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Faust, Part I Paperback – 28 Jul 2005
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" One of those great works of literature into which a writer has been able to combine his ranging preoccupations and understanding as he worked."
-A. S. Byatt, from the Preface
From the Inside Flap
The best translation of "Faust available, this volume provides the original German text and its English counterpart on facing pages. Walter Kaufmann's translation conveys the poetic beauty and rhythm as well as the complex depth of Goethe's language. Includes Part One and selections from Part Two. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
Penguin Classics have been giving us Philip Wayne's translation for many years. The translation is good, but having been done in the 1940's, it is now showing it's age, not least in the language which can seem to contemporary tastes a little ponderous. David Constantine is one of the best English poets now writing. He is also probably the leading translator of German poetry. Thus I looked forward to how he would approach the task.
He does not disappoint. What we get is a poetic, Faust that is fresh, vibrant and alive. What's more it's easier to follow the narrative, with some very illuminating notes at the back (the Wayne version had none) on the origins of certain phrases. It's also a good read, the version I would recommend to any one coming to the text for the first time.
Thank you, David. I look forward to see what you have done with Faust, Part II: Pt. 2, which I've just ordered.
I must admit I wasn't too sure what to expect, how would or could someone tell a complex story containing many interacting characters in the form of a poem? It is worth reading this book to find not only to that question but to experience a true masterpiece of language and literature based on a German folktale.
The introduction is engaging and explanatory and puts the story and how it is told into context, this is of the utmost importance as without this the story would become confusing.
Expand your engagement with literature and buy this book, you will only grow from reading it.