In: KulturPoetik 2010, Heft 2


Burkhard Meyer-Sickendiek


Vom Grübeln. Ein Beitrag zur »Poetologie des Wissens«




Ever since Susan Nolen-Hoeksemas eminent studies, the mechanism of »rumination« is at the centre of (neuro-)psychological interests. Rumination is generally considered as being unhealthy and is associated with depression: a thesis that is hard to agree with from the perspective of cultural studies. The Romantics developed a kind of »fashion of rumination«, and Walter Benjamin was even enthusiastic about the »whole wealth of ancient ruminations«. My paper explains this fascination of rumination by focussing on the dimension of depth, which became one of the central themes of German Romanticism since Novalis. By comparing these two different ideas of »rumination« – the scientific one introduced by Susan Nolen-Hoeksema and the more poetological one represented by German Romanticism and, later on, by Walter Benjamin – this paper also contributes to the current discussion concerning the »poetology of knowledge«