This book is a collection of ten scholarly essays dealing with Mark Twain and his work. The essays originated as lectures given at the University of Tübingen in celebration of the Mark Twain Year, 1985, and are written by four American (David B. Kesterson, Sydney J. Krause, J. Kenneth Van Dover, Daniel Williams) and five German Americanists (Hans Borchers, Helmbrecht Breinig, Winfried Fluck, Hartmut Grandel, Hans Hunfeld). Touching upon the main developments of Samuel Clemens the man as well as Mark Twain the writer, on the world-famous masterpiece Huckleberry Finn as well as on Twain's reception both in the United States and in Germany, the contributions in this volume reflect the broad range of interest that present-day scholarship takes in Mark Twain -- one of America's best-known and most popular, if in some respects still strangely mysterious, literary personalities of all times.
The lively interest taken in the original lecture series and the responses it elicited led to the publication of this book. It is directed at the same audience that the lectures were intended for: students and teachers of American and English literature, both at university and highschool level, and a general public interested in one of the more fascinating careers in American literature.