The Calf That Stopped the Gotthard Coach

The Calf That Stopped the Gotthard Coach

Peter von Matt

Peter von Matt, one of the leading lights of Swiss Germanism, presents us with a critical yet ultimately affectionate take on Switzerland – a country situated at the very heart of Europe which has nevertheless always followed its own idiosyncratic path.
Peter von Matt loves his homeland for its contrasts – its time-honoured alpine traditions and the high-tech futurism o f its modern tunnels. Switzerland should count itself fortunate that it is also home to such a clever and astute critic – and proud that it isn’t afraid to heed his words.
Switzerland is by no means alone in ?nding itself caught between rural idyll and globalisation, so non-Swiss readers will be able to recognize their own home-grown sins and failings as the author gives his compatriots a piece of his mind concerning their slipshod use of language or their bull-headed, insular policy towards immigrants.
Rich in imagery and acute observational wisdom, von Matt casts a fresh light on a variety of themes with hard-hitting irony and barbed humour. As always, his observations are under-pinned by German literature throughout, from Friedrich Schiller via Robert Walser to Max Frisch and many other authors – all the way to the modern literary aspirants. This book is proof that a closer scrutiny of a country’s literature and language can give us a more comprehensive understanding of its socio-political attitudes.

Foreign Sales

France (Editions Zoé), Russia (Rudomino), Serbia (Rudomino)

The Calf That Stopped the Gotthard Coach

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