Writing History: Why "Ferdinand der Andere" Is Called "Wallenstein"

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book


Döblin’s assertion that his "Wallenstein" should have been called “Ferdinand der Andere” has been widely accepted. This chapter establishes that Wallenstein holds a central place in the novel, and that Döblin’s interests in fact shifted from Wallenstein when he began writing in 1916, to Ferdinand by the novel’s completion in 1919/20. Re-establishing Wallenstein’s importance re-emphasises the historical in a text that challenged the genre of the historical novel: Döblin did not break with the genre’s basic principles, but pressed them further than before, undermining the ‘historicist’ belief that the past imparts meaning. The chapter then examines Wallenstein’s significance in Döblin’s context as an army doctor in the First World War. Finally it examines the influence of Germany’s most prominent Wallenstein – Schiller’s dramatic character – on Döblin, using marginalia in Döblin’s copy of Schiller as a guide to the two works’ common themes.
Translated title of the contributionWriting History: Why "Ferdinand der Andere" Is Called "Wallenstein"
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAlfred Döblin: Paradigms of Modernism
EditorsSteffan Davies, Ernest Schonfield
PublisherBerlin: de Gruyter and London: Institute of Germanic and Romance Studies
Pages121 - 143
Number of pages23
ISBN (Print)9783110217698
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Bibliographical note

Other identifier: 9780854572229
Other: Publications of the Institute of Germanic Studies, vol. 95

Structured keywords

  • Institute of Greece, Rome, and the Classical Tradition


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  • Nachwort

    Translated title of the contribution: AfterwordDavies, S. G., 2014, Alfred Döblin: Wallenstein. Frankfurt am Main: S. Fischer Verlag, p. 899-925 (Alfred Döblin: Gesammelte Werke; vol. 5).

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book

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