definition, i.e., pliegos of no more than 32 pages. The selected sources include mostly poetry (sonnets, couplets, romances, décimas, villancicos, etc.), all dated between 1601-1700 and written in Castilian, with, however, some texts composed in Latin, Catalan, and Portuguese preceded by introductory verses translated into Castilian. In addition, the compilers included mixed works that are at least 50 percent in verse.
Entries are arranged by main entry (author's name or anonymous title) and are assigned a unique catalog number. A bibliographical description indicates the type of composition and collation, and brief annotations delineate the contents and provide references to previous research. The 10 indexes offer different points of access to the primary sources.
The Biblioteca Nacional's collections represent, as Askins and Infantes had recognized, an unquestionably important part of scholarly research on the tradition of the chapbooks for both erudite and popular literary Spanish cultures. García de Enterría and her team of researchers add a total of 268 new items, thus extending our historical knowledge of the pliegos. Undoubtedly, this is a unique and well organized, thoroughly indexed tool that will be indispensable to any research library in the humanities.
Martha Zárate (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)
Biblos enciclopédia Verbo das literaturas de língua portuguesa [Biblos: Verbo Encyclopedia of Literatures in Portuguese]. Lisboa: Verbo, 1995- . Vols. 1-3 [A-Cur, D-Le, Le-Pa], ca. 700 p./vol. 26 cm. No ISBN in book; vols. 1 and 2 listed as 972-22-1660-4 and 972-22-1855-7 in Livros disponíveis. Esc. 8,740/vol.
An RREO Original Review
Biblos is an exhaustive literary encyclopedia in Portuguese published under the auspices of the Sociedade Científica da Universidade Católica Portuguesa (Scholarly Society of the Portuguese Catholic University) and edited by scholars at the Universidade de Coimbra and Universidade de Lisboa in Portugal, and the Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. The first three volumes (apparently out of five) published so far represent a valuable guide to a wide range of specialized topics, covering both general terminology from literary criticism and the literature of the Portuguese-speaking countries.
Biblos offers lengthy and well thought-out essays covering authors, journals, literary genres, theories of influence, and general literary terms such as epístola, epitáfio, elegía, comedia, madrigal, barroco, and finda (a short strophe used as an envoi in the Galician-Portuguese troubadouresque cantigas [songs or ballads]). The article on the finda indicates that it corresponds to the Provençal tornada and the Italian commiato, but focuses on Portuguese poetry of the early medieval period. For readers interested in the literature of cordel (chapbooks), there is a 13-page article that highlights the importance of this popular marginal form in the literatures of Portugal, Brazil, and Spain.
Biblos's articles stimulate the reader's interest and offer bio-bibliographical information on canonical authors of Portuguese literature, such as the author of Os Lusíadas, Luíz Vaz de Camões (1542-1580), considered the Shakespeare of Portugal. He is the object of a 10-page essay followed by a page-long bibliography of editions and secondary sources. In addition to canonical, mostly male, Portuguese authors, Biblos includes biographical studies on prominent women literary figures such as Marianna Belmira de Andrade, Rita Clara Freire de Andrade, María Agustina Bessa-Luís, Marina Colasante, and Clarice Lispector.
Biblos also includes authors and other topics in European literatures that have influenced Portuguese culture and literatures. For example, we find essays on the cancioneiros (songbooks) that explain the relationship of Portuguese lyrics to the traditional Galician-Portuguese poetry of northwestern Spain. And, in order for users to have a clear context of the evolution of Portuguese literature, there are articles on major classical and Renaissance authors: Homer, Petrarch, Góngora, Dante, Boccaccio, and Tasso. Also highlighted are French realism and symbolist poetry that gained influence in Portuguese-language fiction and poetry in the 1870s through the writings of José Maria Eça de Queirós, António Nobre, Eugénio de Castro, Teixeira Pascoais, and Teófilo Braga. These writers were influenced by French realists such as Gustave Flaubert, and symbolist poets such as Baudelaire and Mallarmé, who arefeatured in lengthy articles. An article on the German author Thomas Mann sheds light on the Portuguese ancestry of this author. In addition, Eloísa Alvarez' entry on the Spanish poet Federico García Lorca (1898-1936) associates the dictatorial regimes of António Oliveira Salazar of Portugal and Francisco Franco of Spain. García Lorca's poetry and theater enjoyed wide readership and admiration in Portugal. According to Alvarez, the discussion of Lorca's aesthetics fostered a dialogue between the two countries during common political circumstances. As a further example, an entire 12-page essay is devoted to the roots of modern art that began with Marinetti's Futurist Manifesto in the early 20th century. Biblos thus establishes literary connections between Portuguese and mainstream European currents and movements that marked new trends in the Portuguese literatures.
Another subject that this encyclopedia treats at length is history, both factual and legendary. We find, for example, articles on the history of the city of Coimbra, the story of Merlin, the history of Portugal, and historiography. The last is a flourishing genre in Portuguese literature focusing on kings and prominent cultural figures, such as the chronicles of Fernão Lopes (born ca. 1380).
Biblos has a strong editorial board of approximately 360 scholars. Volume 3 alone has 201 contributors, including 90 women scholars, which is a notable accomplishment for a culture traditionally dominated by males. Although all of the contributors' names are preceded by the title of "professor," it is regrettable that Biblos does not include their fields of authority and specialization or even their institutional affiliations.
Despite these minor reservations, this encyclopedia should fill a very valuable role as a general reference for professors and graduate students in Luso-Brazilian literary studies.
Martha Zárate (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)
Chronologisches Lexikon der portugiesischen Literatur: nach dem "Pequeno roteiro da literatura portuguesa" [Chronological Lexicon of Portuguese Literature, Based on the "Concise Guide to Portuguese Literature"]. Ed. Ilídio Rocha, German translation Renate Heß. Frankfurt am Main: TFM, Ferrer de Mesquita, 1999. 328 p. 22 cm. Portuguese edition under the title: Roteiro da literatura portuguesa. ISBN 3-925203-62-1: DM 34.00 [00-1/4-209]
Dicionário cronológico de autores portugueses[Chronological Dictionary of Portuguese Authors]. Ed. Instituto Português do Livro e das Bibliotecas. Mem Martins: Publicaçoes Europa-América. 18 cm. [00-1/4-210]
Vol. 1. Autores nascidos entre o século XII e o fim do século XVIII [Authors Born between the 12th Century and the End of the 18th Century]. Ed. Eugénio Lisboa. Rev. and enl. ed. 1991. 648 p. ISBN 972-1-00640-8
Vol. 2. Autores nascidos entre 1800 e 1866 [Authors Born between 1800 and 1866]. Ed. Eugénio Lisboa. 1990. 513 p. ISBN 972-1-03157-7
Vol. 3. Autores nascidos entre 1867 e 1899 [Authors Born between 1867 and 1899]. Ed. Eugénio Lisboa. 1994. 569 p. ISBN 972-1-03185-2
Vol. 4. Autores nascidos entre 1900 e 1919 [Authors Born Between 1900 and 1919]. Ed. Ilídio Rocha. 1998. 740 p. ISBN 972-1-04378-8
The German-language chronological Lexicon, based on the 1995 and 1998 editions of the Pequeno roteiro da historia da literatura portuguesa, was revised to include material from 1999, and also German translations of works by Portuguese authors. It contains 501 entries, beginning with collective articles (e.g., on troubadour poetry), followed by articles on individual authors, from King Joao (1357-1433) through José Riço Direitinho (b. 1965). The chronological order is less useful than if the entries had been arranged alphabetically. The generally brief articles list the author's birth and death years, relevant genre(s), place in literary history, and main works, including any translations into German. The work concludes with a useful index of literary and scholarly terms and a selective bibliography of Portuguese and German secondary literature of related interest.
The Dicionario, originally intended to be complete in three volumes, will total at least six when finished. While its entries are similar in structure and layout to those in the chronological lexicon, the Dicionario covers substantially more authors, as well as literary critics and scholars. For example, Vol. 4 contains 620 names, compared with 89 in the lexicon for that time period. Entries are unsigned, but contributors to the Dicionario are listed at the end of each volume (e.g., 45 for volume 4). There is also an index of authors and pseudonyms.
While the Chronologisches Lexikon, funded by the Instituto Português do Livro,
serves to expand knowledge of Portuguese literature abroad, the multivolume Dicionario
(likewise funded by the Instituto) is indispensable for specialized and research
Russkie pisateli 1800-1917: biograficheskii slovar' [Russian Writers, 1800-1917: A Biographical Dictionary]. Ed. P. A. Nikolaev. Moskva: Nauchnoe Izdat. "Rossiiskaia Entsiklopediia." 27 cm. (Russkie pisateli 11-20 vv. [Russian Writers from the 11th-20th Centuries]). ISBN 5-85270-011-8 [00-1/4-211]
1. A-G. 1989. 671 p. ill. ISBN 5-85270-136-X: DM 57.00
2. G-K. 1992. 621 p. ill. ISBN 5-85270-064-9: DM 54.00
3. K-M. 1994. 590 p. ill. ISBN 5-85270-112-2: DM 54.00
4. M-P. 1999. 703 p. ill. ISBN 5-85270-256-0: DM 65.00
Published in cooperation with the Institute of Russian Literature (Pushkin House), this most comprehensive and thorough literary encyclopedia covers prose writers, dramatists, and poets, as well as many literary critics, scholars, and philosophers. While all the volumes were published in the period of transition from communism, the first three were not free from Soviet-era ideological limitations, such as not mentioning Stalinist-era political persecution or restricting discussion to an author's pre-1917 compositions. Only volume 4 does not exhibit these characteristics (which in the other volumes detract from the articles' value). As political pressures relaxed, each volume became more detailed than the previous one. Many lesser-known authors back to 1800 have been included, but still some important authors--e.g., Georgii Peskov (1895-1977) and Stepan Pisakhov (1879-1960)--are missing. Volume 4 was to be the final volume, but now two more volumes are planned, with all six covering a total of some 4,500 authors.
The relatively long entries contain many biographical details, bibliographical data, quotations from contemporaries (including book reviews), extensive bibliographies of Russian and western sources, locations of archives, and references to entries in other reference works. Three glossaries list tsarist-era civil and military ranks, grades, agencies, salaries, and pensions, and also provide information on the educational system and institutions of learning. Each volume contains many illustrations--portraits, drawings, caricatures, and book-page illustrations.
Compared with its Soviet-era predecessors, such as the Kratkaia literaturnaia entsiklopediia (KLE) [Concise Literary Encyclopedia] (Moskva, 1962-1978) and the Literaturnaia entsiklopediia (LE) [Literary Encyclopedia] (Moskva, 1929-1937, incomplete), Russkie pisateli (RP) gives a considerably broader range of information. For example, the chemist Dmitrii Mendeleev (1834-1907), who was also a leading essayist, never appeared before in a major Russian literary encyclopedia. His writings on science, industry, and education are discussed here, as are for the first time his essays on his belief that the falsehoods of socialism would lead to the enslavement of peoples. The characterization of Sofiia Parnok has changed completely--from a terse diatribe in the 1934 volume of the LE, to a similarly terse but complimentary article in the KLE, (which mentions her as a well-known Russian poet), to a balanced article in the RP. This article, which is 20 times as long as the previous ones, mentions her lesbianism as the basis of many of her poems, discusses the 1917 collapse of the non-political literary movement "Tsech poetov" (Poets' Workshop), and cites the recognition she has found among émigré scholars and western Slavicists.
The special merits of this dictionary are the large number of authors covered and its extensive articles and focused portrayals, that is to say, its wealth of information. This work's striving for objectivity should be seen not only compared to the Soviet era but also compared to that of Russian scholars of today, many of whom still have not overcome the ideology of the Stalin era. When one considers the miserable material conditions under which present-day Russian scholars work, the editors deserve our respect and thanks.
This dictionary belongs in every research library, as well as in every Slavic studies
collection. It will also prove to be of great value to scholars of history, philosophy,
and religious studies. [wk/ga]
Lexikon der russischen Literatur des 20. Jahrhunderts: vom Beginn des Jahrhunderts bis zum Ende der Sowjetära [Dictionary of 20th-Century Russian Literature: From the Beginning of the Century to the End of the Soviet Era]. Ed. Wolfgang Kasack. München: Sagner, 1992. 20 cm. (Arbeiten und Texte zur Slavistik, ). [00-1/4-212]
Bibliographische und biographische Ergänzungen [Bibliographical and Biographical Supplements]. 2000. 87 p. (Arbeiten und Texte zur Slavistik, 68). ISBN 3-87690-761-6: DM 22.00
The main volume of the Lexikon der russischen Literatur des 20. Jahrhundert, published in a second edition in 1992, included broad coverage of émigré authors, a feature that made it without rival in its field. The original edition (Lexikon der russischen Literatur ab 1917, Stuttgart, 1976) has been translated into Bulgarian (1996), English (1988), Polish (1996), and Russian (1996). When a Czech and a second Russian edition were being readied, the editor decided to compile these bibliographical and biographical "supplements" to the second German edition, as he was unable to revise and update the entire work.
This slender volume is divided into four parts. The biographical updates (p. 8-9) include death dates. The bibliographical updates (p. 10-65) cover new editions of texts, as well as secondary literature and citations to each author in recent reference works. These works themselves appear in an annotated list (p. 66-77). The volume concludes with an index of writers and authors of the entries.
Although having to use a separate supplement with a reference work is inconvenient, one
must thank the editor for making the fruits of his continued labor in the field of
20th-century Russian literature available to scholars in the form of these important
Slovar' poetov russkogo zarubezh'ia [Dictionary of Poets of the Russian Emigration]. Ed. Vadim Kreyd. Sankt-Peterburg: Izdat. Russkogo Khristianskogo Gumanitarnogo Instituta, 1999. 472 p. 21 cm. ISBN 5-88812-094-4 [00-1/4-213]
Edited by Vadim Kreyd (University of Iowa) and two Russian writers, the poet Valentina Sinkevich and scholar Dmitrii Bobyshev, this dictionary covers 393 émigré poets of the 20th century. Although in principle Russian literature should be treated as a whole, regardless of geography, politics, or genre, the decades-long Soviet neglect, even defamation, of émigré authors has created such a need for information, that works limited to these authors are justified.
The work covers lyric poets (e.g., Marina Tsvetaeva, Georgii Ivanov), prose writers (e.g., Ivan Bunin, Vladimir Nabokov), and literary scholars (e.g., Boris Filippov, Gleb Struve). The three editors of this dictionary are also included. Notable is that the work includes a number of relatively unknown lyric poets, whose publications have appeared only with considerable difficulty.
Vadim Kreyd and Valentina Sinkevich have for years been leaders in furthering appreciation of Russian émigré poetry and its place in Russian literature. Sinkevich has brought out the annual anthology of Russian émigré poets, Vstrechi [Encounters] (Philadelphia) since 1977, and in 1992 she published an anthology, Berega [Shores], of poets of the "second wave" of emigration. Kreyd is the editor of the oldest and leading émigré literary journal Novyi Zhurnal [New Journal] (New York), and in 1995 he published an anthology, Vernut'sia v Rossiiu--Stikhami [Return to Russia in Verses], featuring works by some 200 poets, who comprise more than half the poets covered in this dictionary.
The editors draw on some 12 anthologies (including their own works mentioned above) and also some 20 major reference works, of which 6 are western and include works such as the Dictionary of Russian Women Writers (Westport, CT, 1994), the Handbook of Russian Literature (New Haven, 1985), and the 1988 Russian edition of Wolfgang Kasack's Lexikon der Russischen Literatur des 20. Jahrhunderts (see RREA 6:145 above for a review of a recent supplement to this work).
The articles range from a few lines for those poets with a limited number of publications (perhaps not even a single volume), to three printed pages. Biographical information predominates, with citations to other reference works and to collections, almanacs, and journals where their poems can be found. Better-known authors receive more extensive biographical treatment, as well as critiques of their work by other Russian poets. The editors also provide detailed essays on selected poets with whose works and personas they are well acquainted. Thus, for example, Kreyd writes about Konstantin Bal'mont and Georgii Ivanov; Sinkevich about Ivan Elagin and Oleg Il'inskii; and Bobyshev about Igor' Chinnov and Iurii Ivask.
The editors have Russian readers foremost in mind. The dictionary is mainly confined to Russian sources (important monographs in other languages are not included). Even the names of Western cities (e.g., New York, Frankfurt) are given in Cyrillic script, and of all the non-Russian sources, only English-language periodicals are listed in their original titles.
The émigrés are arranged according to each successive wave of emigration, which helps historical researchers. To find specific names easily, one must use the alphabetically arranged index. Kreyd's detailed commentaries increase the value of this dictionary for future literary research and, together with his other handbooks and anthologies, provide a significant supplement to John Glad's major work Russia Abroad (Washington, DC, 1999), which covers the period 1906-1991.
Kreyd and his two partners have done a good job. This dictionary facilitates research
on Russian émigré poets, and it preserves many names that otherwise would be forgotten.
Together with the anthologies Vstrechi, Berega, and Vernut'sia v Rossiiu
Stikhami, this new dictionary of Russian émigré poets and poetry of the 20th century
will become an indispensable reference work. [wk/ga]
A Bibliographical Guide to Classical Studies. Ed. Graham Whitaker. Hildesheim: Olms-Weidmann. 27 cm. [00-1/4-217]
Vol. 3. Literature: Gaius-Pindaros. 2000. viii, 430 p. ISBN 3-487-10467-9: DM 228.00
Volumes 1 and 2 were reviewed in detail in RREA 4:174. There has been a three-year gap between volume 2 and volume 3. After volume 4 (which will conclude the literature portion), five more volumes are planned: volume 5 for language plus four more volumes for other areas of classical studies.
The Guide covers only monographs from 1873-1980, thus excluding basically the last 20 years' worth of scholarship. Those works listed are annotated in detail. This well-organized work is thus best suited for a retrospective search for scholarly monographs and text editions from a period of over one hundred years. [sh/ga]
Table of Contents
suggestions, or questions
Last update: September 7, 2001 [RD]
© 2005 Casalini libri - VAT no. IT03106600483