The Motif of the Gaze (Blick) in Thomas Mann's Der Tod in Venedig and Wagner's Tristan und Isolde

William A. Kinderman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

While the general importance of music for Thomas Mann is well recognized, the specific relationship of Der Tod in Venedig to Wagner's Tristan und Isolde rewards close attention. Mann knew Wagner's drama intimately, and drew on the composer's autobiography, which was published as the novel was written. Especially important is the motif of the gaze or Blick, which has roots in Wagner's main source, Gottfried von Strassburg's Tristan. Mann's propensity toward irony is abundantly evident, and the import of Wagner's symbolism is often inverted, as is the narrative structure as a whole. Analysis reveals an extensive network of Wagnerian parallels whose import is very different from the Tristanesque resonances of Buddenbrooks.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)315-333
Number of pages19
JournalGerman Studies Review
Volume41
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2018

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'The Motif of the Gaze (Blick) in Thomas Mann's Der Tod in Venedig and Wagner's Tristan und Isolde'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this