Aus unseren Neuerwerbungen – Anglistik 2021.11

Error in Shake­speare: Shake­speare in error
BuchcoverThe tra­di­tion­al view of Shakespeare’s mas­tery of the Eng­lish lan­guage is alive and well today. This is an effect of the eigh­teenth-cen­tu­ry canon­i­sa­tion of his works, and sub­se­quent­ly Shake­speare has come to be per­ceived as the own­er of the ver­nac­u­lar. These entrenched atti­tudes pre­vent us from see­ing the actu­al sub­stance of the text, and the var­i­ous types of error that it con­tains and even con­sti­tute it. This book argues that we need to attend to error to inter­pret Shakespeare’s dis­put­ed mate­r­i­al text, polit­i­cal-dra­mat­ic inter­ven­tions and famous lit­er­ari­ness. The con­se­quences of ignor­ing error are espe­cial­ly sig­nif­i­cant in the study of Shake­speare, as he mobilis­es the rebel­lious, mar­gin­al, and digres­sive poten­tial of error in the cre­ation of lit­er­ary dra­ma.
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Per­cep­tions of Ger­many in British trav­el lit­er­a­ture
BuchcoverAs part of the “beat­en track”, Ger­many did not con­form to the Grand Tourist ideals of eigh­teenth-cen­tu­ry British trav­ellers that were influ­enced by the spir­it of the Enlight­en­ment, and, there­fore, sought to trace ves­tiges of the Gre­co-Roman cul­tur­al tra­di­tion in their ven­tures across the con­ti­nent. It was not until the end of the eigh­teenth cen­tu­ry that the Ger­man land­scape becomes the cen­tral theme of British trav­el dis­course, mark­ing the grad­ual shift of focus from the “sat­u­rat­ed” image of clas­si­cal Greece to the redis­cov­ery of the Old Ger­man­ic cul­ture of the sagas.
Dri­ven by an anti­quar­i­an inter­est in the Ger­man con­text, British trav­ellers dis­cov­ered Ger­many in the wake of the nine­teenth cen­tu­ry, when the dis­so­lu­tion of the Holy Roman Empire not only sig­nalled French expan­sion­ism in Protes­tant Europe, but also stim­u­lat­ed the appetite of the Vic­to­ri­ans for the explo­ration of the Ger­man cul­ture in an attempt to define them­selves as being of pure Teu­ton­ic stock. Giv­en the stren­u­ous strug­gle of Ger­man thinkers to deal with the feel­ings of humil­i­a­tion and shame caused by the Napoleon­ic rule, and, in view of a poten­tial Gal­li­ci­sa­tion, nine­teenth-cen­tu­ry Ger­mans mas­tered the fields of com­par­a­tive philol­o­gy and North­ern anti­quar­i­an­ism to trans­form their polit­i­cal weak­ness into a new cul­tur­al par­a­digm that not only fos­tered pan-Ger­man­ism through the redis­cov­ery of the folk tales and leg­ends of their medieval tra­di­tion, but also ascribed to Ger­many a supe­ri­or spir­i­tu­al role, which was lat­er incor­po­rat­ed into the racial dis­cours­es of Ger­many and Britain.
This book is con­cerned with the views of British trav­el writ­ers, focus­ing on trav­el nar­ra­tives pro­duced from 1794 until 1845. As such, it sheds light on instances which per­tain to the rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Ger­man­ness in rela­tion to the British nation­al con­text.
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