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About the book
  • Published: 11 May 2012
  • ISBN: 9780141192093
  • Imprint: Peng. Mod. Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 264
  • RRP: $22.99

Steppenwolf




A modernist work of profound wisdom that continues to enthral readers with its subtle blend of Eastern mysticism and Western culture, the Penguin Modern Classics edition of Hermann Hesse's Steppenwolf is revised by Walter Sorell from the original translation by Basil Creighton.
At first sight Harry Haller seems a respectable, educated man. In reality he is the Steppenwolf: wild, strange, alienated from society and repulsed by the modern age. But as he is drawn into a series of dreamlike and sometimes savage encounters - accompanied by, among others, Mozart, Goethe and the bewitching Hermione - the misanthropic Haller discovers a higher truth, and the possibility of happiness. This blistering portrayal of a man who feels himself to be half-human and half-wolf was the bible of the 1960s counterculture, capturing the mood of a disaffected generation, and remains a haunting story of estrangement and redemption.
Herman Hesse (1877 - 1962) suffered from depression and weathered series of personal crises which led him to undergo psychoanalysis with J. B. Lang; a process which resulted in Demian (1919), a novel whose main character is torn between the orderliness of bourgeois existence and the turbulent and enticing world of sensual experience. This dichotomy is prominent in Hesse's subsequent novels, including Siddhartha (1922), Steppenwolf (1927), Narcissus and Goldmund (1930) and his magnum opus, The Glass Bead Game (1943). Hesse was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1946.
If you enjoyed Steppenwolf, you might like Hesse's Siddhartha, also available in Penguin Classics.
'A savage indictment of bourgeois society ... the gripping and fascinating story of disease in a man's soul'
The New York Times

  • Pub date: 11 May 2012
  • ISBN: 9780141192093
  • Imprint: Peng. Mod. Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 264
  • RRP: $22.99

About the Authors

Hesse Hermann

Hermann Hesse ws born in southern Germany in 1877.  His most famous works are Siddhartha (1922), Journey to the East (1932), Demian (1919), Steppenwolf (1927), and Narziss and Goldmund (1930).  Hesse died at his home in Switzerland in 1962.

Hermann Hesse

Hermann Hesse was born in Calw, Württemberg, in 1877. He intended to follow in his father's footsteps as a Protestant pastor and missionary, but rebelled against traditional academic education and instead worked for a while as a bookseller, antique dealer and mechanic. After his first novel Peter Camenzind was published in 1904, he devoted himself to writing. In 1919, as a protest against German militarism in the First World War, Hesse moved back to Switzerland where he lived in self-imposed exile until his death at the age of eighty-five in 1962.

Hesse was strongly influenced by his interest in music, the psychoanalytic theories of Jung and Eastern thought. His early novels were traditional, but with the publication in 1919 of Demian, a Freudian study of adolescence with Nietzschean emphasis on the superior individual, he became an 'uninhibited innovator.' Each of his later novels, including Steppenwolf, Siddhartha and Narcissus and Goldmund, was a step in Hesse's determined search for the self. The Glass Bead Game (Das Glasperlenspiel [Magister Ludi]) was his last and consummate work.


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