Was man wissen kann : oder: Gedanken zur Erkenntnisfähigkeit der Literaturwissenschaft am Beispiel der Rede von den Werther-Selbstmorden

  • In recent introductions to German literary studies one reads that the publication of Goethe's "The Sorrows of Young Werther" was followed by a veritable wave of suicides among its readers. However, according to two studies that have collected and reexamined the few hints we have about such alleged cases the story of the suicide wave seems to be a myth rather than an accurate historical account. Why, then, do we still spread this myth? First, I outline a number of cognitive predispositions that might be responsible for the intuitive plausibility of the suicide story. Second, I try to explain why even in academic writing we often succumb to these cognitive tendencies. I propose that our discipline suffers by generally undervaluing empiricism and that this calls for revision.

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Author:Katja Mellmann
Parent Title (Multiple languages):KulturPoetik : journal for cultural poetics
Publisher:Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht
Place of publication:Göttingen
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2013
Year of first Publication:2013
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2015/09/22
GND Keyword:Selbstmord; Rezeption; Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von; Die Leiden des jungen Werthers
Page Number:11
First Page:94
Last Page:104
Dewey Decimal Classification:8 Literatur / 83 Deutsche und verwandte Literaturen / 830 Literaturen germanischer Sprachen; Deutsche Literatur
Sammlungen:Germanistik / GiNDok
CompaRe | Allgemeine und Vergleichende Literaturwissenschaft
BDSL-Klassifikation:13.00.00 Goethezeit / BDSL-Klassifikation: 13.00.00 Goethezeit > 13.14.00 Zu einzelnen Autoren
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht