Josef Fritzl’s literary forebears/Ahnen Fritzls in der österreichischen Literatur

In the Times Literary Supplement of May 16 2008, Ritchie Robertson searches Austrian literature for examples of men who terrorized or imprisoned their families. The article is available online too.

Adalbert Stifter: Turmalin 1852
Franz Nabl: Das Grab des Lebendigen 1917 – later reissued as Die Ortliebschen Frauen
Ferdnand Raimund: Der Alpenkönig und der Menschenfeind 1828
Johann Nestroy: Eine Wohnung ist zu vermeten in der Stadt 1837
Elias Canetti: Die Blendung 1935
Veza Canetti: Die gelbe Straße 1932-3

Robertson finds that John Fowles’s The Collector has more to do with class, whereas the Austrian examples relate to the father’s Züchtigungsrecht – right to chastise his family. He finishes by finding that some of Freud’s famous cases were surprisingly soft on the fathers and insensitive to the mothers.

2 thoughts on “Josef Fritzl’s literary forebears/Ahnen Fritzls in der österreichischen Literatur

  1. Sandwich-making has been raised to an art form in the United States, and that sad little sandwich is no work of art.

    The most amazing sandwich I’ve ever had in the U.S. had a rosemary/olive tapenade as a condiment on each half of a large, fresh kaiser roll with incredibly sweet summer tomatoes, romaine, sliced turkey breast, green onions, and brie–grilled until the meat was warm and the brie melted just enough yet the lettuce and tomatoes were still cold. And, it wasn’t too thick. Now *that* was a turkey sandwich. :-)

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