After Nature is the very first literary work by W. G. Sebald, author of Austerlitz After Nature by W.G. Sebald, author of Austerlitz, is his first literary work and the start of his highly personal and brilliant writing journey. In this long prose poem, Sebald introduces many of the themes that he explores in his subsequent books. Focusing on the conflict between man and nature, each of the three distinct parts of After Nature give centre stage to a different character from a different century - the last being W.G. Sebald himself. 'A deeply intelligent book, but also a marvellously warm, exciting and compassionate one' Andrew Motion 'A debut of rare poetic grandeur' Irish Times 'Astonishing writing. A true poet at work' Evening Standard 'Graceful, allusive, serious, but also immensely readable' Sunday Telegraph 'When you read Sebald you are transported to another realm' Literary Review W . G. Sebald was born in Wertach im Allgau, Germany, in 1944 and died in December 2001. He studied German language and literature in Freiburg, Switzerland and Manchester.
In 1996 he took up a position as an assistant lecturer at the University of Manchester and settled permanently in England in 1970. He was Professor of European Literature at the University of East Anglia and is the author of The Emigrants, The Rings of Saturn, Vertigo, Austerlitz, After Nature, On the Natural History of Destruction, Campo Santo, Unrecounted, For Years Now and A Place in the Country. His selected poetry is published in a volume called Across the Land and the Water.
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(198mm x 129mm x 7mm)
Penguin Books Ltd
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
Born in Germany in 1944, W G Sebald settled in England to become Professor of European Literature at the University of East Anglia. He was acclaimed for four seminal works of fiction, and Austerlitz, his final and best-known book, received widespread praise before his untimely death in December 2001. Now his first literary work is published in English for the first time. Taking the form of a long prose poem written in blank verse, it explores the fundamental conflict between man and nature in a highly personalized and potent fashion. Sebald divides his poem into three distinct parts. First he writes from the perspective of the 15th-century artist known as Grunewald, a painter possessed of an extraordinarily tortured perception of the human condition whose real identity is still in doubt. Just as Sebald sees this mysterious artist's distorted images as providing a conduit into creation, so he manipulates the life of Georg Wilhelm Steller, the theologian turned natural scientist who forms the focus of the second section of the book. Finally, in the third part, Sebald examines his own history. 'How far,' he asks, 'must one go back to find the beginning?' In the words of the Poet Laureate Andrew Motion, Sebald was in his last five years beginning to reap the harvest of a lifetime's immaculate thinking, and After Nature is now imbued with a poignant irony Sebald could not have forseen. At the height of his powers Grunewald faded abruptly into a twilight he still inhabits; Georg Steller did not live to see the publication of his zoological masterpiece. It can only be hoped Sebald's straining for a primordial truth will survive him. (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - W. G. Sebald
W. G. Sebald was born in Germany in 1944 and died in 2001. He is the author of The Emigrants, The Rings of Saturn, Vertigo, Austerlitz, After Nature, On the Natural History of Destruction, Unrecounted, Campo Santo and Silent Catastrophes among other publications.