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The Wild Child: The Unsolved Mystery of Kaspar Hauser

3.42  ·  Rating details ·  53 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Kept in a dungeon for his entire childhood, Kaspar Hauser appeared in Nuremberg, Germany, in 1828 at age sixteen, barely able to walk or talk. When he was killed in 1833, his true identity and the motives for his unsolved murder became the subjects of intense speculation. This provocative essay sheds new light on this mystery and delves into fundamental questions about the ...more
ebook, 272 pages
Published May 11th 2010 by Touchstone (first published March 8th 1996)
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Angela Mcentee
Nov 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Kasper Hauser's story is sad and fascinating. This is a book that goes into details, feels well researched and thorough. His hypothesis is well thought out, and believable.
Jul 10, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
A well-written look at a fascinating story. Includes photos of the place where Kaspar is thought to have been kept and some of Kaspar's drawings.
Katherine Addison
I don't know enough about Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson, Kaspar Hauser, or Kaspar Hauser scholarship to to talk knowledgeably about Lost Prince. I can see that Masson believes passionately that Kaspar Hauser was telling the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, and that he was murdered on the orders of the earl of Stanhope because he was the true heir of Charles, Grand Duke of Baden. But I can also see, even from Masson's biased account, why some people at the time, and other people ...more
Jun 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: history, nonfiction
3.75 The book basically has two sections: the Introduction and the translation of Feurbach's text on Kasper Hauser, the first time this work had been translated into English. The Introduction does an excellent job of synthezing and summarizing the research that has been done on Kasper, though I strongly feel that the author should have opted for footnotes over endnotes....there was a lot of valuable information in them and it was quite a hassle always flipping back and forth. Also, I don't have ...more
Sally Anderson
Sep 06, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aside from some unfortunate, critical inconsistencies in dating (was there no copy editor in the house? These should've been a no-brainer; instead, trying to figure out years misrecorded upstaged the story at times) -- I really appreciate the level of care and research devoted to this compelling story, so worth keeping alive for many reasons. To me, this convincingly answers the question of the identity of the man known as Kaspar Hauser. Just wish a sweeper could come through and fix the date ...more
The Werner Herzog movie is beautiful, and if you only have a passing interest watch that rather than read any book on the subject. But if the movie leaves you, like it did me, in a turmoil of dissatisfaction over not being able to know any more about what happened, this book is a good supplement. There are still huge unknowns, but reading at least the documents that do exist gave me a much better sense of what the possibilities are, and how possible each one is.
I kept this book beside my bed as a sure fire means of falling asleep. It is a very interesting topic: Kasper Hauser, mystery child of the 18th century, and I did get sucked in. Ultimately, though, I had to send it off to have more space for books I can finish.
Scott Williams
Jul 10, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is clearly a thoroughly researched piece of work. The author manages to shed some light and help clarify parts of the fascinating and tragic story of Kaspar Hauser. However, I'm still left feeling like I need to seek out other titles from his bibliography to get the complete picture.
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He has written several books books critical of psychoanalysis, psychotherapy and psychiatry as well as books on animals, their emotions and their rights.

He currently lives in New Zealand with his wife, two sons, three cats and three rats.