Definition of bildungsroman
literature : a novel about the moral and psychological growth of the main character a bildungsroman by Charles Dickens
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Recent Examples of bildungsroman from the Web
His development from shy, floundering teen into wisecracking superhero follows a classic bildungsroman structure that lends itself well to the silver screen.
Departing from Homer, who clocks the Trojan War at 10 years, Tóibín, intent on making his book a bildungsroman focusing on the adolescence of Orestes, has Agamemnon return after only five years, when his son is still coming of age.
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Did You Know?
Bildungsroman is the combination of two German words: Bildung, meaning "education," and Roman, meaning "novel." Fittingly, a "bildungsroman" is a novel that deals with the formative years of the main character - in particular, his or her psychological development and moral education. The bildungsroman usually ends on a positive note with the hero's foolish mistakes and painful disappointments over and a life of usefulness ahead. Goethe's late 18th-century work Wilhelm Meisters Lehrjahre (Wilhelm Meister's Apprenticeship) is often cited as the classic example of this type of novel. Though the term is primarily applied to novels, in recent years, some English speakers have begun to apply the term to films that deal with a youthful character's coming-of-age.
Origin and Etymology of bildungsroman
German, from Bildung education + Roman novel
First Known Use: 1906See Words from the same year
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