The Hotel as Setting in Early Twentieth-century German and Austrian Literature: Checking in to Tell a Story
As the bourgeois concept of "home" became problematic after important changes in German-speaking society during the 19th century, many fiction writers chose the literary setting of the hotel to explore the status of the individual and the notions of public and private. As social microcosms, hotels are fitting experimental settings for literary inquiries into the tension between the individual's quest for a place in the world and the technocratic rationalism of modern life. The book has two parts, the first establishing the cultural and theoretical context and the second providing analyses of literary works set in hotels. A brief history of commercial hospitality and a chapter establishing the theoretical framework of the hotel as a paradigmatic, ambivalent, semi-public, and stage-like modern space lead to readings of texts by Schnitzler, Zweig, Werfel, Kafka, Thomas Mann, Joseph Roth, and Vicki Baum. BETTINA MATTHIAS is associate professor of German at Middlebury College.
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Adlon aesthetic Amerika Arthur Schnitzler artist Aschenbach Baum beautiful become behavior Bloomfield bourgeois character Christine Christine's critics Dan's Death in Venice discussion Dorsday elegant Else's employees Erna existential experience feels Felix Krull floor Francine Frankfurt am Main Franz Werfel Fräulein Gaigern Geld Georg Simmel German Grand Hotel Grusinskaya head cook homeless hotel guest Hotel Lobby Hotel Occidental hotel room Hotel Savoy hotel society hotel stories human idea interaction Joseph Roth Kafka Karl's Kringelein leave leisure class liftboy literary hotel lives Mann's Menschen im Hotel mirror modern narrative narrator needs novel novella offer Otternschlag palaces Philosophy of Money Pontresina protagonist Rausch relationship revolving door Roth's Salomonsohn Schnitzler's seems sense setting sexual Siegfried Kracauer social space status stay Stefan Zweig symbol texts Thomas Mann tion Tod in Venedig twentieth century Untergang eines Herzens Veblen Vicki Baum Vicki Baum's Welt Werfel young Zwonimir