Kitaab Video: A Tale of Two Literary Friendships – Goethe & Marianne and Allama Iqbal and Emma


Narrated by Zafar Anjum, the author of “Iqbal: The Life of a Poet, Philosopher and Politician” (Penguin Random house, 2014), this video describes the literary friendships (or some would call it literary romances) that the two great poets of the West and East, Goethe of Germany and Dr. Mohammad Iqbal (Allama Iqbal) of India, espoused in the 19th and 20th century respectively–that of Goethe and Marriane von Willemer, and of Iqbal and his German tutor, Emma Wegenast.

There was a connection between Goethe and Iqbal too. Allama Iqbal, not only a great poet but also considered to be the spiritual father of Pakistan, greatly admired Goethe.

What was the nature of these literary friendships? How did they come to be? How did they end? What impact these relationships had had on the poetic outputs of Goethe and Iqbal, especially in the context of the Goethe’s East West Divan? This video touches upon all these points.

Source: TLS and “Iqbal: The Life of a Poet, Philosopher and Politician” (Penguin Random house, 2014)

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