Ernst August Klingemann: Nachtwachen [Night-Vigils / Nightwatches]

(1736 words)

When Ernst August Friedrich Klingemann published his novel Nachtwachen [Nightwatches, 1805] under the pseudonym Bonaventura, he had good reasons for concealing his identity: the text presents a harsh indictment of social corruption, of lost values, and of illusory literature on the threshold between Early and High German Romanticism. With its sequence of apparently disjointed scenes that challenge social and literary conventions, the novel stands outside of the German Bildungsroman (novel of education) tradition. For generations scholars have devoted considerable energy to ascribing the text to one of his more (Jean Paul, E. T. A. Hoffmann, Clemens Brentano, F.W.J. …

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Hoffmeister, Gerhart. "Nachtwachen". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 29 November 2006
[, accessed 28 November 2015.]