Wittgensteins Neffe

The Project Wittgensteins Neffe (Wittgenstein’s Nephew) is dedicated to the realisation of a historical-critical edition of Thomas Bernhard’s (1931-1989) novel of the same name, published in 1982.

Our work includes the TEI-annotation of the first edition text with an additional critical commentary concerning persons, places, institutions, as well as intertextual and biographical references. Besides an introduction with information about the creation and publication history of the work, the project also aims at highlighting the various early versions of the text to illustrate the author’s exceptionally complex process of writing and correcting.

This endeavour is possible because of the digitization of Thomas Bernhard’s estate, done by the ACE in partnership with the Suhrkamp publishing house and Dr. Peter Fabjan who manages the estate.

The text of "Wittgensteins Neffe" is of special interest for our department because of its references to the Austrian Academy of Sciences, which awarded Thomas Bernhard with the Grillparzerpreis in 1972 - making for an infamous episode in the novel - and the city of Vienna in general.

Furthermore, the project team intends to investigate the relation between the fictional character and the real person of Paul Wittgenstein (1907-1979) and the historical background of his friendship with the author.