First Advisor

Carrie Collenberg-Gonzalez

Date of Award

Spring 4-1-2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in World Languages & Literatures: German and University Honors


World Languages and Literatures




German literature -- History and criticism, Werewolves -- Poetry, Werewolves in literature -- 19th century, Annette von Droste-Hülshoff (1797-1848) -- Criticism and interpretation




Werewolves have long populated Western culture, forming a particularly close relationship with Germany through their impact on fairy tales, psychology, and literature, with works such as Steppenwolf (Hermann Hesse, 1927) and Der Wehrwolf (Hermann Löns, 1910) eventually becoming international bestsellers.

Less widely recognized, however, is Annette von Droste-Hülshoff's "Der Loup Garou" published in 1860 in the collection, Letzte Gaben. This nine-stanza poem depicts a tale of a savage beast with white fur and twisted eyes that is told to the mischievous children Pierrot and Caton in hopes that it keeps them pious and obedient on a cold night. At first glance, this poem reads similarly to other pedagogical tales. However, in depicting an old drunkard and greedy merchant as the victims of the werewolf, Droste-Hülshoff may be providing an implicit critique of patriarchal hierarchies.

This thesis includes a literature review of German literature involving werewolves and werewolf imagery, followed by the first English translation of Annette von Droste-Hülshoff's work with a supplementary literary analysis. There is an emphasis on the themes of gender, morality, and transformation that is applied in both the literature review as well as "Der Loup Garou."


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