Research Projects

Three joint research projects form the core of the association. They will intensify cooperation between the three institutions by jointly pursuing current lines of inquiry in textual, visual, book and media studies as well as in the history of ideas. This research will be conducted from perspectives based on the three institutions’ holdings. In each case, content design, methodological differentiation and concrete implementation of the projects are the responsibility of research groups comprised of the research staff from the three institutions and internationally renowned figures in the scholary community. The association’s research projects will be supplemented by the implementation of a “Virtual Research Environment.”

Research Project Writers´ Libraries
Materiality – Orders of Knowledge – Performance

Reading materials of a writer – Goethe’s private library (© Klassik Stiftung Weimar, Foto: Jens Hauspurg)

This research project concerns writers’ libraries: priorities within collections, intellectual profiles and performative framings, as well as their relationship to public and semi-public libraries. At the same time, the project examines writers’ libraries as sites where new knowledge is produced and as evidence of transformation in scholary and poetic practices.

Research Project Manager: PD Dr. Stefan Höppner (Weimar)
Research Project Associates: Caroline Jessen (Marbach), Dr. Jörn Münkner (Wolfenbüttel)
Librarians: Ulrike Trenkmann (Weimar), Katrin Schmidt (Wolfenbüttel)

Research Project Politics of the Image
Authors’ portraits and iconic authorisation

Almanac of the Muses, 1794 (© DLA Marbach)

The project assembles current approaches in research on texts and images in order to highlight the central concept of “'iconic authorisation” based on the holdings of the network institutions. It examines the functional mechanisms of authors’ portraits and their predecessors in literary discourse.


Research Project Associates: Daniel Berndt (Marbach, Prof. Dr. Christian Hecht (Weimar), Dr. Henrike Haug (Wolfenbüttel)
Librarian: Jens Schramm (Marbach)

Research Project Text and Frame
Modes of Presenting Canonical Works

Text of the 136th psalm with accompanying commentary by Augustine and Cassiodorus in a hand-painted incunabula, Strasbourg before 1481 (© HAB)

The Bible, Faust, the Classics: what is it that makes them canonical? The project works on the hypothesis that an appeal to the senses plays a decisive part. This lies, for example, in the tangible and visible materiality of books, but also in presentations in words, gestures, and song. The research group will analyse how canons are subject to trends and examine the conditions and limitations of the media employed, thus providing a critique of collections in the Enlightenment sense of the term.

Research Project Associates: PD Dr. Philip Ajouri (Marbach), PD Dr. Carsten Rohde (Weimar), Dr. Valentina Sebastiani (Wolfenbüttel)