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Dr Charlie Louth

Fellow in German

Tutor for Undergraduates

Fellow Librarian


After attending a comprehensive, I studied French and German at Cambridge, spent a year in Berlin learning Ancient Greek, and then returned to Cambridge to do my PhD on the poet Friedrich Hölderlin. After that, I was college lecturer in German at Keble College, Oxford for a year, then lecturer in the German Department at Bristol for three years, and came to Queen’s in 2000. From 2002-3 I was a Fellow of the Alexander-von-Humboldt Foundation in Berlin. From 2008 to 2014 I was the Tutor for Admissions at Queen's and I am Chair of the German Sub-Faculty until October 2018.


I teach a wide range of authors and topics in the modern period, so from the mid-18th century to the present day. Precisely what mainly depends on the interests of my students in a given year, but I am interested in all literary genres and also in some aspects of thought. I teach language to all years, especially translation. Most of my graduate supervision has been on 20th-century poetry.


My main interest is poetry, not just when it’s written in German. I did my thesis on Hölderlin, a poet writing after the French Revolution but only really discovered in the 20th century. Since then, I have worked on a number of other poets – including Goethe, Mörike, and Celan – and at the moment am writing a book on Rilke. I have also translated Hölderlin and Rilke and am interested in ideas about translation. I see my work as broadly comparative and have written on English and French writers as well as German.


Selected publications are listed below and a full list of publications is available here.

Rilke: the Life of the Work (OUP, 2020)

Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet & The Letter from the Young Worker (Penguin, 2011; Penguin Classics, 2012) [translator and editor]

Friedrich Hölderlin, Essays and Letters (Penguin, 2009) [translator and editor, with Jeremy Adler]

Agenda Vol. 45 No. 2 (Spring 2010): C. H. Sisson Special Issue [guest editor]

‘The early poems’, in The Cambridge Companion to Rilke (CUP, 2010)

‘The romantic lyric’, in The Cambridge Companion to German Romanticism (CUP, 2009)

Hölderlin and the Dynamics of Translation (Legenda, 1998)