Laocoon An Essay on the Limits of Painting and Poetry

ISBN-10: 0801831393
ISBN-13: 9780801831393
Edition: 1984
List price: $31.00 Buy it from $12.24
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Description: Originally published in 1766, the Laocon has been called the first extended attempt in modern times to define the distinctive spheres of art and poetry.

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Book details

List price: $31.00
Copyright year: 1984
Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press
Publication date: 2/1/1984
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 296
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.748
Language: English

Originally published in 1766, the Laocon has been called the first extended attempt in modern times to define the distinctive spheres of art and poetry.

Lessing, one of the outstanding literary critics of all time, was "the first figure of European stature in modern German literature." The son of a Protestant pastor, he was educated in Meissen and at Leipzig University, then went to Berlin as a journalist in 1749. While employed as secretary to General Tauentzien (1760--65), he devoted his leisure to classical studies. This led to his critical essay Laocoon (1776), in which he attempted to clarify certain laws of aesthetic perception by comparing poetry and the visual arts. He fought always for truth and combined a penetrating intellect with shrewd common sense. He furthered the German theater through his weekly dramatic notes and theories, found mainly in the Hamburg Dramaturgy (1769), which he wrote during his connection with the Hamburg National Theater as critic and dramatist (1768--69). His plays include Miss Sara Sampson (1755), important as the first German prose tragedy of middle-class life; Minna von Barnhelm (1767), his finest comedy and the best of the era; and his noble plea for religious tolerance, Nathan the Wise (1779).

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