“Visuality and Non-narrativity in German
Historical Representations in the Nineteenth
to be proposed for the Annual Conference “Narrative: An International
Conference” of the Society for the Study of Narrative Literature (April
7-10, 2005, Louisville, KY).
Recent debates on history emphasize the non-narrative aspect of
historical representations. What are formal, aesthetic, and cultural
elements of non-narrative historical representation? Does even
non-narrative historical representation still require certain narrative
forms? In our panel we would like to explore the visual as a key aspect
to define non-narrativity.
The nineteenth century is often termed as the century in which “history”
boomed and developed into a concept that not only gained philosophical
but also scholarly relevance. This interest in history is – particularly
in Germany – often connected to the realm of academic historicism, which
aimed to represent history by means of the grand narrative,
metahistorical presumptions, and the historical individual who is
supposed to make sense out of history.
In contrast to the traditional schemes of historical representation in
the nineteenth century, our panel would like to investigate its different
forms of representations that are counter-productive towards the grand
narrative. This includes historical representations in German Romanticism
that built up a different tradition to the academic discourse of
historical writing and (non-)narrative forms in Realism. We would like to
explore anti-narrative forms of German historical representations that
can be found in the writings of historians as well as in literary
historical fiction. We are particularly interested in contributions that
compare literature and historiographical representations.
This exploration of anti-narrative forms can be contextualized with media
inventions of the nineteenth century, such as photography. In what ways
did photography inspire non-narrative forms of historical representation?
What new modes of remembering and representing the historical past were
Presentations should be fifteen to twenty minutes long, and in English.
Please, e-mail a proposal of max. 600 words (including a brief summary of
about 150 words) as word or rtf-file attachment, and brief vitae, by
September 22, 2004 to both panel organizers.
Dr. Stephan Jaeger
Assistant Professor of German
Department of German & Slavic Studies
University of Manitoba
328 Fletcher Argue
Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, Canada
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Dr. Kathrin Maurer
University of Arizona
301 Learning Services Building
P.O. Box 210105
Tucson, AZ 85721-0105, USA
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All participants of the conference must join the Society for the Study of
Narrative Literature (for more information on SSNL visit
The German Studies Call for Papers List
Editor: Stefani Engelstein
Assistant Editor: Karen Eng
Sponsored by the University of Missouri
Info available at: http://www.missouri.edu/~graswww/resources/gerlistserv.html