The Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften: Events

Monday, 06 December 2010, 18:00
lecture room in the Institute building

Event series »Aesthetics of Commodities. Discussing Consumption, Culture and the Arts« (IV)
Public lecture

Thomas Wegmann
»Über Versprechen schreiben. Zur Zeitstruktur des Konsums in der Erzählliteratur«

Thomas Wegmann (Adj. Professor of Literary Theory at Humboldt University Berlin)

Information: Prof. Heinz Drügh (

rnrnAdvance registration required (Andreas Reichhardt,, Tel.: +49/(0)6172-13977-16, Fax: +49/(0)6172-13977-29)

rnrnAbout the lecture

Thomas Wegmann, born 1962, works as Associate Professor of German Literature and Literary Theory at Berlin’s Humboldt University and is a renowned scholar of the interface between literature and economics. He has published two major studies on this subject: »Tauschverhältnisse. Zur Ökonomie des Literarischen und zum Ökonomischen in der Literatur von Gellert bis Goethe« (»Exchange Relations: On the economics of the literary and economic aspects in literature from Gellert to Goethe«) in which he explores the interwovenness of literature and economics with reference to the literature of the eighteenth century, and »Dichtung und Warenzeichen: Zur Beobachtung und Bearbeitung von Reklame im literarischen Feld 1850 – 2000« (»Poetry and Trademarks: On the perception and treatment of advertising in the literary sphere, 1850–2000«) in which he examines the significance of the expansion of advertising culture following the Industrial Revolution for forms of literary representation.


In his lecture at the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities he proceeds from the premise that acts of consumption represent complex processes in which promise and desire, presence and absence, real and imaginary are superimposed onto one another. Since 1850, when Gustave Flaubert created in Madame Bovary what is perhaps Europe’s most notorious consumer, literature has exhibited an interest in the narrative and reflective potential of consumption and the question of its emotional, social and economic components.

rnrnThe lecture and seminar will be held in German.

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