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The novel is a literary genre , namely the long form of the written story . The word Roman is a loan word from French and means "story in verse or prose ". In the 17th century it replaced the word history , which until then had referred to works falling under this genre . From the 17th century onwards, only writings in prose were understood as “novels”. The plural "novels" did not come into use until the 18th century.


Gerard ter Borch around 1680: young man reading, the format of the book is suggestive of a novel, as is the secluded reading situation.
François Boucher , 1756: Madame de Pompadour relaxing afternoon private reading - religious and scientific reading is presented differently.
Winslow Homer 1877: The New Novel , comparable reading circumstances
S-Bahn commuter reading a novel, Berlin 2009

To this day it is difficult to define the novel clearly, because on the one hand it is not mentioned in the ancient discussion about literary forms and on the other hand many different influences had an effect on the production of the novel and continue to do so today. This results in two basic assumptions that are important for the definition of the novel. In the theory of novels, the novel is firstly understood as a synthesis of different genres , since there are hardly any formal requirements other than the prose criterion and therefore other aesthetic patterns can be easily integrated. And secondly, due to its openness to other forms and genres, the novel is subject to constant change that has continued into the present and has not yet been completed.

The novel must be distinguished from other genres in a negative way. The criterion of fictionality distinguishes the novel from factual narratives - such as those of historiography - that want to present a faithful representation of an event. Often the word novel on the book cover or title page already identifies a novel as an artistic and thus fictional work. Before 1700, however, the novels were often read as key novels with quite a historiographical claim, which is why they often had the word " Historia " in the title. Only as a result of the in-depth poetological discussions in the 18th century are novels perceived as an independent art form and as fictional works in the true sense. The devaluation of the novel as a historical source goes hand in hand with an appreciation in the literary genre system.

In contrast to historical works, the novel usually deals with comparatively private material from subjective narrative positions . Love stories were a genre-defining private subject well into the 18th century . Other, but as a rule no less private, material spread in the sub-genres of the picaresque novel and the satirical novel.

Novellas , fairy tales , legends and short stories are related to the novel as epic prose forms, but as small epic forms they are usually much shorter. Apart from the length, the novel differs from these genres mainly in that it focuses on the depiction of a contingent world. Like Georg Lukács, literary historians of the 19th and 20th centuries spoke of the novel's "epic approach to life in its entirety". In contrast to the epic , however, the novel does not presuppose a horizon of meaning that is valid for all readers, but shapes the world from the horizon of experience of the individual. This can be fragile, incoherent or even chaotic, which would be unthinkable in an epic. For Georg Lukács, the form of the novel is therefore the “expression of transcendental homelessness” of modernity .


Non-European Traditions and the European Roman of Antiquity

Here, too, paper as a groundbreaking medium: Murasaki Shikibu writing her story of Prince Genji (early 11th century) in a 17th century illustration

Novel-like storytelling was widespread early on in many advanced cultures , such as Japan , China , India and the Arab-Oriental culture. The non-European novels and the novel of antiquity were, in comparison to the ancient epic, only of minor importance for the development of the modern novel. Some of the most important non-European novels are the Genji Monogatari (11th century) by Murasaki Shikibu , the Arabic Hayy ibn Yaqdhan by Ibn Tufail (before 1185) and the story of the Three Kingdoms of Luo Guanzhong . The reception of European ancient novels began as early as the Middle Ages , but only intensified in the 17th century. For the baroque novelists, Heliodors Aithiopika (3rd century AD) in particular , with its medias-in-res entry and the numerous previous histories, became an unrivaled genre model. Other important models for the courtly historical novel were Achilleus Tatios ' Leukippe and Kleitophon (1st century AD) and Xenophons of Ephesos Ephesiaka (2nd century AD). A well-read forerunner of the bucolic genre was Longos ' Daphnis and Chloe . Authors of the satirical novel were able to tie in with the Metamorphoses of Apuleius (2nd century AD) and Petron's Satyricon (1st century AD).

The founding of the genre in the European Middle Ages

Hero song tradition, 1100–1500

Chaucer lecturing from his verse novel Troylus and Criseyde : Illustration from the manuscript of Corpus Christi College, Cambridge , early 15th century

The old French word “romanz” came into use in the 12th century for stories in “Romance” (Old French and Anglo-Norman) vernacular, which, unlike later novels, were not written in prose but in verse. Northern France established itself with works such as the Roman de Thèbes (approx. 1160), the Roman d'Énéas (shortly after 1160), the Roman de Troie (approx. 1165) and the Roman d'Alexandre (from which fragments and editorial levels from the Time between 1120 and 1180) as a new, already humanistic (in the sense of a "Renaissance of the 12th century") shaped literary center in medieval Europe. Novels such as Heinrich von Veldeke's Eneasroman (approx. 1170–1187) or Geoffrey Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde (1380–1387) testify to the supraregional importance of these works . All of these works are located in the courtly milieu and draw their material from antiquity, which is why they are referred to as ancient novels .

Northern European and Christian materials (such as the Tristan , Artus , and Grail materials ) spread throughout the fiction literature from the middle of the 12th century. Love relationships in the courtly milieu dominate the subject. The standard plot of the Middle High German Arthurian novels by Hartmann von Aue or Wolfram von Eschenbach , in which the hero is separated from the lover and has to endure numerous adventures ( aventiurs ), shows formal borrowings from the ancient novel .

Prose variants of the new novels - the prose Lancelot, the prose Perceval, the prose Tristan - emerged from the early 13th century. At the same time, the first satires were written on these novels.

The novella, 1300–1600

Chaucer, Canterbury Tales , woodcut from the 1484 Caxton print

Since the beginning of the written fixation of epics (in Northern Europe from around the year 1000, around this time the old English Beowulf epic was written down), art forms quickly developed here that were essentially dependent on the ability to compose the text step by step. The social location of the epic was determined at the same moment: until the advent of paper, manuscripts needed financially strong clients. From the 13th century onwards, wealthy urban merchants appeared as new interested parties in addition to the noble clients. With song manuscripts from knights they acquired a culture in which they even from the class could not participate. The most important Middle High German song manuscript, the Codex Manesse , shows this bourgeois origin as a commissioned work.

A large number of narrative forms remained in the tradition of oral tradition compared to the epic: to this day, the joke has retained its place of all of them, including fixed narrative patterns of questions and curious answers or the step of three, in which the last step contains the punch line. The joke itself circulated into the 19th century alongside long forms of oral storytelling such as the Schwank , the fable , the fairy tale , the example (Middle High German bîspel ), which could be inserted in books and in the pulpit to illustrate a particular moral sentence.

The short narrative forms with the famous narrative cycles rose to art - in Europe as in the Islamic world. Nezāmi's The Seven Portraits (1198), the tales from the Arabian Nights (oldest surviving manuscript c. 1450), Boccaccio's Decamerone (between 1349 and 1353) and Chaucer's Canterbury Tales (between 1386 and 1400) share the pattern of the presentation: being in a cycle the individual stories are offered by narrators who themselves act in a framework . The narrative break allows the author Boccaccio or Chaucer to distance themselves from the narrators of his collection as desired. In case of doubt, he reproduces what these internal narrators said: narratives that characterize not him, but the story itself and the situation in which the story was told. Different materials and divergent sentences can be placed next to each other. The individual narratives gained their own narrative art in the cycles:

  • they were event driven: in that situation, after that person said this, that narrator picked up the floor and told a story for that purpose;
  • they ran towards an illustrative punch line - those who listened to the narration expect the narrator to make his point in the course of his story and to demonstrate with the example exactly what he wanted to illustrate with his story;
  • they replace the adventure with the intrigue , the prank : a plan which the protagonists usually pursue in the story without the knowledge of their opponents and which puts them in awkward positions, usually also in a surprising final situation;
  • they introduced a critical reflection into the narrative itself: listeners of the internal plot comment on poorly made narrations, boring passages, questionable morals;
  • they turned more clearly than the epic to the present: Chaucer's Canterbury Tales use the option of exemplary narrators from the lower classes to compete against each other with fluctuations in which heroes of class and occupation of those who attack them do poorly.

At the end of the 13th century, the novella , the superordinate generic term that emerged in the early modern period, asserted itself as a serious alternative to verse romance. Criticism of the heroism of antiquated heroic songs, of the narrative form of the epic, its sequence of combat rehearsals and its lack of cleverly planned interactions was first formulated in novella cycles and from them in the 16th and 17th centuries became the standard for further novel criticism such as the plea for the novella as only realistic alternative to the antiquated novel.

Not “literature”: the novel on the early book market

Page from the German version of the Melusinen -History (Augsburg: Johann Bämler, 1474), the print edition tells again how the handwritten template was commissioned.

Historiography and the novel legitimize each other independently

In retrospect, the more popular of the early modern histories give literary scholars clear classification problems: Jehan de Mandeville's report of his trip to the Orient from the 1370s, sold in cheap printed editions unchanged until the late 18th century, is full of spectacular fictions, such as the one-legged Ethiopian. A classification as a novel stands in the way of several things: the novel-like plot is missing, the hero who experiences a life. What is more serious: the simple audience that read the wonderful history seems to have been uninterested in the truth or untruth of what they have read. Thomas Malory's Le Morte Darthur (1471) leads into another gray area : the reader receives all of King Arthur's stories including magical details of magic with which heroes assumed the shape of others in order to act in their bodies. The first printed edition, however, begins in 1485 with a foreword in which the editor William Caxton classifies the text as true history . The modern reader will recognize the qualities of a prose novel in compilative history: here, narration takes place in fictional space. Contemporary judgments go in a different direction: one read histories and admitted fictions. Historians were regularly called upon to fill in the gaps. The speeches that were written out even when there was no tradition were popular. Both historians and novelists wrote with the aim of teaching. Here our organization of the fields of debate separates us from the 15th century.

History becomes the subject of national responsibility

Between 1400 and 1700, historiography fell into a crisis. It culminated in the 17th century in the Pyrrhonism debate with its ultimately unanswerable question as to when we can consider a historical report to be proven. A source discussion must provide indicators for this, said Pierre Bayle and the authors around him. In the course of this controversy, historiography renounces the intention of teaching with a true narrative and instead presents the material situation in critical discussion. History books no longer look like novels any longer.

As a result, from the mid-17th century onwards, historians can move away from distancing themselves from the novel with the same emphasis with which they must distance themselves from all historical falsehood: untrue histories are disqualified by source criticism ; Novels, on the other hand, can be recognized by art lovers as their own art form of narration.

As a critical discussion, history gained importance in Western Europe from the 17th century onwards as a field of negotiation for cross-party and cross-denominational controversies. In the 19th and 20th centuries it is a discourse that justifies the establishment of historical commissions that subject wrong political decisions to an (at least scientifically) consensual assessment.

The novel becomes the subject of cultural-historical interpretation

While historiography is moving away from the novel, the novel gains its own recognition in the early modern period as art and ultimately as literature ; the word must be redefined for this purpose in the 19th century. Several developmental steps were responsible for this up to 1700, which resulted from a considerable legitimation crisis of the novel of the 16th century. The early printing initially created space for cheaper histories. With the 16th century these found an increasingly broad audience. A differentiation sets in in which a new market for elegant books sets itself apart from the lower as well as the academic market for scientific books. The success of the Amadis , which triggered the first international reading fashion from the 1530s, ultimately led to the first critical debate in the new field of elegant reading. The debate about the Amadis in the 17th century was carried out as an open contest between the modern genres of the novel. New heroic novels, alternative satirical novels as well as novels orientated towards collections of novels contribute to a genre discussion, in the course of which the artful novel is justified as opposed to artless production among the growing passion for fiction production.

With Huets Traitté de l'origine des romans in 1670 the appreciation of this reform and the modern interpretation of the novel began. Novels will be reevaluated over the next few decades. One reads them with education in order to understand foreign cultures and past eras. While the writers of the Renaissance avoided making their stories look realistic, in the 17th century the more probable the events presented in them, the more acceptable they became as fictional constructions. The credible is no longer defined morally, but appears as a consequence of an inner inconsistency and probability of the action through which a second, self-contained world is created. While Don Quixote cannot distinguish between reality and deception, and its author is still experimenting with the relationship between reality and fiction, Madame de Lafayette in La Princesse de Clèves in 1678 designed a fictional reality that far surpasses the world in terms of coherence. Elena Esposito suspects that the “fictional” novel, which is based on the probability of the reality he portrays, and the modern theory of probability , the development of which began with the correspondence between Blaise Pascal and Pierre de Fermat in 1654, did not develop independently of one another.

In the second half of the 18th century, the new interpretation of the novel changed the way we deal with poetry: Dramas and poems were beginning to be analyzed in a new network of genres that supposedly developed together with novels as a fictional, artistically designed, cultural production. In the 19th century the new science became the central area of ​​literary studies. In the middle of the 19th century, in western societies, this group organized its own confrontation with history, dealing with the transmission of artistic fictions as a cultural indicator.

Books such as Malory's Morte Darthur or Mandeville's Travels ultimately come from a culture in which history did not have today's significance as a venue for critical discussions - also a culture in which literary scholarship did not compile its own area of ​​fictions into national art. Both areas are part of a secular debate landscape that was built up in Western Europe in the 19th century compared to what had been defined as political and religious up until then. The development of the history of mentality gives the impression that at the beginning of the modern age people still mixed up reality and fictions in remnants of medieval superstition.

Cheap novels, later popular books

Rough style and a text that has been on the market since 1598: Géronimo Fernandez , The Honor of Chivalry, or […] Don Bellianis of Greece (London: JS [approx. 1715])

Book printing immediately created new market areas: leaflets , early forms of newspapers , religious pamphlets - there had previously been no comparable media for this. With printing, the sciences gained the possibility of creating standard editions of texts that would ultimately become reference works in identical editions in specialist libraries - a little later they entailed a discussion system that observed the quality of the new specialist books.

Historical representations had no clear social status in this spectrum. They commissioned princely houses to adorn themselves with them, rich townspeople emulated the aristocracy as owners of manuscripts, and women citizens collected descriptions of saints and the edifying lives of Mary . In this field, printing was most likely to create the possibility of cheaper production. The publishers collected popular historical manuscripts and, with decreasing care, converted them into printed versions, which could be reprinted. In the middle of the 16th century there was a broad segment of cheap books in this field with knight tales, picaresque stories such as Till Eulenspiegel , saint legends, and edifying allegorical fictions such as the Seven Show Masters , which were to undergo hardly any changes over the next three centuries. The titles were outfitted with rough woodcuts , the text versions were only slightly modernized, shortened and mutilated, where profit could be maximized - a commodity that was preferred to be sold without the year or printer information; it was not subject to any fashions and was best known as timeless to an audience who wanted to read what they supposedly had always read.

From 1530 onwards, a product was created here for the first time, which reached the craft class and apprentices in the cities and was also sold in the country - for many young readers a transitional stage that could lead to better novels. However, caution should be exercised before the judgment that the market for popular books is the forerunner of today's trivial literature . The folk books formed a closed segment of titles of similar design, which, in addition to historical narratives, contained religious and pseudoscientific titles as well as moral and medical advice. After educational initiatives of the Enlightenment in the course of the 18th century, this market segment was largely lost at the turn of the 19th century. The romantic rediscovery begins in the 1840s . The word “people's books” is now used to imply that unaffected books that are close to the people were created here. Today's market for trivial literature (on this below ) does not develop out of the popular books, but out of the elegant belles lettres of the 17th and 18th centuries, when the high production of national literary works in the late 18th century developed from this begins to take off.

The courtly historical novel, 1600–1750

The sub-genre of the courtly historical novel arises from a critical examination of the much-read Amadis novel. In particular, the improbability of the action and the frivolous passages were criticized. However, its "cruel" length was adopted, because the courtly historical novels are still among the most extensive works of literature ever. However, the authors tried to increase the degree of probability of what was told by orienting themselves towards historical events.

The most important non-German novels of this sub-genre include:

For the German-speaking area, the following novels should be mentioned in particular:

The novels of Barclays, Scudéry and Anton Ulrichs contain references to the present day and to the fashions that spread with the new novels as a decisive feature. The gallant conduite and the gallant style became the decisive sales arguments for the new goods in the course of the 17th century: one reads them to receive samples for compliments, letters, speeches, ready-to-use dialogues of courtly intercourse between the sexes.

This applies to the great novels, which assert themselves as a game of the new European court culture, but to a completely different extent also to the 300 to 500-page much more manageable goods, which in the 17th century conquered a customer base of education and taste among young urban readers . In the second half of the 17th century, a special market for young, presumably still unmarried women who appreciate gallant novels of this shorter format - addressed not least by their heroines of the same age, who change identities as princesses of India or ancient Persia at risk of death , flee in men's clothing and far below their stand and seek protection until their situation improves.

Satirical Novels and Satires, 1500–1780

In the course of the 17th century, the label satirical novel was applied to a wide range of titles with different historical roots: Roman and late antique satire, in particular the novels Petron and Lucian, medieval swan stories with heroes like Till Eulenspiegel and the novel satire, which was already in the Middle Ages existed in a considerable range. The rose novel includes satirical passages. Heinrich Wittenwiler's ring is itself a satirical battle in satiricals on courtly heroism.

A number of developments characterize the production that comes up here with the printing. Heroes gain consistency: where Till Eulenspiegel has a typical character, but remains the hero of a collection of traditional episodes, comparable heroes of the 16th and 17th centuries gain life stories. The anonymous Lazarillo de Tormes (1554), Richard Head's English Rogue (1665) and Grimmelshausen's Adventurous Simplicissimus (1666/1668) are part of this trend.

Compared to the gallant heroes of the heroic novel, who use Spanish and then increasingly the French conduite, international patterns of behavior, the satirical heroes stand out as people of their people. The titles indicate ethnicity: Grimmelshausen's hero is Simplicissimus Teutsch , Head's hero of the English Rogue , who competes with a French rogue on the market. Rozelli: The miraculous Neapolitan completes the spectrum with an Italian (French author) at the beginning of the 18th century. Here, among readers of European taste and with a clear distance to the common people, a desire for the national typical arose, which in the course of the 17th century led to the development of national characters and identities. At the same time, the nationally identified heroes increasingly became actors in international history, not as their directors, but as people who were affected by Europe's changeful fortunes and who mostly survived curiously. The production has a repeated nostalgia for looking back on not so funny times. Professions became the subject of satires, sometimes with novels, whose heroes are specifically equipped with professions, more often because these heroes constantly needed new survival strategies and with them new identities and professions to survive.

In addition to the heroes who expose the rampant vices with their pranks, fate and misfortunes, there was a separate line of development of novel heroes who primarily act as satirises on heroes of the high novel. Rabelais ' La vie très horrifique du grand Gargantua (1532–1554) offers a world of giants of exaggerated peasant boobies, of excessive physicality. The crude heroic epic delighted intellectual readers with a desire to destroy elegant popular reading material. As a more far-reaching satire on the Amadis , Cervantes' Don Quixote was published in 1605 and 1615 , the novel of the man whom the reading of chivalric novels caused strange misperceptions of the real world to be countered. Scarron's Roman Comique used a troupe of traveling actors for a dedicated French reflection on the world and poetry after Cervantes and his satire. Lesages Gil Blas (1715–1735), Fieldings Joseph Andrews (1742) and Tom Jones: The Story of a Foundling (1749), Diderot's Jacques le Fataliste (1773, printed 1796) are offshoots of the line of tradition in the 18th century; Jaroslav Hašek of The Good Soldier Schweik (1921-1923) and Gunter Grass The Tin Drum (1959) intervened in the 20th century clearly heroism and narrative patterns of this field back.

"Petites Histoires": The Novella as an Alternative, 1600–1740

Statistical analysis of the ESTC on the
predatory competition between novels and romances 1600–1800. The genre's development was European, even if it was only reflected in Spanish and English through a change of terms.

The fact that English and Spanish speak of novels or novelas instead of novels (Romances) is a late consequence of the debacle that Amadis prepared as a novel for his successor. At this point in time , the Amadis had not been read any longer anywhere in Europe. Critics were only just aware that it was about knights who freed princesses from the hands of cruel giants, that he swelled into countless volumes, and that his inventions of heroism cost the mind. The Amadis criticism from Don Quixote (1615) had become the standard of the novel criticism , although the novel of the present day opened itself up in a spectrum compared to the Amadis .

The modern heroic novel and its satirical counterpart shared with the Amadis length and ingenuity. The alternative at this point was the novella. It established the word novel on the English book market in the 1670s . In German, the influence in novels of “curieusen events” is evident. If the novella in the 1660s and 1670s was mainly the current, new story, part of the scandalous market, it was given the status of a classic in the early 18th century. The Select Collection of Novels (1722–1722), which is mentioned in more detail below , is pioneering here in English . In the 1720s, longer novels became increasingly interesting: long love stories, such as those presented by Eliza Haywood , ensure that the word loses its limitation to short pointed stories. In the middle of the 18th century, romance is still the umbrella term for the novel as a genre in English. However , at this point in time, the novel has become the current genre, saying goodbye to adventurous novel art. Today's conceptual fixation directed in English in the 1790s one, as the romance , the romance rediscovered with all its showers of Invented for themselves. In the same process, the word novel becomes a neutral generic term in English, a situation in which one needs another word for the original novel: "Novella" is activated here compared to "Novel", from now on the word for the long novel.

Cervantes , Novelas exemplares (1613)

As a short novel of news, the novella had a decisive influence on the overall picture of the novel in the 17th century. The genre has roots in the short story collections of Boccaccio and Chaucer. With Cervantes' Novelas exemplares (1613) the open assertion is made that it could be at the center of a new spectrum as an alternative genre.

Most genre definitions - Du Sieurs Sentimens sur l'histoire (1680) gain greater influence here from Bellegarde's plagiarism of considerations and their translations - derive the individual genre characteristics largely from brevity. With the brevity, the claim to abduct the reader into a world of his own ideals is lost in a pleasant continuous reading. The short narrative no longer needs to struggle to develop long passages of speeches and descriptions. According to the novella, “bombast” is the main characteristic of heroic novels. The new authors claim targeted artlessness. Your stories are unadorned, short, pointed. Ideally, the author makes it clear why he is telling: the following story is intended to be an example of a virtue or vice, a circumstance of modern life, an astonishing and consequential intimate decision. From then on, the course, style, and the entire conception of the novella must be tied back to the narrative intention, the example to be given. There is no further agreement in the novella about what high style is; instead, the mostly surprising final turn , the punch line , is told concisely. With these specifications, the novella fits between the heroic and the satirical novel. The former wanted to teach through heroes whom one wanted to imitate, the latter through heroes whose ridiculousness one would not emulate with awareness of one's own reputation. The new short novel, on the other hand, is not about improving yourself by identifying with the heroes. The example itself teaches: If you do things like the one here in the story, such a surprise can happen to you. The heroes become people with strengths and weaknesses. The schemers regularly win. In the new novels, compassion for inferior victims takes on the role of being able to create a moral balance in favor of the inferior protagonists.

In contrast to the heroic novel, which aims to show eternal ideals in embodiment, the novella shows the specifics of places and times in the tradition of medieval novellistics. Stories that supposedly actually happened that way are popular. The novella spreads on the international book market with the offer of local perspectives, and at the same time it accelerates the development of national genre traditions: in the middle of the 17th century, the heroes of Scarron's novel Comique discuss the advantages of the new genre from a national perspective: France must have stories present what the Spaniards called Novelas . Marie-Madeleine de La Fayette then wrote a story in the new Spanish style with her Zayde (1670) and its French counterpart with her Princesse de Clèves (1678): an exemplary story in courtly French fashion. From the 1690s onwards, German students provide “local stories”. Around 1700, London readers risk themselves writing in the purposefully artless genre. The new genre is deliberately scandalous under these guidelines. Allegedly, the story is told here only for the instructive example, a pretext under which private affairs can be indiscreetly penetrated. The short stories entered scandalous journalism in the 1670s. Journals and serious histories offer small narratives in larger contexts to loosen up.

At the same time, the novella opens Europe's view of non-European narrative traditions: the stories from the Arabian Nights became the European market success of the early 18th century and are a collection of novels, not a heroic or a satirical novel.

For history, the temporary amalgamation of the genres of the novel with the novella has lasting repercussions to this day. The novel discussion that existed before the 1660s asks about ideals and high language. Any narrative intentions can be discussed with the novella. Novellas highlight life, people in surprising situations. The realism of the narrative and the moral of the particular example are to be discussed here. The new discussion still has an impact on today's novels. The narrative situations are interesting in the novella: the grand novel says goodbye to the adventure series. The adventure gives way to the intrigue, the plan, which mostly turned out differently than intended. Playing with the narrative penetrated modern novels through novellism in the 17th century.

In the middle of the 18th century, the great novel is legitimate again thanks to the novelistic. Samuel Richardson's Pamela or Virtue Rewarded is a long novel and the title is an exemplary novella: Here an example is given that virtue is worthwhile. German novelists write from Hunold's Satyrical Novel (1706/1710) to Schnabel's Wonderful Fata of Some Seafarers (1731–1743) and Gellert's Swedish Countess G *** (1747/48) in the genre of current exemplary stories. At this point in time, the short novella was already discredited as a scandalous genre. As a rule, they exclude today's literary stories entirely from the history of novels : For them there is the step from the baroque novel to the novel of the Enlightenment. It can often be read that the novella between the Middle Ages and Goethe's novella of 1828 completely abandoned the market. The statement is primarily the result of a retrospective adjustment of the history of the novel.

Scandalous excursions into history, 1600–1750

4 a.m., arrest of the author, page from Renneville's French Inquisition (1715)

At the end of the 17th century, the novel raised the need for reform. Conservative critics continued to speak of the seductions of “Amadis” fantasy, others complained that the novel remained embedded in history - the Mass catalogs made this classification. At the same time, more modern critics defended the novel with its attacks on real history. They did so for two reasons: Novellistics and the heroic novel that ventured into the field of the romanesque romances had reformed. Observing real characters was his new trademark; the dangers of Amadis no longer emanated from modern novels. At the same time, Scudéry had the key novels, the d’Aulnoy’s fiction- like letter collections and the first epistolary novels such as Aphra Behn’s Love-Letters (1684–1687), with novelistic journalism such as DuNoyer offered, with “curieusen” fictional-like memoirs by anonymous French authors popular journals such as the Mercure Galant and the current nouvelles historiques , as written by the Abbé de Saint-Réal , opened a new novel-like space in the midst of historiography, in which authors acted elegantly and, if necessary, regime-critical. The novel-like reworking of contemporary history, which is now attributed to Gatien de Courtilz de Sandras (like the story of the man in the iron mask , which implied that Louis XIV was hiding a secret brother and thus secured his claims to power - history had a lasting influence here who made Alexandre Dumas famous with the Three Musketeers in the 19th century). Open-minded market observers like Pierre Bayle saw considerable reason to defend the potential criticism of this market and to demand critical reading rather than censorship or the abolition of such works.

The two options under which novels could reach into history created a clear scheme of the genres alluded to on the title pages and preface: New titles could pretend to be novels, but turn out to be romaneses when read. On the other hand, like Defoe's Robinson Crusoe (1719), they could be offered as true history in the form of a novel. Here as there, the market differentiated between private and public offers:

Heroic novels:
Fénelon's Telemach (1699)
Allegedly fiction, novel, actually true public history?

Manley's New Atalantis (1709)

Allegedly an invention, a novel, actually true private history?

Menantes' satyrical novel (1706)
Classics of the novella and the novel
from the stories from the Arabian Nights to M. de La Fayette's Princesse de Clèves (1678)
Allegedly true private history, but actually an invention, a novel?

Defoes Robinson Crusoe (1719)
Allegedly true public history, but actually an invention, a novel?

La Guerre d'Espagne (1707)
Satirical novels:
Cervantes' Don Quixote (1605)

The division offered authors of scandalous public and private revelations the security of being able to claim that they had only written a novel after all. Anyone wishing to assert otherwise would first have to prove in a court case that their publications made unpleasant truths public.

English edition of Fénelon's Telemachus (1715)
First edition of Defoe's Robinson Crusoe (1719)

Creating the desired twilight required creativity. Robinson Crusoe shows: The title page of 1719 claimed that the Adventure ( Adventures ) a sailor to publish (see right). Adventures was also featured on the cover of the English edition of François Fénelon's famous fictional novel Telemach (see image on the left). The title page of Robinson Crusoe outbid its rivals with spectacular adjectives. In the preface, the publisher allegedly wants to confirm that this is a true report, and in doing so it throws new doubts.

His 1719 book was not a novelty, neither in crossing the boundaries with true history, nor in the realism Defoe risked. Constantin de Renneville's report of his imprisonment in the Bastille Inquisition Françoise (1715) was far more realistic - it is still unclear what was true and what was invented here.

That Defoe turned away from French "romance" with Robinson Crusoe is a problematic claim. The aforementioned "Romance" had already given way to the novelistic "Novel" in the 1670s. The new big novel expanded the current novelistic with an offer of extraordinarily adventurous fictionality. In the end , Robinson Crusoe fitted in perfectly with the development of the 18th century : It led to a literature of deliberately fictional works that deal with reality using artistic means. Jean-Jacques Rousseau pioneered this reorganization of Defoe in his novel Émile, ou De l'éducation (1762).

The novel becomes "literature"

The rise of the novel in the 18th century

ESTC stock numbers for the period 1600–1799. Clearly visible: increase in production after the abolition of the Star Chamber in 1641 and the swings in phases of political controversy. Exponential, stable market growth from around 1750.

Anglistic research connected the 18th century with theories of the rise of the novel. The Rise of the Novel is the headline of the authoritative study that Ian Watt presented in relation to the novels Defoes , Richardsons and Fieldings in 1957. The history of English literature is of crucial importance at this point. The thesis of a change of influence is linked to it. French authors dominated the European market until the early 18th century, while English authors gained importance with the publication of Robinson Crusoes (1719). For the English as well as for the German and French production of fictional prose for the 18th century, there was evidence of accelerated growth according to relatively stable figures for the 17th century.

Increase in production numbers
London's range of books in 1700 according to the Mass catalogs of the time. Sectors that stand out from the circle are poetry and fiction.
ESTC data on the annual production of fictional prose in the English book market

The entire book production in the period 1600 to 1800 in languages ​​such as German and English was 1500 to 3000 titles. Up until the 1750s, this offer was dominated by the scientific production of literature, theology and daily political production, which included pamphlets, journals and newspapers. Literature in the current sense of the word, novels, dramas and poems, made up a marginal share of 2–5% of total book production up until the 1750s.

The proportion of novels in total production was correspondingly low. Up until the 1730s, 20 to 60 novels were published per year in languages ​​such as German and English. The production of novels in French was slightly higher. This was mainly due to the division of French publications into an inner-French and a Dutch market. Dutch publishers printed what was censored in France, doubling the market.

Total production increased in the middle of the 18th century. Fictions contributed significantly to this. This has above all to do with the fact that the English-language publishing industry became decentralized after 1750 and was increasingly produced locally for the market. No less begins here the phase of feedback between the general market and literary criticism , which established a canon of classical works of novel art in the field of fiction in the second half of the 18th century , against which new novels had to measure themselves from now on.

Social recognition

The place of the novel in social perception changed significantly from the Middle Ages to the 18th century. The epic of the Middle Ages had dealt with aristocratic customs and the appreciation of chivalry. Novels like the Amadis had trivialized the ideals of chivalry and made them commonplace. National court culture determined the titles of the 16th and 17th centuries, that of Spain until the 1630s, that of the French court from the 1640s. In the middle of the 17th century, authors like Scudéry sold with the promise that the current forms of French etiquette would be taken from them.

In the 1660s there was a split in French publications into a domestic and a Dutch market. Pirate printers in The Hague and Amsterdam operated the secondary marketing of the Parisian publishers and they acted as contact points for authors who were only able to publish in France with the hindrance of the censors. At that time a politically explosive, daily updated international market was created that was shaped by French fashion and sold all kinds of fashion. Arcangelo Corelli and Antonio Vivaldi published from Italy with Étienne Roger in Amsterdam, the same publisher who published Renneville's L'inquisition Françoise in 1715 - one of the many titles that were translated into English and French that same year. The political market had become the hub of the international, fashionable daily news.

Sarcander, Cupid at Universities (1710), a typical student novel of the early 18th century

A decidedly local production was inspired by this international perspective. At the end of the 18th century, European scandalous novels found parallel local production with private perspectives in London as in Leipzig, Halle and Jena. It is crucial for the new, more private production that its authors can maintain anonymity in the scandalous, more intimate revelations. Women can do this in London, students act similarly from an anonymous crowd in central German university cities. The early 18th century in England was dominated by a flourishing of women's novels, while a parallel flourishing of student novels scandalized the German states until the 1720s. At the beginning of the 18th century it was considered easy to publish novels - they did not seek to gain any significance as art, and remained largely undiscussed, the matter of those who love novels. The censorship paid attention to religious and political writings, but hardly any more private novel production.

The novel reached readers at the beginning of the 18th century, an international product with special local additional offers. Its real rise begins with the spread of Huets Traitté de l'origine des romans (1670), in which the career of the genre is made public for the first time, as well as with the criticism of the novel in the moral weekly papers , which offend the entire ideal of the gallant. They do not lead to a decline in the genre, but to a split in production and a rivalry between authors who committed themselves to reforming the novel in the mid-18th century. A new, higher market is emerging , which is open to criticism of the novel. In the middle of the 18th century, learned literary magazines took on the now public task of criticizing novels.

The novel arrives at the center of public perception articulated in newspapers and magazines with the new public attention in the 1780s. From then on it took another half century before the national educational systems canonized it as a literary genre. From the beginning of the 19th century, the location of the novel was primarily assigned by the media.

In short, it can be said that in the course of the 18th century the novel rose from the scandalous side branch of historical production to the medium of a reform of public morals. Its focus on the private and the private reader makes it both threatening and the ideal medium of reform: with no other genre you can reach the reader so clearly in the private sphere, with no other one gives him such deep insights into the secret thoughts of heroes. The result is less the reform of the novel than the division into a production that engages in discussion and a production that withdraws from it. There were sex scenes in novels of the 17th century, for example, while their own pornographic production emerged in the middle of the 18th century compared to those who were morally reform-minded.

Appearance of the classics at the end of the 17th century

Classics of the "Novel" in the representative collective edition A Select Collection of Novels (1720–1722)

The structure of a canon of world literature is essentially based on Huets Traitté de l'origine des romans (1670). Huet had published the work, which will soon appear in separate editions - there was still no literary history to take care of it - as a preface to Zayde Marie de La Fayettes on the novel market itself. With it, above all, the justification for reading novels among lovers of fiction changed. Until then, the novel reader had to face the reproach of escaping into a precarious pseudo-reality, Huet demonstrated that novels from different epochs and cultures could be differentiated from one another with a new interpretation practice: times and cultures of world history had the fictional as a domain for very different reasons designed. Under this premise one would be able to read novels in a targeted manner in order to learn more about the customs, ways of thinking and consumer needs of other times and cultures. The new reading of novels required scientific expertise as soon as one reconstructed the worldwide lines of tradition in which fictionality spread.

By the late 17th century editions of fictional literature increased with references to Huet noting these books in his World History of Fiction. The novels Heliodors , the Tales from the Arabian Nights , Petron and Lucian became antique and international classics. At the same time, the novel appeared with Fenélon's Telemach , which was discussed in the next decades as evidence that in the modern age it was not the heroic verse epic that was revived, but the novel as its modern counterpart and replacement.

Modern novel production was given its own market for classical modernism: the Select Collection of Novels , published in London between 1720 and 1722, is groundbreaking here ; it encompassed current novels with authors from Machiavelli to Cervantes to La Fayette (without already knowing her name).

Contemporary authors tried to gain a foothold in this market after Fénelon succeeded in instantly becoming a classic with a single publication. Publishing under real names became fashionable in London in the 1720s.

The establishment of an international classic field of the belles lettres followed in the second half of the 18th century attempts to establish national classics in their own ranks.

Sensitivity and Enlightenment: Reforms of the Novel, 1678–1790

Samuel Richardson, Pamela (1741)

The reform of the novel, which the 18th century aspired to, aimed above all at morals, in particular that of private access to the press and the public. At the beginning of the 18th century, Christian Friedrich Hunold, alias Menantes, astonished his publishers with the private use of the press and the novel as a medium. Scandal authors and had made a name for themselves in novels in London. For the most part, like their audience and their novel heroes, they had belonged to the younger generation. The novel of the 17th century thrived on ideals of private cleverness that cleverly evaded society (see the article Galante Conduite for more details ): the heroes and heroines usually have to resort to secret actions, intrigues, in order to gain their private happiness Find. The handling of secrets determined the novel well into the 18th century, both in the novel plots and in the game that these titles play on the book market: novels publish private secrets. Until well into the 18th century, this was supported by a specific self-definition of the heroes as well as the authors: one does not define oneself through psychological identity, but through reputation, the reputation one is defending. The duel is a legitimate form of defending one's reputation by force. The public presentation of one's own point of view, the washing of dirty laundry, the defamation of other claims are the business of novelists and authors up to the 1740s. Anyone who wants to assert otherwise has to decide to stand up against revelations and thus challenge the reputation of the author. These harsh regulations, in which novel heroes and authors consistently see themselves as public actors, were exchanged in the 18th century for soft ones of sensitivity and sensitivity .

The sensitive behavioral model is based on an individual who is naturally reluctant to act in public. Shame and blushing when someone speaks of one characterizes the sensitive individual. In society, it is not a player who uses his own reputation in a calculated way, but needs help. Where heroines of the 17th century hide from their parents who they love in order to gain the freedom to realize their goals, the sensitive individual feels helpless. It has to approach others, dare to trust, win parents over for their own happiness. Love towards all fellow human beings and transparency towards them characterize sensitive heroes (behavioral guides of the early century, on the other hand, defined the environment as hostile and advised non-transparency). At the same time, the new heroes and heroines are faced with a new environment in which there are like-minded good people against scheming enemies.

Samuel Richardson's Pamela or Virtue Rewarded in 1740/41 exemplarily plays the new basic conflict between an innocent moral heroine of lower class and an employer who confronts her as a seducer. The conflict ends neither with the ruin of the heroine, as in Delarivier Manley's novels , nor with a witty triumph of supposed innocence, as in many novels; instead it leads in a novel way in the reform of the man with superior status. The new heroes experience themselves as guided by their virtues, barely able to keep secrets. The loss of the feeling of living in “natural” harmony with their environment makes them unhappy. They develop their own sensitive psychological dispositions with which they can explain their behavior to themselves and to others - openly and dependent on compassion and support, where their predecessors acted wittily and "cunning" even when they were virtuous. The new production has a forerunner in French novelism. Marie de LaFayette's Princesse de Cleves (1678) in particular conquered the new behavior here.

The novelists of the mid-18th century clearly handle their works as samples. The new heroes are made available to the public with didactic intentions: “Now first published in order to cultivate the Principles of Virtue and Religion in the Minds of the Youth of Both Sexes, A Narrative which has the Foundation in Truth and Nature; and at the same time that it agreeably entertains… ”is the subtitle of Richardson's Pamela . The new novel uses fictionality to teach and sketches people with the intention of discussing whether this is the first time that human nature has been correctly recognized.

Beginnings of the modern pornographic novel, illustration from the English Fanny Hill edition of 1766

The new characters therefore need a science of the secret nature of man, which has so far been deformed by culture. This science arises in parallel with psychology. At the same time, the new novels develop a special interest in developments (this word is also new in the middle of the 18th century, "changes" went through protagonists of novels up to the 1720s). Educational and development novels are emerging. Childhood and youth become subjects of the modern novel. At best, the satirical novels of the 17th century, which portrayed the funny weaknesses of their heroes in their childhood, serve as models. In the novels of Jean-Jacques Rousseau in the 1760s, processes of development and maturation became the subject of philosophical experimental fictions. In the 1760s and 1770s, the novels Laurence Sternes and Henry Mackenzies savored the developments of their heroes in a satirical and loving way into "sensitive" character sketches. Educational novels by German authors of the 18th and 19th centuries combine the new subject with a range of social criticism to individual historical reflection.

The new norms of behavior were first introduced to female heroes in the mid-18th century. Male heroes behave “sensitively” a little later, often with clear self-irony. In the 1770s, contrary to the consensus-oriented models, novel heroes become interesting who break with society and cannot have a share in their happiness out of their own dispositions. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Werther (1774) sets a European standard here. At the end of the 18th century he developed his own fashion of tragic heroes who failed to integrate into the sensitive, cramped conditions.

The entire development is linked to public discussions, which, however, do not bring about the equalization of the variety of novels: The criticism is dissonant, it promotes competition between different models. Even more, it divides the market into an area whose reform efforts can appeal to reviewers and a larger area which, bypassing critics, focuses on customer groups. From the middle of the 18th century, the differentiation becomes clear in the development of a separate area of pornography : it is not advertised publicly, a subculture has to spread knowledge about these titles. The result is a range of novels with a broad, undiscussed, trivial production and secret niches in which the boundaries of moral consensus are lifted.

The novel as an experimental text form, 1700–1800

The new status that the novel achieved as a genre of public discussion in the 18th century is particularly evident in the philosophical and experimental works.

Philosophical fictions are nothing new. Plato's dialogues came out in philosophical narratives. The classic utopias used novel-like frameworks from Thomas More 's Utopia (1516) to Tommaso Campanella's La città del Sole (1602). They remained discussed as philosophy, since acts of love and intrigues played no further role in them. That changed with the 1740s. More ' Utopia can now be published as a "novel". Voltaire writes philosophical novels: Zadig (1747) and Candide (1759) become central texts of the French Enlightenment and milestones in the history of novels. Jean-Jacques Rousseau extends the options here with the clearly didactic Emile or about education (1762) and the much more novel-like Julie or The New Heloise (1761).

Laurence Sterne: Tristram Shandy , Volume 6, pp. 70–71 (1769)

The titles mentioned show that philosophical questions were asked in the novel rather than in internal treatises. Voltaire and Rousseau could meanwhile trust that their works would also be published as novels and will be noticed by the professional discussion. The entire literary discussion turned from science to fiction.

With the novel's new self-image, experiments with the genre boundaries went hand in hand. Laurence Sternes The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman 1759–1767 playfully and groundbreakingly breaks with the ongoing narrative as the basis of the novel. The author-reader communication, which previously dominated prefaces, replaces the plot. Her subject is the non-material life story, a failure of the narrative. Visual moments replace text: a marbled page shapes communication like a demonstratively black block; On the other hand, the narrator gives various lines as a sketch of the course of the confused plot. Jonathan Swift's satirical tale A Tale of a Tub (published 1704) preceded this with a similar enthusiasm for experimentation, but experimented not with the novel, but with the genre of the treatise.

In the field of “literary” genres

The novel becomes “National Literature”, 1780–1860

Charles Dickens on the cover of L'Eclipse on June 14, 1868: The famous author crosses the canal to read from his novels in Paris.
Charles Dickens at an author reading: a new phenomenon in literary life

By the beginning of the 19th century, the novel had developed as a primarily Western European production. As an unscientific genre that primarily wants to be received with reading pleasure and curiosity, it flourished in a wide range of books for simple readers to explosive titles that marketed indiscretions of European politics. Without further localization in religion or politics, it was at the same time most likely the subject of commercial exploitation of more or less elegant private reading until the 1780s.

In the second half of the 18th century, the novel gradually moved into the focus of public perception: literary reviews focused on it. This tendency consolidated in the first half of the 19th century: New forms of reviews and discussions were established in literary histories and magazines. “Literature” is from now on the area of ​​fictional and poetic writings. The sciences, so far literature in the sense of the word, are becoming more professional and stand out from the general literature review or hide them. With fiction and poetry, literary criticism New Brunswick, NJ: in the nations of the West gains a restricted, secular, very freely manageable subject of discussion of great public interest.

Institutionalization as a subject of education

The next step took place in the 1830s: the nations of Western Europe established literature in the new sense of the word as a subject of instruction. The national literatures are in a race among civilized nations canonized Europe in literary histories and with developing stories. In particular, the nations of Northern, Eastern and Southern Europe come under pressure to develop at the same moment: their cultural elites have consumed the Western European novel in the last few centuries. Now it is necessary to submit your own works from the great national literature. In this competition, the novel gains great importance in the production of epoch-making great novels that reach into national history and define national identity.

In the early phase of the dissemination of national literature, Germany played a pioneering role. At the beginning of the 18th century, Germany was territorially fragmented into small states and was consistently aligned with the fashions of France, the nation with which there had been centuries of hereditary hostility , while the political novels of its regime-critical intellectuals were being read. In the middle of the 18th century, German intellectuals noted that Germany was lagging behind with regard to the English novel. Elevating poetry and prosafiction to subjects of discussion had national unifying significance in Germany - religion and politics did not offer comparable subjects that could be discussed supra-regionally. The structure of German national literature at the beginning of the 19th century created an educational object and a national discussion that could be exported. Although the English-speaking world has built the decidedly more sustainable commercial novel, it is lagging behind in terms of institutionalization, with which national literature became a subject of instruction in schools and a subject of public debate in the media in the 19th century. The history of English literature by the French Hippolyte Taine caught up with the institutional development step here in 1863.

The step of the novel into school lessons is accompanied by a reorganization of the sciences that are responsible for the new subjects of education. Theology, jurisprudence, medicine and philosophy were the four basic sciences until the middle of the 18th century. With the 19th century, a new division into natural sciences , technical sciences , social sciences and humanities established itself . In this development, the humanities become the institutional umbrella structure of history and culture, the experts of which have a decisive influence on the discussion of art and literature.

Establishment in new forms of literary life
Émile Zola , the political novelist at the center of the public fever he sparked (painting by Henry de Groux , 1898)

With the new social meaning, the modalities of literary life changed in the 19th century. The overall offer is growing and diversifying into an area of ​​discussed works of high literary quality and the mass market of fiction, which developed in the second half of the 18th century and which gains further differentiation with fashionable trivial literature. A broad exchange in the media now covers the novel.

The position of the author is being redefined. Anonymous publication was the rule until the middle of the 18th century. This corresponded to the extensive separation of the author from the business that could be done with his book: the author delivered his manuscript and received a fee based on the number of printed sheets in the published book. In an emergency, publishers could claim that they had never had more intensive contact with the authors of explosive novels; they acquired manuscripts without immediately recognizing their explosiveness (that is the excuse that publishers repeatedly used to censors in the 17th century). Copyright changed with the 19th century . The author shares in the further profit that his title makes. The new regulation gives the author identity (which a new press law with new civil liberties must protect). It also allows a new calculation with the literary career. A literarily demanding book can only be printed once in a small edition. If the critics become aware of it, the breakthrough follows with the critical attention that makes the title an educational subject. The author then benefits from the fame he finds as a recognized poet.

Oscar Wilde in court 1895

Poetry readings are symptomatic of the new forms of literary life such as controversies with literary critics or public statements by major authors on all issues of social significance. Great nineteenth-century novelists such as Charles Dickens and Émile Zola , Lev Tolstoy , Fyodor Dostoyevsky , are products of the new literary life with its clear focus on the nation and its public. In the ideal case, the nation gains an independent voice with the novelist, a conscience that is not involved in politics or religion, but in an emergency should only act responsibly towards art, according to the theory.

The central theme of the literary controversy takes account of the new responsibility that the author of great literature has for the nation: The ongoing topic of the literary debate of the 19th century is the question of how far the author can get involved in the description of reality (without to pollute art with the lower of reality), how far he can be instrumentalized in public discussions at the same moment (or whether he as an artist does not have to be outside). The opposite position to realism raises the demand for l'art pour l'art , art for art's sake. It is no less exposed to the wider question of the artist's social responsibility. The artist here evades society's claims by pointing out that he is solely responsible for art. The question of the moral integrity of the novelist gains weight in the 19th century. It fits in with the fact that novelists are exposed to public proceedings in extreme cases. The careers of Émile Zola and Oscar Wilde provide role models for the biographies of authors such as Alexander Solzhenitsyn and Salman Rushdie .

If great authors find themselves at the center of a new national literary and cultural life in the 19th century, the entire range of books is increasingly carried by a new and broad mass market of fictional literature that further develops the genres of the 18th century. A separation of high consumer goods, which are open to discussion, and low consumer goods developed in the 19th century. It is the foundation of the entire development, as it guarantees market activity without losers: the market is growing overall. At most, the relative importance of the areas is shifting. Among the subjects of debate, literature is gaining social status compared to theology.

Between Triviality and Revolt: Romantic Fictions, 1770–1850

Illustration from a Dutch edition by Juliette von de Sade, ca.1800

At the turn of the 19th century, the word romantic linked a whole generation of artists to the novel as the most interesting art genre. In the 17th century, “Written in a romantick vein” meant that the author used a novel-like style. The German equivalent in the 17th century was the “Romanesque” spelling (the t in “romantic” prevailed with the Anglophone definition of the epoch). The romantics risk all the virtues and vices of the old genre in order to build up terrifying worlds (instead of realistically and naturally depicting the real one ) and to let fictions grow fantastically (instead of following the art of realistic novellism). The novella is rediscovered as a genre that can be destroyed in its closedness of the plot of intrigue, and which, in its brevity, can acquire a new openness in order to refer beyond itself to a reality beyond.

In contrast to the heroic novels of the 17th century, which sought to set themselves apart from Amadis as the abyss of confusion, the romantics celebrate the dangerously confused nature of the novel. Opposite to the criticism of the Enlightenment, which praised clear didactic intentions, open subversion is practiced. At the same time, they deal with the new market differentiation that the novel has just captured: in the middle of the process in which the current literary criticism largely trivializes fiction in favor of a small area of ​​classically apostrophized literature, which should from now on be the subject of literary discussion, the younger generation is playing by authors with the materials of the low market, where chills and emotions sell. The grotesque, relentlessly exciting and breathtakingly invented is a welcome reservoir of the fictional, which is evidently supposed to be suppressed as trivial. At the same time, Romanticism succeeds in its first attack on literary criticism, which art absolutely wanted to have committed to fictionality.

The question of what art should actually be openly determines the novels and short stories of the Romantics. Artists' novels and novellas were devoted to discussions of art theory. Allegorical stories appeared in which, as in ETA Hoffmann's Der Sandmann (1817), the focus is explicitly on the knowledge of art and the romantic transfiguration of the more trivial and threatening reality. The real and the artificial are as interesting an object here as in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1818), the horror novel about the creation and soul of a new artificial person that crosses the boundaries of the trivial even more clearly .

The question of what art should actually be, which is openly discussed in art, has its most interesting addressees in literary studies, which obliges art as a whole to be fictional and thus interpretable. The question of interpretation is at the same time a question openly discussed in the novels of the Romantics. Fictions with superficially trivial realities, under which deeper truths can be hidden with an understanding of art, are spreading. Allegory and the abyss of depth of meaning are as popular as the deception of the superficial, which only pretends to have deeper meaning and only gains such importance in the art-devoted, transfigured romantic.

The fictional itself is accepted by the romantics as the real realm of art. The new question is where does the fictional get its deeper truths from? The fact that it is an expression of sexual impulses, deeper fears and longings belongs to the spectrum of responses of the romantics like the program to free art and fictionality from all regulatory constraints. The unabashed and indomitable fictionality that breaks through in the nightmare and in the vision are popular narratives, like the reality of delusions that arise in crime. The fragment becomes an art form that breaks the rules of the genre and refers beyond itself to the unfinished.

The interest in psychological abysses, as they appear in dreams, in fantasy, in delusions or in artistic fictions, ultimately creates a spectrum of material that continues to have an effect in both trivial literature and modern art and which at the same time influences the entire scientific practice of interpretation. The horror film , fantasy , the role-playing scene are permeated today with romantic discoveries of dark material areas, in particular the "dark" Middle Ages, the night, the excess of violence, the isolation of the individual and the exercise of power in secret societies that is beyond public access. Authors such as De Sade , Poe , Shelley or ETA Hoffmann created the imaginary worlds that reappeared in psychoanalysis as in surrealism . At the beginning of the 20th century, Freud's psychoanalysis draws a large part of its plausibility from interpretations of the literature that came about here at the beginning of the 19th century.

Novels dealing with society and its history, 1800–1900

Novels that plunge into history have existed since ancient times. The history of the present has been an extensively used romance theme since the 17th century - satirical novels such as Grimmelshausen's Simplicissimus (1666/1668) exploited it as well as historical revelatory novels of the anonymous type La guerre d'Espagne, de Baviere, et de Flandre, ou Memoires du Marquis d *** (Cologne: Pierre Marteau, 1707), which, in the early 18th century, had a French agent uncover the background of the War of the Spanish Succession in James Bond fashion .

The social position of historical novels of the 19th century marked a change: the satirical novel of the 17th century remained an unspoken adventure. Journalists exploited the scandalous novel of the early 18th century as an indiscreet and uncovered source of information. The historical novel, which appeared in the early 19th century with works such as Walter Scott's Waverley (1814), attempts to incorporate the title into the educational canon and to take over fiction into the collective historical consciousness in order to generate national identity in this way.

The subject matter of most historical novels is entertaining, escapist , slightly educational, and edifying. The popularization of history did not become explosive because of the school lessons and the universities, which initiate historical discussions in the secular western nations and thus create identity, but because of individual reading experience. The historical novel develops its own potential in its attacks on the past and the present through its concentration on individual experiences and individual fates. He endows the lives of heroes in novels with deeper historical significance. Historical suffering and historical triumphs can be relived in the novel.

Title page of the first edition of Harriet Beecher-Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin book (1852)
War and Peace , Volume I, Chapter 5

Novels create a different perception of history than reporting in the public media or history books. Class conflicts , racism , economic exploitation or wars remain largely de-individualized in factual texts; At best, what is interesting here is who was responsible. Not so in the novel: Charles Dickens made child labor in the workhouses of the 19th century tangible as individual suffering, Émile Zola described the proletarianization of the big cities. With Lev Tolstoy's War and Peace (1868/69), the military conflicts in Russia became the personal fate of men and women. Harriet Beecher-Stowes Uncle Tom's Cabin (1851-1852) was the best-selling novel of the 19th century and was instrumental in making slavery publicly debated in the United States . George Eliot's novels ensured that women's education and their role in society were discussed. The novel thus turned from being the subject of private reading to being the subject of general debate, in which literary criticism and the media also participated.

Illustration for Jules Vernes Vingt mille lieues sous les mers (1870)

The rise of the novel as the subject of national controversy was reflected in the institutionalization of literary historiography in the 19th century, which now followed the anchored French, English and German national literature. Novels with a national historical theme initiated developments in the Scandinavian and Eastern and Southern European languages.

Future became a new topic in a side branch of development. The development runs here from Samuel Madden satirical Memoirs of the Twentieth Century (1733) by Louis-Sébastien Mercier's progress utopia L'An 2440 (1771) and Mary Shelley's autobiographical and political novel The Last Man (1826) to the dedicated clashes with current development processes, as presented by Edward Bellamy with Looking Backward (1887) and HG Wells with The Time Machine (1895) at the end of the 19th century. The confrontation with the future took on a new quality with these books: developments, changes, and evolution in the social and cultural field became the subject of public discussion and a space of popular imagination that inspired the company's own commercial production of science fiction .

The novel as a genre of subjective experience, 1760–1960

Goethe's Wilhelm Meister in the 1795 edition

Individualism had determined the novel of the Middle Ages as well as that of the early modern period: As a rule, individual heroes were in the foreground. Whether they fell into pagan slavery as heroines of antiquity in men's clothes, like Robinson Crusoe had to survive alone on a South Sea island or like Constantin de Renneville on the edge of the fictional penetration of their existence to adapt to the living environment of the Bastille: They all experienced differently than the heroes of the novel 19th and 20th centuries, their own experience is not as completely personal and unreliable. There are very different reasons for this.

Until the middle of the 18th century, the individual was exemplary who defined and asserted himself in a conscious conduite through his public reputation . Developments played no role for this individual, but changes in the situation did play a role that had to be used wisely. The hero, the heroine, was defined by personal strength over others. The satirical heroes deviated from this, developing personal weaknesses from which the reader had to learn and from which he distanced himself with amusement.

As long as the novel remained part of historiography, there was hardly any reason to think about personal perspectives and a painful break between these and collective experience. The story was the subject of mediation for which the writer was responsible. Before 1750, breaks between one's own point of view and that of the environment did not determine the novel, but rather religious literature: the women's mysticism of the Middle Ages and the Protestant spiritual autobiography of the early modern period.

Proof with handwritten notes by La Recherche Du Temps Perdu: Du côté de chez Swann

At the moment when the novel was removed from historiography and incorporated into the field of literary art, it gained leeway with the stylization that the novelist now found as an individual approaching the public. The reality of his life was increasingly that of art, which distanced itself from life if it did not find it new and more intense at this distance - here a field of tension was immediately opened up that previously, more securely defined, for the poet had existed since antiquity. Novels like Laurence Sternes Sentimental Journey through France and Italy (1768) savored the game with amusing, individual life based on satirical novels of the 17th and early 18th centuries. The artist's own confrontation with his life and experiences came up with the sensitive novels that surround him . In the Romantic era, these explorations of lonely experience became radicalized in the spectacular savoring of the threatening scenarios of madness and longing.

When, in the first decades of the 19th century, the novel of history and the present reassigned itself to current social concerns, there was a further area of ​​tension between the individual and society: the individual as an observer who seeks independence from being appropriated by collective reality a new topic. The artist's path to such a position remained a major subject in this field with educational novels from Goethe's Wilhelm Meister (1777–1795) to Gottfried Keller's Green Heinrich (1854, second version 1879/80). Explorations from other observation positions were added with more or less fictional life sketches, especially by women and groups who are comparable marginalized in public reporting, whose points of view are now interested as undiscovered isolated ones.

The novel offered itself here as an experimental genre, since it went back to the long narrative without it being clear what formally defined a narrative and (unlike the publicly staged drama) reached its reader in an intimate, individual experience.

The exploration of personal experience revolutionized the way the novel was written. The search for an individual, subjective style was the focus of the competition between the authors. The experiment with completely new narrative patterns that, like stream of consciousness, effectively assimilated experience, led authors such as Virginia Woolf and James Joyce in the first half of the 20th century to more clearly defined experiments in the course of a critical distance from the novel of the 19th century and its narrative patterns, which are still clearly organized by author.

20th and 21st centuries

Berlin, May 10, 1933, one of the National Socialist book burnings .
Simone de Beauvoir , Jean-Paul Sartre and Che Guevara at a meeting in Cuba, 1960
Announcement of the upcoming Nobel Prize for Literature Stockholm, 2008

The novel as a genre with worldwide significance

Culture pessimists have seen the end of literature several times over the past 100 years. Television, cinema, the Internet, and video games replaced the good book. In a larger perspective, the opposite will be found. The novel is thriving in the book market as well as in public perception.

Novels were among the first books that the National Socialists demonstratively destroyed in the book burns of 1933. Individual specimens were burned here in show events. The novels that were on private shelves could only be captured by house searches. The novel was not pursued as a genre: novels were printed with the last paper contingents that the National Socialists released for printing in 1944/45. While the empire went under in the bombardment, the soldiers on the fronts, for whom only reading material was still produced, were to continue to dream of love in homeland novels . Novels were read by US soldiers in Vietnam and by the movement against the Vietnam War . Hermann Hesse and Carlos Castaneda were part of the luggage here. While it was difficult to find out more about the Siberian concentration camps within the Soviet Union , it was left to one novel to produce both internal and global audiences - Alexander Solzhenitsyn's A Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich (1962), followed by the historically narrated Gulag archipelago (1973), who ultimately gave the horror its name. The customer base, to whom the media gladly attested the departure from books, has in recent years provided the greatest bestsellers of the century with the sale of Harry Potter volumes. The most weighty political confrontation of the last thirty years, that between the “free West” and the “Islamic world” found its first round with the worldwide persecution of a novel - Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses (1988). In fact, the novel offered itself here like no other medium of cultural confrontation.

Private and at the same time the subject of a pluralistic debate landscape

Part of the novel's recipe for success in the 20th century lies in its antiquated medium. Novels circulate in single editions as a convenient reading subject with which one can create an undisturbed private space in public at any time. In politically explosive cases, printing can take place in safe foreign countries or in local samizdat presses. Copies can be passed on by hand. The Satanic Verses in Persian are acquired in obscure prints under black simple book covers, without the publisher's name and with an obviously pseudonymous translator. Theatrical performances, television broadcasts and Internet offers have a fundamentally different public. The attraction of the theatrical performance lies precisely in the fact that one becomes part of a performance witnessed simultaneously by the audience. Similar to the book, television and the Internet are mainly consumed privately, but remain simultaneous public events via broadcasters and providers that can be accessed by state organs. As far as novels are concerned, censors can only trace copies of them, once printed, only in private possession. The novel itself remains public. The book is an industrially manufactured mass product, in the medium the obvious evidence that it reached other readers like you. In an exciting way, it remains unclear to the novel reader who read what he has just read and who, in an explosive case, will reveal himself as the reader.

As a private medium, the novel became explosive in the 20th century primarily through the public institutional cover it was offered. It captures private reading, threatens to shape it, and can get into new forms of argument with it. The “literary life” that the “free societies of the West” defend today, together with its modern institutions, from the city's literary houses , the publicly discussed literary prizes , the literary readings held in bookstores , the book fairs with their press releases, hardly goes before the middle of the 19th century back. Since then, the public appreciation has been accompanied by a canon debate , which is reflected in the media, in newspaper sections , on television and on the Internet, and which affects the entire hierarchy of the educational system, from university seminars down to daily school lessons, to the Guides appreciation of primarily national literature. Authors and publishers cannot refuse to market sophisticated novels to the public. The vast bulk of literary prizes below the Nobel Prize for Literature , the prizes that start with the Booker Prize and the Pulitzer Prize , create marketing platforms. To be discussed in the media is the central sales requirement for high quality titles, for titles which claim to be publicly recognized. In modern literary life, literary studies and literary criticism only seemingly take the rank of observers. In fact, they function at the center of the exchange: they distribute public attention and use their attention to separate upscale literature from books that are primarily sold commercially.

Model of literary communication with lines of exchange between the state, school lessons it offers, literary debate, publishers, authors and reading public. The literary criticism occupies a central position here as it is both covered by the state via the educational systems and an authority reaching out into the media.

What distinguishes the 20th century from the 19th is the role of the global public, which articulates itself to national publics. In the 20th century, an increasing globalization of the novel develops , which reflects the globalization of conflicts ( world wars ). Whereas in the 19th century it was the states of Eastern Europe that began to describe themselves as cultural nations with the adoption of the western concept of literature and presented the first novels in their languages, global expansion continued in the 20th century. Around 1900, the spectrum of current novel production was expanded to include South American and Indian authors, followed by Arabic-speaking writers and, from the second half of the 20th century, black African novelists. Postcolonialism studies are currently focusing on the decentralization of the concept of literature, which is geographically distinctive here. The list of Nobel Prize winners for literature documents how the standards of Western literary life spread in the 20th century: Rabindranath Tagore was the first Indian to receive the award in 1913. The first Japanese to receive the award was Yasunari Kawabata in 1968, the first South American Gabriel García Márquez 1982; the first Nigerian Wole Soyinka in 1986, the first author in Arabic, Naguib Mahfouz in 1988. The awarding of the prizes is usually associated with a political element: the West supports persecuted authors and authors who make themselves the “conscience of their nation” in their homeland. Orhan Pamuk received the award in 2006 not least because, as an author, he critically addressed the way Turkey dealt with the Armenian genocide . Mahfouz criticized Rushdie's Satanic Verses (1988) as an “insult to Islam”, but defended its author against Khomeini's death sentence and almost paid for his commitment with his life.

The worldwide spread of literary life as part of the international pluralistic exchange came into confrontation in the 20th century. This has a lot to do with the fact that the novel and literature in the West conquered the educational systems in the process of secularization : As part of national struggles with texts, in which Bible study is replaced by reading the greatest works of art created by one's own nation. The novel - previously only used in fiction, a production primarily by private authors - was offered to state education with maximum freedom of treatment: one can interpret novels as desired, analyze them critically, and canonize them. Forms of dealing with texts traditionally at home in theology thus encompassed a genre of text that had hitherto been more secular and deprived of morality. In the bookstores, in university seminars, in school lessons in the West, the novel has effectively occupied a place since secularization, which until then religious texts claimed. The conflict that flared up with the publication of Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses (1988) immediately intensified as a conflict of global dimensions between the secular West and post-secular Islam. From a Western perspective, it was about granting Rushdie the freedom of the artist, who in the novel, a medium of subjective artistic expression, has to offer a subjective worldview.

At the same time, the Islamic Republic found itself in an awkward position: if it defends religion as a guarantor of inviolable truth, it cannot at the same time grant art the right to relativize all other discourses at will. This works in the West, where literary critics can defuse any provocation in the field of art by declaring it to be a mere question of artistic taste if necessary. In the end, art is only free because it can be scandalized and de-scandalized at will: as meaningful as it is defended as free expression and as meaningless as it is always interpreted as a purely subjective utterance. The nation-states of the West protect individual freedoms at the expense of a system that has protected religion for centuries. In the same confrontation, Iran was able to show that Western societies were setting up their own new non-free areas in relation to free artistic expression. With Holocaust denials , which should be a sign of the freedom that Iran grants scientists, the double-edged journalistic counter-attack succeeded.

Behind the expansion of a form of society that defends its own public sphere of private and subjective expression of opinion with the novel is a book and information market with media connection that had no counterpart before the 19th century.

The novel on the modern book market
Quantities of titles published in the UK in 2001.
UK book supply breakdown by market value produced in £ m for 2008

A good 20 to 60 novels appeared in English (the German numbers did not differ here) in the early 18th century, with a total of 2,000 annual titles of all types of text. In 2001, 119,001 titles came onto the book market in Great Britain. The novel had an 11% share in this offer. The percentage has remained stable for decades, even if total title output has doubled since 1986. 5,992 novels appeared in Great Britain in 1986, compared with 13,076 in 2001. More interesting than the title numbers is the quantitative volume, the number of books that leave the printing press here. If we reckon that publishers in the early 18th century were working with well-selling goods with editions of around 1,000 copies and would rather reprint several times than print too many, then 20,000–60,000 novels would have to be published 300 years ago in English (such as an the German-speaking) customers. The circulation figures in fiction have increased since the 18th century. UK publishers had an estimated 236.8 million books to press in 2008, according to Nielsen BookScan statistics from 2009. Novels for adults made up 32 percent of this, with an estimated 75.3 million books. The youth and school book area, which includes bestsellers such as Harry Potter , was added with 63.4 million copies, a further 27 percent. The total value of UK book production in 2008 was around £ 1.773 billion. Production of adult novels accounted for £ 454 million.

The worldwide numbers differ with the size of the national markets, the ratios are likely to be similar in Western Europe.

The book marketing that developed with this production optimized communication with all instances of modern literary life. It is part of the business that the publishers let the “high” literary production come to the literary critics' tables along with the first offers for discussion. The discussions do not arise, they are prepared, are part of the business of pluralistic societies.

From this perspective, the novel production of the 20th century can be roughly divided into three areas that deal differently with the fields of discussion.

  • With the 20th century, a special direct communication between novels and literary studies developed in the form of titles that interfered in the literary theoretical discussion.
  • Second, literary criticism is reached by all titles that spark public discussion, and it is their task to critically question the positioning of titles in public.
  • Fiction, which got by without public debates in the 18th century, developed through the 19th century into a mass market that continues to find its readers directly without much public discussion.

Novels writing literary theory

Decisive developments in the novel's techniques can be explained by the inspiring examination of competing, modern media: film, newspaper and comics developed an influence on the novel. Editing and montage became established techniques in modern narrative forms.

The experimental novels of the 20th century took steps at the same time with literary theory , which in the 20th century encompassed literary studies as an interdisciplinary discussion of methods . There was little dispute about the methodology in the literary criticism of the 19th century: literature was written by authors under the influence of their epochs. The social conditions were reflected in the works. The argument was not about literary theory but about which title was assigned which meaning in the national canon.

The literary theory of the 20th century made a movement at this point that went hand in hand with the linguistic turn in philosophical epistemology : the meaning of a text, according to the theoretical starting point, lies in its linguistically comprehensible structure. Great works of art remain under discussion because they have more complex, if not inexhaustibly complex structures. The reader decodes and contextualizes texts. From this perspective, information about the author, epoch and work are not really explanations of the text, but additional texts produced by literary studies, and literary studies of the 19th century produced these additional texts without even bothering with the literary works of art using text analysis . The theoretical discussion, which progressed under the keywords formalism (1900–1920), New Criticism (1920–1965), structuralism (1950–1980) and poststructuralism (from 1980), searched for the aspects of art, analyzed structural complexity and asked about the Associations, thanks to which linguistic meaning arose in the mind of the reader. It disempowered the author. For him, the text was as much text as it was for the reader, and she made herself the authority through whom the text gained meaning.

Novelists reacted to this interaction offer with texts that offered exactly that: linguistic compositions that were as fascinating for the author as they were for the reader. James Joyce's Ulysses (first censored in Paris in 1922) no longer has a higher-level narrator. The narration becomes a stream of consciousness of thoughts and feelings. It is idle to ask what the author is trying to say when the text he is producing becomes a web of textual material throughout literary history. The author creates a space of association here rather than making statements about politics and society.

Alfred Döblin opened his novels Berlin Alexanderplatz (1929) and Babylonian Migration (1934) to comparable non-literary material, sentences from advertising and newspapers. Reality suddenly permeated the fictional novel.

Authors of the 1960s radicalized concepts of narrative by fragmenting them and abandoning time and narrative sequentiality as forms of order.

The postmodern tied playfully these developments with novels, the bridges in the popular literature suggested. This is exactly what she was always accused of: not being original, merely reassembling existing material, and therefore being inferior. Post-structuralists like Roland Barthes asked whether creativity could be anything other than a constant recombination of existing linguistic material. At the same time, authors like Thomas Pynchon reached into the textual worlds from which trivial literature and popular conspiracy theories were made, and made new art out of them. The relationship between the novel and literary theory was exciting because it is difficult to explain what fictionality is; a sentence from a newspaper is just that, why does it become fiction when it appears in the novel? What actually constitutes a narrative if the narrator or the chronology can be deleted? Novelists drew questions from the theoretical debate; on the other hand, they inspired literary theory with works that raised questions about what a text actually is; they also intervened in the theoretical discussion with their own texts. Raymond Federman formulated the theory behind it in a merger of fictional literature and literary criticism under the word "Critifiction".

The discussion that took place in the second half of the 20th century between authors of experimental novels and literary theorists has repeatedly been criticized as a mere thought game. The experiments would at most satisfy intellectuals. However, the art of film of the last few decades then became relatively massively popular. Apocalypse Now (1979) suddenly turns a nineteenth-century novel into a template for current criticism of the times, reflecting the film's view of reality as cinematically produced, rather than as a view that emanates from the world. Pulp Fiction (1994) stages itself as a cinematic piecework made of penny books, Memento (2000) stages a narrative that is torn up into individual scenes, reassembled backwards into a crime thriller, Matrix (1999-2003) turns out to be a conglomeration and piecework of religious, literary and figurative textuality. The viewers consumed the virtual worlds as functioning in confirmation of the theory that has so far been formed primarily on the novel.

Novels that spark society-wide debates

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn , Vladivostok, 1995
Paul Auster , Salman Rushdie and Shimon Peres , New York City, 2008
Doris Lessing , Cologne, 2006
Kenzaburō Ōe , Cologne, 2008

In the end, novels unfold in private reading - the individual experience at the same moment is no longer a private matter. As a result, in the novels of the 20th and 21st centuries, one can span the widest range from individual experience to public politics and beyond it to primarily fictional world designs.

Personal fears, daydreams, hallucinatory perceptions spread in experiments in the novel of the 20th and 21st centuries. What would be privately expressed the disclosure of a psychotic disorder, for example Gregor Samsa's report, who wakes up as a huge vermin in Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis , immediately takes on heterogeneous meaning in literary fiction, which in public debate as a metaphor , as an image for modern life experience interpreted by instability and loss of personal consistency. The word Kafkaesk was carried over from the novel to the experience that has since enjoyed collective status.

The generations of the 20th century found their own novels. Germany's World War I veterans identified with the hero of Erich Maria Remarques In the West Nothing New (1928) (and a decade later with the proto-existentialist fascist counter-draft Thor Gootes ). French existentialism manifested itself in novels. Jean-Paul Sartre's Der Ekel (1938) and Albert Camus ' Der Fremde (1942) achieved world fame . The Cold War overshadowed George Orwell's 1984 (1949). The subculture of the 1960s was rediscovered in Hermann Hesse's Der Steppenwolf (1927). Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest , Thomas Pynchon's Gravity’s Rainbow and Chuck Palahniuk's Fight Club (1996) similarly gained cult status with subsequent generations (the latter not without the help of the movie that recorded the material).

The offers of identification specifically aimed at the male gender are contrasted with epoch-making designs by female authors from the 20th century: Virginia Woolf , Simone de Beauvoir , Doris Lessing , Elfriede Jelinek made feminist gender politics . The field is definitely more complex than that of a simple confrontation. Appropriations of sexist male models of femininity have expanded the range of options in recent years. Provocatively strong heroines from trivial literature achieved cult status among female readers.

The most important social processes of the 20th century were reflected by and in novels, for example the sexual revolution . DH Lawrence and Lady Chatterley's Lover , published in Italy in 1928, only released in Great Britain in 1960, risked censorship . Henry Miller created an equivalent scandal with the Tropic of Cancer (1934) in the USA. From here through the story of O by Anne Desclos (1954) and Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita (1955) to Michel Houellebecq's Elementary Particles (1998) runs a story of the border crossings with which the novel repositions the public in relation to sexuality.

Crime and criminality dominate the novel of the 20th and 21st centuries in a separate genre of the detective novel . Crime unfolds as a topic to the extent that the reality of modern, highly organized societies is questioned from a private perspective. The offender stands before the court as an individual, the victims are primarily concerned privately. The instance of the detective or commissioner forms the interface between public institutionalization (and disempowerment, the commissioner investigates, at best as a private person) and a private counter-view of reality. Patricia Highsmith's thriller made crime a new place of psychological observation. Paul Auster's New York Trilogy (1985–1986) opened up the somewhat trivial field of experimental postmodernism.

The main political controversies involved novelists of the 20th and 21st centuries. Günter Grass Die Blechtrommel (1959) and Joseph Hellers Catch-22 (1961) dedicated themselves to the Second World War . The Cold War defined modern spy novels . The political awakening of Latin America manifested itself with a squad of Latin American authors of the avant-garde from Julio Cortázar , Mario Vargas Llosa to Gabriel García Márquez . Magical realism became a hallmark of Latin American writers' engagement with reality. The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 found widespread literary expression. Art Spiegelman's In the Shadow of No Towers (2004) is one of the most interesting borderlines here with the questions that the author of the graphic novel opposes the collective reality of the images.

Beyond reality and its artistic transformation, the alternative worlds of fantasy and science fiction begin . Fantasy also blurs the boundaries between novel, role play and esoteric myth-making. In this production center established itself as a literary classic JRR Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings of Germanic prehistory with borrowings from (1954-55), a novel in which originally primarily young readers in a mythical conflict between archaic cultures Beowulf and Scandinavian Edda with Could identify world designs of Arthurian epic .

In contrast to fantasy, science fiction developed spaces that are specifically linked historically and spatially with the world of their readers without being accessible. Jules Verne created the classics of 19th century production that played with technology and science. Aldous Huxley's Brave New World (1932) and George Orwell's 1984 turned perspectives on what is technically feasible into warning political scenarios. Stanisław Lem , Isaac Asimov and Arthur C. Clarke became the classic authors of a more experimental science fiction that focused on the interaction between humans and machines. (Post) apocalyptic fantasies came into the genre with the East-West confrontation and the atomic threat. Virtual realities have become popular in recent years - the internet and the collective handling of media-conveyed experience created new topics here. William Gibson's Neuromancer (1984) is one of the classics in this field today.

Trivial literature

Lower literature, trivial from today's perspective, had existed since early printing: books that one read over and over and that one bought because they were generally popular. Some titles were known all over Europe. The segment comprised novels with no clear separation between fiction and history. This market segment died out at the end of the 18th century when the education systems were expanded with the strengthening of the nation states. Reading was made a general duty. The aim was to introduce the people to valuable fictions. This led to a division into titles suitable for teaching and a mass market that found its customers with contempt for criticism. For this reason, the trivial literature that developed during this upheaval in the 19th century is not a continuation of the old area (in which romanticism nostalgically declared it popular books ), but far more a continuation of the field of elegant fictionality that has existed since the 17th century . It had developed in the 18th century and was for sale until the 1780s largely without critical attention. The genres of the new trivial literature continued earlier types of the novel that had already dominated the market around 1700: romance novels , historical escapist novels, adventure novels (see also fiction ).

Magazine novels in an Oldenburg newspaper shop, 2009
Second-hand cheap novels in a bookshop in Antwerp, 2010

Trivial literature includes historical names such as Karl May , Hedwig Courths-Mahler , Raymond Chandler , Margaret Mitchell , Barbara Cartland , Ian Fleming , Johannes Mario Simmel . In longer periods of time the perception of belonging to trivial literature changes. Paul Heyse won the 1910 Nobel Prize for Literature, today he is seen near trivial literature. The area is inherently heterogeneous and today offers internationally acclaimed bestselling authors such as Rosamunde Pilcher , Ken Follett , Stephen King , Patricia Cornwell , Dan Brown and Joanne K. Rowling in the upscale segment . The collective, quasi-industrial text production ensures the continuity of popular series for decades.

Trivial literature in the upscale field thrives on contact with current debates. Political confrontations, conspiracies and the abyss of crime are common subjects. Popular writers admit that they tap into their subjects primarily as a guarantee of tension. But they also articulate the consensus that exists against injustice. Artistic experiments are unusual in this market segment.

Renowned authors of trivial literature have regular customers. Fans follow every new title, the author meets their expectations. In the lower market segments, the connection to the well-known author is replaced by the stability of pseudonyms and series titles such as Perry Rhodan , Der Bergdoktor , Captain Future or Jerry Cotton . Structured genres (such as doctor , homeland , mountain , adventure , espionage , romance , detective novel ) create clarity about the expected reading throughout the field . The greatest sales are made in romance novels.

The reviews of literary criticism in particular maintain the distinction between trivial literature and upscale literature and ensure the appropriate market differentiation. High literature thus arises in interaction with literary criticism. Trivial literature and its audience, on the other hand, are mainly despised by literary criticism and literary studies. The relationship is characterized by mutual disregard. The strict distinction between demanding and trivial literature is typical for continental European nations and less pronounced in English-speaking countries. Even today, German and French critics forbid one another unequivocal appreciation of the trivial.

Genera and genres of the novel

See also


Historical sources on the novel (until 1900)

  • 1651 Paul Scarron: The Comical Romance , Chapter XXI. "Which perhaps will not be found very entertaining" (London, 1700). Call on French authors to write short exemplary stories instead of great novels, as the Spaniards propagate them as "novels". Marteau
  • 1670 Pierre Daniel Huet: Traitté de l'origine des romans , preface to Marie-Madeleine de La Fayette : Zayde, histoire espagnole (Paris, 1670). World history of the novel and of the fictional in general. pdf-edition Gallica France
  • 1683 Du Sieur: Sentimens sur l'histoire , from: Sentimens sur les lettres et sur l'histoire, avec des scruples sur le stile (Paris: C. Blageart, 1680). Appreciates the novels of La Fayette as novels in the new style of short exemplary stories. Marteau
  • 1702 Abbe Bellegarde: Lettre à une Dame de la Cour, qui lui avoit demandé quelques Reflexions sur l'Histoire , from: Lettres curieuses de littérature et de morale (La Haye: Adrian Moetjens, 1702). Paraphrase of the text by Du Sieur, now with a more concise discussion of the advantages of the exemplary stories over the long novels. Marteau
  • 1705 (Anonymous) The preface to the Secret History of Queen Zarah and the Zarazians (Albigion, 1705; French 1708, German 1712) offers Bellegarde's article plagiarized. Marteau
  • 1713 German Acta Eruditorum , review of the French translation of Delarivier Manley's New Atalantis 1709 (Leipzig: JL Gleditsch, 1713). Discussion of a political scandalous novel in a literary magazine. Marteau
  • 1715 Jane Barker: Preface to Exilius of the Banish'd Roman. A New Romance (London: E. Curll, 1715). Appeal to write “Romances” according to the Telemachus model . Marteau
  • 1718 Johann Friedrich Riederer : Satyra from the love novels , from: The adventurous world in a Pickelheerings cap , 2 (Nuremberg, 1718). Satire on Marteau's novel reading, which is spreading in all strata of the population
  • 1742 Henry Fielding: Preface to Joseph Andrews (London, 1742). Poetology of the comic epic in prose .
  • 1774 Christian Friedrich von Blanckenburg , attempt on the novel (Leipzig / Liegnitz: DS Wittwe, 1774).
  • 1819 Carl Nicolai: Attempting a theory of the novel (Quedlinburg, 1819).
  • 1876 Erwin Rohde: The Greek novel and its precursors (1876).
  • 1883 Friedrich Spielhagen : Contributions to the theory and technology of the novel (Leipzig: Staackmann , 1883). Reprint 1967: Göttingen (Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht).

Current research

Web links

Wiktionary: Roman  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations


  1. In the genre definition at the beginning of his Traitté de l'origine des romans , first published by Marie de LaFayette as Zayde (Paris 1670 ), Pierre Daniel Huet deals broadly with all controversial points of discussion, in order to then name the central love story as a content criterion without controversy . Huet overlooks the satirical novel, possibly because he sees it as a satire on the novel rather than a novel.
  2. See Georg Lukács: The theory of the novel. A historical-philosophical attempt on the forms of the great epic (written 1914–1916). Cassirer, Berlin 1920.
  3. Georg Lukács: The theory of the novel. A historical-philosophical attempt on the forms of the great epic . Cassirer, Berlin 1920, p. 23 f.
  4. Cf. Jochen Vogt: Aspects of narrative prose . Fink, Munich 2006, ISBN 978-3-8252-2761-6 , p. 225.
  5. On the late antique Greek novel and its influence see Georges Molinié: Du roman grec au roman baroque. Un art majeur du genre narratif in France sous Louis XIII. Presses universitaires du Mirail, Toulouse 1995, ISBN 2-85816-248-4 .
  6. See Günter Berger: Legitimation and Model. The "Aithiopika" as a prototype of the French heroic-gallant novel. Reinhold Merkelbach on his 65th birthday. In: Antike und Abendland 30 (1984), pp. 177-185, here: p. 179; Niklas Holzberg, The Ancient Roman: An Introduction . Artemis & Winkler, Düsseldorf, Zurich 2001, ISBN 978-3-538-07115-5 , p. 120; Michael Oeftering, Heliodorus and its significance for literature. Felber, Berlin 1901.
  7. For an overview of the ancient novel, see Niklas Holzberg: The ancient novel: an introduction. 3rd ed. Wiss. Buchges., Darmstadt 2006, ISBN 978-3-534-18769-0 ; John Robert Morgan, Richard Stoneman: Greek fiction. The Greek novel in context . Routledge, London a. a. 1994, ISBN 0-415-08506-3 ; Gareth L. Schmeling (Ed.): The Novel in the Ancient World. Brill, Leiden, Boston 1996, ISBN 978-90-04-21763-8 ; Tim Whitmarsh (Ed.): The Cambridge companion to the Greek and Roman novel. University Press, Cambridge 2008, ISBN 978-0-521-68488-0 .
  8. ^ Bernhard D. Haage: Medicine and Poetry (Middle Ages). In: Werner E. Gerabek , Bernhard D. Haage, Gundolf Keil , Wolfgang Wegner (eds.): Enzyklopädie Medizingeschichte. De Gruyter, Berlin / New York 2005, ISBN 3-11-015714-4 , pp. 929-932; here: p. 929.
  9. As in jokes like "A German, an American and a Pole travel together ..."
  10. On the handling of the "author" and the "narrator" in the Canterbury Tales, see George Kane: The Autobiographical Fallacy in Chaucer and Langland Studies . In: Chambers Memorial Lecture , London: HK Lewis, 1965; David Lawton: Chaucer's Narrators , Woodbridge, Suffolk and Dover, New Hampshire, 1985.
  11. Cf. on this the two anonymous tracts Raisonement on the history and its use. In addition to the History of Augusti from the Italian (1707), Herzog August Bibliothek , call number 255. (1); Reasoning about the novels (1708), State Library Munich , signature L. eleg. M. 435; Beibd. 2.
  12. On the Pyrrhonism debate see in detail Markus Völkel: Pyrrhonismus historicus and Fides historica . Lang, Frankfurt 1987, ISBN 978-3-8204-8819-7 .
  13. On the development of the reading public in the early modern period, see Guglielmo Cavallo , Roger Chartier: A History of Reading in the West. Translated by Lydia G. Cochrane. University of Massachusetts Press, Amherst et al. a. 2003, ISBN 1-55849-411-1 ; Jennifer Andersen, Elizabeth Sauer: Books and Readers in Early Modern England: Material Studies. University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia 2001, ISBN 0-8122-3633-5 .
  14. For an overview of the European market see Hilkert Weddige: The "Historien vom Amadis aus Franckreich": Documentary basis for the creation and reception . Steiner, Wiesbaden 1975, ISBN 3-515-01959-6 .
  15. Elena Espositio: The Fiction of Probable Reality. Frankfurt 2007, p. 7; 13 ff.
  16. On the audience of the popular books see Margaret Spufford : Small Books and Pleasant Histories: Popular Fiction and its Readership in Seventeenth Century England . Univ. of Georgia Pr., Athens (Ga.) 1982, ISBN 0-8203-0595-2 ; on the contemporary perspective Johann Friedrich Riederer : Satyra from the love novels , in: The adventurous world in a Pickelheerings-cap , Volume 2, [Nuremberg,] 1718 ( online ).
  17. See Herbert Singer: The gallant novel . Metzler, Stuttgart 1961; Thomas Borgstedt, Andreas Solbach: The gallant discourse: communication ideal and epoch threshold . Thelem, Dresden 2001, ISBN 3-933592-38-0 ; Olaf Simons: On the corpus of 'gallant' novels between Bohse and Schnabel, Talander and Gisander . In: Günter Dammann (Ed.): The work of Johann Gottfried Schnabel and the novels and discourses of the early 18th century . Niemeyer, Tübingen 2004, ISBN 978-3-484-81025-9 ; Florian Gelzer: Conversation, gallantry and adventure. Romanesque narration between Thomasius and Wieland . Niemeyer, Tübingen 2007, ISBN 978-3-484-81025-9 .
  18. See also Günter Berger: The comical-satirical novel and its readers. Poetics, function and reception of a lower genre in 17th century France . Carl Winter Universitätsverlag, Heidelberg 1984, ISBN 3-533-03373-2 ; Ellen Turner Gutiérrez: The reception of the picaresque in the French, English, and German traditions . P. Lang, New York et al. 1995, ISBN 0-8204-2161-8 ; Frank Palmeri: Satire, History, Novel: Narrative Forms, 1665-1815 . University of Delaware Press, Newark 2003, ISBN 0-87413-829-9 .
  19. A French model could not be proven: The French rogue. Being a pleasant history of his life and fortune, adorned with variety of other adventures of no less rarity . Samuel Lowndes, London 1672.
  20. Sometimes attributed to Jean Abbé Olivier. L'Infortuné Napolitain, ou les avantures du Seigneur Rozelli (1708); German: The unfortunate Neapolitan, or the wonderful life of Seigneur Roselli (Hamburg, T. v. Wierings Erben, Frankfurt / Leipzig: Z. Hertel, 1710).
  21. On the triumphant advance of novelists or the decidedly short novel, see: René Godenne: L'association 'nouvelle - petit roman' entre 1650 et 1750 . CAIEF, n ° 18, 1966, pp. 67-78; Roger Guichemerre: La crise du roman et l'épanouissement de la nouvelle (1660–1690) . Cahiers de l'UER Froissart, n ° 3, 1978, pp. 101-106; Ellen J. Hunter-Chapco: Theory and practice of the “petit roman” in France (1656-1683). Segrais, Du Plaisir, Madame de Lafayette . University of Regina, Regina (Saskatchewan) 1978; Vincent Engel: La Nouvelle de langue française aux frontières des autres genres, du Moyen-Age à nos jours . Vol. 1, Ottignies 1997, vol. 2, Louvain 2001, ISBN 2-87209-615-9 ; Olaf Simons: Marteau's Europe or The Novel Before It Became Literature . Rodopi, Amsterdam 2001, ISBN 90-420-1226-9 , pp. 466-482, pp. 599-606; Camille Esmein: Poétiques du roman. Scudéry, Huet, Du Plaisir et autres textes théoriques et critiques du XVIIe siècle sur le genre romanesque. Champion, Paris 2004, ISBN 2-7453-1025-9 .
  22. See Robert Ignatius Letellier: The English novel, 1660-1700; an annotated bibliography . Greenwood Publishing Group, Westport 1997, ISBN 0-313-30368-1 .
  23. See [Du Sieur:] Sentimens sur l'histoire , from: Sentimens sur les lettres et sur l'histoire, avec des scruples sur le stile , Paris: C. Blageart, 1680 ( online ) on the achievements of the novellist novel.
  24. On dealing with heroism in the manner of a novel, see also Camille Esmein: Construction et demolition du 'héros de roman' au XVIIe siècle . In: Françoise Lavocat, Claude Murcia, Régis Salado (eds.): La fabrique du personnage . Honoré Champion éditeur, Paris 2007, ISBN 978-2-7453-1536-6 .
  25. See Chapter 21 by Paul Scarron, Roman comique , " That Probably Nobody Will Find Entertaining."
  26. See for example Niels Werber: Love as a novel. For the coevolution of intimate and literary communication . Fink, Munich 2003, ISBN 978-3-7705-3712-9 , with a more detailed attempt at a genre history with this line.
  27. One example is Pierre Bayle's defense of the novels against Gottlieb Stolle , who later summarized the conversation. See also Martin Mulsow : Pierre Bayle's relations to Germany. With an appendix: an unpublished conversation by Bayle , Aufklerung 16 (2004), 233–242; as well as Stolle's travel notes online .
  28. See, for example, his Dom Carlos, nouvelle histoire , Amsterdam 1672. Chantal Carasco has the last investigation of the border crossings: Saint-Réal, romancier de l'histoire: une cohérence esthéthique et morale (dissertation), Nantes 2005.
  29. ^ Jean Lombard: Courtilz de Sandras et la crise du roman à la fin du Grand Siècle . PUF, Paris 1980, ISBN 2-13-036574-4 .
  30. Scheme based on Olaf Simons, Marteaus Europa . Rodopi, Amsterdam 2001, ISBN 90-420-1226-9 , p. 194.
  31. Delarivier Manley reports in her autobiographical Adventures of Rivella , London: E. Curl, 1714, p. 114 ( online ) about how she appeared in the interrogations with references to her "novel".
  32. A very early work on the influence of dubious French reports on Defoe is: Wilhelm Füger , The emergence of the historical novel from the fictional biography in France and England, with special reference to Courtilz de Sandras and Daniel Defoe (Munich, 1963).
  33. Ian Watt propagated this thesis in The Rise of the Novel . Chatto & Windus, London 1957.
  34. ↑ For more details, Wyatt James Dowling: Science, "Robinson Crusoe", and judgment: A commentary on Book III of Rousseau's "Emile" . Dissertation, Boston College, 2007 ( online ( memento of the original from May 2, 2016 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link has been inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this note. ). @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  35. ^ Ian Watts The Rise of the Novel: Studies in Defoe, Richardson and Fielding . Chatto & Windus, London 1957, inspired several follow-up publications, notably: John J. Richetti, Popular Fiction before Richardson. Narrative Patterns 1700–1739 . Clarendon Press, Oxford 1969, ISBN 0-19-811681-0 ; Lennard J. Davis, Factual Fictions: The Origins of the English Novel . Columbia University Press, New York 1983, ISBN 0-231-05420-3 ; J. Paul Hunter, Before Novels: The Cultural Contexts of Eighteenth-Century English Fiction . Norton, New York 1990, ISBN 0-393-02801-1 ; Margaret Anne Doody, The True Story of the Novel . Rutgers University Press, New Brunswick, NJ 1996, and the individual volumes presented by Eighteenth Century Fiction magazine under the theme Reconsidering The Rise of the Novel (the first of these volumes was published January-April 2000, the second is due in 2009). Research into the novels of Aphra Behn , Delarivier Manley and Eliza Haywood has been instrumental since the 1970s in drawing attention to the women authors who made the genre rise in English before Defoe. Important works and text editions come from Patricia Köster, Ros Ballaster, Janet Todd and Patrick Spedding. A summarizing study is Josephine Donovan, Women and the Rise of the Novel, 1405–1726 , revised edition. St. Martin's Press, New York 2000, ISBN 0-312-21827-3 .
  36. The numerical values ​​are collected using the English Short Title Catalog and the classification fiction . The classification is arbitrary, but the tendency is unaffected. There must have been a somewhat larger number of stories with a “literary” claim. Data on Olaf Simons, Marteaus Europa . Rodopi, Amsterdam 2001, ISBN 90-420-1226-9 .
  37. Inger Leeman's Het woord is aan de onderkant provides statistics on the Dutch and French markets : radicale ideeën in Nederlandse pornographic romans 1670–1700 . Vantilt, Nijmegen 2002, ISBN 90-75697-89-9 , pp. 359-364. For the German and English markets of the early 18th century, see The Novel in Europe 1670–1730 .
  38. See Christiane Berkvens-Stevelinck, H. Bots, PG Hoftijzer (eds.): Le Magasin de L'univers: The Dutch Republic as the Center of the European Book Trade: Papers Presented at the International Colloquium, Held at Wassenaar, 5 . – 7. July 1990 . Brill, Leiden / Boston 1992, ISBN 90-04-09493-8 .
  39. See George Ernst Reinwalds Academien- und Studenten-Spiegel . JA Rüdiger, Berlin 1720, pp. 424–427, and the novels published by “authors” such as Celander , Sarcander , and Adamantes at the beginning of the 18th century.
  40. See the Entertainments of Gallantry: or Remedies for Love. Familiarly discours'd, by a society of persons of quality . J. Morphew, London 1712, pp. 74-77.
  41. Explicit negations of art can be found especially in the prefaces of student and private London novels, the anonymous authors agree that they only write to their own satisfaction, nonchalance is a trademark of the gallant conduite here.
  42. See Hugh Barr Nisbet, Claude Rawson (eds.): The Cambridge history of literary criticism , vol. IV (Cambridge: UP, 1997) and Ernst Weber, texts on romantic theory: (1626–1781) , 2 volumes (Munich: Fink, 1974/1981) as well as the individual volumes by Dennis Poupard (et al.), Literature Criticism from 1400 to 1800: Critical Discussion of the Works of Fifteenth-, Sixteenth-, Seventeenth-, and Eighteenth-Century Novelists, Poets, Playwrights, Philosophers, and Other Creative Writers (Detroit, Mich .: Gale Research Co, 1984 ff.).
  43. The current central point of reference in the discussion about the public of the Enlightenment is Jürgen Habermas, Structural Change of the Public. Investigations into a category of civil society (Neuwied, 1962). In recent years, however, considerable criticism has been leveled at the epoch-making classifications of developments and the comparison of European situations.
  44. See Benjamin Wedel's review of Hunold's negotiations with Gottfried Liebernickel , his first publisher and Wedel's supervisor at the time, in [Benjamin Wedel,] Secret Messages and Letters from Mr. Menante's Life and Writings (Cöln: Oelscher, 1731, Reprint: Zentralantiquariat der DDR, Leipzig 1977 ).
  45. On the sensitive rules of the game: Olaf Simons, Marteaus Europa, or The novel before it became literature (Amsterdam, 2001), pp. 200–207 and pp. 259–290.
  46. See on the tactical repertoire, which is in transition here: Vera Lee, Love and strategy in the eighteenth-century French novel (Schenkman Books, 1986) and Anton Kirchhofer, Strategy and Truth: On the use of knowledge about passions and gender in the novel English sensitivity (Munich: Fink, 1995). online edition .
  47. See on the rise of pornographic novels: Robert Darnton, The Forbidden Best-Sellers of Pre-Revolutionary France (New York: Norton, 1995), Lynn Hunt, The Invention of Pornography: Obscenity and the Origins of Modernity, 1500–1800 (New York : Zone, 1996), Inger Leemans, Het woord is aan de onderkant: radicale ideeën in Nederlandse pornografische romans 1670–1700 (Nijmegen: Vantilt, 2002) and Lisa Z. Sigel, Governing Pleasures: Pornography and Social Change in England, 1815– 1914 (January: Scholarly Book Services Inc, 2002).
  48. For the prehistory of the philosophical novel in the 17th century see the chapter The Spinozistic Novel in French , in Jonathan Irvine Israel , Radical Enlightenment: Philosophy and the Making of Modernity 1650–1750 (Oxford UP, 2002), pp. 591–599. Basic studies on the French philosophical novel of the late 18th century are: Roger Pearson, The fables of reason: a study of Voltaire's 'Contes philosophiques' (Oxford UP, 1993), Dena Goodman, Criticism in action: Enlightenment experiments in political writing (Cornell UP, 1989), Robert Francis O'Reilly: The Artistry of Montesquieu's Narrative Tales (University of Wisconsin., 1967), René Pomeau, Jean Ehrard: De Fénelon à Voltaire (Flammarion, 1998).
  49. ^ Thomas More, Utopia: or the happy republic; a philosophical romance (1743).
  50. See also the article literature on the following . The following is based on Olaf Simons, Marteaus Europa, or The Novel Before It Became Literature (Amsterdam / Atlanta: Rodopi, 2001), pp. 85–95, pp. 116–193. Current and with a special interest in the early history of development: Lee Morrissey, The Constitution of Literature. Literacy, Democracy, and Early English Literary Criticism (Stanford UP, 2008). The conceptual historical problem covered: Rainer Rosenberg, “A confused story. Preliminary considerations for a biography of the concept of literature ", Zeitschrift für Literaturwissenschaft und Linguistik , 77 (1990), pp. 36-65. Richard Terry takes a special look at the belles lettres in “The Eighteenth-Century Invention of English Literature: A Truism Revisited”, Journal for Eighteenth Century Studies , 19.1 (1996), pp. 47-62.
  51. See John Guillory: Cultural Capital. The Problem of Literary Canon Formation (University of Chicago Press, 1993) and Mihály Szegedy-Maszák: Literary Canons. National and International (Akadémiai Kiadó, 2001).
  52. See Peter Uwe Hohendahl, Building a National Literature: The Case of Germany, 1830-1870 trans. Renate Franciscono (Cornell University Press, 1989) and Jürgen Fohrmanns Das Projekt der deutschen Literaturgeschichte (Stuttgart, 1989).
  53. ^ See Richard Altick, Jonathan Rose: The English Common Reader: A Social History of the Mass Reading Public, 1800-1900 , 2nd ed. (Ohio State University Press, 1998) and William St. Clair, The Reading Nation in the Romantic Period (Cambridge: CUP, 2004).
  54. See Ian Hunter: Culture and Government. The Emergence of Literary Education (Basingstoke, 1988).
  55. Hippolyte Taine looked back in the introduction to his Histoire de la littérature anglaise (1863; English: 1864, online ) on the establishment of the new subject of debate, see in particular the first three paragraphs of the Introduction .
  56. See on English novel criticism : Edwin M. Eigner, George John Worth (Ed.), Victorian criticism of the novel (Cambridge: CUP Archive, 1985).
  57. See Mark Rose, Authors and Owners: The Invention of Copyright 3rd ed. (Harvard University Press, 1993) and Joseph Lowenstein, The Author's Due: Printing and the Prehistory of Copyright (University of Chicago Press, 2002) and, with a special focus on interests of censorship: Lyman Ray Patterson, Copyright in Historical Perspective (Vanderbilt University Press, 1968).
  58. See Susan Esmann: The reading by authors - a form of literature communication . In: Critical Edition 1/2007 PDF; 0.8 MB .
  59. See Gene H. Bell-Villada, Art for Art's Sake & Literary Life: How Politics and Markets Helped Shape the Ideology & Culture of Aestheticism, 1790–1990 (University of Nebraska Press, 1996).
  60. See on the novel of romanticism: Gerald Ernest Paul Gillespie, Manfred Engel, Bernard Dieterle, Romantic prose fiction (John Benjamin Publishing Company, 2008).
  61. ^ See Alan Richardson, Literature, Education, and Romanticism: Reading as Social Practice, 1780-1832 (Cambridge University Press, 1994).
  62. With general thoughts on the use of the grotesque: Geoffrey Galt Harpham, On the Grotesque: Strategies of Contradiction in Art and Literature , 2nd ed. (Davies Group, Publishers, 2006).
  63. See D. Bruce Hindmarsh, The Evangelical Conversion Narrative: Spiritual Autobiography in Early Modern England (Oxford University Press, 2005) and Owen C. Watkins, The Puritan Experience: Studies in Spiritual Autobiography (Routledge & K. Paul, 1972).
  64. The term was introduced by William James in 1890 on the influence of the new technology: Erwin R. Steinberg (ed.), The Stream-of-consciousness technique in the modern novel (Port Washington, NY: Kennikat Press, 1979) outside Europe: Elly Hagenaar / Eide, Elisabeth, "Stream of consciousness and free indirect discourse in modern Chinese literature", Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies , 56 (1993), p. 621 and PM Nayak (ed.), The voyage inward: stream of consciousness in Indian English fiction (New Delhi: Bahri Publications, 1999).
  65. See John Barth: The Literature of Exhaustion (1967) or, more recently, Alvin Kernan: The Death of Literature (Yale University Press, 1990).
  66. Jan-Pieter Barbian, Literary Policy in the “Third Reich”. Institutions, competencies, fields of activity (Stuttgart: dtv, 1995).
  67. ↑ On the book trade policy of the last years of the Third Reich, see the chapters in the commission report on Bertelsmann im Third Reich published by Saul Friedländer, Norbert Frei, Trutz Rendtorff and Reinhard Wittmann (Gütersloh: Bertelsmann, 2002). See for front book trade: Hans-Eugen and Edelgard Bühler, Der Frontbuchhandel 1939–1945. Organizations, competencies, publishers, books (Frankfurt am Main: Booksellers Association, 2002), as well as the network between authorities, the armed forces and publishers: Hans-Eugen Bühler and Olaf Simons, The Blendend Shops of Matthias Lackas . Corruption investigations in the publishing world of the Third Reich (Cologne: Pierre Marteau, 2004).
  68. In June 2008 the Harry Potter volumes were reportedly over 400 million copies in 67 languages. See , accessed October 17, 2008.
  69. See Günther Petersen, Feuilleton and public opinion: On the theory of a literary genre in the context of its resonance field (Verlag für Deutsche Wirtschaftsbiographien H. Flieger, 1992) as well as the exemplary detailed study by Michaela Enderle-Ristori, Market and intellectual force field: literary criticism in the Feuilleton of " Pariser Tageblatt ”and“ Pariser Tageszeitung ”1933–1940 (Tübingen: M. Niemeyer, 1997).
  70. See Ian Hunter, Culture and Government. The Emergence of Literary Education (Basingstoke, 1988) and Donovan R. Walling, Under Construction: The Role of the Arts and Humanities in Postmodern Schooling (Bloomington, Indiana: Phi Delta Kappa Educational Foundation, 1997).
  71. See James F. English, The Economy of Prestige (2005).
  72. Bill Ashcroft, Gareth Griffiths, Helen Tiffin (eds.), The empire writes back: theory and practice in post-colonial literatures , 2nd edition (Routledge, 2002).
  73. Compare: Kjell Espmark, The Nobel Prize in literature: a study of the criteria behind the choices (GK Hall, 1991), Julia Lovell, The politics of cultural capital: China's quest for a Nobel Prize in literature (University of Hawaii Press, 2006) and Richard Wires, The Politics of the Nobel Prize in Literature: How the Laureates Were Selected, 1901–2007 (Edwin Mellen Press, 2009).
  74. See Malise Ruthven : A satanic affair: Salman Rushdie and the rage of Islam (Chatto & Windus, 1990), Girja Kumar, The book on trial: fundamentalism and censorship in India (Har-Anand Publications, 1997) and Madelena Gonzalez, Fiction After the Fatwa: Salman Rushdie and the Charm of Catastrophe (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2005).
  75. Theo Sommer : Man's courage before Mullah Thrones , Die Zeit , February 24, 1989.
  76. Data published first in The Bookseller , made available on Book Marketing Ltd.'s website . ( Memento of the original of July 14, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  77. See the press release of February 9, 2009 ( Memento of March 26, 2009 in the Internet Archive ) (PDF; 64 kB).
  78. See titles such as David Cole, The Complete Guide to Book Marketing 2nd edition (Allworth Communications, Inc., 2004) and Alison Baverstock, How to Market Books: The Essential Guide to Maximizing Profit and Exploiting All Channels to Market , 4th edition (Kogan Page Publishers, 2008).
  79. See Brian McHale, Postmodernist Fiction (Routledge, 1987), John Docker, Postmodernism and popular culture: a cultural history (Cambridge University Press, 1994).
  80. Leslie Fiedler first addressed this in Cross the border, close the gap! , Playboy (December 1969).
  81. See Roland Barthes: The death of the author . in: Fotis Jannidis (ed.), texts on the theory of authorship (Stuttgart: Reclam, 2000).
  82. ^ Raymond Federman, Critifiction: Postmodern Essays , SUNY Press, 1993, ISBN 0-7914-1679-8 .
  83. See Susan Hopkins, Girl Heroes: The New Force In Popular Culture (Annandale NSW :, 2002).
  84. See Charles Irving Glicksberg, The Sexual Revolution in Modern American Literature (Nijhoff, 1971) and his The Sexual Revolution in Modern English Literature (Martinus Nijhoff, 1973). For current trends, see also Elizabeth Benedict, The Joy of Writing Sex: A Guide for Fiction Writers (Macmillan, 2002) and, with a separate look at the trivial market, Carol Thurston, The Romance Revolution: Erotic Novels for Women and the Quest for a New Sexual Identity (University of Illinois Press, 1987).