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This unknown work ranks with the well-known literary attacks of the Storm and Stress on Wieland. The novel is a parody of both Wieland's Don Silvio and its supposed model, the French "roman philosophique," by Crébillon Fils. The "Vorrede des Herausgebers" to Tatojaba, a comprehensive attack on Wieland, is here under discussion. The anonymous author of Tatojaba is the Braunschweig historian J.A. Remer, who, it seems, had not known Wieland or representatives of the Storm and Stress personally. In his "Vorrede," Remer invents an "older brother" of Wieland as the author of Tatojaba; this "brother" has just died. The reader discovers, eventually, that this "brother" is really a "Bruder im Geiste," and a Frenchman: the notorious Crébillon Fils. According to Remer, Wieland's Rococo novels are clumsy copies of works such as Tatojaba; Wieland, "Germany's most popular author," is really engaged in a literary mass production of erotic nature, which he sells to the public. Remer concedes that Wieland, now "Hofrath" and "Prinzenerzieher" in Weimar, seems to have turned to more respectable topics, but he does this only because he wants to continue to sell his works, to a public which has finally tired of the Crébillon-Wielands.
Monatshefte © 1972 University of Wisconsin Press