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Call for Papers: GSA 2019

GSNA-Sponsored Panel for the 2019 GSA Conference, Portland, OR, 3-6 October 2019

Karl Philipp Moritz’s Interdisciplinary Stance

For a long time, Karl Philipp Moritz was viewed as a minor figure in German intellectual history and as a mere epigone of Goethe. Today, he is appreciated for his important role in the evolution of several disciplines: modern aesthetic theory, psychology, and pedagogy, just to mention a few. He is considered the instigator of the theory of aesthetic autonomy, the inventor of the psychological case study, and a reformer of pedagogical practices.

Lately, researchers have begun to emphasize the various intersections between these different disciplines, thus revitalizing the understanding of Moritz’s place in eighteenth-century thought. Following this trajectory, scholars are hereby invited to submit abstracts for a panel on the interdisciplinary stance in Moritz’s work. The scope of the panel is to engage more systematically with the connections between disciplines in his theoretical and fictional work. The papers should aim at combining or contrasting Moritz’s contributions to various intellectual and artistic fields, thus revealing the consistencies, tensions, and/or developments of his thought.

The following list of keywords are suggestions only and not meant to limit the scope of inquiry:

  • Aesthetic autonomy
  • Art history
  • Beauty
  • Ethics
  • Formation
  • Grammar
  • Interest and disinterest
  • Language pedagogy
  • Mythology
  • Pedagogy
  • Perfection
  • Politics
  • Prosody
  • Psychology
  • Signature
  • Theology

Please send abstracts (350-600 words) and a short bio in either English or German to Mattias Pirholt, Södertörn University ( by 15 January 2019.

Mattias Pirholt
Professor of Comparative Literature
School of Culture and Education
Södertörn University
SE-141 89 Huddinge

2018 Election Results

Dear members of the Goethe Society of North America!

The election results for the 2019-2022 term are in and were announced at the annual meeting of the German Studies Association. Congratulations to our newly elected officers!

Vice President: Heather Sullivan
Directors at-Large: Vance Byrd and Eleonor ter Horst
Secretary-Treasurer: William Carter

Thank you to the nominating committee and to all those members who stood for election.

2017 Prizes Announced

It was an exciting year for Goethezeit studies, with over forty essays for the committee to read, of truly high quality. I would like to thank committee members John Smith and Heidi Schlipphacke for their stalwart work, reading so many articles over summer break.

Gabriel Trop published three articles in 2017, each of which was worthy of an award. The committee selected as the essay prize winner “Goethe’s Faust and the Absolute of Naturphilosophie,” The Germanic Review 92.4 (2017): 388-406. The article succeeds remarkably in several ways: it offers a new perspective on one of the most written about and studied plays; it makes Schelling’s version of Naturphilosophie not only clear in its essence but also applicable as a way of understanding a literary text; and it gives us a new insight into the makings of tragedy. Trop sees in Schelling an ontology of tensions and conflicting forces—attraction and repulsion, contraction and expansion. As Trop writes elegantly: “a chaotic reserve of disorder belongs intrinsically to the unfolding of the absolute of Naturphilosophie.” Precisely this structure makes for the principle of signification in Faust, as Trop shows in fresh analyses of disorderly figures including Gretchen, Homunculus, and Euphorion, concluding that in his resistance to the Eternal Feminine Mephistopheles both negates life and presents a new ethics of the absolute. The key is that the tragic unfolding is not based in the subjectivity of the striving Faust but in the very nature of the Absolute itself.

The committee also awarded an honorable mention to another scholar who had an exceptionally productive year, Leif Weatherby, for his elegant essay “A Reconsideration of the Romantic Fragment,” which indeed appeared in the same issue of The Germanic Review immediately after Trop’s essay (pp. 407-25). As a form of Witz that is a conjunction of opposites, the fragment, in Weatherby’s reading, also is a mediating place where science and poetry intersect through material irony.

We also had to decide on an essay with a focus on natural science, for the Richard Sussman Essay Prize. Here, too, there were some interesting choices for us, with studies of chemistry, light, and, of course, equilibrium, thanks to a special issue of The Germanic Review edited by Jocelyn Holland and Gabriel Trop. However, we selected the nuanced essay by Tove Holmes, “Reizende Aussichten: Aesthetic and Scientific Observation in Albrecht von Haller’s Die Alpen,” published in Modern Language Notes 132.3 (2017): 753-74. Haller’s long poem is not at the top of many of our reading lists, so it was refreshing to see it brought to life in this essay and rescued from Lessing’s potent negative reading of its descriptive mode. Holmes shows the way Haller’s scientific sensibility frames a way of observing the world that then feeds into the poetic descriptions, notably ekphrasis. But the reverse is also true: according to Holmes, because Haller wrote his poem at a time just before the “two cultures” of natural science and the humanities separated over different conceptions of methodology, his poetic sensibility, informed by a traditional notion of energeia or “bringing vividly before the eyes,” shaped his scientific observations and invites us to look forward as well to a more modern practice of scientific observation.

Catriona MacLeod
University of Pennsylvania

Cash Bar at the GSA

Andy Warhol, Goethe

The Goethe Society of North America invites you:

Cash Bar:
Saturday, Sept. 29, 6 p.m.
Brigade Room (Ballroom Level)
Celebrate the publication of the 25th volume of the Goethe Yearbook!

Business Meeting:
Saturday, Sept. 29, 7 p.m.
Rivers Room
German Studies Association Conference
Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown

From the President

In 2018 the Goethe Society published the 25th volume of its Yearbook, demonstrating thereby the robust vitality of North American scholarship on the poet and his age. Copies of the first volume, printed in 1982, are hard to find nowadays, but thanks to Project Muse, scholars can read their way through the entire run. Such a perusal offers a diachronic sample that reveals how Germanistik on this side of the Atlantic has developed, as the seasons of scholarship are preserved in the Yearbook. The first essay in the first volume was written by David Wellbery; Jane Brown’s essay on Act II of Faust II appeared in the second volume—both scholars continue their leading role in the Society. In a remarkable demonstration of continuity, Ehrhard Bahr has published research in both the first and the most recent volume. Some of us were adolescents just glancing up from our copies of Werther when the Society was founded. The most recent volumes show that in the twenty-first century we often contemplate the famous names from 1800 with different eyes than before, so that today’s pressing issues lead readers into books and questions long forgotten. If physics had once dispelled Naturphilosophie as mere idealistic speculation, recent investigations make clear that the history of science is quite interlaced with poetic visions, not so different from Faust’s. Twenty-first century demands to preserve and protect the environment also compel us to reconsider the eighteenth-century portrayal of “Nature,” along with Goethe’s organic depictions of weather, atmospheres, and clouds. This rotation of scholarly approaches to German literature will become obvious as members vote for new officers.

Assuming an office in the Goethe Society also enjoins one to absorb the full spectrum of members’ scholarship. In our Society, stepping into an office automatically compels a person to take account of the legacy that precedes. When I was allowed to become the Yearbook editor, the task of charting the many approaches into the eighteenth century obligated me to read through the back issues, thereby renewing my relationship to German culture by looking farther than my own strait track. This insight was guided, of course, by Tom Saine and Simon Richter, the founding and succeeding editors, who gently reminded me of my responsibility to all members of the Goethe Society. The advice to look beyond myself also included the task of fostering the next generation of scholars. Just as you feel that you have grasped the nuances of literary scholarship, the Society calls on you to consider your replacement—to make sure that beginning scholars also find their voice in the dialogue, so that they too can feel empowered and so that the study of German literature never becomes an ossified erudition. To that end, we have stepped up our financial support of younger scholars attending our tri-annual conference and we have expanded the prizes we offer for scholarly essays written in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth century literature, philosophy, and science.

As I finish my term, I welcome Catriona MacLeod as the next President. I urge you all to vote for the next officers, all of whom have shown a sincere scholarly dedication to the Society. My fellow out-going officers I wish to thank for their hard work, their friendly counsel and aid, their critical acumen, and their commitment to preserving scholarly excellence. John Smith and Heidi Schlipphacke have assiduously fulfilled many crucial functions in planning the conference and selecting the essay prizes. Christian Weber was the steady hand as Secretary-Treasurer, keeping our finances in order and offering sound expertise. Burkhard Henke has been our indispensable webmaster, who keeps us all connected and communicating. As Executive Secretary, Birgit Tautz, followed by Elliott Schreiber, has planned the many panels and meetings we hold at other conferences—exhorting, cajoling, collecting proposals for submission elsewhere. In addition, to guiding the Book Series with Bucknell University Press, Karin Schutjer has provided the institutional memory every organization needs to preserve continuity and fairness. Our new Yearbook editors, Patricia Simpson and Birgit Tautz, are well on their way to compiling the next volume of the Goethe Yearbook, allowing us to look forward to volume 50. Sean Franzel keeps all us book reviewers honest with his overview. To Catriona MacLeod I am most grateful, not only for running the book prizes and the dissertation workshop, but even more so for her wise counsel over the last three years. I wish her great success.

Daniel Purdy
Pennsylvania State University

Goethe-Lexicon of Philosophical Concepts

Invitation to participate in a new collaborative research project

The Goethe-Lexicon of Philosophical Concepts is a collaborative research initiative investigating the central role played by concepts and their re-invention in Goethe’s development as a philosopher. Guided by the writer’s estimation of his own approach to philosophical problems as “heterodox,” the project’s international team of cross-disciplinary collaborators will identify, collect, and explicate a wide range of philosophical concepts that, when taken together, allowed Goethe to reformulate central questions of traditional metaphysics within the practices of literature, science, aesthetics, and cultural history. Drawing on digital technologies, the lexicon will position users to connect Goethe to an exemplary line of predecessors and successors in philosophical conceptualization. It will also facilitate “reading” and systematically organizing the vast Goethe-database, thereby putting the each of the writer’s discrete disciplinary practices into a virtual dialog with all the others on the basis of shared philosophical investments.

By publishing the lexicon in English and online as an open-access research tool with a cross-disciplinary focus, we will be fulfilling several important goals. Firstly, the lexicon will make Goethe available beyond the German-speaking world to a global readership. Secondly, it will serve as a resource for scholars outside the disciplinary confines of German Studies to connect their work to a thinker who—despite Emerson’s portrait of Goethe in Characteristic Men (1850) as the exemplary “philosopher” of “modern life” and its “rolling miscellany of facts”—remained largely unacknowledged for his philosophical achievements until recently. Thirdly, the lexicon’s digital platform will allow users to re-organize the sequence of entries with the stroke of a key and so empower them, as never before, to experience the basic building blocks of Goethean thought across a dynamic network of contextual fields. The term Geist (spirit), for example, would be searchable within individual literary works or genres, and these, in turn, could be linked to Goethe’s scientific or aesthetic works, as well as to works in metaphysics from ancient Greek philosophy through 20th and 21st century revisionists like Whitehead and Deleuze. Lastly, the lexicon’s online format will enable a production and distribution process that is flexible and interactive. Each (subsequent) year of work will produce about 25 new entries that will be immediately available and integrated into the work of previous years. And users will be equipped to respond to the entries with suggestions for emendation in an interactive process of revision.

The first major event for the project will be the four panels at this year’s GSA Annual meeting in Pittsburgh, as well as a “working” dinner following the GSNA business meeting. More details about activities this year will be sent to our members through our list-serve as they become available. Early in May, 2019, the Lexicon Project will be hosting its first annual three-day workshop at the University of Pittsburgh, and we invite all who might want to participate in the project as authors to contact either Clark Muenzer or John H. Smith, so they we are sure to send them details about this event, as well as a second workshop in England in May 2020. Both the GSNA and the English Goethe Society are serving as sponsors of the project, which will be generously funded over the next two years by a sizable seed-funding grant from the University of Pittsburgh, which is its institutional home. Again, we urge interested members to contact us as soon as possible. Many editorial decisions of substance will be made this year. We imagine this as a truly collaborative project and would welcome your input.

Clark Muenzer (
John H. Smith (

2018 GSA Panels

Heterodox Thinking: Goethe and the Invention of Philosophical Concepts
German Studies Association Conference
Pittsburgh, 27-30 September 2018

This series of four GSNA-sponsored panels has been organized by Clark Muenzer. It launches the lexicon of Goethe’s philosophical concepts that Clark first announced at the 2017 Atkins Goethe Conference, and promises to be a milestone event. See the invitation to participate in the project here.

Signature Concepts
Friday 10:30-12:15 (Grand Ballroom 3)
Moderator: Michael Lipkin (Columbia University)
Commentator: Michael Saman (New York University)

  1. Sebastian Meixner (Universität Zürich)
  2. Andree Hahmann (University of Pennsylvania)
  3. Margaret Strair (University of Pennsylvania)
    Gefühl, Empfindung, Einbildung

Concepts and Theories of Language
Saturday 10:30-12:15 (Grand Ballroom 2)
Moderator: Margaretmary Daley (Case Western Reserve University)
Commentator: John McCarthy (Vanderbilt University)

  1. Dennis Johannssen (Brown University)
  2. Clark Muenzer (University of Pittsburgh)
  3. John H.  Smith (University of California, Irvine)
    Geist and Buchstabe

Concepts and Prosody
Saturday 4:15-6:00 (Grand Ballroom 2)
Moderator: Jan Oliver Jost-Fritz (East Tennessee State University)
Commentator: Horst Lange (University of Central Arkansas)

  1. Simon Friedland (University of Chicago)
    Blank Verse
  2. Karin Schutjer (University of Oklahoma)
  3. Charlotte Lee (University of Cambridge)

Surprising Concepts
Sunday 12:30-2:15 (Grand Ballroom 2)
Moderator: Robert Norton (University of Notre Dame)
Commentator: Alice Kuzniar (University of Waterloo)

  1. Christian Weber (Florida State University)
    Wunderlich, Unheimlich, Ungeheuerlich
  2. Jennifer Caisley (University of Cambridge)
  3. Jane Brown (University of Washington)

2019 MLA Panel

Goethe’s International Relations: Imagining the Ausland, 1770-1832
Modern Language Association Convention
3-6 January 2019, Chicago

Organizer: Joseph D. O’Neil (University of Kentucky)
Presider: John H. Smith (University of California, Irvine)

  1. Chunjie Zhang (University of California, Davis)
    “Voltaire’s The Orphan of China (1753) and Schiller’s Turandot (1801)”
  2. Julie Koehler (Wayne State University)
    “Frau Holle Defeats King Arthur: A Conflict of Cultural Values in Naubert’s ‘Der kurze Mantel’”
  3. Joseph D. O’Neil (University of Kentucky)
    “Goethe with Sade? Principles of Republican Narratology”

From the Editor of the Book Series

Our big news is that we’re awaiting the arrival of two superb new volumes, both slated to come out in February 2019.

Odysseys of Recognition:  Performing Intersubjectivity in Homer, Aristotle, Shakespeare, Goethe, and Kleist
By Ellwood Wiggins (University of Washington, Seattle)


Literary recognition is a technical term for a climactic plot device. Odysseys of Recognition claims that interpersonal recognition is constituted by performance, and brings performance theory into dialogue with poetics, politics, and philosophy. By observing Odysseus figures from Homer to Kleist, Ellwood Wiggins offers an alternative to conventional intellectual histories that situate the invention of the interior self in modernity. Through strategic readings of Aristotle, this elegantly written, innovative study recovers an understanding of interpersonal recognition that has become strange and counterintuitive. Penelope in Homer’s Odyssey offers a model for agency in ethical knowledge that has a lot to teach us today. Early modern and eighteenth-century characters, meanwhile, discover themselves not deep within an impenetrable self, but in the interpersonal space between people in the world. Recognition, Wiggins contends, is the moment in which epistemology and ethics coincide: in which what we know becomes manifest in what we do.


Pretexts for Writing:  German Romantic Prefaces, Literature, and Philosophy
By Seán M. Williams (University of Sheffield, UK)


Around 1800, print culture became a particularly rich source for metaphors about thinking as well as writing, nowhere more so than in the German tradition of Dichter und Denker. Goethe, Jean Paul, and Hegel (among many others) used the preface in order to reflect on the problems of writing itself, and its interpretation. If Sterne teaches us that a material book enables mind games as much as it gives expression to them, the Germans made these games more theoretical still. Weaving in authors from Antiquity to Agamben, Williams shows how European–and, above all, German–Romanticism was a watershed in the history of the preface. The playful, paradoxical strategies that Romantic writers invented are later played out in continental philosophy, and in post-Structuralist literature. The preface is a prompt for playful thinking with texts, as much as it is conventionally the prosaic product of such an exercise.

As always, we’re eager to hear about your proposals, whether a single-authored monograph or a collection of essays. With Bucknell’s new publishing partnership with Rutgers, the series is now more attractive than ever.  Cover prices have come way down:  both of our forthcoming volumes are priced at $34.95 for the paperback edition.  So if you’re at the GSA please come by the cash bar to chat.  We hope to have books and flyers on display.

Karin Schutjer
University of Oklahoma

From the Yearbook Editors

Volume 26 of the Goethe Yearbook features a special section on Goethe’s narrative events, edited by Fritz Breithaupt, with contributions from Christopher Chiasson, “Much Ado about Nothing? The Absence of Events in Die Wahlverwandtschaften”; Christian P. Weber, “Narrating (Against) the Uncanny in Goethe’s ‘Ballade’”; and Lisa Anderson, “Countering Catastrophe: Goethe’s Novelle in the Aftershock of Heinrich von Kleist.” This issue also showcases work presented at the 2017 Atkins Goethe Conference (Re-Orientations around Goethe), hosted at Penn State, including presentations by Eva Geulen on morphology and W. Daniel Wilson on the Goethe Society of Weimar in the Third Reich. The volume has a range of articles by emerging and established scholars on Klopstock, Schiller, Goethe and objects, dark green ecology, and texts of the Goethezeit and beyond through the lens of world literature.

As always, we welcome manuscripts on any and all aspects of Goethe, his contemporaries, and the 18th century broadly conceived, including the century’s legacy. We also are interested in broadening the discussion, in organizing special sections, and experimenting with new forms and genres of scholarly writing. Please contact us with any and all suggestions at!

Note that the Goethe Yearbook is a double-blind, peer-reviewed publication, widely indexed, and published with DOIs. All manuscripts should be prepared in MS Word, and in accordance with the Yearbook’s style sheet – published on our web site – and anonymized for review. Manuscript submissions should be no longer than 8,500 words.

Patricia Anne Simpson
University of Nebraska

Birgit Tautz
Bowdoin College

New Books by Members

Wilson, W. Daniel. Der Faustische Pakt. Goethe und die Goethe-Gesellschaft im Dritten Reich. München: dtv, 2018.
Wilson, W. Daniel. Der Faustische Pakt. Goethe und die Goethe-Gesellschaft im Dritten Reich

Goethes Leben ist so reich dokumentiert, sein Leben so vielschichtig, dass er leicht von allen möglichen Meinungsmachern vereinnahmt werden konnte. Für die Goethe-Gesellschaft etwa, 1885 in Weimar gegründet, war er schon vor der „Machtergreifung“ 1933 weniger der aufgeklärte Humanist als vielmehr der konservative Nationalist, danach transportierte sie das Bild eines betont „braunen“ Goethe noch vehementer. Schließlich wurde der Olympier breitspurig für Regimezwecke eingespannt. Die Privilegien einer vorgesehenen „Weltmission“, gepaart mit zunehmenden Verstrickungen, ergeben eine spannende dramatische Kurve.

Prof. Dr. W. Daniel Wilson, gebürtiger Amerikaner, ist Professor of German an der University of London. Er hat diverse Veröffentlichungen zu Goethe vorgelegt, in wissenschaftlichen Verlagen, aber auch bei dtv: Das Goethe-Tabu. Protest und Menschenrechte im klassischen Weimar (1999).

Goethe Yearbook 25 (2018)

Special Section on What Goethe Heard, edited by Mary Helen Dupree

  1. Mary Helen Dupree, “What Goethe Heard: Special Section on Hearing and Listening in the Long Eighteenth Century.” 3-10.
  2. Tyler Whitney, “Behind Herder’s Tympanum: Sound and Physiological Aesthetics, 1800/1900.” 11-30.
  3. Deva Kemmis, “Becoming the Listener: Goethe’s ‘Der Fischer’.” 31-54.
  4. Robert Ryder, “Of Barks and Bird Song: Listening in on the Forgotten in Ludwig Tieck’s Der blonde Eckbert.” 55-76.
  1. Chunjie Zhang, “Garden Empire or the Sublime Politics of the Chinese-Gothic Style.” 77-96.
  2. Hans Richard Brittnacher, “Die Austreibung des Populären: Schillers Bürger-Kritik.” 97-108.
  3. Matthew H. Birkhold, “Goethe and the Uncontrollable Business of Appropriative Stage Sequels.” 109-132.
  4. Jessica C. Resvick, “Repetition and Textual Transmission: The Gothic Motif in Goethe’s Faust and ‘Von deutscher Baukunst’.” 133-160.
  5. Patricia Anne Simpson, “‘Die gewalt’ge Heldenbrust’: Gender and Violence in Goethe’s Iphigenie auf Tauris.” 161-182.
  6. Chenxi Tang, “Literary Form and International World Order in Goethe: From Iphigenie to Pandora.” 183-202.
  7. Linda Dietrick, “‘Two Gifts from Goethe: Charlotte von Stein’s and Charlotte Schiller’s Writing Tables.” 203-216.
  8. Galia Benziman, “Goethe’s Wilhelm Meister and the Refusal to Grow Up: The Dialectics of Bildung.” 217-238.
  9. Susanne Fuchs, “‘So steh’ ich denn hier wehrlos gegen dich?’ — Figures of Armament and Disarmament in German Drama before and after the French Revolution.” 239-266.
  10. Jason Yonover, “Goethe, Maimon, and Spinoza’s Third Kind of Cognition.” 267-288.
  11. Ehrhard Bahr, “Die Neuvermessung von Lyrik und Prosa in Goethes Novelle.” 289-298.
Book Reviews:
  1. Die Entweltlichung der Bühne: Zur Mediologie des Theaters der klassischen Episteme by Franz-Josef Deiters (review). Jane K. Brown. 299-300.
  2. Goethe’s Families of the Heart by Susan E. Gustafson (review). Julie Koser. 300-302.
  3. Armed Ambiguity: Women Warriors in German Literature and Culture in the Age of Goethe by Julie Koser (review). Stephanie M. Hilger. 302-303.
  4. The Making of a Terrorist: On Classic German Rogues by Jeffrey Champlin (review). James F. Howell. 303-304.
  5. Fact and Fiction: Literary and Scientific Cultures in Germany and Britain ed. by Christine Lehleiter (review). Christopher R. Clason. 305-306.
  6. Goethes Euphrat. Philologie und Politik im West-östlichen Divan by Marcel Lepper (review). Hannah V. Eldridge. 307-308.
  7. Recoding World Literature: Libraries, Print Culture, and Germany’s Pact with Books by B. Venkat Mani (review). Carl Niekerk. 308-310.
  8. Myth and the Human Sciences: Hans Blumenberg’s Theory of Myth by Angus Nicholls (review). Spencer Hawkins. 310-312.
  9. Versammelte Menschenkraft—Die Großstadterfahrung in Goethes Italiendichtung by Malte Osterloh (review). Stefan Buck, Eckhart Nickel. 312-313.
  10. Schopenhauer und Goethe: Biographische und philosophische Perspektiven eds. by Daniel Schubbe und Søren R. Fauth (review). Iris Hennigfeld. 313-318.
  11. Lyric Orientations: Hölderlin, Rilke, and the Poetics of Community by Hannah Vandegrift Eldridge (review). May Mergenthaler. 318-322.
  12. Archiv/Fiktionen: Verfahren des Archivierens in Literatur und Kultur des langen 19. Jahrhunderts eds. by Daniela Gretz and Nicolas Pethes (review). Ervin Malakaj. 322-323.
  13. Schillers Geschichtsdenken: Die Unbegreiflichkeit der Weltgeschichte by Alexander Jakovljević (review). Asko Nivala. 324-325.
  14. German Aesthetics: Fundamental Concepts from Baumgarten to Adorno eds. by J. D. Mininger and Jason Michael Peck (review). Johannes Wankhammer. 325-327.
  15. The Practices of the Enlightenment: Aesthetics, Authorship, and the Public by Dorothea von Mücke (review). Peter Erickson. 327-329.
  16. Transculturality and German Discourse in the Age of European Colonialism by Chunjie Zhang (review). Richard B. Apgar. 329-330.

Wahlen stehen ins Haus!

With the invigorating Atkins Conference at Penn State behind us, the Society is looking forward to new elections to its executive board. After Elliot Schreiber succeeded Birgit Tautz as Executive Secretary in the fall, and Birgit and Patty Simpson took over the reigns as co-editors of the Goethe Yearbook from Adrian Daub and Elisabeth Krimmer, we are now looking to fill the positions of Vice President, Director-at-Large (2x), and Secretary-Treasurer.

Our nominating committee, comprised of Mary Helen Dupree, John Lyons, and Leif Weatherby, will be glad to accept nominations and self-nominations from members. If you would like to make one, please write to the committee chair, John Lyons, at, by May 1.

From the President

Last November we held the Goethe Society’s triennial Atkins Conference at Penn State University on the theme of Re-Orientations around Goethe. As in our previous meeting, 85 North American and European scholars contributed presented talks. All together, we had thirty events, including keynote addresses by Helmut Schneider from the University of Bonn and Eva Geulen from the Zentrum für Literatur- und Kulturforschung at the Humboldt University of Berlin. The Presidential Forum provided a glimpse of the diversity of orientations around Goethe’s work, which was then expanded by a Pop Up Rare book exhibit on “Goethe Re-oriented,” sponsored by the Eberly Family Special Collections Library.

I am most grateful to everyone who helped run the conference. Heidi Schlipphacke and John Smith helped delicately balance the many paper proposals into focused panels. My colleague, Tom Beebee, organized the logistics here on campus. Catriona MacLeod set up the dissertation workshop for graduate students writing on Goethe topics while also leading the committee to award prizes for the best essays on the Goethezeit. Christian Weber was a steady hand on the financial side of the conference.

Some of our officers have changed roles. Birgit Tautz and Patty Simpson have taken up the editorship for the Goethe Yearbook and Elliott Schreiber has stepped in to fill the responsibilities of the Executive Secretary in organizing events at national conferences.

This spring the Goethe Society will be preparing for the next round of elections in the fall semester. In the summer, Burkhard Henke will send out announcements regarding the candidates and the online voting procedure. Our schedule will be to gather your nominations for Vice President, Secretary-Treasurer, and two Directors-at-Large by May 1; send out email ballots by September 1; gather the votes by September 23; so that we can announce the results at the GSA business meeting on September 28. The new officers will fill their positions starting on January 1, 2019, with the current Vice President, Catriona MacLeod, succeeding to the Presidency.

If you have nominations please do not hesitate to send an email to John Lyons,, chair of the nominating committee, which also includes Mary Helen Dupree,, and Leif Weatherby,

Daniel Purdy
Pennsylvania State University

From the Yearbook Editors

Our first volume as editors is well underway and will feature some work showcased first at our memorable Atkins Goethe Conference at Penn State, in addition to new scholarship from North America, Europe, and Australia. As always, we welcome manuscripts on any and all aspects of Goethe, his contemporaries, and the 18th century broadly conceived, including the century’s legacy. We also are interested in broadening the discussion, in organizing special sections, and experimenting with new forms and genres of scholarly writing. Please contact us with any and all suggestions at!

Note that the Goethe Yearbook is a double-blind, peer-reviewed publication, widely indexed, and published with DOIs. All manuscripts should be prepared in MS Word, and in accordance with the Yearbook’s style sheet – published on our web site – and anonymized for review. Manuscript submissions should be no longer than 8,500 words.

Patricia Anne Simpson
University of Nebraska

Birgit Tautz
Bowdoin College