I have only read the book in Serbo/Croatian language (a long time ago).

I'm looking for the original word(s) in the book of the "feljton" or "feljtonistic'ko" (It describes an era in humanity history somewhere around page 8 of the book)

Online translation I've tried gives Sketch in German.

  • What exactly are you looking for? Just the original text online? A physical copy of the book?
    – phantom42
    Commented Mar 7, 2014 at 14:36
  • Just the original words.
    – Ruzeil
    Commented Mar 7, 2014 at 14:55
  • It was written in German so the German translation you found is probably the most accurate you can get.
    – Kevin
    Commented Mar 7, 2014 at 15:30

2 Answers 2


In English the title of Herman Hesse's book is "The Glass Bead Game", and the word you're talking about, which is untranslated from French in the English version, is Feuilleton, referring to trivial or gossipy items that used to run in old French newspapers (both the style of item and the name were adopted in papers throughout Europe). In Hesse's future history, our era was referred to as the "Age of the Feuilleton".

Amazon has the "search inside the book" feature enabled for this German edition of the book, if you click the book's cover and then do a search for the word "Feuilleton" (in the "Im Buch suchen" box) you can see that Hesse used the untranslated French word in the original German version.

  • Das is excellent. Ja!
    – Valorum
    Commented Mar 7, 2014 at 17:51
  • Nice "diggin" :). Thanks a lot P.S. Фељтон is the same word in Macedonian.
    – Ruzeil
    Commented Mar 10, 2014 at 7:15

The original word is indeed Feuilleton. However, this word has radically different meanings in different times and cultures. The one Hesse means was established in German newspapers in the 1920s and is still valid today.

The Feuilleton is an established section in German newspapers, and is relatively flexible in its content, but generally deals with current cultural and social issues. There are typically reviews of books, films and shows as well as essays and commentaries, sometimes referring/responding to previous articles in the same or other papers.

Basically, it's a playground for mainstream intellectuals, dealing with the mid- to highbrow entertainment they prefer, and often considered the most prestigious part of the newspaper.

At best, it's insightful, wittyand mind-broadening. At worst, it's a bunch of pretentious, superficial navel-gazing bullshit. And it's these negative aspects that are, in Das Glasperlenspiel considered the hallmark of the earlier epoch: obsession with ostensibly intellectual but ultimately superficial entertainment.

  • Kinda where we live today....It makes me sad
    – Ruzeil
    Commented Mar 10, 2014 at 7:17

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.