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Monatshefte

Volume 96, Number 2, Summer 2004 Table of Contents

(Re)Readings—New Readings / Widergelesen—Neu Gelesen

Hans-Georg Gadamer, Wahrheit und Methode (1960)

 

Rolf Goebel
Wahrheit und Methode im Zeitalter der postmodernen Globalisierung

 

Carl Niekerk
Why Hermeneutics? Rereading Gadamer’s Wahrheit und Methode

 

À Propos

Stefan Jordan
Ein Standardwerk und seine Skandalisierung—Das Internationale Germanistenlexikon und seine Rezeption in den Medien

 

Articles

Bernadette H. Hyner
Geschichte des Fräuleins von Sternheim: Explorations of a Woman’s Terra Cognita
Abstract:
The Sternheim narrative pairs the paradigm of sensibility with a travel theme and traces a woman’s coming-of-age. La Roche’s treatment of relocation undermines the conventional emphasis on domestic ideals. On route, the heroine defies conventional passivity by exploring various geographic environments before encountering a matrilineal community that initiates her transformation from dependant girl to autonomous adult. The text highlights sensibility (heart) and resilience (mind) as key attributes promoting the protagonist’s physical and cognitive progression. Challenging Rousseau’s gender model, La Roche surrounds her agile traveler with male characters that are mere spectators of her activities. While exploring old and new ‘spaces,’ the heroine assesses her potential, determines her history without the support of a mate, and in this process defines her self. Regardless that her journey ends in marriage, the heroine also serves as a model for women, who reject the domestic realm as their only venue. (BHH)

 

Edward Larkin
Reading Schiller’s Die Jungfrau von Orleans with Lacan: In the ‘Name-of-the-Father’ and of the Daughter
Abstract:
As he is in most Schillerian plays, the father is an important figure in Die Jungfrau von Orleans. But besides portraying the influence of Thibaut, Joan’s father, the play also includes many other fatherly allusions that structure the play’s development. The following essay examines the impact of this fatherly nexus on Joan of Arc from the perspective of Lacanian desire, as it is entangled with the “Name-of-the-Father” or nom-du-père. The analysis specifically illuminates some persisting enigmas of the play: What does the Schwarzer Ritter want? What is at stake in Joan’s gaze upon Lionel? Why does Joan remain silent in face of the accusations made against her, and how might the reader understand the perplexing final scene? It is argued that an unusual identification with her sinthome, a term Lacan uses to indicate a little piece of the “real,” enables Joan to separate herself from the symbolic world of the father and propel herself toward subjectification, a state that is not unrelated to Schiller’s notion of freedom, for in its virtual inattainability Schiller’s freedom approximates Lacan’s desire. (EL)

 

Elystan Griffiths
A Nation of Provincials? German Identity in Gustav Freytag’s Novel-cycle Die Ahnen
Abstract:
The essay challenges the view that Freytag’s novel-cycle Die Ahnen constitutes an attempt to escape from the painful reality of German unification. It proposes, rather, that the cycle is shaped by Freytag’s perception that the Kaiserreich suffered from insufficient centralisation and an anti-modernist ethos. The cycle is understood as a well-focused attempt to remedy these weaknesses by appealing to precisely those who, in Freytag’s view, endangered the unified Germany by clinging to inherited traditions and provincial loyalties. Freytag invites those who remain outside the nationalist movement to identify with his provincial protagonists, but he uses his characters’ words and life-stories to question the supposed dichotomy between region and nation. Historical fiction becomes a means to engage with, but also to criticise historical introspection. Freytag’s use of a complex and carefully concealed structure thereby emerges as one of most noteworthy aspects of this neglected work. (EG)

 

Ulrich Schönherr
Als die Bilder hören lernten: Musik, Ton, Avantgardeästhetik und Geschlechterkonfiguration in Wim Wenders’ Lisbon Story
Abstract:
Wenders’ multi-layered movie about the city of Lisbon opens up an innovative perspective on the mostly ignored dimension of sound in film, be it in the form of music, language, or noise. The cinematic exploration of the acoustic aspect of film-making marks an important shift in Wenders’ aesthetic, reflecting his growing distrust of the visual resistance of the image. Lisbon Story connects the acoustic portrayal of the city through the music of Madredeus and the recordings of the sound engineer with a meta-narrative reflection on the aesthetic representation of (urban) reality in film and literature. The repeated recourse to two prominent figures of the early European avant-garde—Dziga Vertov and Fernando Pessoa—provide the theoretical context for Wenders’ self-ironic and playful confrontation of the historicity of his own work, including the gendering of sound and image. (US. In German)

 

Fatima Naqvi
The Man of Taste Reconceived: Mastering Aesthetics in Thomas Bernhard’s Alte Meister
Abstract:
This article interprets Thomas Bernhard’s Alte Meister (1985) as an intervention in the humanist Bildungs-project we have inherited from the 19th century. Drawing on Elaine Scarry’s On Beauty and Being Just, the essay argues that Bernhard’s novel develops an alternative pedagogical model centered on the experience of the beautiful in art. The purpose of this pedagogy is to transmute students from their teachers’ mouthpieces into independent thinkers. This unorthodox education rests on a two-fold approach: on the one hand, it seeks to encourage the dilettante—the lover of art who ranges freely across genres and disciplines and enjoys art somatically and psychically. On the other, this method strives to promote the man of taste, whose critical acumen allows him to understand the common humanity underpinning the experience of beautiful art. (FN)

 

Book Reviews

Albes, Claudia, Der Spaziergang als Erzählmodell. Studien zu Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Adalbert Stifter, Robert Walser und Thomas Bernhard (Tamara Evans)

Bauschinger, Sigrid, Hrsg., Die freche Muse / The Impudent Muse. Literarisches und politisches Kabarett von 1901 bis 1999 (Mary Paddock)

Bennett, Benjamin, Goethe as Woman: The Undoing of Literature (Karin Barton)

Budds, Michael J., ed., Jazz and the Germans: Essays on the Influence of “Hot” American Idioms on 20th-Century German Music (Susan Cook)

Bühler, Patrick, Die Leiche in der Bibliothek. Friedrich Glauser und der Detektivroman (K. Julia Karolle)

Dawson, Ruth P., The Contested Quill: Literature by Women in Germany, 1770–1800 (Katherine Arens)

Geulen, Eva, Das Ende der Kunst. Lesarten eines Gerüchts nach Hegel (Uwe Steiner)

Gilson, Elke, Hrsg., Monika Maron in Perspective. ‘Dialogische’ Einblicke in zeitgeschichtliche, intertextuelle und rezeptionsbezogene Aspekte ihres Werkes (Katharina Gerstenberger)

Hasselbach, Karlheinz, Georg Büchner (Nancy Lukens)

Hollmer, Heide, und Albert Meier, Hrsg., Dramenlexikon des 18. Jahrhunderts (Martin Kagel)

Hook, Elizabeth Snyder, Family Secrets and the Contemporary German Novel: Literary Explorations in the Aftermath of the Third Reich (Brigitte Jirku)

Könneker, Carsten, “Auflösung der Natur Auflösung der Geschichte”: Moderner Roman und NS-“Weltanschauung” im Zeichen der theoretischen Physik (Heather Sullivan)

Kontje, Todd, ed., A Companion to German Realism 1848–1900 (Frederick Betz)

Kovach, Thomas A., ed., A Companion to the Works of Hugo von Hofmannsthal (Nancy Michael)

Lubich, Frederick A., Wendewelten. Paradigmenwechsel in der deutschen Literatur- und Kulturgeschichte nach 1945 (Hester Baer)

Pethes, Nicolas, und Jens Ruchatz, Hrsg., Gedächtnis und Erinnerung. Ein interdisziplinäres Lexikon (Stephan Jaeger)

Pietsch, Stephanie, “Noli me tangere.” Liebe als Notwendigkeit und Unmöglichkeit im Werk Georg Kaisers (Ernst Schürer)

Rolleston, James, ed., A Companion to the Works of Franz Kafka (Franz Kempf)

Sagnol, Marc, Tragique et tristesse: Walter Benjamin, archéologue de la modernité (Marcus Bullock)

Saranpa, Kathy, Schiller’s Wallenstein, Maria Stuart, and Die Jungfrau von Orleans: The Critical Legacy (Julie Prandi)

Schlick, Werner, Goethe’s Die Wahlverwandtschaften: A Middle-Class Critique of Aesthetic Aristocratism (Peter Schwartz)

Steiner, Uwe, Poetische Theodizee. Philosophie und Poesie in der lehrhaften Dichtung im achtzehnten Jahrhundert (Stefan Greif)

Taberner, Stuart, and Frank Finlay, eds., Recasting German Identity: Culture, Politics, and Literature in the Berlin Republic (Stephen Brockmann)

Ziolkowski, Theodore, The Sin of Knowledge. Ancient Themes and Modern Variations (Max Statkiewicz)

Zipes, Jack, The Brothers Grimm: From Enchanted Forests to the Modern World (Paola Mayer)

Books Received