What is an ‘ego-document’? The answer might at first sight seem simple: a source or ‘document’—understood in the widest sense—providing an account of, or revealing privileged information about, the ‘self’ who produced it. The term itself, which is of relatively recent coinage—just over half a century old—has variants: while it is a term originating in Dutch that works well in several languages including both English and German, some scholars prefer the notion of ‘self-narratives’ or ‘testimonies to the self’ (Selbstzeugnisse), a term in use since the late nineteenth century, with corresponding differences in theoretical approach and emphasis from those who retain the notion of ego-documents.1 But the broader concept of texts which (mis)represent a self is far older; and, as the contributions in this area by Rousseau, Goethe...

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