This essay undertakes the first critical assessment of Klaus Böldl's prose works and discusses the position his three published books hold within the context of contemporary German literature. After an introductory examination of Böldl's contribution to the literary portrayal of the peripheral, in this instance the North European/Scandinavian hemisphere, a contrastive analysis of the plots identifies recurring patterns and motifs. In the main part of the essay, the two focal characteristics of Böldl's writings are explored in depth: the narrative destruction of the threshold between natural history and civilisation, as well as the function of transcendental experiences reminiscent of epiphanies. With reference to theoretical writings by Walter Benjamin and George Steiner these literary epiphanies are interpreted as moments of transcendancy's 'profane presence'. © Springer 2005.
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- Klaus Böldl
- contemporary German literature
- natural history
- Walter Benjamin George Steiner