Beyond Atonement

Beyond Atonement

Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach

Translated by Vanessa Van Ornam

Introduction by Vanessa Van Ornam

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19th-century novel of adultery and remorse.
Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach (1830-1916) was celebrated even in her own lifetime as Austria's foremost nineteenth-century woman writer.Beyond Atonement (Unsühnbar, 1889), loosely based on an actual event in a high-class Austrian family,is a novel about adultery: Maria marries Hermann Dornach, though she is in love with Felix Tessin; two years later, she commits adultery with Tessin, conceiving a child whom she alone knows to be illegitimate; when her husband and their legitimate son die in an accident, she reveals her infidelity. Her unforgiving family and her own remorse set Maria apart from the protagonists of other nineteenth-century novels of adultery such as Goethe's Elective Affinities and Tolstoy's Anna Karenina. Beyond Atonement is a companion piece to Ebner's best-known tale of village life, Their Pavel (Das Gemeindekind), also published by Camden House.
Dr VANESSA VAN ORNAM is a translator for the city government of Berlin.


"The nineteenth-century's keen interest in order and social contracts provided the context for those famous novels of marriage and adultery -- Tolstoy's Anna Karenina, Fontane's Effi Briest, and Ebner-Eschenbach's Beyond Atonement. Van Ornam's translation is eminently readable and thoughtful, capturing in English the cadences of the original German. Her fine, nuanced work opens Ebner-Eschenbach's text to a new audience. She is to be commended." -- Linda Krause Worley, University of Kentucky
Aficionados of 19th-century novels -- especially those written by women -- will be intrigued. SEMINAR 'Van Ornam achieved her goal of retaining the late 19th-century flavor of the original novel.' COLLOQUIA GERMANICA

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