Museums Of The Mind: German Modernity And The Dynamics Of Collecting by Peter M. McIsaacMuseums Of The Mind: German Modernity And The Dynamics Of Collecting by Peter M. McIsaac

Museums Of The Mind: German Modernity And The Dynamics Of Collecting

byPeter M. McIsaac

Paperback | March 5, 2013

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Museums of the Mind is the first book to explore the evolving relationship of collecting and the German literary imagination since the invention of the public museum. This study shows that in addition to redefining categories of art, history, and identity in modernity, the museum transforms the relationship between material objects and imaginative narratives. Using new categories, Peter McIsaac constructs a critical genealogy using key texts by Johann Goethe, Adalbert Stifter, Wilhelm Raabe, Rainer Maria Rilke, Ingeborg Bachmann, Siegfried Lenz, W. G. Sebald, and Durs Grünbein and the material record of Germanophone museums.

McIsaac rethinks how fundamental cultural “truths” define what it means to belong to acculturated communities, showing that the activation of meaning in museums depends foremost on what people bring, in their minds, to those real and imagined environments, resulting in what McIsaac calls museums of the mind. This notion elucidates the vital shifts wrought by museum culture over the past two centuries and illuminates how museums, literature, and digital media shape thought and behavior today.

Peter M. McIsaac is Assistant Professor of German at York University, Toronto. He is the author of numerous articles on German literature and culture and museum studies. Peter M. McIsaac is Assistant Professor of German at York University, Toronto. He is the author of numerous articles on German literature and culture and museum studie...
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Title:Museums Of The Mind: German Modernity And The Dynamics Of CollectingFormat:PaperbackDimensions:336 pages, 10 × 7 × 0.93 inPublished:March 5, 2013Publisher:Penn State University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0271058706

ISBN - 13:9780271058702

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Table of Contents

Contents

Illustrations

Acknowledgments

Part 1: Historical and Theoretical Coordinates of Museal and Literary Discourses

1. The Museum Function, Inventoried Consciousness, and German-Speaking Literature

2. Inventoried Consciousness Today: Durs Grünbein and W. G. Sebald

Part 2: The Rise of the Public Museum and Bildung

3. Ottilie Under Glass: Collecting as Disciplinary Regime in Goethe’s Wahlverwandtschaften

4. The Museum of Bildung: Collecting in Stifter’s Nachsommer

Part 3: Acculturation, Commodification, and the Nation

5. Archaeology, Exhibition, and Tourism: Raabe’s “Keltische Knochen”

6. Flâneur Optical, Collector Tactile: Rilke’s Neue Gedichte as Imaginary Museum Landscape

Part 4: Narrative Interventions in the Museal Abuse of Culture

7. “Quiet Violence”: The Army Museum in Ingeborg Bachmann’s Malina

8. (Re)collecting the Twentieth Century: Siegfried Lenz’s Heimatmuseum

Conclusion

Notes

Works Cited

Index

Editorial Reviews

“It is the principal merit of this study to have highlighted the connections that bind the process of internalisation of memory in German literature with the tangible nature of museums as both objective and imaginative structures.”

—Daria Santini, Oxford Art Journal