The German Student Movement and the Literary Imagination

The German Student Movement and the Literary Imagination : Transnational Memories of Protest and Dissent

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Through a close reading of novels by Ulrike Kolb, Irmtraud Morgner, Emine Sevgi Ozdamar, Bernhard Schlink, Peter Schneider, and Uwe Timm, this monograph traces the cultural memory of the 1960s student movement in German fiction, revealing layers of remembering and forgetting that go beyond conventional boundaries of time and space. These novels engage this seemingly German memory contest by constructing a palimpsest of memories that reshape the readers' understanding of the 1960s with respect to the end of the Cold War and to the legacy of the Third Reich and the Holocaust. Topographically, these novels refute assertions that East Germans were isolated from the political upheaval that took place in the late 1960s and 1970s in the West and the East. Through their aesthetic appropriations and subversions, multicultural contributions challenge conventional understandings of German identity and at the same time lay down claims of belonging within a German society that is more openly diverse than ever before.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 180 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 11.18mm | 417g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 0857457543
  • 9780857457547
  • 2,003,940

Table of contents


Introduction: Trans/National Memories of 1968

Chapter 1. Remember? 1968 in German Fiction

Chapter 2. Forget it? 1968 in East Germany

Chapter 3. Transatlantic Encounters between Germany and the United States as Intercultural Exchange and Generational Conflict

Chapter 4. Transnational Memories: 1968 and Turkish-German Authors

Conclusion: Continued Taboos, Confirmed Canons


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Review quote

"This is a thoughtful study of the current discourse surrounding the important role of literature in shaping cultural memory - The case of the literary representation of the German '1968' is particularly interesting as it reveals a continuing preoccupation with the traumatic effects of Germany's past." * Ingo Cornils, University of Leeds
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About Susanne Rinner

Susanne Rinner is Assistant Professor of German Studies and regular program faculty in the Women's and Gender Studies Programat the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Most recently, she edited a special issue of International Poetry Review with a focus on poetry written in German by bilingual and multicultural poets. She has published several articles on contemporary German literature and is working on a book-length study of intermediality and intertextuality in contemporary German culture.
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