Der Fontane-Ton am Beispiel der Poggenpuhls

Schonfield, E. (2020) Der Fontane-Ton am Beispiel der Poggenpuhls. In: Cusack, A. and White, M. (eds.) Der Fontane-Ton: Stil im Werk Theodor Fontanes = The “Fontane Sound”: Style in the Works of Theodor Fontane. Series: Schriften der Theodor Fontane Gesellschaft (13). De Gruyter: Berlin, pp. 195-216. ISBN 9783110538984 (doi: 10.1515/9783110541731-010)

Full text not currently available from Enlighten.

Publisher's URL:


This essay considers some stylistic features of Theodor Fontane's late work, using the example of “Die Poggenpuhls”. “Die Poggenpuhls” is a good example of the Fontane tone, because the novel presents a series of tones that are particularly characteristic of Fontane: intimacy, modesty, discretion, and humour. In this respect, questions of genre do not get us very far. In this article, some stylistic features of the novel are analysed: a programmatic beginning which ‘sets the tone’ is followed by a set of revealing oppositions. We can also observe musical effects, assonances; much gentle humour; attention to detail; sensitivity to the texture of the family’s everyday routine; skilful treatment of popular sayings and quotations; critical handling of social roleplay; and, last but not least, an appeal to humanity in general, thus affirming Fontane’s humanism.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Schonfield, Dr Ernest
Authors: Schonfield, E.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Modern Languages and Cultures > German
Publisher:De Gruyter
Published Online:16 December 2020

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