Fictie, waarheid en verdichting. Het Rijnlandse en het Angelsaksische genre-systeem voor verhalend proza in de negentiende eeuw

Toos Streng


Genres help readers to decide what to read and how to read it. This article researches which aspects were highlighted by the genre designations in the (sub)titles of the circa 6700 original Dutch and translated novels, published in the Netherlands between 1790 and 1899. It turns out that the labels (among others) indicated where to place the text on the scale of truth versus invention. This is shown by an analysis, firstly of the meaning of the genre designation ‘historical novel’ and, secondly, by the way Dutch publishers dealt with genre-designations in the titles of translated novels. Moreover, these cases show a substantial difference between the Dutch and German genre system on the one hand and the Anglo-Saxon genre system on the other, a distinction that is lost when around 1900 the concept of ‘fiction’ became common in the Netherlands.

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