Fontane in the Twenty-First Century

Fontane in the Twenty-First Century

Edited by John B. Lyon, Brian Tucker


Camden House



Assesses the relevance of the works of Fontane, perhaps the foremost German novelist between Goethe and Mann, for the twenty-first century.

Theodor Fontane remains a canonical figure in German literature, the most important representative of poetic realism, and likely the best German-language novelist between Goethe and Mann, yet scholarly attention to his works often lags behind his stature, at least in the English-speaking academy. This volume, coinciding with Fontane's 200th birthday in 2019, assesses the relevance of his works for us today and also draws attention to the most current English-language research.
Much has changed in the last two decades in critical theory, and the volume highlights how new methodological approaches and new archival research can update our understanding of Fontane's works. Although his novels are famously rooted in the details of quotidian life in nineteenth-century Germany, they also reflect larger historical transformations that resonate with our world today (e.g., financial crisis, class conflict, changing gender roles, and migration) and so speak to contemporary critical interests. The volume's contributors draw on literary and cultural studies approaches including gender and sexuality studies, emotion studies, transnationalism and globalization, media and visual studies, rhetorical criticism, paratextual criticism, and digital humanities. Their contributions survey a wide range of Fontane's literary production in order to speak to both German and non-German audiences in the twenty-first century.

Contributors: James N. Bade, Russell A. Berman, Katharina Adeline Engler-Coldren, Todd Kontje, John B. Lyon, Ervin Malakaj, Nicholas von Passavant, Lynne Tatlock, Christian Thomas, Brian Tucker, Michael J. White, Holly A. Yanacek.

John B. Lyon is Professor of German at the University of Pittsburgh. Brian Tucker is Associate Professor of German at Wabash College.

An e-book version of this title is available (9781787444669), to libraries through a number of trusted suppliers. See here for a full list of our partners.


May 2019
15 black and white illustrations
270 pages
9x6 in
Studies in German Literature Linguistics and Culture
ISBN: 9781640140097
Format: Hardback
Camden House
BISAC LIT004170, HIS014000
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Table of Contents

Note on Editions
Introduction: Fontane in the Twenty-First Century - John B. Lyon and Brian Tucker
Narrative Digression and the Transformation of Nationhood in Vor dem Sturm - Russell A. Berman
Nasty Women: Female Anger as Moral Judgment in Grete Minde and Effi Briest - Holly A. Yanacek
Peforming the Philistine: Gossip as a Narrative Device and a Strategy for Reflection on Anti-Semitism in Theodor Fontane's L'Adultera - Nicolas von Passavant
To Have an Eye: Visual Culture and the Misapprehension of Class in Irrungen, Wirrungen - Brian Tucker
Fontane as a Pacifist? The Anti-War Message in Quitt and Fontane's Changing Attitude to Militarism - James N. Bade
Disjunctive Transnationalisms in Fontane's Frau Jenny Treibel - John B. Lyon
On the "Right Measure" in Effi Briest: Ethics and Aesthetics of the Prosaic - Katharina Adeline Engler-Coldren
Transfiguration, Effect, and Engagement: Theodor Fontane's Aesthetic Thought - Michael J. White
Fontane and World Literature: Prussians, Jews, and the Specter of Africa in Die Poggenpuhls - Todd Kontje
Von Zwanzig bis Dreissig: The Male Author in Parts - Lynne Tatlock
Melusine von Barby's Barriers and Connections in Fontane's Der Stechlin - Christian Thomas
Senescence and Fontane's Der Stechlin - Ervin Malakaj
Notes on the Contributors

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