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Die neuen Leiden des jungen W.

3.31  ·  Rating Details ·  1,465 Ratings  ·  52 Reviews
A text edition of the bestselling East German novel, divided into 14 short chapters to facilitate use as a language reader in German classes at the intermediate level and above. Contains questions, extensive annotation, a vocabulary list, and the text of an interview with Plenzdorf. An introduction by the editor discusses Plenzdorf's personality and career, the reception a ...more
Paperback, Suhrkamp BasisBibliothek, 157 pages
Published by Suhrkamp Verlag (first published 1972)
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Jonathan Ashleigh
Sep 04, 2015 Jonathan Ashleigh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After reading both parodies of The Sorrows of Young Werther, I have to say that The Sorrows of Young Mike is the better of the two. Ulrich Plenzdorf did a good job but his story doesn't take any steps forward compared with John Zelazny version, but I possibly feel this way because I read the English translation. Zelazny's version is not simply a retelling and the only thing it is lacking is a German translation, which is something that is supposedly in the works. If you want to read a parody of ...more
May 05, 2016 George rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 20th-century
Φετινό απόκτημα από κάποιο παλαιοβιβλιοπωλείο έναντι μισού ευρώ, είπα να το διαβάσω τώρα κυρίως λόγω μικρού μεγέθους, αλλά και της πρόκλησης που έχω βάλει στον εαυτό μου για να διαβάσω βιβλία από όσο γίνεται περισσότερες χώρες. Το μικρό αυτό βιβλιαράκι είναι πλέον κλασικό στην Γερμανία και απ'όσο ξέρω είναι ένα από τα λογοτεχνικά έργα που διαβάζουν οι Γερμανοί μαθητές στα σχολεία.

Δεν μπορώ να πω ότι ξετρελάθηκα. Δεν έχω διαβάσει, βέβαια, το "Τα πάθη νεαρού Βερθέρου" του Γκαίτε, του οποίου το βι
May 16, 2016 Jasi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classic
Interessante Verknüpfung von neuem Protagonisten und der bekannten Werther-Geschichte. Mir hat das Buch gut gefallen, aber ehrlich gesagt ist es mir nicht ganz klar was der Leser mit dem Buch aussagen möchte. Da es sehr kurz und prägnant ist, lässt es sich leicht lesen und grundsätzlich hat es mir gut gefallen.

16. 05. 2016
Auch beim zweiten Mal lesen, gefiel mir das Buch nicht so gut. Wobei ich die Verknüpfungen zwischen Goethes Werk und diesem hier besser erkennen konnte.
Sep 26, 2016 Darlene rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: zeitgen-ssisch
Filip Đukić
Feb 24, 2016 Filip Đukić rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Pokušaj poruge, satire kroz Salingerov - Holdenov žargon (usput se Lovac u žitu spominje u samom romanu gdje glavni lik idelizira knjigu) i ne znam što još, ali sve je ostalo na bljutavom pokušaju nekakve želje za relativiziranjem Goetheova Werthera. Nije me se niti u jedno trenutku djelo dojmilo- a koje je išlo kroz naraciju glavnog lika pa onda kroz umetnute dijaloge njegovih roditelja, poznanika s posla kao i djevojke Charlie u koju je fake Werther (Edgar) bio zaljubljen (Edgar svaki taj dija ...more
Sep 24, 2008 Erin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes J.D. Salinger and specifically Holden Caulfield
A good, short and easy read on usual teenage angst and rebellion present throughout the world, however Edgar (young W) lives in the GDR. This short novel goes hand in hand with The Sufferings of Young Werther, by both paralleling it and parodying it as well. The novel centers around Goethe's aforementioned novel. Edgar reads it and is extremely taken in by it. Throughout the rest of the book he quotes Goethe's work (although he knows not what it is, having found it in a bathroom with the front p ...more
Jan 26, 2014 Laura rated it it was ok
Definitely liked this one better than the original, though it's still not really my kind of book. The writing was a lot easier to understand and it wasn't as much of a torture to get through as the one written by Goethe, which is probably normal seeing as this one is written over a century later. Apart from the writing, I have to say that I liked the build up of the story, with his father trying to find out what happened and him telling the story from the great beyond, and the story itself as we ...more
Feb 09, 2014 Leigh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, ya-fiction
Very funny narrative voice. A sort of mash-up of The Sorrows of Young Werther and The Catcher in the Rye, which is definitely more entertaining than the former and not quite as good as the latter.
Sep 28, 2008 Lavinia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2007, fiction
This is a sort of mixed parody after Goethes’ Werther and Salinger’s Caulfield settled in East Germany; Berlin, to be more exact. Not bad, but I found the Romanian translation not so satisfactory.

noile suferinte ale tinarului w. se vrea a fi un mix-parodie dupa wertherul lui goethe si caulfieldul lui salinger in berlinul germaniei rdg-iste. cartea nu e rea, dar traducerea mi se pare putin metalica si fortata.
Meh. It was okay, but I couldn't relate to the 17 year old male main character. Apparently this is a satire of The Sorrows of Young Werther by Goeth (I believe), which I hadn't read before this, so maybe I would have found it more enjoyable if I had. Too much teenage angst for me. And Edgar was very full of himself, which wasn't that fun to read either.
Brandon Prince
Interesting intertextual work that puts into dialogue Goethe, JD Salinger and 1970s East German youth culture. Unfortunately, the British idiom used in this translation feels forced and had me wincing on nearly every page. An insufferable read.
Jun 10, 2009 Adrian rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would say this is an improvement over it's inspiration but the obsessive use of East German slang to make it sound "cool" and in order to appeal to young people is obnoxious. The protagonist is more likable that Werther.
Mar 26, 2008 Beth rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I translated this entire novel into English for a class at OSU...handwritten on legal pads.

Anyone want to read it, let me know, and I will type it up one of these days.
Oct 21, 2016 Galina rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites, classics
Fun read.
I really enjoyed the references in the book and it made me read The Sorrows of Young Werther again and reconsider my opinion on different subjects covered in both of the books.
Lori L (She Treads Softly)
The New Sorrows of Young W. by Ulrich Plenzdorf is a recommended satirical novel that was originally published in 1972 in Germany. This re-released edition is translated from the German by Romy Fursland.

Edgar Wibeau, a 17 year old drop out, is found dead, electrocuted, inside a condemned building in Berlin with just a tape recorder and a battered copy of Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther. Edgar had previously sent tapes discussing his life to his friend Willi Linder. His father, hoping to fi
Aug 13, 2015 Deborah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, netgalley
The New Sorrows of Young W. is a modern-day (sort of) retelling of Goethe's The Sorrows of Young Werther, which I had not read before but have now read. Goethe's work is a classic epistolary novel in which Werther tells the tale of his unrequited love for an engaged girl, a tale which ends with Werther's suicide. Ulrich Plenzdorf's version starts with the same structure (here, a series of tape-record "letters") and basic premise (young man dies after an unsuccessful love affair) but adds a new d ...more
Jul 05, 2015 Theediscerning rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Or not so new now, as this is a reissue of an East German modern classic from the early 1970s. Edgar is a young lad, het up on reading two books – one of them, of course, ''Catcher in the Rye'' – and het up on a lovely, engaged Kindergarten teacher whose playground abuts the abandoned allotments where he's squatting. He's also dead – no spoiler – and talking to a collective readership/audience (always asking rhetorical questions of us 'guys') and answering back on the reported dialogue of his ab ...more
Aug 17, 2015 Mandy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another interesting title from the wonderful Pushkin Press (how much we are indebted to them for bringing so many foreign titles to our notice!). This time it’s a touching coming-of-age story about a rebellious teenage dropout from East Germany, Edgar Wibeau, who recounts his story from beyond the grave, using Goethe’s classic The Sorrows of Young Werther to express himself. This is a conceit that I felt worked admirably and added to the depth of Edgar’s characterisation. We also get to hear fro ...more
Shahriar shiva
Oct 03, 2014 Shahriar shiva rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Plenzdorf created a brilliant novel where he utilizes the struggles of a young man living in the GDR to reflect the negatives and, to some minor extent, the positive of soviet occupied east germany. The blue jeans becomes a motif for something that "doesnt fit quite right". within the context of this book the blue jeans are symbolic of communist ideals imposed on german nationalist ideology of the time. Yet plenzdorf is not entirely cynical, he does reflect the merit of hard work and totalitaria ...more
Jul 31, 2016 Erin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A less pretentious and more accessible version of a more classic story.

Edgar is relatable in his teenage eccentricity, and makes for a more like-able, and perhaps a more socially adept, Holden Caulfield, and narrates with good humor and genuineness that quickly endeared him to me

Though the book is light spirited it still touches on a lot of the frustrations that Edgar feels growing up in East Germany on the individual level, and as a teenager in general. In fact, the two are inter-related, and
Giovaennchen Lozano
Está bueno. Es una manera moderna de abordar la famosa novela de Johann Wolfgang von Goethe: Werther, un jóven que está enamorado y al no ser correspondido se suicida. Este libro es interesante porque fué escrito en la extinta República Democrática Alemana, bien comunista y burocrática. Un uso del lenguaje diferente y más coloquial. No es para todos los gustos, pero lo recomiendo ampliamente. En español se llamaría: Las nuevas cuitas del joven Werther, o las nuevas penas del joven Werther....
Maybe I would have liked this more if I were younger, or if I remembered The Sorrows of Young Werther which I read a thousand years ago, or if I liked The Catcher in the Rye. It's well written, a cult classic in Europe, and I did like it, but it doesn't inspire me to re-read forgotten books. Library book.
Jul 12, 2014 Paul rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Has dated somewhat with the passage of time, but still remains a good reworking of Goethe's classic. Lots of slang makes the work difficult to understand at times, but it is still an interesting insight into the former GDR.
Jun 18, 2015 Sunjay rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not as funny as I had hoped, but still a pleasing little book. Slightly repetitive in its teenage slang (and a bit dated as well), it is nevertheless quite a charming portrait of growing up in the DDR.
Becca Laya
Es war sehr besser als die anderen von Goethe, die der Figuren nicht so eingehenden waren. Die Neuen Dein des jungen W. gab einen Politiken eklatanten bedeute(jedenfalls mehr als die leiden des jungen Werther).
Jan 17, 2010 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a clever parody/modern version of Goethe's "Leiden des Jungen Werthers." But I think if you hadn't read Goethe first, many of the jokes/parallels would be missed, but the book's well-writtne enough to be enjoyable in its own right.
Tja.. es handelt sich um eine typische Schullektüre eben..
Es hat nicht meinem Geschmack entsprochen, war aber dann im Nachhinein recht interessant, wenn man bedenkt was wir sonst noch in der Schule lesen mussten/dürfen..
Adele Mitchell
I am sorry to say that I really did not enjoy this book and struggled to keep going, but thankfully it was quite short. It may have helped to have read the book that this book is based on but I hadn't, so it probably made it all the more confusing.
Nov 20, 2007 Erik rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Funny! And what a voice. Too bad about that little "electrical experiment." This is in my Drop Dead New York shelf because his Berlin reminds me so much of NYC. Those two cities were almost parallel worlds in the 1970s.
Jul 26, 2014 Simon rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: german
Lustige Reaktualisierung von Goethes Werther, leider mit einer Prise zuviel Salinger-Pseudo-Rebellentum (galt damals wohl noch als hip oder "es popte", wie Edgar Wibeau sagen würde). Das beste ist die untergründige DDR-Satire
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Ulrich Plenzdorf was a German author and dramatist.

Born in Berlin, Plenzdorf studied Philosophy in Leipzig, but graduated with a degree in film. He found work at DEFA.

He became famous in both East and West Germany for his socially critical work titled "Die neuen Leiden des jungen W." Written in the jargon of the GDR-youth of the 1970s, it details the tragic story of a young man and his attempt to
More about Ulrich Plenzdorf...

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