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December 23, 2004

Narcissus and Goldmund

Last night I finished reading Hermann Hesse's Narcissus and Goldmund. I wanted to quote my favorite passage from it, but already leant it out to a friend.

I google'd for an essay analyzing some of the themes and images in the book, and found very little, apart from websites that provide term papers for a fee. How dumb does a student have to be to buy a research paper online? Don't they know how easy it is to discover plagiarism? A quick google search uncovers all but the most skilled word-stealing. And then there are special websites and computer programs that help identify more subtle plagiarism. What kind of screwball plagiarises the work of another and claims it as his own? If you're going to take the time to go to school or university, at least put out the effort to learn and do your own work. . .

I never did find the sort of Hesse analysis I wanted to read.

Anyway, last year I tried each month to list all the books I was reading. I wasn't as consistent as I wanted to be. While it's not quite time for New Year's resolutions, that's one thing I'm going to again attempt in 2005.

Back to Hesse. . . I haven't yet read Camille Paglia's Sexual Personae, but Hubby's talked to me about some of Paglia's themes and says it'll make a great follow up to Narcissus and Goldmund.


Posted by TulipGirl  |  09:34 PM|  TrackBack (0)  |   Words

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Off topic comment here, but thanks for telling me my tags didn't work on my sidebar. Wasn't sure of the problem, but it's fixed now!

Posted by: Melissa at December 23, 2004 10:29 PM

Greetings, Tulipgirl.

I have enjoyed you and 'hubby's blogs from Ukraine, and I and disco have alredy lobbed a few back and forth about Sexual Personae. Wishing you both a Happy Holidays.
God Bless,

Posted by: Brian G. at December 24, 2004 01:37 AM

Melissa, no problem! Those are the kinds of things easy to overlook on your own blog. *grin*

Brian, ah--missed those comments. Need to go back and read them.

Posted by: TulipGirl at December 24, 2004 10:23 AM


Narcissus and Goldmund is my favorite book!

I'd also recommend Hesse's "Steppenwolf."

Barth's "The Floating Opera" is also good.

small world...


Posted by: nikita demosthenes at December 25, 2004 06:41 PM

Hey there.

I read Narcissus and Goldmund. A very interesting book, although of pure philosophical nature.

Anyway, I did find essays and interpretations of the book, along with summaries, biographies, articles about the impact Hesse's work had, a.s.o.

However, they were all in German. I, having read the book in German as well (much better than those translations, which normally don't transfer the poetic beauty of the book) am in a bit of advantage there. But I am sure you can read the websites as a translated version.

Translate this page:

You can also find out a lot about the book yourself. Simply compare it with Hesse's biography. He took many of his own experiences and put it into writing. If you read more of his works, you will realize that his works are always a psychoanalytic report on his own personality, conveyed as a story.

But, I think this is enough. Everyone, have a good new year, and I hope what I wrote might be useful to you, tulipgirl.

All the best,

Posted by: accolon at December 31, 2004 02:42 PM

Thanks for the leads!

Posted by: TulipGirl at December 31, 2004 08:51 PM


Posted by: TulipGirl at January 6, 2005 07:14 PM

Forgive me, but does anyone ever blog about the actual story, and not just about who has read it, whether is in German or English???? I have been searching for an intelligent blog on Narcissus and Goldmund for a while, and, with no malice intended, I have had yet to find one that even comes close to succinctly summing up the core of this particular tale!!!! I personally love the quote.....

"One has a tendency, especially when they are young, to confuse thier wishes with predestination."

I read this book at a point in my life where this particular quote had a special significance for me, but later came to appreciate the writing style of Hesse in more profound ways. I am eager to communicate with those who share my passion for uncovering the more profound and esoteric words of the writer, instead of just exchanging who is fluent in the German/English aspect of the work

Posted by: Kristin at December 15, 2007 04:45 AM

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