Wilhelm Raabe’s Lifeworks Prize

BraunschweigIn the Leonardstrasse street in Germany, there is a house that still holds its former resident’s name Wilhelm Raabe. In the intense debate of the city of Braunshcweig’s boar for Literature preservation, the decision was made to not only rejuvenate the old house of German’s famous writer but to build a new one as well. All this is only possible because of the increasing numbers of admirers of his work.

Wilhelm Raabe was born in a small district of the duchy of Brunswick, in a town called Escherhausen. He entered a bookstore after attending the gymnasia in Wolfenbuttel, and soon became the apprentice in 1849. He found this opportunity perfect for richening and brightening his literary skills and learn more about the folklore and local tales of other countries but also his own. He stayed in the position of apprentice until 1854, so he had five years to dedicate himself to what will be his lifework in the future.

raabe-wilhelm-1955-die-chronik-der-sperlingsgasse-a1He started studying philosophy at Berlin from 1855 until 1857, after the routine at the bookstore became too tiring and monotonous. He published his first work while studying philosophy. He used a pseudonym and published “Die Chronik der Sperlingsgasse in 1857 at the end of studying days. This book gained great popularity, due to its illustrious overview of German bourgeoisie in simple sketches.

Realizing how big of a success this newly released book became, he was encouraged to leave the studies for good and entirely dedicate his life to literary work. Shortly after leaving philosophy studies he returned to Wolfenbuttel, only to realize that Stuttgart is the city for him in which he lived from 1862-1870. After this short adventure, Raabe returned to Brunswick remaining active and writing and publishing 30 novels and a small number of short stories and sketches until the end of the century.

His life work and reputation were enough to the town of Brunswick and the local radio station to organize prize rewarding system bearing his name that we know today as Wilhelm Raabe literature prize.

ricarda-huch-altersportraetThe first awarded prize was presented to Ricarda Huch in 1944. The awarding ceremony was then organized every 2 to 3 years counting 1947’s winner Fritz von Unruh, 1948’s Werner Bergengruen and other that achieved recognition in continuing events. It wasn’t until 2010 that the prize awarding events took hold in the repetition of every year to this day. Clemens J. Setz was the 2015’s winner of Wilhelm Raabe literature prize, with his new novel “Die Stunde Zwischen Frau un Gitarre” or the hours between woman and guitar.

All the novelists that were nominated for the prize were greatly inspired by Wilhelm’s life work that had so much influence on their work. It is no surprise that this legendary German novelist continues to be a role model novelist for today’s generations. The major of the city Braunschweig and the member of leading board of local radio’s program has been a big factor in contributing to this event. There are still many novelists that are hoping to be awarded this honor of Wilhelm’s Raabe Literal prize.

Wilhelm Raabe – highly-respected prize

93cbb26c372b3107f3275991c89914a3v1_max_755x425_b3535db83dc50e27c1bb1392364c95a2In 2015 writer Setz J. Clemens achieved the right and was rewarded the Wilhelm Raabe Literature prize. The winning novel was Clemens J. Setz’s  “The hour between woman and guitar” providing him with 30 000 euros that were donated by the city in Germany called Braunschweig and local radio station. Ulrich Markurth, the major of Braunschweig, who is also the director of a radio station that goes by the name Dr. Willi Steul, had his final say in this and approved the proposition of the jury.

Conference-centerThe team of the jury for the Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize, which is held on 1. Of October, consisted of 9 high esteemed members: Dr. Gerd Biegel, who is the president of the International Rabbe-Gesellschaft event, Dr. Anja Hesse(Culture and Science of Braunschweig’s deputy major) Thomas Gaiger ( from Literary Colloquim of Berlin), Alexander Cammann( from DIE ZEIT magazine), Sandra Kegel(FAZ association’s head staff member) Dr. Hubert Winkels( from local German radio station) Dr. Renate Stauf( Germanistisches Institute’s member also known from TU Braunschweig) and the freelancer critic Kristina Maidt-prong.

42495All jury members agree that reviewing novels nominated for this prize award, must be done a certain amount of care and perfect sense for story writing. After reading and carefully examining every page of 1000 pages novel “ The hour between women and guitar” they agreed on making this the best novel that deserves the right to be the winner of Wilhelm Raabe Literature prize. There is more to just a good story; it has to relate to the event’s origin writer. The important thing is that the novel has to pay a certain amount of respect toward Wilhelm Raabe’s work. The work he provided for German literature not only richens it but also pushes the limits of other writers in his time and continues to do so to this day. With more Raabe inspired writers German literature is bound to expand its horizon and achieve great heights in literature sense.

The prize for this award is among more significant ones, right after the Georg Buchner Prize and Joseph-Breitbach’s prize. With 30 000 thousand euros to motivate the writers, along with the respect the Prize brings with fellow writers the jury states it is more than enough to set the writers in the perfect mood for creating the best novels of German literature history.

330113_1_lightbox_Wilhelm_Raabe_1901Wilhelm Raabe’s pseudonym JakobCorvinus is rarely known among the public, but true fans and writers who are inspired by Wilhelm Raabe’s work know this important detail that brings more to the story of his life and work.

This prize is not only about gaining fame and glory for current novelist and writers in general; it is a way of paying honor to Wilhelm Raabe’s lifework and also about supporting the German literature.

Wilhelm Raabe lived in the 18th century, and his individual work was greatly awarded. The town of Braunschweig literature board members, along with radio station, are the writer’s most dedicated fans as they contribute most in inspiring other writers to look up to Raabe’s work.


The Hunger Pastor – a German novelist

4833406,3165428,highRes,71-13084691.JPGWilhelm Raabe is a German novelist who was born in 1831 and died in 1910 in the town of Braunschweig. His writing powerfully influenced the existence of his readers back then and with his work he made a mark in German literature. At the beginning, he worked under pseudonym Jakob Corvinus and he is one of the greatest writers of the ninetieth century.

Wilhelm Raabe’s book called Der Hungerpastor (1864) is a typical case of the poetic realism” to which many German writers were faithful in the nineteenth century. Wilhelm Raabe became eminent after the release of his first novel, Die Chronik der Sperlingsgasse which was translated as The Sparrow Lane Chronicle, in 1856. Later people recognized him for their social criticism, while previous books, such as The Hunger Pastor, were planned to be first and foremost educational. With the lead role, a man called Hans Unwirrsch, in The Hunger Pastor Raabe entirely lives up to his slogan. And that slogan was look up to the stars, pay attention to the streets. The promising minister, who had been born in scarcity, is eager, in some point author uses term hunger (associated with the book title), for knowledge and an appreciated spot in the community, but he is continually finding difficulties with obstacles. Those obstacles represent things from his life, as well as his family and friends. The fight against obstacles can be compared to the famous rock of Greek Sisyphus.  Raabe’s confused style makes his books hard for reading and for many current readers. That’s why in the newer version of The Hunger Pastor, more than a few chapters have not been completely originals because it’s been summarized by the translators. But the most important ones are same, and they are available in their original duration. Regardless of some anti-Semitic rudiments, which were usual for the works of 19th-century writers in Germany, this is a well-known classic in German literature.

Raabe_HungerpastorThen there is main character’s friend Moses, a lad born at the identical time, and in the equivalent scruffy street. Moses has a similar desire for knowledge and skill that Hans have, though he has several advantages than Hans. He has greater intelligence, and more wealth, as well as the intense difficulty of being Jewish in anti-Semitic culture. What the writer portrays as the vital distinction between the two characters is that Moses goes to become a voracious, manipulative, rude man, whereas Hans keeps his good straightforwardness.

The trouble with the story is that the Rabe does not speak to the question of why one person’s spirit becomes tainted, and another boy does not, so sadly, the tale would seem to be just anti-Semitic. On the other hand, the Rabe makes an attempt to represent anti-Semitism as being terrible, and he makes some fascinating comments about the diverse forms it took before, through, as well as following the Napoleonic wars. But he regularly uses the unpleasant language of his day, in referring to his Jewish roles, yet when their events are otherwise highly regarded. The resulting manuscript is puzzling, alarming, and wide open to being interpreted as anti-Semitic silage.


Negative Review of The Hunger Pastor

When was it the last time you read some book? Seems like yesterday when my friends and I had organizing book clubs. It’s not like we don’t hang out any more it’s just that awful thing of modernization. We spend more time playing video games, hanging around the internet, talking about new applications for our cell phones. Because of that, I appreciate older times, those times what older people are telling us. Times when thongs weren’t so complicated. My father told me when he had to go on a date with my mother and how he was nervous. He had to dial their phone, and he was nervous if her father, my grandfather, answer it. Then he told me how they went to the movies, and he had to bring her back by ten in the evening. Nowadays, my son just sent a text message to his girlfriend with very short contains, and go and spend all night together.  All that grudged me and I started a book club for my friends. They all had to read their homework and had to analyze it on one evening. My friend had the most interesting on the analysis of the book that we had to read, and I wanted to share it with people.

Wilhelm_RaabeI read Wilhelm Raabe’s book in its original complete German description. The first third of the novel is quite charming, picturing an 18th-century image of the population of a small street Kröppelgasse in a small town Neustadt. Fairly alike to Dickens’ writing method, we find out a lot about the material of culture at this time based on full character studies of its roles. It is a vivid, nuanced, from time to time dreadful image. The leading character Hans Unwirrsch, and his Jewish school buddy Moses Feuerstein are motivated by a desire for schooling, education, and everything that goes beyond their street. They want to live their lives outside of those streets and their hunger, associated with the title of the book, is one of the characters in this book.

41mLCkBLi6L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_In the second third of the book, they do not hang out more after they finished university in a bigger close town. Moses tries to go alone from the social and ethical borders that Germany offered to progressive, capitalist Jewish intelligentsia. Hans remained the straightforward and green if appreciated and valued man dreaming of turning into a community priest. Hans and Moses assemble once more in a big city in a physiological fight of wills mainly characterized as good against evil. Now this is where the tale begins to become boring somewhat closest on tastelessness, and decorated by the very own prejudices of the writer.

The last third of the book leads us to a fishing town at the Baltic Sea, where Hans succeeds with all that he has missing so far; social gratitude, proper love, steady profits. A lot of duplication on the theme of desire, and the right shape of his one proper love and spouse make this part uninteresting analysis, full of ethical lectures, and principally unimpressive characters.

Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize

JakobCorvinus and Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize have something in common. They are centered around the same person.
wilhelm-raabe-schriftsteller-grJakobCorvinus was the pseudonym of one of the greatest German novelists – Wilhelm Raabe and the Prize is German literary award given to current writers with an intention to pay honor to Raabe’s lifework and support German literature.
Wilhelm Raabe was a German novelist born in 1831, died in 1910 in Braunschweig. His literature work strongly influenced spiritual life of his readers at the time leaving great mark in German literature. He published early works under JakobCorvinus pseudonym and his first book “Die Chronik der Sperlingsgasse” gain significant publicity among readers of that time.
raabeporWanting to pay honor to Raabe, share the memory and values of his works and promote German literature, the award named after him was established in 1944. This prize was irregularly awarded for almost fifty years when founders decided to modify it slightly according to policy changes in cultural aspects. The prize was revised in 2000 and for the next nine years it was awarded every second year. Since 2009, it is awarded annually.
_DSC4148redThe donor of the prize is the City of Brunswick partnering with Radio Germany. Every year in November, these two institutions organize a jury consisted of nine members – eminent literates, journalists and other professionals from the world of literature. The rules do not allow writers to nominate themselves. Each member of the jury nominates two chosen titles that fall under the category – prose written in native German. The works are nominated as influential, high-quality narrative literature. After the nominations, the jury selects preliminary list and debates those works one more time.
Sandmeyer-up-closeOne title will be picked up from the narrowed list and rewarded as the best and the most representative current contemporary German literature work. The only condition is that winner’s literature work must have been published sometime in the current calendar year.
Since the last revising in 2009, Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize amounts 30 thousand euros. This rates it among the most significant awards given in the field of German literature, along with Georg Buchner and Joseph Breitbach prizes. Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize is, also, among the most significant ones due to its renown. Nominations for this prize come as some sort of annual overview of the most influential active writers, according to the judgment of professional critic.
20121107-233502The ceremony takes place in November, the birth month of Wilhelm Raabe. Producer of the program of Germany Radio is the official speaker of the jury and the whole ceremony is usually followed by memorable atmosphere and a good time all participants have.
If making ambitious plans to give a shot and try to gain jury’s attention and respect and possible aim for this year’s Wilhelm Raabe Literature Prize, you have several months left to meet the criteria.
This year’s nominations and the ceremony are already announced as the special upcoming event, some changes and pleasant surprises are implied and the public is predicting and discussing potential winners.

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