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Scientia Poetica

Jahrbuch für Geschichte der Literatur und Wissenschaften / Yearbook for the History of Literature, Humanities and Sciences

Ed. by Albrecht, Andrea / Danneberg, Lutz / Regn, Gerhard / Schmidt-Biggemann, Wilhelm / Vollhardt, Friedrich

Editorial Board: Mahlmann, Barbara / Epple, Moritz / Fick, Monika / Grafton, Anthony / Jaumann, Herbert / Klippel, Diethelm / Kühlmann, Wilhelm / Müller, Jan-Dirk / Nisbet, Hugh Barr / Proß, Wolfgang / Schönert, Jörg / Strohschneider, Peter

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»Eines Tages aber wird ein Wunder geschehen«

Alfred Döblins Erzählung Astralia als Gelehrtensatire, literarische Studie zu Paranoia und Theosophie sowie als Prätext von Ermordung einer Butterblume

Matthias Berning
Published Online: 2014-12-16 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/scipo-2014-0107


Alfred Döblin wrote his early story Astralia while he prepared his medical dissertation about the Korsakoff’s psychosis in Freiburg 1904. The short narrative about a small man, a private scholar, who sees himself as a visionary and medium, whereas other people regard him as an insane or drunk person, can be read as a pre-exercise of the popular novella Die Ermordung einer Butterblume. The story combines two virulent discourses of the turn of the century: then current research about the neurological and psychiatric consequences of alcohol abuse like memory loss (and the neurological as well as poetological question, how memory and creativity works) - and on the other hand the ideas and practice of occultism and spiritualism. These two concurring discourses find their synthesis in this sarcastic as well as empathic pre-expressionistic story.

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Published Online: 2014-12-16

Published in Print: 2014-12-01

Citation Information: Scientia Poetica, Volume 18, Issue 1, Pages 136–159, ISSN (Online) 1868-9418, ISSN (Print) 1431-5041, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/scipo-2014-0107.

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© 2014 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston.Get Permission

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