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Intellectual women around 1800 : you read a lot, quickly, and in multiple languages

"The nights I was not allowed to go out & las-resistant, & have durchgeleßen a whole library," writes Charlotte von Schiller, in 1809, in a letter to the home

- 42 reads.

Intellectual women around 1800 : you read a lot, quickly, and in multiple languages

"The nights I was not allowed to go out & las-resistant, & have durchgeleßen a whole library," writes Charlotte von Schiller, in 1809, in a letter to the home teachers of the Schiller children. It is far from the only Time Fridrich Schiller's widow, the Poet and playwright died in 1805 at the age of 45 years – about her numerous readings information.

A few years later, she reported: "I read the Plutarch again, with a new enjoyment, you should employ in every time of life again with such writers." Not only will the read has of Schiller continuously, it also produces detailed excerpts. Over a thousand pieces of paper with quotations to be found in their estate. What does this mean? Charlotte von Schiller was a typical reader of the late 18th century. and the early 19th century. Century? She was addicted to not reading the books hopelessly addicted, as, at the time, many women was?

The culture of reading developed explosively

to read to the 1800's is explored by the literature. Even more amazing, that a meeting of the Free University (FU) brought the supposedly well-known topic again recently on the Agenda. To discover there really is yet Unknown in this era? Meeting organiser Kathrin Wittler, who works as a research assistant at the Peter Szondi Institute for General and Comparative literature at the FU, is convinced: "If you look closer on the Situativität the readings, sorted a lot of things."

thus, While it was known that women played an important role in the explosively developing reading culture, but solely on terms such as "emotionality" and "Excess" leave the not reduce. "Many of the popular ideas to read around 1800 need to be revised if a more differentiated consideration."

As Helene Kraus, a Junior scientist at the University of Bielefeld has searched in the archives for answers to the question, what, why, and how read Charlotte von Schiller. They found traces of an intellectual reader, the areas in the self-study in all the important research of their time, Einar worked his way. Schiller las scientific papers in German, English, French, and Latin, dealt with the geography, history, philosophy, and theology. She read quickly, and many of the texts multiple times. Kraus found numerous documents.

Long excerpts, because books were too expensive

Why is the mother of four, and corresponded with many of the great minds of the time, made even bother with the copies? It served the pleasure? It helped her in understanding? You wanted to text for subsequent discussions of Europe? Kraus can only formulate first hypotheses: "As a widow, she was no longer able to buy the books, but she had to borrow, and perhaps, therefore, the numerous excerpts."

It is a feature of the latest literature, scientific research, and that such socio-economic conditions, more and more attention. For whom the books were around 1800 economically available? What is the role of the social state of individual readers played readers? Read outdoors or indoors, by candlelight or sunlight, in the dialogical exchange, or alone? "The pragmatic aspects are Central when it comes to real-world reading practices," explains Luisa Banki, a research assistant at the University of Wuppertal and also the organizer of the meeting. Praxeology-the so-called interdisciplinary approach in the empirical data likewise be included, such as knowledge of the history of literature and book science.

The read is moved from the library into bed

Nothing is irrelevant: diaries, letters, inventory lists of house libraries, notes in the margins read, books, literary works – everything can be used in the praxeological analysis. This includes questions as to the nature of the material and the Format of the books to come. How big and heavy they were? They were good in the rock apron to transport? Where were they kept, who had access to them?

"We need to cross various sources to be able to make statements," explains Helga Meise, Professor for modern German literature at the Université de Reims Champagne-Ardenne. Looking at the reading preferences of famous women like Charlotte von Stein and Sophie von La Roche in more detail. Striking is that the courtly-representative libraries from the middle of the 18th century. Century lose importance. The noble ladies prefer to have their extensive book collections close. The reading shifted to the private quarters and to bed. Will like to read in the early Morning and late evening hours. "The secretion of the community is completed," says Meise.

What helps against the Excess? Less Novels!

This newfound freedom within the daily routine, enjoy the not only noble, but also increasingly middle-class women, awaken, apparently, big Fears. The reading woman, and beyond, becomes the projection surface. You might be addicted to to lose the relation to reality, argue enjoyed numerous male time. "This has little to do with the actual reading practices of women, but a lot of with a picture of femininity, is constructed in this time," says Luisa Banki. The reading debate circled constantly to the question of control. The female read should be regulated: fewer novels, and, above all, not read in solitude!

The resulting gender coding female read is now considered emotional, irrational, male as a matter-of-factly – shape European cultural history over many decades, partly until today. "And we must also question the extent to which the literature of scientific research of the 20th century. Century seeks the perspectives of the reading debate has taken,“ says Kathrin Wittler. Reading practices and gender in the 18th century. Century are closely interwoven, there is no question, however, gaped projection and reality often diverge. Often women, in truth, had acted in a completely different reading than the kind of wild-addicted books to devour, the man turned to them.

"wrote The gentlemen natural philosophers" in the case of Goethe

Unfortunately, the source location still to lean, to prove it on a larger scale. Because the least educated reader left behind as Charlotte von Schiller caskets full of notes and letters. How critical you could be at your readings, is shown in a message to the house of a teacher, from February, 1809: "in Schubert's night pages, etc., I read," she writes. "It is very nice ideas are darinn, basically, but the gentlemen natural philosophers going to use angerißne pieces from Goethens great views, and continue to build on their type. If you continue to come? Time will tell, but don't believe me.“

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