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Steppenwolf: A Novel Paperback – December 6, 2002
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"Hesse is a writer of suggestion, of nuance, of spiritual intimation."―The Christian Science Monitor
"For all its savagely articulate descriptions of torment and isolation, it is most eloquent about something less glamorous but far more important: healing."―The Guardian
About the Author
Hermann Hesse was born in Germany in 1877 and later became a citizen of Switzerland. As a Western man profoundly affected by the mysticism of Eastern thought, he wrote novels, stories, and essays bearing a vital spiritual force that has captured the imagination and loyalty of many generations of readers. His works include Steppenwolf, Narcissus and Goldmund, and The Glass Bead Game. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1946. Hermann Hesse died in 1962.
Top Customer Reviews
The result was "Steppenwolf", a poetic tale about a middle-aged man who is spiritually, emotionally and physically sick. Any doubt to its subject matter can be easily dispelled in the book of poetry entitled "Crisis" or Crisis Pages From a Diary (Noonday), which Hesse published in 1927 at the same time as "Steppenwolf". It contains two poems found in "Steppenwolf" and a number of confessional poems describing his despair and personal loss.
Despite the abundance of reviews and narratives written on "Steppenwolf" and Hesse's philosophical position it was, he confided in the preface of editions printed after 1961, his most "violently misunderstood" work. Hippies in the late sixties embraced the book's references to drug use, anti-war activity, provocative music and sexual promiscuity. Even counter-culture guru and psychiatrist Dr.Read more ›
Harry is in pain - spiritual pain, emotional pain, social pain, political pain; deep and suffocating pain. Drinking alcohol doesn't cure Harry's pain, and his health is poor too. Kind landlords provide no relief, and the kindness of old colleagues bestowing social niceties only serve to prove to Harry how wretched he is, because Harry is a "genius of suffering, with a frightful capacity for pain...rooted in self-contempt." Harry is also authentically himself and without pretenses, though he is rejecting of himself. He escapes the pretenses of the world, yet he lives according to the rules of the world. He is accepting and honest with everyone he meets, yet is filled with deep contempt, for himself, and the "bourgeois" world. Conformity to the norm of the day is not the way of the wolf, and Harry Haller is a wolf; a wolf, "living a journey through hell...a soul dwelling in darkness." What Harry wants and needs is relief. Yet he is afraid. Afraid of others, the past, the present, the future, and so with despair for the life he lives, Harry wants to die. Harry also wants to be connected, to be present, and to live. He yearns for it; he even, "regrets the present day and the countless lost hours and days in mere passivity." Yet in Harry's darkest moments, he still has an ability to transcend the darkness and connect to nature as he "contemplates the araucaria.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is the third book of Hesse's I have read, with the previous two being Damien and Siddhartha, and it has to be the most dense of the three. Read morePublished 19 days ago by I. Nooraddini
I had no idea what I was getting into when I decided to read this book. It sent me on an existential tailspin as it described myself to me in profound, barefaced terms and... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Maria Regina Paiz
A good but long 200 pages. I think there was one chapter. Good illustration of the frustrating allure of the bougie.Published 2 months ago by Zachary D. Hensler
One star is based on the printing, not the novel. This is a larger sized book (8.25" x 5.5"), but there is a huge margin around the text as though it was formatted for a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Steve
It is a wonderful novel that makes one question living life. I need 7 more words. The Steppenwolf. An armadillo.Published 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Re-reading Hermann Hesse’s 1927 book Steppenwolf, which I last read I surmise in my twenties, has been an interesting experience. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Lady Fancifull