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On Writing with Photography$
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Karen Beckman and Liliane Weissberg

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780816674695

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816674695.001.0001

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Sphinxes without Secrets

Sphinxes without Secrets

W. G. Sebald’s Albums and the Aesthetics of Photographic Exchange

Chapter:
(p.254) 11 Sphinxes without Secrets
Source:
On Writing with Photography
Author(s):

Adrian Daub

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816674695.003.0011

This chapter focuses on the dynamic interactions instituted between W. G. Sebald’s writing and photographs, creating a false dichotomy that implies perfect interpenetration of word and image on one hand, and absolute privileging of the written word on the other. It considers the third part of Sebald’s book The Emigrants, which contains the biography of Ambros Adelwarth, Sebald’s great uncle. The Emigrants describes homosexuality as a tension between promise and catastrophe, and viewed through a visual and historically structured intertext.

Keywords:   W. G. Sebald, writing, photographs, false dichotomy, The Emigrants, Ambros Adelwarth, homosexuality

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