Allgemeine und Vergleichende Literaturwissenschaft
Iqbal and Goethe : a note
- The recourse to Goethe plays an important role in the work of Mohammad Iqbal (1873-1938), one of the few important writers from the Indian subcontinent who knew German literature. Iqbal situates his own writing in the context of western colonial expansion and the corresponding world-historical loss of power of Islam in the East. The recourse to Goethe becomes an import reference point in his work. It enables him to stylise himself as a Messenger of the East in reply to Goethe as a representative of the West. By establishing a comparative cultural constellation with his German predecessor Iqbal affirms a cultural position consisting of a mode of historical complaint and cultural revival.