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In a German Pension by Katharine Mansfield

In a German Pension (original 1911; edition 1995)

by Katharine Mansfield (Author)

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3901141,579 (3.66)42
Title:In a German Pension
Authors:Katharine Mansfield (Author)
Info:New York: Dover
Collections:Your library, Fiction
Tags:inscribed, Day Room

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In a German Pension by Katherine Mansfield (1911)



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English (10)  German (1)  All languages (11)
Showing 1-5 of 10 (next | show all)
This was Katherine Mansfield's first collection of stories, published in 1911 when she was in her early twenties. The sto ries are told by a young married Englishwoman who is staying alone at a pension in a German spa town while taking the cure. As the guests tend to stay for weeks or even months, she has plenty of time to get to know their foibles, and the stories take a satirical look at her fellow guests, concentrating on their snobbish and obsequious regard for the aristocracy, and their withering disdain for everything English. The narrator is criticised for the huge breakfasts eaten by people in England and the habit of warming the pot when making tea, since after all we are not going to eat the teapot! Her fellow guests also dislike the cold temperament of the English, their unmusical nature, attitude to romance and dislike of discussing their health, although one lady did find something complimentary to say.

"Fish-blooded," snapped Frau Godowska. "Without soul, without heart, without grace. But you cannot equal their dress materials. I spent a week in Brighton twenty years ago, and the travelling cape I bought there is not yet worn out—the one you wrap the hot-water bottle in, Sonia."

I found most of the stories funny, but the bit that made me laugh the most was the narrator's refusal to pander to Fräulein Sonia when she fainted theatrically in the street in "The Modern Soul".

"I am going to faint here and now."
I was frightened. "You can't," I said, shaking her.
"Come back to the pension and faint as much as you please. But you can't faint here. All the shops are closed. There is nobody about. Please don't be so foolish."
"Here and here only!" She indicated the exact spot and dropped quite beautifully, lying motionless.
"Very well," I said, "faint away; but please hurry over it."
She did not move. I began to walk home, but each time I looked behind me I saw the dark form of the modern soul prone before the hairdresser's window. Finally I ran, and rooted out the Herr Professor from his room. "Fraulein Sonia has fainted," I said crossly.
"Du lieber Gott! Where? How?"
"Outside the hairdresser's shop in the Station Road."
"Jesus and Maria! Has she no water with her?"—he seized his carafe—"nobody beside her?"
"Where is my coat? No matter, I shall catch a cold on the chest. Willingly, I shall catch one... You are ready to come with me?"
"No," I said; "you can take the waiter."
"But she must have a woman. I cannot be so indelicate as to attempt to loosen her stays."
"Modern souls oughtn't to wear them," said I. He pushed past me and clattered down the stairs.
( )
1 vote isabelx | Jul 30, 2015 |
From the first paragraph of the first story, it is clear why this little collection caught the attention of the literary world. Katherine Mansfield dissects social interactions in a pithy and unapologetic way. She is particularly rough on men. Very ahead of her time, she has little respect for the institution of marriage or for family life and from her stories it would be hard to tell if she's ever seen a happy marriage or family. Some of her stories are funny, some pathetic, some beautiful and some devastating. She is a master of her craft and she leaves me cold. ( )
  nittnut | May 22, 2015 |
This collection is the third and last part of my Kindle edition of "Selected Stories" (the first 2 parts, "The Garden Party and Other Stories" & "Bliss and Other Stories", I read in 2013). I found this collection distinct from the other 2 in that the stories are almost chapters in a "slice of life" novel, describing the various characters & events that occur while the main character, an Englishwoman, is staying at this pension (sort of like a boarding house). ( )
  leslie.98 | Feb 13, 2015 |
bookshelves: gutenberg-project, e-book, published-1911, tbr-busting-2014, shortstory-shortstories-novellas, dip-in-now-and-again, nutty-nuut, under-500-ratings, germany, spring-2014
Recommended to ☯Bettie☯ by: Wanda & TA
Read from May 05, 2012 to May 23, 2014


Description: In a German Pension is a remarkable collection of short stories, displaying all Katherine Mansfield’s skill in the genre. Written shortly after the author visited Germany as a young woman, these short stories form a series of satirical sketches of German characters. From a young wife’s preoccupation with her husband’s stomach, to a society lady’s inability to see beyond the latest fashion, Katherine Mansfield depicts, in exquisite detail, the minute changes of human behavior. In a German Pension reveals her as a true disciple of Chekhov. A key figure in the Modernist movement, Katherine Mansfield is most remarkable for perfecting the art of the short story.

I have a feeling that I will like this 'write-back' to EvA's romanticism - all in the the contrast, what!what!

**Hattip Blair** Also available here: http://nzetc.victoria.ac.nz/tm/schola...

Germans at Meat 7
The Baron 19
The Sister of the Baroness 29
Frau Fischer 43
Frau Brechenmacher Attends a Wedding 61
The Modern Soul 79
At “Lehmann's” 105
The Luft Bad 125
A Birthday 135
The Child-Who-Was-Tired 163
The Advanced Lady 185
The Swing of the Pendulum 211
A Blaze 239 ( )
  mimal | May 23, 2014 |
Ho usato per insegnare a Mansfield in inglese o di Naipaul "Miguel Street" o di Hemingway "Kilimanjaro". Esilarante satira su buone maniere, dove i tedeschi sono come gli americani, sulle funzioni corporee franche. "I tedeschi a base di carne" satira subordinazione delle mogli tedesche, i loro mariti alimentazione. "Il Barone" satira l'ossessione tedesca con il cibo che porta all'obesità, a cui noi americani oggi li superano. Ho ricevuto alcune buone carte da universitari matricole donne soprattutto ( )
  AlanWPowers | Jun 25, 2013 |
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» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Katherine Mansfieldprimary authorall editionscalculated
Llisterri, AnnaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Murray, John MiddletonIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 048628719X, Paperback)

Rich, psychologically probing stories: "Germans at Meat," "The Baron," "The Modern Soul," "The Advanced Lady" and nine others.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:06 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

This is a remarkable collection of short stories, displaying all Mansfield's skill in the genre. It reveals her as a true disciple of Chekhov.

(summary from another edition)

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