Een onbekende klassieker: de Camera Obscura uit 1839

Gert de Jager


Camera Obscura (1839) by Hildebrand is generally considered to be a masterpiece in nineteenth century Dutch realism. In the second half of the nineteenth century the collection of stories, sketches and essays was expanded to double its original size and from that time on it gained a huge popularity. The readers, however, showed a strong preference for some of the stories that presented an idyllic picture of Holland before the industrialization. In doing that, they neglected the overall design of the book -- especially that of the first edition. The first edition was conceived by a 25-year old author who was a student entering society. His description of human behaviour was prompted by the concern that human beings might not fulfil their destiny and express themselves according to what he considered to be their nature. The ten texts that make up the first edition, how diverse in character they may be, deserve to be read in their original context.

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© Tijdschrift voor Nederlandse Taal- en Letterkunde | ISSN (print): 0040-7550 | eISSN (online): 2212-0521