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Gertrude (Modern Classics)
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Gertrude (Modern Classics)

3.78 of 5 stars 3.78  ·  rating details  ·  3,063 ratings  ·  114 reviews
Hesse's novel about the destructive nature of love.The narrator loves Gertrude.When she marries his friend he watches while they slowly destroy each other a destruction which ends with his friends suicide.
Paperback, 158 pages
Published 1973 by Penguin Books (first published 1910)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Mohit Parikh
This one is on harmony. On concordance and discordance. This one passage, very early into the book, summarizes the theme best:

"Of all the conceptions of pure bliss that people and poets have dreamed of, listening to the harmony of the spheres always seemed to me the highest and most intense. That is where my dearest and brightest dreams have ranged - to hear for the duration of a heartbeat the universe and the totality of life in its mysterious, innate harmony. Alas, how is it that life can be s
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Gertrude & Victoria
Hermann Hesse's Gertrude and Knut Hamsun's Victoria share a common bond about man's attempt to fight fate, fate's conspiracy against man in his search for inner peace and lasting love. Kuhn, the student, aspiring composer and central character, seeks direction and purpose, understanding, and eventually, solace, through his life struggles, which lead him towards the path of unrequited love, an attempt at suicide, success and fame, death of close friends, and finally to peaceful resignation.

Gertru
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Paul
Another novel about unrequited love. The book shows the influence of Nietzsche and the split between Dionysian passion and the intellectual and cerebral virtues of the Apollonian aspect. This duality reminded me a little of Death In Venice by Thomas Mann, which I have also read this month.
The main protagonist Kuhn, is a fairly successful composer who is looking back. Kuhn reminded me a little of Philip Carey in Maugham's Of Human Bondage (which I have also read recently), because of his physica
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Rida Hariri
الآن شعرت قليلًا بسبب التقدير الذي يحمله تاركوفسكي لهيرمان هسه..
هيرمان هسه يحتاج لحالةٍ من الهدوء لقراءته هذا ما أحسست به,,تحتاج للهدوء لكي تتمكن من الاستمتاع بالهدوء المطلق الذي يسيطر على طريقته في السرد,على هدوء الأحداث في الرواية الهدوء الذي تفرضه أجواء الرواية التي تدور في محيط أرستقراطي في ألمانيا..
كل شيء بطيء ولكن في مرحلة معينة أثناء القراءة يجبرك على الامساك بالكتاب حتى النهاية..
الرواية لا تحمل أي نوع من الأمل الأحمق بالحياة كما يفعل باولو كويلو وكذلك لا تراجيديا هنا بل حياة فقط والاحسا
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S Prakash
Hesse is one of my favorite writers and my take on his works would carry a bit of bias. Gertrude might not be one of the famous books of Hesse in the league of a Siddartha, yet it is one of the most heart rendering narratives. Its a semi autobigraphical work, liberally feeding on the tumultous life of Hesse during his younger days. Its a soliloquy of the protaganist's solitude, lovelornness and his inability to deal with the upheavels of his life.

Kuhn falls in love twice and both the times it go
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Theia
Dacă există ceva creat de om care să poată ajuta trăirea și purtarea existenței, acest ceva cu siguranță are în plămădeală muzică și scriere.
Pentru mine, acest ceva este Hesse, cărțile lui și spiritul lui, impregnat în scriere și îndreptat, direcționat, dedicat cititorului. Tot ce-a creat (și din ce-am citit) e despre natura umană și o încercare de a o înțelege fără a o judeca prea aspru. Fără a-i impune îmbunătățire.
Doar că acel uman prezent în lucrările sale are o puritate aproape inumană az
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Ahmad Sharabiani
همیشه و هنوز در عالم رویا ندای جوانی ام را به مثابه آهنگی زیبا به گوش جان میشنوم
Griselda
A gently paced narrative giving insight into the narrator's interpretation of the people around him. Brief, but, in the tradition of the Bildungsroman, the book allows us to observe the emotional journey and development of the young narrator.
Corey
I read most of Hesse in my twenties and I was a little trepidacious approaching him again. I thought perhaps he was one of those authors you read and appreciate only when young. But this is a beautiful book.
Lisa
Not the easiest book to get through. It's pretty dark and sad. But definitely some of the most beautiful writing I've read. This is probably one of my favorite quote of all time:

"Fate was not kind, life was capricious and terrible, and there was no good reason in nature. But there is good and reason in us, in human beings, with whom fortune plays, and we can be stronger than nature and fate, if only for a few hours. And we can draw close to one another in times of need, understand and love one a
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هبة فريج
هل يمكنُ لأحدٍ قرأ رواية دُميان لهرمان هسّه ألا يحتاج إليه في هذا الدّرب ، وقتاً ما ؟
هرمان يأتي بالنّفس ويفتحُ أبوابَها الظاهرة والخفيّة ، يفهّمها ويرعاها قليلاً ثم يدعها تنطلق لتختبر الحياة من جديد ، أو تختبرها الحياة من جديد ..

ممتنّة لهرمان
Henrique Cassol
Definitivamente meu autor favorito. Hesse, neste que foi um dos seus primeiros romances, já desponta como um excelente escritor, destacando uma das marcas que lhe são próprias: a impessoalidade e a imprevisibilidade. Seus livros são carregados de sentimentos e de narrativas muito bem conduzidas, com personagens de personalidades fortes e marcantes, como é o caso de Kuhn, o compositor aleijado e peça central do romance, que sofre pelo amor de Gertrud, dotado de um talento incrível para compor e d ...more
Nawesa
Tiene un estilo formal que puede sonar cursi o afectado. Quizá porque fue escrita a principios del siglo pasado. Leí la versión española de Emilio Ávila de la Torre. Me gustó porque me parece que describe muy bien el alma pesarosa de los artistas o mentes creadoras que tienen mucha sensibilidad. Es la historia de un músico, así que cualquier músico compositor podría sentirse conectado con el personaje principal. Pero creo que la forma en que describe el proceso creativo se podría bien aplicar a ...more
Kris
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Davidg
I have had this second hand paperback sitting on my shelves for over 30 years. I loved 'The Glass Bead Game' back when I was at University and someone recommended 'Gertrude' to me and I picked it up for 50p and shelved it next to my other Hesse books and there it has remained. Surviving several moves and numerous culls to make room on the shelves, It finally got taken down and put in my bag for a train ride down to London.

I knew it was going to be a love story, something of that original recomme
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Lalitha
I'm glad I read Siddhartha first. It seems that Gertrude was written earlier. What the author says at the outset of the book, he seems to carry it through the book. So to that extent it was not disappointing.
There are some observations expressed at several points that made an impression on me. But unlike in Siddhartha where I felt that reading the book up to a point was worth it because of what becomes clear at that point, I am not so sure about this book from that perspective.
An interesting
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Micha
Speaking with a friend here in Ireland about my well-documented love of Hesse and about my recent writing involving composers he rooted through the bookshelves in his house till he could find me this book, insisting upon the necessity of reading it. It's very much a book I needed at this time in my life, but then Hesse always seems to be that for me. I love that he talks about individualism and "the artist's way" somewhat cynically here. At times I feared he veered too much towards accepting the ...more
Nathan
Aug 04, 2007 Nathan rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Composers of Music
Shelves: hermanhesse
Initially I was drawn to the narrator's passionate obsession with music and composing, but in the end I just fell in love with the entire novel. It travels through friendship and love and passion, and in the end it leaves you wanting more. I sat down with this book and could not pull myself away from its pages, as is always the case for me and Herman.
Wouter
Very nice book! About love that's not meant to be, about passion for music and about friendship. It's a very easy read, taking notice of the fact that the story was written about a century ago. If you like Hesse's work you should absolutely read this.
Hesse can wrap words around subtleties i thought people could only slightly sense the truth of.
David
Hesse tells the story of the composer Kuhn which is both (unintentionally) humorous and (intentionally) beautiful. We are taken through Kuhn's childhood during which he suffered an injury which left him physically handicapped for life and into his music school years and his life as a composer. The book has its quirky parts good for a few laughs, such as Kuhn's run-in with a Rudolf Steiner-esque theosophist...or his **mild spoiler** pitiful friend-zoning which the reader sees coming a mile away b ...more
Lachlan
Stronger than I anticipated for one of Hesse's early works. Worth your time.
Lindu Pindu
I'm reading this just to experience all of Hermann. It has its good moments. But early Hesse seems to be all about the toils of the male artist. Inward disappointment+outer bemusement, inner floods of self-loathing and all that. It leaves me with a chronic queasiness, much like life when seen in a dualist way.
Mike Barretta
Seems like a straight-forward character sketch of artists hung on the scaffold of an unrequited love story. I did like the fluidity of the narrative, how quickly and smoothly things moved from one key period to the next; it's a small book that covers a large period of time.

There was a good quote in there that lines up with thoughts I agreed with from Settembrini in Magic Mountain:

"Fate was not kind, life was capricious and terrible, and there was no good or reason with nature. But there is good
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Lee Kofman
This is the third novel by Hesse I read and it's time to stop! I don’t share his worldview, which is too ascetic and didactic to my liking even though he upholds some ideas I agree with, particularly about the paramount importance of inner resources. But then, Hesse thinks people’s capacity to be happy is pre-determined and I have a problem with such defeatist beliefs. Besides, he doesn’t seem to be interested much in his characters and the narrative, but rather uses his novels as platforms to d ...more
Stephanie
this is one of my favorite books.
Mark
A friend of mine left this book at my house after visiting for a few days. I would never have picked this off a shelf at the bookshop or library.

This is a really dark but enjoyable book that kind of snuck up on me after getting through the tedium of the first few pages. The main character, Kuhn, is his own worst enemy. A great tale of sadness and despair caused by unfilled love, even though Kuhn had quite an accomplished life. Kuhn's dark, cynical observations almost become comical at times, al
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Farhan Khalid
At the beginning I enjoyed the solitude like a cool, healing drink

The calm solitude surrounded me like a fortress

I saw and felt myself like a mass of moving clouds

Everything appeared without a mask

Where things were no longer labeled sorrow or happiness

But everything signified strength and sound and creative release

Sorrow and peace were rhythm, part and spirit of the same great music

When the south wind blows, the avalanche trembles and death's dirge rumbles

Is that God's will?

Through the lands of
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Patrick Gibson
Sounds like an existential law firm for the humanities: “Student, Painter and Musician Esq.” (The subject of Hesses’ first three novels.) This novel deals with the composer Herr Kuhn and his tangled relationship with the worldly singer Heinrich Mouth and the woman they love and share(!) Gerturde. Hesse begins his lifelong quest for exploring the conflict between the good (piety) and evil (worldliness). The subject of his later masterwork “Narcissus and Goldman.” Similar to Goethe in its existent ...more
Marty
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Hermann Hesse was a German-Swiss poet, novelist, and painter. In 1946, he received the Nobel Prize in Literature. His best known works include Steppenwolf, Siddhartha, and The Glass Bead Game (also known as Magister Ludi) which explore an individual's search for spirituality outside society.

In his time, Hesse was a popular and influential author in the German-speaking world; worldwide fame only ca
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More about Hermann Hesse...
Siddhartha Steppenwolf Demian: Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend Narcissus and Goldmund The Glass Bead Game

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“That is where my dearest and brightest dreams have ranged — to hear for the duration of a heartbeat the universe and the totality of life in its mysterious, innate harmony.” 760 likes
“Youth ends when egotism does; maturity begins when one lives for others.” 204 likes
More quotes…