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Bettie's Books

A Stuga On the Cusp of the Orust Riviera, tucked away next to a hobbit hole in the woods.

The Glass Bead Game by Hermann Hesse

The Glass Bead Game - Hermann Hesse, Richard Winston, Clara Winston, Theodore Ziolkowski

bookshelves: summer-2010, published-1943, philosophy, dystopian, nobel-laureate, germany, currently-reading, autumn-2014, re-visit-2014, classic, games-people-play, play-dramatisation

Recommended for: BBC Radio Listeners
Read from July 18 to 26, 2010

** spoiler alert ** Re-VISIT 2014: Cannot refuse a second go at this. It had me enthralled first time around.

Classic Serial


Description: Set in the 23rd century, The Glass Bead Game is the story of Joseph Knecht, who has been raised in Castalia, the remote place his society has provided for the intellectual elite to grow and flourish. Since childhood, Knecht has been consumed with mastering the Glass Bead Game, which requires a synthesis of aesthetics and scientific arts, such as mathematics, music, logic, and philosophy, which he achieves in adulthood, becoming a Magister Ludi (Master of the Game)

1/2 Elite intellectual Joseph Knecht rebels against the utopian society he once idolised.

See the Goodreads blurb box - it says this is the novel that won the Nobel prize for Hesse. No one work wins that, it is all to do with the body of works given forth from an author.

THE CITATION: The Nobel Prize in Literature 1946 was awarded to Hermann Hesse "for his inspired writings which, while growing in boldness and penetration, exemplify the classical humanitarian ideals and high qualities of style".


blurb - Joseph Knecht is a rising star in the Castalian Order, a band of elite intellectuals who live a closeted life of study and Glass Bead Game playing. But Joseph's elevation to one of the highest and most respected ranks of the Order coincides with a crisis of conscience, as his ever deepening doubts about this idealistic and sanitised society threaten to topple its very foundations.

Biographer...Derek Jacobi
Joseph Knecht...Tom Ferguson
Young Joseph...Aidan Parsons
Music Master...Malcolm Raeburn
Teacher/Van Der Trave...Terence Mann
Plinio...David Seddon
Fritz...Toby Hadoke
Father Jacobus...David Fleeshman
Elder Brother/Bertram...Jonathan Keeble
String Player...Kevin Flynn
Dramatised by Lavinia Greenlaw
Producer: Charlotte Riches