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01/20/2022 14:44

German-Danish literary history: digitalisation of the literary remains of Jens Baggesen

Eva Sittig Presse, Kommunikation und Marketing
Christian-Albrechts-Universität zu Kiel

    The German Research Foundation (DFG) is funding the project of around €150,000

    A total of 16,200 pages from part of the literary remains of the Danish writer Jens Baggesen (1764-1826) are to be digitalised over the coming months and years. These include letters and personal documents, fragments of plays and translated pieces, poems and aphorisms, as well as family albums, documents and invoices of the “Danish Wieland”. Participating in the project are the Specialised Information Service for Northern Europe at Kiel University Library and the Institute of Scandinavian Studies, Frisian Studies and General Linguistics/ Department of Scandinavian Studies (ISFAS) at Kiel University.

    Valuable and delicate works wait to be processed in the fortified vaults of the Central Library. Many of them have never been published. This is now about to change: a total of 16,200 pages from part of the literary remains of the Danish writer Jens Baggesen (1764-1826) are to be digitalised over the coming months and years. These include letters and personal documents, fragments of plays and translated pieces, poems and aphorisms, as well as family albums, documents and invoices of the “Danish Wieland”. Participating in the project are the Specialised Information Service (FID) for Northern Europe at Kiel University Library and the Institute of Scandinavian Studies, Frisian Studies and General Linguistics/ Department of Scandinavian Studies (ISFAS) at Kiel University. The German Research Foundation (DFG) is providing funding of €151,600 for the project.

    The Danish writer Jens Baggesen was a passionate advocate of the European Enlightenment and supporter of the French Revolution. As a well-connected cosmopolitan, he travelled all over Europe. He wrote his books in Danish and German. The travel story “Das Labyrinth” (Danish: “Labyrinten”) is his most famous work. In it, he describes an account of his journey from Copenhagen to Basel in 1789, the year of the French Revolution. He also spent time in Kiel. Many years later, from 1811 to 1813, he took on the position of first professor of Scandinavian studies there and was committed to peaceful cooperation between the nations. Contemporaries compared him to Christoph Martin Wieland, the famous German proponent of the Enlightenment. Baggesen died in Hamburg in 1826 and is buried in the Eichhof cemetery in Kiel.

    “The Institute of Scandinavian Studies is grateful that by sorting and digitalising the literary remains of Jens Baggesen, part of the departmental and institutional history at Kiel University will also finally be visible to a comprehensive extent,” said Karin Hoff, Professor of Modern Scandinavian Literature at Kiel University and co-applicant for the project funding. “Baggesen was the first professor of Danish language and literature at Kiel University and now researchers will be able to access a large number of as yet unexplored works, correspondence and translations.”

    The project application was prepared in close collaboration with Professor Anna Sandberg of the University of Copenhagen. What is very important, according to Sandberg, is the fact “that Jens Baggesen’s bilingual authorship and Danish-German biography will be more visible and accessible by sorting and digitalising his literary remains.” “In doing this, we are updating the historic link between Copenhagen and Kiel. The writings and letters in Kiel University Library and Landesarchiv Schleswig-Holstein (Schleswig-Holstein State Archive) are an important piece of German-Danish cultural heritage that researchers will be able to access from around the world once they are digitalised.”

    Landesarchiv Schleswig-Holstein in Schleswig, which also has archived documents on Baggesen, is another project partner. “We are delighted that the literary remains held in Schleswig will be explored in greater depth thanks to this cross-institutional and cross-departmental project. It means they can be used more intensively and put into clearer context with other literary remains that have been passed down,” explained Professor Rainer Hering, Director of Landesarchiv Schleswig-Holstein.

    More information on Jens Baggesen:
    http://www.uni-kiel.de/grosse-forscher/index.php?nid=baggesen

    Photos are available for download at:
    http://www.uni-kiel.de/de/pressemitteilungen/2022/008-baggesen-portrait.jpg
    Christian Hornemann: Portrait of Jens Baggesen.
    © Jürgen Haacks, Kiel University

    http://www.uni-kiel.de/de/pressemitteilungen/2022/008-baggesen-handschrift.jpg
    One of Jens Baggesen’s manuscripts to be digitised.
    © Denise Petersen, UB Kiel

    http://www.uni-kiel.de/de/pressemitteilungen/2022/008-baggesen-kick-off.jpg
    Workshop of the lead project partners from Kiel and Copenhagen at the Central Library (from left): Dr Ruth Sindt (Head of FID North at Kiel UB), Prof. Dr Karin Hoff, Prof. Dr Anna Sandberg, Dr Kerstin Helmkamp (Director of Kiel UB).
    © Denise Petersen, UB Kiel

    Contact:
    Dr Rüdiger Schütt
    PR division at Kiel University Library
    Telephone: +49 (0)431 880 5419
    E-mail: schuett@ub.uni-kiel.de

    Kiel University
    Press, Communication and Marketing, Claudia Eulitz, Text/editing: Dr. Rüdiger Schütt/Christin Beeck
    Postal address: D-24098 Kiel, Germany, Telephone: +49 431 880-2104, Fax: +49 431 880-1355
    E-mail: presse@uv.uni-kiel.de, Internet: www.uni-kiel.de Twitter: www.twitter.com/kieluni
    Facebook: www.facebook.com/kieluni Instagram: www.instagram.com/kieluni


    Contact for scientific information:

    Dr Rüdiger Schütt
    PR division at Kiel University Library
    Telephone: +49 (0)431 880 5419
    E-mail: schuett@ub.uni-kiel.de


    More information:

    http://Link to the press release (including a Danish version): www.uni-kiel.de/en/details/news/008-ub-baggesen


    Criteria of this press release:
    Journalists, Scientists and scholars
    Language / literature, Philosophy / ethics
    transregional, national
    Research projects, Studies and teaching
    English


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