The Avoidance of Divorce in Goethe’s Die Wahlverwandtschaften

Leydecker, Karl (2011) The Avoidance of Divorce in Goethe’s Die Wahlverwandtschaften. Modern Language Review, 106 (4). pp. 1054-1072. ISSN 0026-7937. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Starting from Walter Benjamin's insight into the importance of marital dissolution in Die Wahlverwandtschaften, this article argues that the work is one in which divorce is an omnipresent narrative possibility that Goethe's novel is fascinated by, but ultimately shies away from. The compulsive discussion, and avoidance, of divorce in the novel is examined in the context of the legal, ideological, and social framework in place at the time it appeared. The article concludes by demonstrating the central role that Die Wahlverwandtschaften played in debates about divorce reform in the 1840s and again at the end of the nineteenth century.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PT Germanic literature
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of European Culture and Languages > German
Depositing User: Fiona Godfrey
Date Deposited: 28 Aug 2012 09:37
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2012 09:39
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