Een noodzakelijk kwaad. De Franse roman en de meningsvorming over de roman in Nederland (1830-1875)

Toos Streng


Abstract – This article elaborates on the importance of the French novel in Holland between 1830 and 1875. Its poetic significance is inversely proportional to the number of translations. Novels translated from French were deemed inappropriate for reading societies and the supply remained limited to novels of lower quality, that were bought by less distinguished reading libraries. However, the French novel was indispensable for the debate on poetics. The increasing importance of the novel as a genre necessitated critics to develop a poetic of the novel, but their ethos inhibited a sharp debate on the work of contemporary Dutch authors. French authors and their novels, however, were freely discussed in Dutch elite magazines. As a result, the French novel was not seen only as an evil, but a necessary evil, that in the Netherlands of the nineteenth century served an artistic, polemic and social purpose. Moreover is shown that author-focused reception studies will easily lead to false conclusions.

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