Männliches und Weibliches in Goethes West-östlichem Divan
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German literary scholarship took a turn towards cultural inquiry in the 1970s, and the works of Johann Wolfgang Goethe were re-examined in this light. However, in relation to Goethe’s poetry, a number of questions about gender roles have remained unasked. This thesis will analyse gender role issues within the West-östlicher Divan. This study focuses on the book Buch Suleika, and analyses the relationship of the protagonists, Hatem and Suleika. The analysis reveals that their relationship, based on equality, plays with the traditional gender roles in a light and cheerful way. Further interpretations show that those gender structures hold true for the entire Divan. Goethe’s image of the woman as seen in the Divan is untypical for the time, and not present in his other works. The equality of partners and the dissolution of boundaries between genders are slogans which allow the Divan to be a guide for the modern age.