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Mysticism and Sexuality- E.T.A. Hoffmann

Part One: Hoffmann and His Sources


James M. McGlathery

This study aims to show that Hoffmann drew on his own psychic experiences relevant to sexuality, and that he also was writing in a broad literary tradition of roguish sexual humor and ironic portrayal of the psychology of desire that had survived to his time in «opera buffa» and comic theater generally, as well as in certain vestiges of the eighteenth-century «conte licencieux». (In a second volume, «Part Two: Interpretations of the Tales», this perspective will be used to provide new readings of each of Hoffmann's four-dozen tales and of his two novels.)
Contents: Hoffmann and the Critics - Hoffmann's Careers - Love - «Commedia dell'arte» - «Opera buffa» - «Contes licencieux» - Shakespeare and Sterne - German Sources - Spiritualism - Narrative Irony.