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Advocating Awareness: The Development of Peter Handke's Concept of Language

Umpierrez, Erica (2010)
Honors Thesis (55 pages)
Committee Chair / Thesis Adviser: Aue, Maximilian
Committee Members: Maxim, Hiram ; Bing, Thomas ;
Research Fields: Literature, Germanic
Keywords: Peter Handke ; Kaspar; The Ride Across Lake Constance ; Wittgenstein
Program: College Honors Program, German
Permanent url: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/7tqnp

Abstract

Abstract
Advocating Awareness: The Development of Peter Handke's Concept of Language
By Erica Umpierrez

Relatively early in his career, Austrian author Peter Handke took an idiosyncratic look at the area of language. His first full-length play, Kaspar (1967), about the legendary Kaspar Hauser explores human socialization through language. In Kaspar, Handke is establishing the processes and consequences of language acquisition, while in his second play, The Ride Across Lake Constance (1971), he presents how we use this tool. Therefore, Handke's second play affords a different insight into language because we are finally able to watch how language works between speakers. In the secondary literature there is a great deal of uncertainty about the reception of Wittgenstein in Handke's Kaspar and The Ride Across Lake Constance. Wittgenstein's influence on Handke has been either overestimated or underappreciated. I shall show, however, that the plays are not primarily the refutation or the explication of Wittgenstein's thoughts. Handke, like Wittgenstein, sees language as the key to our experience of reality and accordingly assigns great power to language. Never doubting the authority or necessity of language and language systems, Handke warns his readers to never stop questioning the extent to which this force is controlling and limiting us.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents:

Introduction - p.1

Kaspar - p.4

The Ride Across Lake Constance - p.27

Conclusion - p.45







Files

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