Routines of Writing: Administration and the Poetics of Movement in Robert Walser’s Works and the Film All This Can Happen

Simon Roloff


This article contextualizes Robert Walser’s The Walk and All This Can Happen through Walser’s literary practice and the social technologies of his time. It is argued that walking, perceiving, and writing in both works become part of a quasi-bureaucratic routine and therefore reflect certain historical changes in the office as an architectural and technical means of administration. Walser’s earlier novel Jakob von Gunten is referred to in order to expand the argument and develop the final thesis that Walser’s poetics of movement mirror an administrative control of “life” that was strongly shaped and remodelled around 1900.


Robert Walser; body techniques (techniques du corps); biopolitics; poetics of knowledge

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ISSN: 2154-6878