Abstract

This essay reads the novels of the late German writer, W. G. Sebald, through the lens of extraterritoriality, the condition of being outside the jurisdiction of the nation-state yet paradoxically reliant upon it. Sebald's extraterritorial spaces—train stations, abandoned army bases, country houses, and camps—both reflect and evoke his characters' psychological experiences. We argue that extraterritoriality helps explain Sebald's treatment of the nation-state as simultaneously necessary and inadequate for understanding the cultural and political geography of the twentieth century.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1080-658X
Print ISSN
0026-7724
Pages
pp. 214-238
Launched on MUSE
2012-06-26
Open Access
No
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