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The Doppelgänger

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Edited By Deborah Ascher Barnstone

The Doppelgänger – the double, twin, mirror image or alter ego of someone else – is an ancient and universal theme that can be traced at least as far back as Greek and Roman mythology, but is particularly associated with two areas of study: psychology, and German literature and culture since the Romantic movement. Although German language literature has been a nexus for writing on the Doppelgänger, there is a paucity of scholarly work treating a broader selection of cultural products from the German-speaking world. The essays in this volume explore the phenomenon of the double in multiple aspects of German visual culture, from traditional art forms like painting and classical ballet to more contemporary ones like film, photography and material culture, and even puppet theatre. New ways of understanding the Doppelgänger emerge from analyses of various media and time periods, such as the theme of the double in a series of portraits by Egon Schiele, the doubling of silk by rayon in Weimar Germany and its implications for class distinctions in Germany, and the use of the x-ray as a form of double in Thomas Mann’s Magic Mountain and Christoph Schlingensief’s performance art.
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DEBORAH ASCHER BARNSTONE is Professor and Associate Head of School in Architecture at University of Technology Sydney, Australia. She is a licensed architect as well as an historian. Barnstone is co-editor of the German Visual Culture Series at Peter Lang. Barnstone publishes widely on twentieth-century German art and architecture history. She has published her research widely including Journal of Architecture, Journal of Architectural Education, and New German Critique and in the anthologies Berlin Divided City: 1945–1989, Transnationalism and the German City, and Art and Identity at the Water’s Edge. Routledge released her book The Transparent State: Architecture and Politics in Postwar Germany in 2005. Her new book, Beyond the Bauhaus: Cultural Debates in Breslau, 1918–1933 is forthcoming with University of Michigan Press in 2016.

APRIL A. EISMAN (MA Courtauld Institute of Art, PhD University of Pittsburgh) is Associate Professor of Art History at Iowa State University. Her research focuses on contemporary art and theory with an emphasis on East German art and its reception. Recent publications include, “East German Art and the Permeability of the Berlin Wall,” German Studies Review (2015); “From Economic Equality to ‘Mommy Politics’: Women Artists and the Challenges of Gender in East German Painting,” in International Journal for History, Culture and Modernity (2014); and “Painting the East German Experience: Neo Rauch in the Late 1990s,” Oxford Art Journal (2012). Co-founder of the Transatlantic Institute for East German Art, Eisman also co-organizes the German Socialisms Network for the German Studies Association...

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