Title:

Johann Nestroy: Aphorisms, Ditties, and Deliberations From His Plays

Author(s):

Translations by Herbert Czermak

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Johann Nestroy: Aphorisms, Ditties, and Deliberations From His Plays

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~ These Translations Are Dedicated To The Memory Of Maria Verber ~

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Though Nestroy typically needed only the flimsiest structure with a minimum of tension to hang his gags and skits on, it is still infinitely more difficult to do justice to a translation if considerations of dialog, shifting levels of speech, the interaction between characters, or of plot structure enter into the picture.Even so, I have not been able to cope with some of Nestroy´s strokes of genius, sometimes also because the original flavor has evaporated on their paths from the stage to the page and through time.But even if one side should come out more clearly in your imagination than the other, remember that a translation can best be appreciated by those familiar with both sides.

-- Herbert Czmerak, herbert.czermak@chello.at

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Herbert Czermak, an Austrian academic partly schooled in America, has translated with wit and grace an enticing sampler of reflections, bon mots, and witticisms (some light, some very dark) from the plays of one of the premier dramatists of the 19th c sprachraum. Nestroy's humanity shines through these selections. As well, the translator's comprehensive gifts in German and English make for clear and powerful reading to a German or an English language audience. Some of the best literary efforts are those -- applying Austen and her technique of a "bit of ivory" -- which aim deep and not wide. Such is this delightful volume. The translator's taste and command impressively draw us into Nestroy's world.

--Tom Phillips, Wake Forest University, phillito@wfu.edu

 

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A print edition of this book is available from Amazon.com, here.

 

A print edition of this book is also available from Amazon.de, here.

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