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Diotima's ChildrenGerman Aesthetic Rationalism from Leibniz to Lessing$
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Frederick C. Beiser

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780199573011

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199573011.001.0001

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Gottsched and the High Noon of Rationalism

Gottsched and the High Noon of Rationalism

(p.72) 3 Gottsched and the High Noon of Rationalism
Diotima's Children

Frederick C. Beiser (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter focuses on another prominent figure in the development of aesthetic rationalism: Johann Christian Gottsched (1700-66). Gottsched is a seminal, if also controversial, figure in German cultural history. His chief claims to fame rest on his two grand ambitions: making German into a leading literary language, on par with English and French; and reforming the German theatre so that it became a platform for serious literature rather than popular entertainment. Whether Gottsched actually contributed to these goals is a matter of opinion; but, considering the state of German literature and drama at the time, he at least deserves credit for conceiving them and working indefatigably to realize them.

Keywords:   Johann Christian Gottsched, aesthetic rationalism, theory of taste, poetics, tragedy

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