Geistererscheinungen und ihre Zeugen: Geschichtenerzählen zwischen Positivismus und Spiritismus im späten Zarenreich.
In late imperial Russia, reports about spirit appearances were common features in the periodical press. These alleged witnessaccounts can be read as crafted stories in which narrative and recurrent rhetorical devices were used to convince readers of the existence of supernatural powers. But these reports not only provided the ›proof‹ of the reality of spirits, moreover they stressed the importance of friendship and love which surpassed even death. This article argues that omnipresent rhetorical patterns provided spirits not only with a cultural reality in turn-of-the-century Russia, but also allowed some contemporaries to hold on to traditional values and old loyalties at a time when social certainties seemed to be in flux or threatened to dissolve.