Christian Schneider

Christian Schneider

Associate Professor of German
PhD, Dr. habil., Ruprecht-Karls-Universität, Heidelberg
research interests:
  • Medieval and Early Modern German Literature
  • Historical Narrative Theory and Medieval Poetics
  • Medieval Courtly Culture
  • History of Knowledge and Science
  • Medieval Media and Adaptation
  • Textual Editing
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  • On Leave
  • Fall 2019 and Spring 2020
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  • Washington University
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  • St. Louis, MO 63130-4899
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Professor Schneider's research and teaching interests are in medieval and early modern literature, with a focus on narrative theory and poetics, late medieval court literature, and pre-modern history of thought and knowledge.

Christian Schneider is the author of Hovezuht (2008), a monograph on the nature and functioning of literary discourses on courtliness in late medieval court societies. His second book, Logiken des Erzählens (forthcoming with De Gruyter), examines the logic of storytelling in vernacular epics from the 12th and 13th centuries. In addition to essays on topics ranging from the concept of "fictionality" in pre-modern literature to late medieval and early modern scientific writings, he has co-edited five essay anthologies, among them Erzähllogiken in der Literatur des Mittelalters und der Frühen Neuzeit (2013), Knowledge in Motion: Constructing Transcultural Experience in the Medieval and Early Modern Periods (1200–1750) (2017, with Gerhild Scholz Williams), and Der "Welsche Gast" des Thomasin von Zerklaere: Neue Perspektiven auf eine alte Verhaltenslehre in Text und Bild (forthcoming with Heidelberg University Publishing).

Professor Schneider's teaching covers the full range of medieval and early modern literature, with a particular interest in the aesthetics and poetics of medieval literary culture. His course offerings include general courses in German language and culture and the history of the German language. He also teaches in the program in Comparative Literature and the Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities and currently serves as Director of Undergraduate Studies.

Schneider was a Volkswagen Foundation postdoctoral fellow at Washington University from 2012 to 2013. In 2016, he was awarded a Marie S. Curie FCFP Senior Fellowship at the Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies. He has received additional research grants from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, the Fritz Thyssen Foundation, the German National Academic Foundation (Studienstiftung des deutschen Volkes), and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD). In 2010–11, Schneider co-curated an exhibition on the Manesse Codex and medieval German love lyric which is documented in Der Codex Manesse und die Entdeckung der Liebe (2010). From 2011 to 2014, he also headed an editing project on Thomasin's von Zerklaere Der Welsche Gast. This work is being done within the Collaborative Research Centre 933, "Material Text Cultures," at Heidelberg University, funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft.

Hovezuht: Literarische Hofkultur und höfisches Lebensideal um Herzog Albrecht III. von Österreich und Erzbischof Pilgrim II. von Salzburg (1365-1396)

Hovezuht: Literarische Hofkultur und höfisches Lebensideal um Herzog Albrecht III. von Österreich und Erzbischof Pilgrim II. von Salzburg (1365-1396)

European courtesy is a "discovery" of the Middle Ages. Around the secular and spiritual rulers of the 10.-12. In the twentieth century, those ideals of courtly being and behavior emerged which up to the present day determine the image of polite forms of behavior. In literary as well as extra-literary texts they were conceived, reflected and propagated. Using the example of literature in the environment of the Habsburg court in Vienna and the archiepiscopal court in Salzburg in the last third of the 14th century, the book turns the gaze from the courtly behavioral teachings of the High Middle Ages to late medieval concepts of courtly behavioral regulation.

Erzähllogiken in der Literatur des Mittelalters und der Frühen Neuzeit

Erzähllogiken in der Literatur des Mittelalters und der Frühen Neuzeit

Telling is a basic human need. At all times people have told. But not at all times they have told the same way. Motifs, fabrics and themes vary, as well as the way in which the narrative is arranged and its individual components combined in such a way that they convey the impression of a coherent whole. The insight into the historical conditionality of narrative forms and methods has been solidified in recent research into the demand for a historical narratology. To such a supply of this band provides a building block. He assembles contributions that deal systematically and in case studies with the logics of late antique, medieval and early modern narration. Topics include: myth, spatial and temporal structures, motivation to act, figurative constitution.

Der Codex Manesse und die Entdeckung der Liebe: Katalog zur Ausstellung der Universitätsbibliothek Heidelberg

Der Codex Manesse und die Entdeckung der Liebe: Katalog zur Ausstellung der Universitätsbibliothek Heidelberg

“Saget mir ieman, waz ist minne?" This question by the poet Walther von der Vogelweide about the nature of love has been dealing with moving singers, nobles and even clerics since the high Middle Ages. As reflected in a variety of texts and images, it was no longer enough for a knight to own the lady he wanted. He wanted to conquer her heart. The polyphonic discovery of the subject of love as an erotic love between man and woman not only influenced the relationship between the sexes. It also transformed the self-image of the nobility and manners within courtly society. The songs and images in the Codex Manesse capture this change as an example. In a unique way, the large-scale manuscript collection brings together the Hohenstaufen as well as the post-classical minstrelsy in all its diversity of forms and forms. The miniatures to the poets with their depictions of courtly scenes, festivities and tournaments sustainably shaped the modern image of the knightly Middle Ages. The Codex Manesse itself is already to be interpreted as a wistful review: He wanted to first collect the gradually fading, previously only orally transmitted songs in writing; many texts would have been lost today without this transcript. Using the example of the Codex Manesse and other valuable manuscripts and prints from the vaults of Heidelberg University Library, the catalog illustrates the discovery of love in the high Middle Ages.