Literary Trials: Exceptio Artis and Theories of Literature in Court
By: Ralf Gruttemeier (editor)Hardback
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From the 19th century onwards, famous literary trials have caught the attention of readers, academics and the public at large. Indeed it is striking that more often than not, it was the texts of renowned writers that were dealt with by the courts, as for example Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary and Charles Baudelaire's Les Fleurs du Mal in France, James Joyce's Ulysses and Henry Miller's Tropic of Cancer in the US, D.H. Lawrence's Lady Chatterley's Lover in Great-Britain, up to the more recent trials on Klaus Mann's Mephisto and Maxim Biller's novel Esra in Germany. By bringing together international leading experts, Literary Trials represents the first step towards a systematic discussion of literary trials on a global scale. Beginning by first reassessing some of the most famous of these trials, it also analyses less well-known but significant literary trials. Special attention is paid to recent developments in the relationship between literature and judicature, pointing towards an increasing role for libel and defamation in the societal demarcation of what literature is, and is not, allowed to do.
Ralf Gruttemeier is Professor and Chair of Dutch Literature in the Faculty of Linguistics and Cultural Studies at Oldenburg University, Germany. He has formerly held the positions of Dean of Linguistics and Cultural Studies at Oldenburg University, Research Fellow of the Netherlands Institute of Advanced Study, and co-editor and editor-in-chief of the journal Internationale Neerlandistiek. He is co-editor of the journal Spiegel der Letteren.
Acknowledgments Literary trials as mirrors. An introduction Ralf Gruttemeier (Oldenburg University, Germany) I. Towards more autonomy of literature. Histories of literary trials 1. The Legal Responsibility of the Writer between Objectivity and Subjectivity: The French Case (19th-21st Century) Gisele Sapiro (CNRS (Centre de sociologie europeenne-Paris), France) 2. The Making of the 1959 Obscene Publications Act: Trials and Debates on Literary Obscenity in Britain Before the Case of Lady Chatterley Anton Kirchhofer (Oldenburg University, Germany) 3. Law and the Literary Field in South Africa, 1910-2010 Ted Laros (Oldenburg University, Germany) 4. De Sade as a Benchmark. Dutch Legal Actions Against Obscenity in Literature, Theatre and Film in the 1960s and 70s Klaus Beekman (Universiteit van Amsterdam, The Netherlands) 5. Freedom of Satire? Oscar Panizza's Play Das Liebeskonzil in a Series of Trials in Germany and Austria Claudia Lieb (University of Munster, Germany) 6. 'Words Are No Deeds': Trials Against Literature in the Soviet Union Sylvia Sasse (University of Zurich, Switzerland) II. Change of Rules? The Challenges of Defamation and Religion 7. Literature Losing Legal Ground in Germany? The Case of Maxim Biller's Esra (2003-2009) Ralf Gruttemeier (Oldenburg University, Germany) 8. Defamation Trials in Belgium: The Case of Herman Brusselmans' Uitgeverij Guggenheimer Katharina Hupe (Oldenburg University, Germany) 9. Libellous Literature: Elton John and the Perils of Close Reading Peter D. McDonald (University of Oxford, UK) 10. 'The law is a ass': Obscenity, Blasphemy and Other Literary Offences After Lady Chatterley Martin A. Kayman (Cardiff University, UK) Notes on Contributors Index
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