Enlightenment Phantasies: Cultural Identity in France and Germany, 1750-1914

Voorkant
Cornell University Press, 2004 - 227 pagina's

For centuries the histories of France and Germany have been linked in ways productive and destructive, and each nation's sense of itself has often been shaped by admiration of or hostility toward the other. Harold Mah explores the interweaving paths of German and French cultural identity that emerged in the Enlightenment and continued through the nineteenth century and into the twentieth.

Mah argues that the efforts of German and French intellectuals and artists to formulate stable cultural identities constantly collapsed in the face of other powerful images and the rush of history. In Mah's view, these shifting conceptions of cultural identity are problematic phantasies, internally unstable and prone to falling apart under the pressure of events, only to be replaced by new, equally problematic constructions. Mah offers fresh analyses of a wide range of iconic texts and artworks, including those of Jacques-Louis David, de StaŽl, Diderot, and Rousseau in France and Goethe, Hegel, Herder, Mann, Marx, and Nietzsche in Germany.

Mah's book examines how attempts to define cultural identities were caught up in issues of language, gender, classical revival, politics, and modernity. Enlightenment Phantasies presents the shaping of cultural identity in narratives accessible not only to specialists but also to students and all readers concerned with the history of Western culture.

 

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Inhoudsopgave

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
1
THE MAN witH Too MANY QUALITIES
15
THE LANGUAGE OF CULTURAL IDENTITY
45
STRANGE CLASSICISM
71
CLASSICISM AND GENDER TRANSFORMATION
116
THE FRENCH REVOLUTION AND THE PROBLEM OF TIME
157
NOTES
181
INDEX
221
Copyright

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Over de auteur (2004)

Harold Mah is Professor of History at Queen's University, Canada. He is the author of The End of Philosophy, The Origin of Ideology: Karl Marx and the Crisis of the Young Hegelians.

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