Eckbert the Fair

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Sawyer Auer
LIBLR 123
Take home exam #1
October 23,2012

Tieck; Eckbert the Fair
Tiek’s “fairy tale” of Eckbert the fair strays from the classical conception of style given to modern fairy tales. Fairy tales are often associated with several defining characteristics; extra-ordinary circumstances, “happy endings” and a moral to be learned. While Tieck’s tale does obey two of these three guidelines, he does so in a negative manor going the opposite way of twentieth century thought. Tiek’s protagonist Eckbert is first and foremost described as “…little more than medium height with short, light blond hair that hung in a plain fashion, closely framing his pale, drawn face.” (pg.35). Eckbert is, normal, plain and pale. Average in more ways than one. A stark difference with traditional fairy tales has already showed itself in Tiek’s opening paragraph. The main character, Eckbert is a plain quiet simple man. As opposed to traditionally tales whereas the lead is a special person, in special circumstances. Furthermore the perspective changes within the narrative bouncing from Eckbert to his wife Bertha and then back to Eckbert.

Daunting and depression social issues plague the story line. Bertha’s story begins with accounts of her parents beating her. Eckbert murders his friend in cold blood, incest, as discovered in the final page. Conventional, modern fairy tales take into account the youth of their readers and with this their context is molded to cater to such. Tiek used an arsenal of controversial subjects throughout the story, another way in which Tiek’s strays from the path from what is considered a “fairy tale” today.

Ludwig Tiek’s tale has a theme to it, several factors that come back from the beginning to the end that paint the image that Tiek was attempting to portray through his examples. In the end of the story the message is finally brought to the forefront for the reader, punishing Eckbert for a deed that his wife committed and for his leeching of his wife’s treasure. Tiek punishes Eckbert and his wife for their monotonous lifestyle and Berta’s betrayal. Yet the punisher (the old woman in black) is pushing Berta to betray her the whole time, as though all she wanted was to see her fail. The same is true for Eckbert’s failures, the old woman, cackling, tells him that she was in fact Walther and Hugo. The two friends who Eckbert feels he needs to divulge his secrets too in order to be closer. He’s met with the same result each time, to his terrified disgust. One reason why this poem is such a stellar example of the romantic period is the way it portrays the paradoxical nature of the period itself. The attempt to teach a lesson that and punish the couple, whilst the entire time it seems as though they never had a choice, they were almost destined to fail. Hand in hand with the importance of the natural settings to the narrative, it holds true to romanticism. Berta’s journey through the harsh cliffs to the waterfall, we can see the descriptions changing to represent Berta’s environment altering. Nature, the supernatural elements and the paradoxical punishment of Berta and Eckbert make Tiek’s classic a romantic poem. Marx: The Communist Manifesto

Dialectic Materialism a phrase coined by Marx, and further progressed by other authors who study Marx and Hegel exclusively, is the idea that every economic system at its core is based on principle values that lift it to its maximum efficiency while simultaneously helping to create an opposing system that will overtake the old one when its flaws see to its demise. Marx saw this occurrence as steps throughout history, which would eventually lead to communism. One system grows to its maximum efficiency, and then gives rise to an opposing system that takes the fundamental positives from the prior systems and evolves with them incorporated. In the Manifesto Marx and Engels talk of the Feudal system of Industry and its inability to cope with the changing world...
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