The latest book reviews in one place

The Collected Poems of Bertolt Brecht Reviews

The Collected Poems of Bertolt Brecht by Bertolt Brecht, David Constantine, Tom Kuhn

The Collected Poems of Bertolt Brecht

Bertolt Brecht, David Constantine, Tom Kuhn

Score pending

2 reviews

Category: Poetry, Non-fiction
Imprint: Liveright Publishing Corporation
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Publication date: 4 Dec 2018
ISBN: 9780871407672

One of the most important poetry publications in years, The Collected Poems of Bertolt Brecht appears in English for the first time.

5 stars out of 5
Tristram Fane Saunders
2 Jan 2019

"the frisson of watching history unfold, moment by moment"

...funny and bleak, moralising and wicked, passionate and philosophical, with a rich seam of coal-black humour... feels fresh and alive, whether in tightly knit rhymes, free verse or prose... Students and scholars may feel under-served...but if the translators’ aim was to create a book for the general reader that stands on its own feet, they have succeeded triumphantly... The quality of individual poems may be patchy...but collectively they have the frisson of watching history unfold, moment by moment. Reading from start to end, it becomes a gripping narrative, charting the evolution of an artist, of Germany, and of the early 20th century.

Reviews

4 stars out of 5
Corinna da Fonseca-Wollheim
14 Dec 2018

"pristine, unsentimental language"

The more than 1,000 entries...are only about half of Brecht’s lyric output. But they give a sense of the fertility of his pristine, unsentimental language and the breadth of subject and form... A collection this size is often said to contain something for everybody. In this one, every reader is sure to find something to take offense at... And yet. “Brecht is a great poet,” the translators write in their introduction, “one of the three or four best in the whole of German literature.” This volume holds enough evidence to support that claim...