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Tragic Love

The narrative perspective that Goethe chose for “The Sorrows of Young Werther” was not a typical first person narrative.  The majority of the story was told through a sequence of letters written by Werther to his close friend Wilhelm.  This narrative allowed the reader to understand Werther’s sorrows and his feelings of happiness. The reader was able to take on the role of Wilhelm, and caused you to feel a deeper connection with the narrator.

When, while the lovely valley teems with vapour around me, and the meridian sun strikes the upper surface of the impenetrable foliage of my trees, and but a few stray gleams steal into the inner sanctuary, I throw myself down among the tall grass by the trickling stream; and, as I lie close to the earth, a thousand unknown plants are noticed by me: when I hear the buzz of the little world among the stalks, and grow familiar with the countless indescribable forms of the insects and flies, then I feel the presence of the Almighty, who formed us in his own image, and the breath of that universal love which bears and sustains us, as it floats around us in an eternity of bliss;”

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The Sorrows of Young Werther (Kindle Locations 44-49).

There were multiple passages within Werther’s letters that revealed his detailed perceptions of the world around him.  These passages expressed a different side of Werther’s personality and allowed the reader to understand him in a deeper way.  The language that Goeth used was beautiful and allowed the reader to take their mind off of the tragic plot.  Werther exaggerated his surrounding and made everything seem beautiful which shows that he was a dreamer and a romantic.

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