Robert Walser: Geschwister Tanner (The Tanners)

The latest addition to my website is Robert Walser‘s Geschwister Tanner (The Tanners). This was Walser’s first novel and a strange one it is, clearly based on himself and his family. The main character is Simon Tanner, a young man who drifts around from job to job, from town to town, from relationship to to relationship, unsure of where he fits in but not too concerned about it either. Like Walser, he likes long walks, the joys of nature and writing. His eldest brother is concerned about his siblings, but one brother (whom we never meet) has been institutionalised, the other brother, a painter, is almost as out of touch with reality as Simon and their sister, Hedwig, feels there is a thin wall between her and the real world. The novel, like the characters, is rambling but an interesting first novel all the same.

2 Replies to “Robert Walser: Geschwister Tanner (The Tanners)”

  1. I’ve wanted to read a follow-up to Jakob von Gunten for a long time, but I keep forgetting to make time for it other than for a couple of stray short stories from Walser. Thanks for reminding me about this title – the out of touch with reality vibe sounds appealing.

    1. I preferred Jakob but enjoyed this. Hope to get round to his other works soon. And glad to see Caravana is back in business after your move.

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