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Constructing Authorship in the Work of Günter Grass$
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Rebecca Braun

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199542703

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199542703.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 September 2021

‘Er, in dessen Namen ich krebsend vorankam’: Reading the Author in Ein weites Feld and Im Krebsgang

‘Er, in dessen Namen ich krebsend vorankam’: Reading the Author in Ein weites Feld and Im Krebsgang

Chapter:
(p.149) 6 ‘Er, in dessen Namen ich krebsend vorankam’: Reading the Author in Ein weites Feld and Im Krebsgang
Source:
Constructing Authorship in the Work of Günter Grass
Author(s):

Rebecca Braun (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199542703.003.0007

This chapter analyses in detail two late texts, Ein weites Feld (1995) and Im Krebsgang (2002). The key premise is that in displacing his authorial persona into the margins of the text, Grass introduces new voices that reinterpret the author's literary and socio-political achievements. The unflattering way in which these voices present the old master—the archivists note his physical decrepitude while Paul portrays him as a nagging old man—adds a considerable deal of humour to the texts. Furthermore, this shift indicates an increasingly ironic approach to authorship. By focusing on how others, readers and budding authors alike, construct the author in line with their image of him, Grass develops a self-conscious aesthetics of replacement. The contradictory pulls towards monumentality and inconsequentiality lie at the heart of these late works, conditioning not just much of the humour and authorial self-presentation within them, but their structural composition.

Keywords:   Ein weites Feld, Im Krebsgang, authorship, authorial position, reader, humour, irony, ironic, replacement, monumentality, inconsequentiality

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