Fritz Breithaupt’s latest book, Kultur der Ausrede [Culture of Excuse], proposes a theory of narrative that places narrative in structural proximity to excuse making. The making of excuses, it is proposed, may have been the evolutionary origin of narrating: to get off the hook and avoid punishment. Chapters of the book present aspects of this narrative theory, examine how early legal history and narrative may be intertwined, and provides a chapter on the relationship of literature and narrative. The book provides some starting ideas for the new proposed book, a book that nevertheless takes a different starting point with its "experimental humanities" approach. Some English language articles preceded the book, including an article for Poetics Today. Suhrkamp Verlag selected the book for the Book of the Month award.
Fritz Breithaupt, Kultur der Ausrede. Eine Erzähltheorie, (Berlin: Suhrkamp 2012).