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Storytelling in the Spectators / Storytelling dans les spectateurs

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Edited By Klaus-Dieter Ertler, Yvonne Völkl, Elisabeth Hobisch, Alexandra Fuchs and Hans Fernández

The Spectators, also known as Moral Weeklies, were an important magazine genre which came into being in the early 18th century and which shaped European identity by developing the strategies of critical journalism and by popularizing the ideas and values of the Age of Enlightenment. Investigating modes of storytelling in the Spectators is an important starting point for a paradigmatic investigation of our historical, cultural and philosophical evolution since the Enlightenment and the impact of these magazines on issues of identity in today’s Europe. In this collection on ‹Storytelling in the Spectators›, we present a series of contributions which study English, French, Spanish, Italian, German, Dutch, Czech, Polish and Danish-Norwegian periodicals.

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On Searching and Finding. Narratives in the Medical Weekly Der Tirolische Arzt

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Next to weeklies for children and for female readers and apart from spectatorial magazines dealing with literature, economy or natural sciences, medical weeklies form one of the most influential spin-offs of the enlightened Spectator project.

The present paper is going to deal with the narrative genres and techniques of the nearly forgotten Austrian weekly Der Tirolische Arzt (“The Tyrolean Physician”) by Claudius Martin Ritter von Scherer and Franz Niedermaier. This periodical on medicine and veterinary science was printed in Innsbruck between 1791 and 1792.

In a first step the following study will shortly outline the general profile of this periodical and its authors. In a second step it will give an overview of the range of storytelling devices used in this weekly. And finally it will deal with the challenges, which professional readers have to face, if they want to learn from the narratives presented in the Tyrolean magazine.

The Weekly and Its Authors

As far as the authors of the present paper sees, Der Tirolische Arzt is the first magazine inspired by the Spectator tradition in Innsbruck and in the whole of Tyrol1. Unlike the first moral weeklies, this periodical does not exclusively focus on the inhabitants of a certain town or city. From its title and topics, from the readers’ letters and from a subscribers’ list added to this weekly2 we can deduce that its addressees are barber surgeons, physicians as well as officials, landowners, clerics, lawyers, and...

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