The Novellas of Theodor Storm

The post-Romantic era in German-speaking countries did not produce weighty tomes like the major novels published in Britain, France and Russia. Many a hidden gem from this period waits to be discovered by the wider English-speaking public­ – especially in the work of the nineteenth-century German master of the novella, Theodor Storm (1817–88), who wrote many fine narratives besides the best-known, Immensee and The Dykemaster (Der Schimmelreiter).

Denis Jackson’s editions of Theodor Storm, the most comprehensive selection of his novellas in English, have been praised for their truth to Storm's voice and style and also for their absorbing background material including maps and end-notes taking the reader inside the world of their settings, which range from nineteenth-century small-town life in an era of rapid change to ‘chronicles’ of earlier times. Denis Jackson is a winner of the annual Oxford-Weidenfeld Translation Prize for his selection of three of Storm’s novellas under the title Paul the Puppeteer.

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‘Storm took tragedy away from the public sphere of the theatre and into the privacy of the home. For him, prose fiction in the shape of the novella was a more intimate vehicle for the portrayal of tragedy. . . his work has a profound humanity and a universal resonance for the present-day reader.’

Barbara Burns, University of Glasgow