B4: Acting personifications as figures of aesthetic reflection in medieval literature and art

The interdisciplinary project B4 explores personification in literature and visual art of the Middle Ages. For the first time, the rhetorical figure frequently used in texts and images is examined in reference to its actions. As a phenomenon of language and imagination, personification operates at an intermedial intersection from which it opens up towards a reflection of poetological and pictorial aspects. According to the project’s underlying hypothesis, a representational potential unfolds from a personification’s actions creating a distinctly aesthetic surplus of meaning. The aim is to examine personification with regard to its potential as a reflexive figure within the framework of pre-modern aesthetics.


principal investigators:

Prof. Dr. Sandra Linden
Dr. Daniela Wagner


Katharina Bauer
Julia Fischer

student assistants:

Sina Bahlke
Nina Laura Luz
Melina Schmidt
Anna Katharina Turba
Lisa Marie Weinberger




Online workshop with Mariam Hammami 'Abstraktum, rhetorische Figur, Körper. Zur Beschaffenheit der Personifikation'. 02.07.2020, 2–5  p.m.

Prof. Dr. Caroline Emmelius: Talk 'frovwe minne und amor: Reflexionsfiguren einer theologischen Ästhetik bei Mechthild von Magdeburg und Mechthild von Hackeborn'. 20.05.2020, 10–12 a.m., Room 037 (Brechtbau).

Workshop with Prof. Dr. Caroline Emmelius: 'Bild und Klang: Sinnliche Schichtungen im 'Fließenden Licht''. 19.05.2020, 6–8 p.m., Room 415 (Brechtbau).

Dr. Christoph Schanze: Talk 'Walther und Frau Bohne. persona und Personifikation'. 06.11.2019, 6–8 p.m., Room 315 (Brechtbau).



SoSe 2020:
"Ästhetische Reflexion in Kunst und Literatur des Mittelalters" (Interdisziplinäres Haupt-/Oberseminar), Sandra Linden und Daniela Wagner

WiSe 2018/19:
"Eigentlich / Uneigentlich. Die Personifikation in Mittelalter und Früher Neuzeit" (Interdisziplinäres Haupt-/Oberseminar), Sandra Linden und Daniela Wagner