Connected by the Ear

Cloth Text – $80.00

ISBN 978-0-8101-2964-1

Paper Text – $39.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-2933-7
Publication Date
November 2013
Page Count
304 pages
Trim Size
6 x 9

Connected by the Ear

The Media, Pedagogy, and Politics of the Romantic Lecture
Sean Franzel

In this innovative new study, Sean Franzel charts the concurrent emergence of German Romantic pedagogy, the modern research university, and modern visions of the politically engaged scholar. At the heart of the pedagogy of Immanuel Kant, Johann Gottlieb Fichte, K. P. Moritz, A. W. Schlegel, Adam Müller, and others was the lecture, with its ability to attract listeners and to model an ideal discursive community, reflecting an era of revolution, reform, and literary, philosophical, and scientific innovation.Along with exploring the striking preoccupation of Romantic thinkers with the lecture and with its reverberations in print, Franzel argues that accounts of scholarly speech from this period have had a lasting impact on how the pedagogy, institutions, and medial manifestations of modern scholarship continue to be understood.
About the Author

Sean Franzel is an assistant professor of German at the University of Missouri, Columbia.


Connected by the Ear achieves the feat of marrying the two most important and most antagonistic postwar German thinkers on communication: Jürgen Habermas and Friedrich Kittler. Sean Franzel’s archaeology illuminates both the bourgeois public sphere and discourse network 1800 by showing the romantic lecture to be the key cultural form in a pivotal moment of German intellectual history, a history long obsessed with the mediation of oral discourse and written text. Franzel lucidly lays bare the cultural genome of a mode which continues in our day of MOOCs and TED talks. The next time you hear a pedagogue (or president) call the class, public, or nation to converse, you will note that the romantic lecture is alive and well.”—John Durham Peters, author of Speaking into the Air

"Sean Franzel’s Connected by the Ear: The Media, Pedagogy, and Politics of the Romantic Lecture reminded me why my teaching philosophy has long been of the guide-at-the-side type. Franzel takes us back to the birth of 'staging of the sage' as lecture model in German Romanticism." —The Chronicle of Higher Education