The world is becoming more socialist

The beginnings of the social history of German literature in the 1970s were characterized by an interdisciplinary encounter and a changed concept of literature. In the meantime, the discourses and methods in cultural and literary studies have changed significantly, but the main question of a socio-historical literary history - that of the relationship between literary texts and socio-historical contexts - remains topical.

The contributions of the International Archive for the Social History of German Literature (IASL), which was founded in 1976 by Georg J├Ąger, Alberto Martino and Friedrich Sengle, examine this question in all its facets and under the most varied of aspects. Its spectrum encompasses the entire history of German literature from the Middle Ages to the present day. Particular attention is paid to the theoretical foundations of literary history, especially the methodological and thematic points of contact between literary studies and the history and social sciences. The priorities of an expanded social history of literature therefore still include the history of books, publishing and communication, reading research and reception history, the history of knowledge and science as well as the constellations of literature and history in the 20th century.

IASL publishes articles and articles on current research questions in German and English. Occasionally, thematically related focal points appear; In addition, current research discussions and research projects in planning as well as new materials and documents on the social history of literature (documentation) are presented in separate sections. All texts published in IASL are subject to a strict peer review process.

Reviews appear on the Internet platform of IASL online (, which is independent of IASL, a cooperating but independent electronic journal that also publishes intermedia research articles.

Editorial by the new editors from Vol. 28, No. 1 (2003): xml