SCRABL Newsletters

Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature
No 42 – Spring of 2005
Membership in SGRABL is $3 per annum, sustaining membership is $15. Daphnis is $35 per year for members. Dues and subscription payments to:
Bethany Wiggin
Subscription requests should be in by 4/15/05.


Message from the President

Dear Colleagues,

Thank you very much for your most welcome input to the discussion on the future of SGRABL. This is indeed the kind of discussion that I was hoping to stimulate with my informal questionnaire of more than a year ago and the topics for the MLA 2004—in particular the roundtable with Barbara Becker-Cantarino, Richard Schade, Helmut Puff, Albrecht Classen, and Jonathan Hopkins. The roundtable was, incidentally, well-attended.

I’d also like to join Glen Ehrstine in thanking Albrecht Classen for serving as president for two years and Marian Sperberg-McQueen for serving as treasurer for five years. Thank you also to those members who came to the business meeting of which Glen gave you a first informal report. Jonathan Clark was confirmed as Vice-President and Bethany Wiggin was confirmed in an electronic vote in January.

Message from the President 1
Call for papers MLA CONVENTION’05 5
Call for Contributions The Future of Early Modern Studies 7
Announcements 8

In my opinion, a society is only as vibrant as its members, a president can shape, give direction, organize, and advocate but has to rely on quality contributions for the various initiatives from the members. As a way of operating, I’d like to use this forum—the whole mailing list, the newsletter in electronic and hard copy form—to address and discuss the more significant issues facing us. At the same time, I’d like to work with the past presidents Classen, Ehrstine, Wade, Hess in the function as a kind of executive committee (in consultation with the former secretary-treasurer Sperberg-McQueen and the current secretary-treasurer) for some of the behind the scenes work. I would also like to consult with some of you on an individual basis to solicit input in your particular areas of expertise.

In response to your suggestions let me try to summarize the issues and formulate a plan of action.
It seems to me that the SGRABL is facing two large and significant issues and a few organizational ones.

Significant Challenges:
1)“Presentism” in the Academy in general and in the profession
2)Visibility (including the membership issue)
3)Distinctiveness of SGRABL

The first issues are clearly related and both are indicative of changes in the profession (depressed hiring patterns in German overall over the last years, as departments contract, they hire fewer scholars in the earlier fields, etc.). As fewer courses are being taught in EM, fewer graduate students become interested and write dissertations or shy away from the field due to the lack of positions.

The question is how to react to those very real shifts in interest. I think it is the wrong strategy to buy into the “lack of relevance” argument and respond with allowing further retraction. After all, this argument can be made about all historical “non-present” fields.
Instead, I would argue that we respond with increasing the level of rhetoric arguing in favor of the relevance of historical fields for making the case to colleagues, chairs, and deans any chance we get. In order to provide these kinds of arguments, we should prepare:
· Strong mission statement
· Brief description of the value and relevance of Early Modern
· Rationalizations for field for colleagues, chairs, deans
· Foster strategic links with other units at our institutions (likely candidates: English, philosophy, history of science, history other national languages)
· Show interconnectedness of the cultures before the 19th century delineation of national literatures
· Continue to blend current theoretical insights with historical material (gender studies, sexuality study, history of the book, material culture)
· Find ways to teach modules or courses on Early Modern in less expected places: honor’s courses, thematic courses, general education courses
· Find ways to include technology into research and teaching
· I propose a corner on innovative, successful, teaching initiatives, syllabi, teaching models as recurring feature of the Newsletter. Please consider sending your materials.
· Add information on SGRABL related events in North America and Europe to the newsletter. As relevant items come across your desks or screens, please consider forwarding them to me.
· Showcase member publications in the Newsletter. Pls. send bibliographical info.
· Do we want to do brief—one paragraph—notes on new and important books to the field in the Newsletter?

I am also prepared to revitalize the relationship with Daphnis (along the lines suggested by Mara Wade), the volume “The Future of Early Modern” that I had proposed at the MLA (I attach the call for contributions) is part of this effort and is intended to address some of these larger issues facing the field. I had intended the main body of this publication along the lines of Profession with a focus on the special challenges and opportunities related to the Early Modern context. I envision those as short pieces on specific aspects such as “Visibility” “Counteracting the Tyranny of the Contemporary,” “Graduate Education,” “The Early Modern and Institutional Challenges—a Dean’s, Provost’s, Chair’s Perspective”. I very much welcome your contributions (please see the complete description on page 7).


Giving up the MLA slots would be counterproductive. After all, this is the venue where chairs and colleagues interview and young colleagues can showcase their talents. For SGRABL and the field to remain vibrant, they must retain their presence among Germanists and colleagues in other literary disciplines. As Mara said: English, French, Spanish, and Italian are there, so, too, should be German and I second all the other arguments in favor of retaining a presence at the MLA.

My immediate suggestions would be:

· to keep the MLA conference topics as broad as possible to allow as many members as possible to fit their current work in
· to encourage senior members to lend “star power” to the sessions on a more regular basis. It would be great if we could have one senior scholar in each session to make the sessions more attractive to a larger audience thus giving the junior members more visibility. I know this is burden but could be done informally. For example, if you have to attend the MLA for other business, you could signal that you might be willing to give a paper and the degree of interest, if there are several people willing—I would communicate this to these volunteers before you actually had to sit down to write the abstract, so that it is an initial minimal level of work on your part.

In addition, I agree with the excellent suggestions to seek formal or informal alliances and affiliations with the organizations suggested:

I would suggest that SGRABL seek out alliances with related societies such as:
· Frühe Neuzeit Interdisziplinär (FNI)
· Women in German (WIG)
· German Studies Association (GSA)
· Sixteenth Century Society and Conference (SCSC)
· The Renaissance Society of America
· Sixteenth Century Society and Conference (SCSC)

Mara’s point is well taken that some societies will be less receptive than others—I presume some of this might be related to how they perceive SGRABL. Thus it might be necessary to beef up the society first (I am aware that this is a “chicken and egg kind of situation).

Members in attendance at the business meeting have authorized me to sponsor sessions at conferences other than the MLA. I will organize a session at the GSA (the Call for Papers is attached as is the Call for Papers for the MLA as well.) and will pursue the WIG presence.

It would be ideal, if those of you who are closely associated with the other organizations could plan on putting together a session for each. It would be great if you could include European colleagues or personal contacts who might not be members. This would be a first step to build membership as we continue to require that people presenting at the meetings will have to be members.


· professional website enhancement
· solicit member feedback on the content
· should it move with the president
· and/or whether it would be appropriate to create an elected position of webmaster for the
· graphics and interface designed by a professional web designer
· stationary and/or electronic stationary
Increase membership:
· Recommend that Departments could offer membership funding for Grad. students
· We could offer a student travel award for presenting at one of the SGRABL sessions at the MLA or elsewhere
· Sponsor European members (as per Mara’s suggestion)
· Offer three year memberships to eliminate the hassle of annual renewals.
· Strongly urge SGRABL members to subscribe to Daphnis
· Pursue reduced subscription rates to Daphnis for graduate students or consider subsidizing the subscription fee for them.
· Pursue an add-on membership to Daphnis, which would make Daphnis subscribers SGRABL members. This would be the most promising (and least risky in terms of retaining autonomy) way to increase membership, which I intend to pursue first.
· Continue the tradition to publish clusters of papers with Daphnis as suggested by Mara.
· Hold a wine and cheese reception at the MLA (President’s suite) to network


· As Glen Ehrstine correctly pointed literary periods are customarily the domain of the MLA Divisions within the national literatures, while allied and affiliate organizations traditionally focus on an author, genre, or school of criticism. This seems is indeed a tricky issue that will require some significant discussion.
· I am not quite sure whether we could, for example, change our name to Early Modern without loosing our status at the MLA.
· Formal mergers need to be approached with caution as we could just simply be merged into another organization—as the stronger Associations will dictate the conditions. My initial reaction is to explore other options first.
· Even for successful merger discussions, SGRABL needs to be strengthened first. Maybe others are more optimistic and I’d love to hear from you individually in this public forum.
· You might want to consider the wisdom of an actual merger with FNI along the lines that Jim Parente suggests: “If we still wish to be with MLA, FNI/SGRABL could then be the affiliated organization with MLA. (FNI has been successful in affiliating itself for several years with SCSC.) FNI also has the singular advantage in that it could allow for interdisciplinary conversations among early modernists rather than just among literary scholars. (Conversely, one could argue that what we actually need is a safe-haven for literary scholars in a world populated by historians.)”
· I do not believe that it is possible to “offer up” SGRABL sessions in return for more sessions in the Division (I am not confident that the Division is in much better shape and is not faced with some of the same issues.)

Best Regards,
Karin A. Wurst
German Studies Program/ 644 Wells Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1027
Tel: 517 353-7870/Fax: 517-432-2736 e-mail:
Washington DC
Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature (SGRABL)
We are inviting proposals for two sessions on

Creating Knowledge

Papers on the ways in which knowledge — social, cultural, economic, political, and scientific — is produced in Early Modern literature and culture are welcome.
How did authors challenge established institutions, disciplines, practices, and policies to create new modes of knowledge? What was the author’s role within established institutions? What is the relationship between the production of knowledge and its dissemination through educational practices? What are innovative practices, research programs, explanatory models, and theoretical modes on the creation of knowledge?

Papers might speak to the following issues:
· The forms of display and the creation of knowledge in the natural history cabinet (Raritätenkabinett)
· The embattled issue of latinitas
· New approaches to Sprachgesellschaften
· Innovative insights from the history of science
· The role of the family as creator of social knowledge
· The writer and his/her role in taste formation
· Sociability as a form of social and cultural knowledge
· Games and other leisure pastimes as creators of knowledge
· The portrayal of travel as creator of cultural/political knowledge
· The objects of material culture and the creation of knowledge
· Fashion as conveyor of social and political knowledge

Papers may focus on specific writers or works or take a thematic approach.

Papers might also focus on the way we, as scholars of the Early Modern, create and convey knowledge on our field to students, graduate students, administrators and the public at large. How do we argue for the importance of the Early Modern in a “presentist” academic and general cultural climate?

Send one to two-page abstracts by MARCH 10, 2005 to
Karin A. Wurst
German Studies Program/ 644 Wells Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1027
Tel: 517 353-7870/Fax: 517-432-2736 e-mail:

German Studies Association 2005
Milwaukee, September 28-October 1, 2005

Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature (SGRABL)

Topic: The Politics of Splendor

We invite innovative contributions on the political and social implications of “splendor” in literary and cultural artifacts in the Early Modern period. Papers on the importance of the visual display of power as well as on the power of the word are welcome. Papers may focus on specific writers or works, take a thematic approach or focus on theoretical approaches to the deployment of power (Norbert Elias, Michel Foucault etc.).

Papers could focus on:

· Festkultur
· The politics of fashion
· The cultural politics of display in the natural history cabinet
· The Splendor of the illustration in the book
· The relevance of the physical appearance of the book
· The theater of splendor
· The staging of splendor and power in the baroque tragedy
· Splendor in the garden
· Visual and textual representation of the splendid city
· Rhetoric and the construction and deployment of verbal splendor
· The splendor of the exotic

One panel on this topic was submitted to the GSA.

Call for Contributions
The Future of Early Modern Studies

I’d like to propose a volume with the working title “The Future of Early Modern Studies” on the basis of the topics posted for the SGRABL (Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature) session this year. As SGRABL has done in the past, I hope to secure a Sonderheft of Daphnis for this publication. I encourage the MLA speakers to submit an article based on their paper but want to issue a wider call for contributions to other members of SGRABL or interested colleagues.

I invite contributions to a conversation on the state of affairs in teaching the early modern period in our curricula in response to various developments: the emphasis on accountability, the significant pressures to reexamine curricula with an eye to “relevance’ and practical application, prompted in part by decreasing financial support to public universities.

How do we react to these pressures in our research and teaching missions? What justification do we give for the continued vibrancy of the field? Contributors could address issues such as: successful pedagogical models, linking the study of the Early Modern with other skills (for example, technology, extensive writing, digital writing etc.), topic or problem-based teaching, drawing explicit connection to contemporary issues, alternate delivery models (distance learning, collaborative initiatives, efforts of consolidating resources, team teaching with colleagues form other disciplines), innovative curricular revisions.

A second emphasis could be on the topic of interdisciplinarity in early modern studies. The concept of the “discipline” has undergone significant changes in recent decades, most readily apparent in the rise of cultural studies with its inherent interdisciplinarity. How has this methodological shift changed our research and teaching practice in the German Early Modern Period?

Proposals are invited on topics such as: innovative theoretical approaches to the field, discussion of productive interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary intersections and topics, interdisciplinary of multidisciplinary delivery models at the College and University level, how has interdisciplinary research impacted the field and the curriculum, institutional ramifications of the increasing permeability of disciplinary boundaries.

I see the proposed volume as divided into three parts:
A general assessment of the state of affairs (length: ca: 20-25 pages), modes of interdisciplinarity as offering potential enhancement of the field (15-20 pages), and a practical ideas and suggestion part with short contributions (5-10 pages).

Send one to two-page abstracts by March 15, 2005
Completed articles are due October 30, 2005

Karin A. Wurst by e-mail:
or mail:
Karin A. Wurst German Studies Program
644 Wells Hall
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824-1027

Glasgow Emblem Studies
Vol. 10: Emblematic Tendencies in the Art and Literature of the Twentieth Century
Edited by †Anthony J. Harper and Ingrid Höpel. To be published in autumn 2005.
This volume, originally conceived as a collaborative project by Dr Ingrid Höpel (University of Kiel, Germany) and Emeritus Professor Anthony J. Harper (University of Strathclyde, and formerly Edinburgh) will be published as a tribute to Tony. In what was for Tony a new direction, it explores connections between the traditional emblem book of the Renaissance and Baroque periods and very diverse and experimental developments in both art and literature of the 20th century. It should thus interest a wide readership.
Contents: articles listed in alphabetical order by author
Anthony J. Harper, an Appreciation
Hubertus von Amelunxen (Lübeck): Emblematische Tendenzen in der digitalen Fotografie
Michael Bath (Glasgow/Strathclyde): Hamilton Finlay’s Inheritance
Jochen Becker (Utrecht): Porträt-Montage von El Lissitzky
Paulette Choné (Dijon): George Herriman, Krazy Kat (Cartoons)
Lawrence Grove (Glasgow): Emblematic Tendencies in Comics
Anthony J. Harper (Strathclyde): Notes on two Twentieth Century Emblematic Works by Escher / Hoogewerff and Ian Hamilton Finlay
Ingrid Höpel (Kiel): “Spoken Things” von Agnes Hegedüs – Emblematik auf CD-Rom
Ulrich Kuder (Kiel): Emblematik und Kunst
Pjotr Rypson (Warschau): Developments in Emblematic Thinking in Twentieth Century Art
Clare Willsdon (Glasgow): Aspects of Klimt’s Landscape Painting and the Emblem Tradition
Tabula in memoriam: An invitation is here extended to all those who would wish to have their name included on the Tabula in memoriam. All orders received by 1 April 2005 entitle you to have your name included in the Tabula in memoriam and to purchase the volume at the special rate of £17 ($32.50; €24.50; usual price £20). Please use the form overleaf.
To be returned, before 1 April 2005, to: Professor Alison Adams, Centre for Emblem Studies, Modern Languages Building, University of Glasgow, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland.

I wish to order a copy of Emblematic Tendencies in the Art and Literature of the Twentieth Century, edited by Anthony J. Harper and Ingrid Höpel (Glasgow: Glasgow Emblem Studies, 2005) at the special subscription rate of £17.00, and to have my name inscribed on the Tabula in memoriam. Libraries are eligible for inclusion on the Tabula in memoriam.
*Name: Address:
* Names on the Tabula in memoriam will be expressed (without title) in the form ‘John Smith’, or ‘Mary J. Anderson’. Names of libraries will be expressed in the form ‘Glasgow University Library’, or ‘National Library of Scotland’.
If the name to be included on the Tabula in memoriam is different from the one indicated above, or if you do NOT wish your name to be included on the Tabula in memoriam, please specify.
Please send payment with your order. Payment can be made by cheque in Sterling (GBP), Euros (EUR) or US Dollars (USD) by one of the following methods.
1. Cheque: Please make cheques payable to: University of Glasgow.
2. Credit Card: Mastercard [ ] or Visa [ ] ONLY. Please indicate which. Cards will be charged in Sterling (GBP), and be subject to a £1 surcharge.
Card Number: [ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ][ ]
Expiry date: [ ][ ] / [ ][ ]
Holder’s name as it appears on the Card: Signature:
Statement Address: Telephone contact number (if possible):
To: Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature:
Subject: CFP: Presence of the Past – Friendship (Div. on German Lit. to
1700; MLA 2005)

The Division on German Literature to 1700 of the Modern Language
Association announces the following topics for three sessions at the
2005 MLA convention, to be held 27-30 December 2005 in Washington,
Submissions on modern cultural manifestations arising from encounters
with the pre-Enlightenment past: representations, adaptations, etc.
Preference given to topics with broader relevance.
Submissions on the manifold literary representations that reflected
and constructed the culture of friendship in medieval and early
modern Europe, including, but not limited to, German-speaking lands.
All participants in MLA convention sessions must be members of the
organization by 7 April 2005. Please send 1-page abstracts via email,
fax, or surface mail by March 14 to:
Glenn Ehrstine
Associate Professor
University of Iowa
Department of German
111 Phillips Hall
Iowa City, IA 52242
Fax ?335-2270

From: Peter Hess []
Subject: CFP: SCSC in Atlanta (Oct. 20-23)

The annual conference of the Sixteenth Century Society and Conference
(SCSC) has become one of the most important conferences in our field
today. Its focus is the “long” sixteenth century, that is the period
from about 1450 to 1660. Its geographical scope is as worldwide as its membership,
but the main focus of most panels, about 140 at each conference, is
continental Europe. The conference is truly interdisciplinary: historians, art
historians, musicologists, and of course literary scholars present their
I would like to encourage you to submit an abstract for the paper–the
application deadline is March 15. I am responsible for putting together
the panels on German literature. You may submit proposal for individual
papers or for entire panels. You should use the online submission system:
Your proposal will automatically be forwarded to me. Please let me know
If you have any questions.
Peter Hess/Department of Germanic Studies
1 University Station C3300
The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX 78712-0304

phone (512) 232-6362
departmental office (512) 471-4123
fax (512) 471-4025


SGRABL Elections and Business Meeting

This year’s business meeting will take place right at the end of the second session organized by SGRABL at the 119th MLA Annual Convention in San Diego, on December 28, 12-1:15 p.m., Solana, San Diego Marriott. Since the current Vice President, Karin Wurst, Department of Linguistics, Germanic, Slavic, African, Asian Languages, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, will assume the presidency of our organization beginning in 2004, we will have to elect a new Vice President/President Elect. Nominations are most welcome at this point, and should go either to the current President, Albrecht Classen (, or to the Vice President ( Both the membership and especially the current Vice President are invited to submit a topic for next year’s MLA convention.

MLA 2003

SGRABL is sponsoring two sessions at the 2003 Annual Convention of the MLA in San Diego:

1. No. 85: Family and Family Relations in German Renaissance and Baroque Literature I:

Saturday, Dec. 27, 5:15-6:30 p.m., Columbia 3, San Diego Marriot

Presiding: Cornelia N. Moore, University of Hawai’i at Manoa

1. Daniel E. Lloyd, North Central College: “‘Kein guter Baum gibt böse Frucht’: Parenting for Dummies in the Lalebuch

2. Patrick Fortmann, Harvard University: “Performing Culture: Harsdörffer’s Frauenzimmer Gesprechspiele (1641-49)

3. Sigmund J. Barber, Grinnell College: “Death, Destruction, and Sleepless Nights: Moscherosch’s Concern for His Children in Insomnis Cura Parentum


2. No. 271: Family and Family Relations in German Renaissance and Baroque Literature II:

Presiding: Albrecht Classen, University of Arizona

1. Cecilia M. Pick, Southern Illinois University, Carbondale: “Domestic Order as Allegory for Political Order in Sebastian Brant’s Narrenschiff”

2. Judith Popovich Aikin, University of Iowa: “Royal Births, Royal Babies, Dynastic Disasters: Problem Pregnancies, Infant Mortality, and Infant Care Viewed through the Eyes of Aemilia Juliana of Schwarzenburg-Rudolstadt (1637-1706)

3. Cornelia N. Moore, University of Hawai’i at Manoa: “Family and Family Relations in the Funeral Biography”


Other sessions in the premodern period offered at the MLA are:

No. 322: Sunday Dec. 28, 3:30-4:45 p.m., Boardroom, San Diego Marriott: Power / Powerlessness: Topics on Catharina Regina von Greiffenberg (Lynne Tatlock); Herzog Ernst (Rosmarie Morewedge); Anna Laminit (Kirsten M. Christensen).

No. 393: Sunday Dec. 28, 7:15-8:30 p.m., Manchester Ballroom D, Manchester Grand Hyatt. Topics on: Wolfram von Eschenbach (Sumie L. Song); Hartmann von Aue (Will Hasty); Walther von der Vogelweide (Mary Ballard Paddock).

No. 424: Monday Dec. 29, 8:30-9:45 a.m., Solana, San Diego Marriott: Gender and Authority: Topics on Women’s Identity in Anonymous Poetry (Judith Aikin), Frau Ava (Ernst Ralf Hintz); Jörg Wickram (Jutta Emig).


Further sessions in German Literature: A. General; B. Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries; C. Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries; D. Twentieth Century.

There are not yet any sessions on Twenty-First Century Literature — I wonder why. At least the Renaissance, Reformation, and Baroque are very much alive.



Membership in SGRABL is $3 per annum, sustaining membership is
$15.  Daphnis is $35 per year for members.  Dues and subscription payments
to Marian Sperberg-McQueen’s home address (259 St. Rd. 399 / Espanola, NM 87532).  Subscription requests should be in by 4/15/04.  You can also reach her via e-mail:


One of the most significant changes for SGRABL in 2003 was the establishment of an official webpage (, which offers, apart from a lot of different kinds of information, also a copy of our by-laws and a list of the officers. We now also have a SGRABL distribution list, maintained, like the webpage, by Albrecht Classen. If you have any news or inquiry you would like to post, please contact him and he will immediately forward your message.


For 2004 SGRABL needs to elect a Vice President.  Moreover, our Treasurer, Marian Sperberg-McQueen, will step down by the end of 2004, and we will need to appoint a new person to replace her.

Sincerely yours,

Albrecht Classen

Business Meeting at the MLA 2004, Dec. 28, San Diego:

Albrecht Classen presided over the business meeting and reported of the changes that happened under his presidency.  We now have a distribution list for the membership, and a constantly updated webpage.  The Society needs to find not only a new treasurer, but also a new vice president, but since no one had come forward, upon Karin Wurst’s recommendation (absent because of family emergency) the idea was discussed to extend Classen’s Presidency and Wurst’s Vice Presidency for one more year to give us time to find a new vice president.  Judith Aikin moved to accept this proposal which would apply only to 2004, after which Wurst would succeed as President and with a new Vice President elected via the distribution list. This would not require a change of our by-laws. Motion was seconded by Cornelia Moore.   Motion carried with all present voting in favor.

Classen will put together the package required by the MLA to review our Society by May 2004, due by March 1, 2004. He asked the members for their assistance.

Classen also asked for a change of point two in our by-laws concerning the historical period covered by our society.  Instead of limiting ourselves to the 16th and 17th centuries, the by-laws should state that we are covering the period from the fifteenth through the early eighteenth century.  This change will be submitted to the membership and voted on electronically in January.

Lynne Tatlock requested that the call for dues payment should be sent out separately.

Respectfully submitted,

Albrecht Classen (Jan. 1, 2004)

SGRABL Elections and Business Meeting
This year’s business meeting will take place right at the end of the second session organized by SGRABL at the 120th MLA Annual Convention in Philadelphia, on December 30, 12-1:15 p.m., Adams, Loews. Since the current Vice President, Karin Wurst, Department of Linguistics, Germanic, Slavic, African, Asian Languages, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, is nominated to assume the presidency of our organization beginning in 2005, we will have to elect a new Vice President/President Elect. Nominations are most welcome at this point, and should go either to the current President, Albrecht Classen (, or to our two past presidents, Glenn Ehrstine ( and Peter Hess (

At this point we have one candidate, Jonathan Clark, whose brief bio follows below. His candidacy has been discussed and approved by the nominating committee:

“I received my Ph.D. from UC Berkeley in 1987. I have since taught at the Johns Hopkins University, Rutgers University—New Brunswick and Concordia College, where I am currently associate professor and chair. My research has primarily dealt with fanatics and heretics of the Early Modern Period, especially Quirinus Kuhlmann, but I have also investigated the image of women and questions of gender in the Early Modern Period. Currently I am collaborating on a book with Karl Otto, Jr. on the brothers Christoph and Daniel Klesch. Also, you are invited to submit a topic/topics for next year’s MLA convention. As vice president I would further promote research in German literature of the Renaissance and Baroque. I am also interested in strengthening interdisciplinary endeavors and to encourage innovative approaches to teaching the Early Modern Period.

We will also need a new treasurer, and Bethany Wiggin, University of Pennsylvania, has volunteered to step in for Marian Sperberg-McQueen. Her biographical statement follows:

“An assistant professor at the University of Pennsylvania since 2003, I am completing a monograph on the early German novel (1680-1750). I arrived at Penn after completing a dissertation in December 2002 at the University of Minnesota under the direction of James A. Parente, Jr. At present I am teaching a graduate seminar on German Literary History to the eighteenth century and a freshman seminar entitled “Censored! A History of Book Censorship,” a topic for which I hold an abiding interest.

We will have to vote on this position as well during our business meeting.
Further nominations for all positions are welcome at this point.

MLA 2004
SGRABL is sponsoring two sessions at the 2004 Annual Convention of the MLA in Philadelphia: Tuesday, 28 December

249. Teaching the Early Modern Period: A Roundtable

3:30–4:45 p.m., Congress B, Loews

Program arranged by the Society for German Renaissance and Baroque Literature
Thursday, 30 December
715. The Early Modern Period as Interdisciplinary Enterprise
12:00 noon–1:15 p.m., Adams, Loews

Membership in SGRABL is $3 per annum, sustaining membership is $15. Daphnis is $35 per year for members. Dues and subscription payments to Marian Sperberg-McQueen’s home address (259 St. Rd. 399 / Espanola, NM 87532). Subscription requests should be in by 4/15/04. You can also reach her via e-mail:

Allied Organization Status
At this point our membership is at a dangerously low level. Our organization just went through a review process by the Program Committee of the MLA. With the help of many former officers and long-time members of SGRABL I had put together the entire package, and our allied organization status was renewed. Unfortunately, this time only for a two-year period, rather than the usual seven years.

1. MLA expects from us to demonstrate that we are truly distinct from the Division on German Literature to 1700
2. We need to demonstrate involvement of a large and diverse portion of the society’s membership in its activities
3. We need to increase our membership

At the end of two years, we will be asked to supply evidence of improvement in these three areas. I have tried to contact the Director of Convention Programs, Maribeth T. Kraus, several times to request a compromise of at least four years, but I have not yet heard back from her.
We need your help on all three fronts, especially regarding membership.
Please make sure to attend our MLA sessions and the Business meeting.

Sincerely yours,

Albrecht Classen, President

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