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"Goethe's Free Market Approach to World Literature" - A Lecture by Professor Martin Puchner

Why would a German writer living in provincial Weimar correctly predict our global marketplace in literature? In answering this question, I consider Goethe’s position at the receiving end of French and English metropolitan culture; his interest in newly arrived literatures from colonial and trade empires; his experience as a traveler; and his insight into market mechanisms for the circulation of literary products. These elements created the condition for his coinage of the term world literature. All that was needed was a trigger . . .    
Martin Puchner is the Byron and Anita Wien Professor of Drama and of English and Comparative Literature at Harvard University. He is the author of The Drama of Ideas: Platonic Provocations in Theater and Philosophy (Oxford, 2010; winner of the Joe A. Callaway Award), Poetry of the Revolution: Marx, Manifestos, and the Avant-Gardes (Princeton, 2006; winner of the MLA's James Russell Lowell Award) and Stage Fright: Modernism, Anti-Theatricality, and Drama (Hopkins, 2002; 2011), as well as of numerous edited volumes and sourcebooks. He is the general editor of the Norton Anthology of World Literature and the Norton Anthology of Western Literature. He also writes for the London Review of Books, Raritan, Bookforum, N+1, Public Books and Inside Higher Ed. At Harvard, he has been involved in enhancing the role of the arts and humanities and led the effort to establish a program in theater, dance, and media.  



Tuesday, May 10, 2016. 12:00 PM


Pigott Hall (Bldg 260), room 252


Department of German Studies; Department of English; Department of Comparative Literature