Vorbestraft: differing perspectives on reintegration and recidivism in narratives by Storm and Fallada

Burns, B. (2002) Vorbestraft: differing perspectives on reintegration and recidivism in narratives by Storm and Fallada. Neophilologus, 86(3), pp. 437-453. (doi:10.1023/A:1015662416357)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.

Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1023/A:1015662416357

Abstract

The article is a comparative examination of two works of German literature on the motif of the ex-convict: Theodor Storm's novella Ein Doppelgänger (1886) and, some fifty years later, Hans Fallada's novel Wer einmal aus dem Blechnapf frißt (1934). The writers' interest in the controversial subject of reintegration and recidivism springs from diametrically opposed starting points, for Storm was a lawyer and judge, while Fallada was an ex-felon, but they share a humanitarian commitment to the plight of the disenfranchised. This study analyses the factors in each work which motivate the protagonist's return to crime, and considers how the respective portrayals reflect contemporary attitudes to law and social order. It is argued that both authors through their creative writing challenge false assumptions about crime and punishment, and anticipate the gradual modern implementation of progressive ideas in the care and resettlement of offenders.

Item Type:Articles
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Burns, Dr Barbara
Authors: Burns, B.
Subjects:P Language and Literature > PT Germanic literature
College/School:College of Arts > School of Modern Languages and Cultures > German
Journal Name:Neophilologus
ISSN:0028-2677

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record