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Reading Colour

George, Rilke, Kandinsky, Lasker-Schüler

Series:

Rey Conquer

Colour is a problem for poetry, where – unlike in painting, sculpture or film – it
is marked by its absence. This absence raises questions that have often been
overlooked in the study of colour: how do writers navigate the invisibility of
colour in text? What aesthetic commitments do certain attitudes to colour
expose? And how, in the face of its absence, do we read colour?

This ambitious and exciting study addresses these questions, analysing the
use of colour language in the work of Stefan George, Rainer Maria Rilke,
Wassily Kandinsky and Else Lasker-Schüler to tease out how these poets
understood poetic production, and how they negotiated the relations between
poem, reader and world. Covering the poetry, prose, translation, literary and art
criticism and theory of these and other writers central to European literature
at the turn of the twentieth century, Reading Colour sheds new light on poetic
practice of the period, but also uses colour to open up an understanding of
how poetic language works, and to ask how we read poetry.

This book was the winner of the 2018 Early Career Researcher Prize in German
Studies, a collaboration between the Institute for German Studies at the
University of Birmingham and Peter Lang.

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Extract

Bibliographic information published by Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek

Die Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data is available on the Internet at http://dnb.d-nb.de.

A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library.

Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data

A CIP catalog record for this book has been applied for at the Library of Congress.

Cover image: Ausschnitt aus dem Südquerhausfenster des Kölner Doms. Entwurf: Gerhard Richter. Ausführung und Foto: Derix Glasstudios, Taunusstein.

Köln, Dom, Südquerhausfenster, Lichtreflexe auf den Wänden des Triforiums © Foto: Derix

Cover design by Peter Lang Ltd.

ISSN 2235-3488

ISBN 978-1-78874-675-5 (print)  •  ISBN 978-1-78874-676-2 (ePDF)

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