Reality and illusion in the novels of Wilhelm Raabe
Webster, William T.
Section One This Section opens with a short historical survey of what previous scholarship has revealed with regard to kaabe's preoccupation with questions of reality and illusion, and attempts to show that, several excellent specialised studies notwithstanding, there still remain substantial areas which have until now been subjected to little or no serious examination; no broadly-based study of the issues involved has as yet appeared. The main aims of the present study are then set out, as follows: to isolate the central elements in Raabe's attitude to and portrayal of the possibilities and limitations of human perception; to examine the relationship of these separate elements and to establish what underlying patterns, if any, are involved; and to make some contribution towards an assessment of the significance of this aspect for Raabe's work as a whole and towards a consideration of Raabe's position in literary and historical terms. The methods and structure of the present study are outlined briefly at the end of this Section.