Cultural Memory and National Representation: The Franco-Prussian War in French and German Literature, 1871-1900 Public Deposited

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  • March 20, 2019
  • Carroll, Christina B.
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of History
  • This thesis examines the memory of the Franco-Prussian War in nineteenth-century French and German literature from a transnational and comparative perspective. It focuses on how four writers – Alphonse Daudet, Émile Zola, Theodor Fontane, and Detlev von Liliencron – used representations of the war to construct visions of their respective nations, which they defined against the enemy "other" and delineated in political, social, gendered, and racial terms. As it makes clear, although these authors directed their texts at a national audience, many of their works crossed the border – so even as the writers posited themselves against each other, they remained in dialogue. The thesis also incorporates reviewers’ responses to these writers’ representations, and considers the scope of their popular appeal. It contends that this ongoing, contested, and transnational process of negotiation between writers, reviewers, and readers helped shape the memory of the war and understandings of nation in nineteenth-century France and Germany.
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  • Kramer, Lloyd
  • Open access

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