From the President

Members of the Goethe Society gathered this year in San Diego at the German Studies Association convention where there were inspiring panels on Goethe, some sponsored by the Society such as “Goethe at Play,” others emerging spontaneously. Vice President Catriona MacLeod together with the Directors at large, Heidi Schlipphacke and John Smith, awarded prizes for the best essay at the annual reception. This year we thank Elizabeth Powers, long-time Goethe Society member and scholar, for her endowment of the Richard Sussman Essay Prize for the best essay on Goethe’s contribution to the sciences and the history of science during the Goethezeit.

Many of us are sad to see Simon Richter step away from the editorial board of the Goethe Book Series at Bucknell University Press. Simon has had tremendous influence on the growth of the Goethe Society. He was the first editor of the Goethe Yearbook after Thomas Saine retired. Later he became president of the Society. Simon has always been very conscious of his responsibility to carry forward the intellectual aspirations of the first members of the Goethe Society and he has been kind in passing along that sense of continuity to the scholars who have come after him. With an ear to Simon’s recollections about the older generation, we sent out a call for recollections about the first years of the Goethe Society. Meredith Lee and Ehrhard Bahr have gathered together their memories to recount the practical and intellectual goals in founding the North American Goethe Society. You can find their histories included here in this newsletter.

The next conference of the Goethe Society will be held November 3-4, 2017 at Penn State University. A full description of the overarching topic “Re-Orientations around Goethe” was included in the previous newsletter and a formal Call for Papers will be published later this fall. We look forward to your joining us next year. Penn State University is serviced by the University Park Airport (SCE), which has connections to major airline hubs. We look forward to proposals for individual papers and collective panels. More information will be coming soon.

Daniel Purdy
Pennsylvania State University

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *