Volume 16, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1384-5829
  • E-ISSN: 2352-118X


In this essay the author examines the relationship between the Present and the Happiness in the works of Louis Couperus. He also examines to what extent Couperus’ moments of happiness match the literary epiphany as defined by Van Halsema in his book Epifanie. It appears that around 1900 a turning point occurred in Couperus’ appreciation of the present. Before that time the term stood for everything that was small and insignificant. After that Couperus generated the idea that happiness comes from the acceptance of the present. In a series of variations on the theme Couperus unfolds his views on the connection of the present and happiness. The story ‘Jahve’ and the novel Antiek toerisme are of crucial importance for this relationship. In these two texts the acceptance of the present is a divine power that man must master. The epiphany character of the moments is initially weak. Only at the end of Couperus’ career as a writer do the moments of happiness get the character of an epiphany.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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