The Journal of Historical Fictions

Detail of Horst Strempel's Night over Germany

Johanna Huthmacher

Victims, heroes, perpetrators: German art reception and its re-construction of National Socialist persecution

Shortly after World War II, the German artists Horst Strempel and Hans Grundig created works that depicted National Socialist persecution. Strempel painted the triptych Night over Germany (1945/46), and Grundig worked on the same subject twice, called Victims of Fascism (1946/47) and To the Victims of Fascism (1947/49). They combined their own experiences as persecuted Communists with images from liberated concentration camps and those derived from Christian icons, creating paintings that shift between testimony and invention.

JHF 1:1, 2017, 1—24Download article as pdf.

Ruth Knezevich

Curating the past:
Margins and materiality in Sydney Owenson, Lady Morgan’s The Wild Irish Girl

In nineteenth-century historical fiction, the emphasis on antiquities was often expressed through capacious footnotes and endnotes as a way to personalize the past. I offer the novel by Sydney Owenson, Lady Morgan, The Wild Irish Girl (1806) as a case study of this textual phenomenon, reading the ways that Owenson attempts to connect the past with the present upon the page: to contain and represent cultural history. Excavating Owenson’s footnotes and their antiquarian curation of her historical fiction allows us to identify and interrogate her larger project of weaving history through fiction by means of antiquarian commentary.

JHF 1:1, 2017, 25—44Download article as pdf.

Tarik Ahmed Elseewi

Contentious history in ‘Egyptian’ television:
The case of Malek Farouq

This article asks what happens when the construction of national identity escapes national boundaries. Using an example from an Egyptian-Arabic televisual production, Malek Farouq, a biopic soap opera that narrates the life of the much reviled last king of Egypt, this article argues that changes in the production, distribution and consumption of media in the Arabic-speaking Middle East are contributing to a restructuring of various forms of cultural identity. The move from a nationally-centred regime of broadcasting, with its official regimes of truth, to a regional and transnational flow of television in multiple languages from multiple subjectivities is transforming ideas of communal identity.

JHF 1:1, 2017, 45—64Download article as pdf.

Clovis, King of the Franks (465-511)

Margot Renard

The faces of history
The imagined portraits of the Merovingian kings at Versailles (1837-1842)

‘One would expect people to remember the past and imagine the future. But in fact, when discoursing or writing about history, they imagine it in terms of their own experience, and when trying to gauge the future they cite supposed analogies from the past; till, by a double process of repetition, they imagine the past and remember the future’. (Namier 1942, 70)

JHF 1:1, 2017, 65—88Download article as pdf.

Ioulia Kolovou

Masculine crusaders, effeminate Greeks, and the female historian: Relations of power in Sir Walter Scott’s Count Robert of Paris

Gender employed as a methodological lens in the analysis of historical fiction can help to reveal implicit or explicit evaluative statements. It is deployed here to examine hierarchies in the military, political and cultural context of the encounter between ‘virile’ Westerners and ‘effeminate’ Greeks in Sir Walter Scott’s last novel, Count Robert of Paris (1831), which is set in Constantinople at the start of the First Crusade (1096-7). Scott’s depiction of Westerners and Orientalized Greeks is set against the geopolitical concerns of the author’s own time.

JHF 1:1, 2017, 89—110Download article as pdf.