The journal “Morgenblatt für gebildete Stände/Leser”.
Sociographic journalism and formation of ethnographic and sociographic knowledge (working title)
As part of the research project “Dissecting Society. Social Sketches and the Formation of Ethnographic and Sociological Knowledge (1830-1860)” my PhD thesis explores journalistic and literary texts from Southern Germany as early forms of ethnographic and sociographic knowledge in the “heyday of the journalistic revolution” (Lauster 2007: 1).
Dealing with the popular, non-political daily (1807-1851) or weekly paper (1851-1865) “Morgenblatt für gebildete Stände/Leser” as a microhistorical entity, I will examine (1) the social sketches as products of cultural transfer referring to Western European models, (2) how concepts like nation/society/history/gender are displayed and (3) the relations between sociographic journalism and other genres and corresponding dispositifs of the emerging social sciences in Southern Germany. Methodologically, I will develop a mix of anthropological and historiographical approaches, combining analytical tools and perspectives from ethnography, microhistorical analysis, discourse theory, entangled history and knowledge history.
By taking the “Morgenblatt” as a point of departure, I will follow the categories proposed by the historian Philipp Sarasin and examine regimes (“Systematisierung und Ordnungen”), representations and media (“Repräsentationsformen und Medialität”), actors (“Akteure”) and genealogies (“Genealogien”) (Sarasin 2011: 167) and contribute to a comprehensive view on the systematisation of ethnographic and sociographical knowledge before the formation of academic disciplines.
Supervisor: Dr. Christiane Schwab