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In the eye of Apollo: world literature from Goethe to Google

Stougaard-Nielsen, J.; (2008) In the eye of Apollo: world literature from Goethe to Google. [Lecture]. Presented at: UCL Mellon Programme: Interdisciplinary Seminar 2007-2008, University College London, UK. Green open access


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“National literature is now a rather unmeaning term; the epoch of world literature is at hand, and everyone must strive to hasten its approach.” Thus the Olympian poet Goethe spoke to his young disciple Johann Peter Eckermann in Weimar in 1827. In Copenhagen, 1899, the great European critic Georg Brandes revived the term as a response to the surge of nationalism in European literature and culture; and in 1952, the emigrant critic, Erich Auerbach, turned to Goethe’s enduring concept as a framework for the emerging future of philology and humanism after WWII. Recent years have witnessed yet another revival of interest in world literature fuelled by a growing concern with a globalized marketplace, migration and new modes of communication. Goethe’s conversations with Eckermann, from which the concept was popularized, inaugurated a dialogue, based on a new cultural awareness of a global modernity, in which we still take part today. This seminar will introduce to the shifting meanings and applications of the concept of world literature, especially as it relates to changing conceptions of international and national cultures and literatures, in order to suggest productive perspectives on the conditions of literature in a transnational space of globalized cultures and media.

Type: Conference item (Lecture)
Title: In the eye of Apollo: world literature from Goethe to Google
Event: UCL Mellon Programme: Interdisciplinary Seminar 2007-2008
Location: University College London, UK
Dates: 24 October, 2007 - 13 May, 2008
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/mellon-program/seminars/2007-...
Language: English
Additional information: Images used as figures 1, 2 and 4 are from NASA. Information on use of images can be found at http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/policies.html The following figures have been removed for copyright reasons: fig.3; Image of cover of Time magazine dated January 3rd 1969 showing an illustration of Apollo 8 astronauts William A. Anders, Frank Borman and Jim Lovell http://www.time.com/time/magazine/0,9263,7601690103,00.html; fig.5 Photograph of Al Gore in front of a picture of Earth with clouds; fig.6 Image of the painting Goethe seinem Schreiber John diktierend (Goethe Dictating to his Clerk John) by Johann Joseph Schmeller, 1834
UCL classification: UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of EU Langs, Culture and Society > Scandinavian Studies
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/17390
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