© 2020

Cultural Controversies in the West German Public Sphere

Aesthetic Fiction and the Creation of Social Identities


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xi
  2. Marcela Knapp
    Pages 1-28
  3. Marcela Knapp
    Pages 29-67
  4. Marcela Knapp
    Pages 315-325
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 327-331

About this book


This book develops a theory of aesthetic fiction’s impact on social identities. Throughout five case studies, the author develops the argument that social identities are nurtured by and may even emerge through the conflict between different aesthetic expressions. As it creates affective structures, narrative fiction enables the development and formation of political and cultural identities. 

This work is part of a field of research that deals with the aesthetics of the everyday and the idea of social aesthetics. It argues for a central role for the arts in the creation and formation of modern society. Social identities emerge in response to aesthetic-sensual patterns of perception.

Focusing on five West German public debates in the years 1950 to 1990, this work sheds light upon the transformation of social reality through the discursive adaption of art.

Dr. Marcela Knapp is a cultural sociologist. She lives and works in Berlin.


Aesthetic Fiction Social Identities Aesthetic Form Aesthetics of the Everyday Social Aesthetics West Germany and Cultural Production

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of SociologyJustus Liebig University GiessenGiessenGermany

About the authors

Marcela Knapp is a lecturer at Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany. Her work has been published in Osterreichische Zeitschrift für Soziologie (Austrian Journal for Sociology) and Revista de Estudios Globales y Arte Contemporáneo (Journal of Global Studies and Contemporary Art). Knapp received her PhD in Sociology from Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany.

Bibliographic information