In: KulturPoetik 2009, Heft 1


Michael Dominik Hagel


Republic und Capital-Vestung. Aufzeichnungen zu Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft in Johann Gottfried Schnabels Wunderlichen FATA (1731-1743)




J. G. Schnabel’s Wunderliche FATA einiger Seefahrer has frequently been approached as a hybrid of the genres of the robinsonade and the utopia, as the point where the static collective intersects with an individual recapitulation of the genesis of civilization. This paper traces how, in Schnabel’s text, the account of the establishment of the commonwealth is interwoven with a history of media and communication. The stages of orality, literacy, and diagrammatic forms of representation correlate with the starting point of wreckage, agriculture, and the differentiation of handicrafts, and with the changes in the political organization of the growing population of the island. The text can thus be placed in the history of ideas as well as in the history of literary utopias.