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Echoes and Oscillations: Poetics, Public Intellectualism, and Contemporary Literature in the Work of Juli Zeh Open Access


Other title
Contemporary German Literature
Juli Zeh
Public Intellectual
Politics and Literature
Type of item
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Richter, Lars
Supervisor and department
Smith-Prei, Carrie (Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies)
Examining committee member and department
Ball, Karyn (English and Film Studies)
Herrmann, Elisabeth (Stockholm University)
Misfeldt, Kim (University of Alberta Augustana Campus)
Neuhaus, Stefan (University of Koblenz-Landau)
Stuhlmann, Andreas (Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies)
Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies
Germanic Languages, Literatures, and Linguistics
Date accepted
Graduation date
2016-06:Fall 2016
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Since the publication of her debut novel in 2001, German author Juli Zeh has established herself as an important figure within the landscape of contemporary German-language literature. Echoes and Oscillations: Poetics, Public Intellectualism, and Contemporary Literature in the Work of Juli Zeh examines the work of Juli Zeh with respect to how her poetological positions, her work as a public intellectual and the incorporation of modes of realistic writing in her narratives result in an interplay between diegetic and non-diegetic realities that, in turn, have an impact on the question of what role literature can play in the present cultural landscape of Germany and beyond. Through the analysis of Zeh’s poetological writings and her work as public intellectual, Echoes and Oscillations defines Zeh as a politically committed author who revives the long-standing model of author as public intellectual and transports it into the twenty-first century. The analysis of selected novels with respect to echoes of traditions of realistic writing from German literary history leads to a re-conceptualization of the term ‘contemporary German-language literature.’ Exemplified through Zeh’s texts, the dissertation proposes a model that regards contemporary literature as being embedded in, being mindful of, and commenting on their time via the tight interconnection between sociopolitical discourses and her fictional and nonfictional work.
This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private, scholarly or scientific research. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
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