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on 13 December 2017
Be aware that Amazon are tricking you into believing that you are receiving the David Luke translation. You are not ! But they disguise that fact by offering it under the "Oxford World Classics" banner and though it is a different frontpiece illustration no other information is provided. They lead you to make a false assumption. Underhand....Bad!!
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on 30 May 2016
I read this book years ago, and was not enthralled. My feelings have not really changed. It still seems disjointed, and seldom gripped me. The translator states that a poetic translation is essential; his text often is less than poetic. He also states his intention of avoiding language which of an ephemeral nature; he fails to avoid this category. I confess that I have little appetite for Part 2!
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on 14 December 2012
After reading the preface and introduction I began to suspect the essence of the work would be lost in translation and as I don't speak German,or have read any other translations,I'm not in a position to argue this point.However the prose is lively enough and contains sufficient insightful treatments into the predicaments of human existence to make it and entertaining read.It seemed to go astray towards the end and it was sometimes difficult to ascertain what was or had happened as the entire work reads as a script.
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on 16 July 2017
Four stars for the work. I was under the impression that this was parts one and two. In fact it is just part one. The verse translation is very readable, even for someone like me who rarely reads anything in verse.
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on 17 June 2016
The English translation could with a little more gravitas, but that's made up for by an absorbing and illuminating introduction and some excellent explanatory notes that enrich understanding of the play and appreciation of what Goethe was trying to do with it.
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on 4 April 2018
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on 12 May 2016
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on 17 November 2012
After reading many books that quoted J W Von Goethe's classic work I felt that it was time to engage with the epic poem in it's entirety.

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.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 9 February 2010
The story of Faust, the academic who sold his soul to regain his youth, has been with us for many years. There have been many versions, not least Christopher Marlowe's version in English literature. It is however, Goethe's version, that has fascinated so many artists and thinkers in modern times: composers like Berlioz, Gounod, Liszt, Mahler, thinkers like Nietzsche and Jung and many others.

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.
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on 26 November 2017
Excellent edition.
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