Reisen am Rande des Heimischen : Schwedische Romantiker auf Reisen in Deutschland und die Bilder Schwedens in deutschen Reiseberichten 1800–1828
Sammanfattning: This thesis examines the images of Germany and Sweden in several travelogues during a period of approximately thirty years (1800–1828). The objective is to analyse German and Swedish travelogues and their descriptions of the respective neighbouring country to view how the relationship between the two countries was perceived. The first part of the analysis examines six Swedish travelogues about Germany, written by authors belonging to the Swedish Romanticism. The second part examines six German travelogues about Sweden. The study seeks answers to the following question: how is Germany and Sweden described in the travelogues from the first three decades of the 19th century and how do the German and Swedish national self-images and the images of others appear in the travelogues? The thesis is to be regarded as a literary study in the field of comparative imagology. Analysing travelogues to which only a few scholars have payed attention, this study expands understanding of national (literary) discourses concerning the neighbouring country. The study of the Swedish travelogues reveals that the Swedish travellers depicted a deep personal relationship to Germany, a sort of ‘elective affinity’, which largely had been developed through the reception of German literature and culture. In Germany, the Swedish travellers were merely on the verge of a foreign space. In the analysis of the German travelogues the thesis shows that a noticeably development concerning the ideas of Sweden was taking place. At the turn of the 19th century, Sweden was often described as barbarian, poor and uncultured. With an increased interest of the German Romantics in Norse mythology and culture, the descriptions of Sweden moved to be positive, visionary and even idealized. The form of a new romanticized notion of Sweden is to be observed during this period.
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