n Acta Germanica : German Studies in Africa - Das Fremde mit deutsch-imperialen Augen sehen : Therese von Bacherachts Briefe aus Java 1850–1852

Volume 46 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0065-1273


Seeing the Foreign with German-Imperial Eyes: Therese von Bacheracht’s Briefe aus Java 1850-1852

This article analyzes two discourses of the German writer Therese von Bacheracht from the mid-19th century. Her involvement in colonial discourse shows her complicity with the Dutch colonial power. On the other hand, her participation in the discourse of femininity typically expresses a more intimate relationship with the native people and culture, which ultimately undermines the colonial discourse. Von Bacheracht’s experiences of social exclusion because of being a woman further contribute to her identification with the oppressed natives of Java. She, along with her husband, who was an officer in the colonial army, experienced an additional form of exclusion as Germans barred from certain aspects of power in the Dutch colony. This analysis is based on von Bacheracht’s travel writings from the Dutch colony of Java, where she lived for two years with her husband.

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