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Old-school transnationalism? On references to familiar authors in world literary history: East(-Central) European literature as presented by Johannes Scherr

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Abstract
Starting from Marcel Cornis-Pope and John Neubauer’s deliberately transnational History of the Literary Cultures of East-Central Europe (2004-2010), this article explores the ‘transnationality’ of Johannes Scherr’s (re)presentation of the young East European literatures in his Allgemeine Geschichte der Literatur (1851), the first edition of what would become the most successful of the then booming genre of world literary history. One of Scherr’s strategies to ‘open up’ the unfamiliar literatures of Eastern Europe consists in linking its authors or works to more or less comparable ones that were expected to be familiar to the average German reader. Additionally, Scherr tends to impose on each of these literatures three quite easily recognizable phases, in the last one of which the literature in question becomes nationally distinctive. While I ‘visualize’ and discuss Scherr’s mentions of comparable authors/works with the help of David Damrosch’ well-known figure of the ellipse, Scherr’s phase-oriented approach leads me to the conclusion that for him a literature cannot be transnational(ly recognized) without first having become distinctly national.
Keywords
Slavic literature, Czech literature, Serbian literature, Polish literature, Russian literature, Weltliteraturgeschichte, Goethe, Damrosch, constellation, world literature

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Chicago
De Dobbeleer, Michel. 2018. “Old-school Transnationalism? On References to Familiar Authors in World Literary History: East(-Central) European Literature as Presented by Johannes Scherr.” In Literary Transnationalism(s), ed. Dagmar Vandebosch and Theo D’haen, 89:104–120. Leiden: Brill.
APA
De Dobbeleer, M. (2018). Old-school transnationalism? On references to familiar authors in world literary history: East(-Central) European literature as presented by Johannes Scherr. In D. Vandebosch & T. D’haen (Eds.), Literary transnationalism(s) (Vol. 89, pp. 104–120). Leiden: Brill.
Vancouver
1.
De Dobbeleer M. Old-school transnationalism? On references to familiar authors in world literary history: East(-Central) European literature as presented by Johannes Scherr. In: Vandebosch D, D’haen T, editors. Literary transnationalism(s). Leiden: Brill; 2018. p. 104–20.
MLA
De Dobbeleer, Michel. “Old-school Transnationalism? On References to Familiar Authors in World Literary History: East(-Central) European Literature as Presented by Johannes Scherr.” Literary Transnationalism(s). Ed. Dagmar Vandebosch & Theo D’haen. Vol. 89. Leiden: Brill, 2018. 104–120. Print.
@incollection{8581179,
  abstract     = {Starting from Marcel Cornis-Pope and John Neubauer’s deliberately transnational History of the Literary Cultures of East-Central Europe (2004-2010), this article explores the ‘transnationality’ of Johannes Scherr’s (re)presentation of the young East European literatures in his Allgemeine Geschichte der Literatur (1851), the first edition of what would become the most successful of the then booming genre of world literary history. One of Scherr’s strategies to ‘open up’ the unfamiliar literatures of Eastern Europe consists in linking its authors or works to more or less comparable ones that were expected to be familiar to the average German reader. Additionally, Scherr tends to impose on each of these literatures three quite easily recognizable phases, in the last one of which the literature in question becomes nationally distinctive. While I ‘visualize’ and discuss Scherr’s mentions of comparable authors/works with the help of David Damrosch’ well-known figure of the ellipse, Scherr’s phase-oriented approach leads me to the conclusion that for him a literature cannot be transnational(ly recognized) without first having become distinctly national.},
  author       = {De Dobbeleer, Michel},
  booktitle    = {Literary transnationalism(s)},
  editor       = {Vandebosch, Dagmar and D'haen, Theo},
  isbn         = {9789004370869},
  keywords     = {Slavic literature,Czech literature,Serbian literature,Polish literature,Russian literature,Weltliteraturgeschichte,Goethe,Damrosch,constellation,world literature},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {104--120},
  publisher    = {Brill},
  series       = {Textxet : Studies in Comparative Literature},
  title        = {Old-school transnationalism? On references to familiar authors in world literary history: East(-Central) European literature as presented by Johannes Scherr},
  volume       = {89},
  year         = {2018},
}