Fact and Fiction: Literary and Scientific Cultures in Germany and Britain

Fact and Fiction: Literary and Scientific Cultures in Germany and Britain

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Edited by Christine Lehleiter
University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division © 2016
World Rights
368 Pages 5 Images
ISBN 9781442645981
Published Feb 2016
Online discount: 25%
 $75.00    $56.25
ebook (EPUB format)
ISBN 9781442664142
Published Apr 2016
Online discount: 25%
Full purchase $75.00

Fact and Fiction explores the intersection between literature and the sciences, focusing on German and British culture between the eighteenth century and today.  Observing that it was in the eighteenth century that the divide between science and literature as disciplines first began to be defined, the contributors to this collection probe how authors from that time onwards have assessed and affected the relationship between literary and scientific cultures.

Fact and Fiction’s twelve essays cover a wide range of scientific disciplines, from physics and chemistry to medicine and anthropology, and a variety of literary texts, such as Erasmus Darwin’s poem The Botanic Garden, George Eliot’s Daniel Deronda, and Goethe’s Elective Affinities. The collection will appeal to scholars of literature and of the history of science, and to those interested in the connections between the two.

Christine Lehleiter is an associate professor in the Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures at the University of Toronto.

Introduction. Fact and Fiction: Literary and Scientific Cultures in Germany and Britain Thoughts on a Contentious Relationship
Christine Lehleiter

PART I Reading: Electricity, Medicine

1 Facts Are What One Makes of Them: Constructing the Faktum in the Enlightenment and Early German Romanticism
Jocelyn Holland

2 The Competing Structures of Signification in Samuel Hahnemann’s Homeopathy: Between 18th-century Semiosis and Romantic Hermeneutics
Alice Kuzniar

PART II Imagining: Botany, Chemistry, Thermodynamics

3 “She comes! – the GODDESS!”: Narrating Nature in Erasmus Darwin’s The Botanic Garden (1791)
Ann Shteir

4 Elective Affinities / Wahlverwandtschaften: The Career of a Metaphor
Christian Weber

5 Physics Disarmed: Probabilistic Knowledge in the Works of James Clerk Maxwell and George Eliot
Tina Young Choi

PART III Sensing: Anthropology, Psychology, Aesthetics

6 Herder’s Unsettling of the Distinction between Fact and Fiction
John K. Noyes

7 Fictional Feedback: Empirical Souls and Self-Deception in the Magazine for Empirical Psychology and Beyond
Michael House

8 Fictional Feelings Psychological Aesthetics and the Paradox of Tragic Pleasure
Tobias Wilke

PART IV Relating: Biology

9 Coining a Discipline: Lessing, Reimarus, and a Science of Religion
Stefani Engelstein

10 Kin Selection, Mendel’s “Salutary Principle,” and the Fate of Characters in Forster’s Longest Journey
Daniel Aureliano Newman 

PART V Displaying: Scientific Collections

11 Anatomy Collections in and of the Mind: Science, the Body and Language in the Writings of Durs Grünbein and Thomas Hettche
Peter M. McIsaac

12 Vivifying the Uncanny: Ethnographic Mannequins and Exotic Performers in Nineteenth-Century German Exhibition Culture
Dana Weber

“This anthology is an important contribution to the field of literature and science. The scholarship as a whole, its depth and breadth, is truly impressive.”

Thomas L. Buckley, Department of Modern and Classical Languages, St Joseph's University