In: KulturPoetik 2003, Heft 2


Andreas Frewer/Stefanie Stockhorst


Bibliomanie als Krankheit und Kulturphänomen. Pathographische Fallstudien zur Rezeption von Magister Tinius (1768–1846)




The paper seeks to analyse the case of the theologian Tinius, one of the best-known representatives of ›book-addiction‹ (bibliomania), as it is described in authentic contemporary documents, popular literature and fictionalised adaptations. Explanations of the phenomenon range from a special socialisation, rational calculation, criminal anthropology, and the ›Faustian urge for knowledge‹, to diabolical bibliophily and a theology of sin. A historical synopsis shows the heterogeneity of the contemporary criminal and psychiatric discourse on bibliomania as a ›literary disease‹. The continuing reception of the bibliomania exemplified by Tinius in a variety of literary genres suggests that it incorporates a considerable amount of ›social energy‹, based on the fascination with the ›Other‹ of reason.