On the Death of Siegfried Lenz ? ?You have to justify your life?

Siegfried Lenz, one of the great writers of German post-war literature is dead. He died on 7 October 2014, surrounded by his family. He was 88 years old.... more more

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1966 revisted

Wednesday 31 May, 2006

In part three of our writers on the World Cup series, Andrew Anthony voices his convictions that England will do it again - and that, naturally, means a victorious showdown with the hosts.
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The spell of a tender eel

Wednesday 31 May, 2006

Update: Romanian-German poet Oskar Pastior was imprisoned in a Soviet Gulag from 1945 to 1949. The new novel of this year's Nobel laureate Herta Müller is based on interviews with Pastior and other Gulag survivors.
The prestigious Georg Büchner Prize for literature is to be awarded to poet Oskar Pastior. Martin Lüdke welcomes the long overdue decision to honour the work of a mild mannered word wizard.
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Flushing the toilet for Brazil

Tuesday 30 May, 2006

In the second part of our series of writers' speculations on their national team's chances of World Cup victory, Joao Ubaldo Ribeiro outlines the incredible complexities of rooting for a team like Brazil.
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Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 30 May, 2006

In Merkur, Christoph Türcke defends blasphemy against its critics. Flemming Rose of Jyllands-Posten defends the publication of the Muhammed cartoons in Blueprint Magazine. In Outlook India, actor Aamir Khan refuses to distinguish between murdered Muslims and murdered Hindus. Die Weltwoche travels to Entropia. In Elet es Irodalom, Laszlo Darvasi explains what makes a brilliant Hungarian footballer. Stephane Zagdanski and Theo Klein argue about anti-Semitism in the Nouvel Obs. Marie Antoinette was the victim of a media hate campaign, reports Il Foglio. And Heti Vilaggazdasag wants to purge the Hungarian Academy of Sciences of dead wood.
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Europe's politics of victimology

Tuesday 30 May, 2006

Flemming Rose, cultural editor at Jyllands-Posten newspaper, justifies his decision to publish the Muhammad cartoons, and takes stock of the controversy they ignited, arguing that Europe must shed the straitjacket of political correctness.
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Everyone has his reasons

Monday 29 May, 2006

In his film debut, Benjamin Heisenberg develops a credible drama in which the fear of terrorism is part of a broader sense of social disorientation. "Sleeper" tells a story of personal betrayal in a world that is as rational as it is paranoid. By Sven von Reden
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Argentina's existentialist game

Monday 29 May, 2006

On the last days before the World Cup pandemic, eight writers eludicate on the why their respective countries will triumph.
Rodrigo Fresan of Argentina kicks off.
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The French malady

Wednesday 24 May, 2006

The Clearstream Affair is just the most recent symptom of a crisis that has been dogging the French Republic for three decades. The time for a "rupture" is at hand. By Andre Glucksmann
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Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 23 May, 2006

Polityka takes a look at the blogging scene in Poland. Elet es Irodalom asserts that it is possible to say no in a dictatorship. In Le Point, Bernard-Henri Levy asks why Peter Handke found his way onto the programme of the Comedie Francaise in the first place. Al-Ahram charges Europeans with ethnic absolutism. And Canada's Walrus is worried about Germany's Linda.
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Rattle's downward roll

Tuesday 23 May, 2006

For a while, Sir Simon Rattle rode a euphoric wave at the Berliner Philharmoniker. Now critic Manuel Brug feels that his novelty is wearing off, fast.

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John Cage's music for a psalm

Monday 22 May, 2006

On May 5, the tone of John Cage's organ composition "As Slow as Possible" changed in the St. Burchardi church in Halberstadt. A major moment in a piece that will last 639 years. By Thomas Gerlach
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The motivation bomb

Thursday 18 May, 2006

At just 21, Turkish-German singer Muhabbet is the new pop icon of Germany's immigrant youth. One hit single has been downloaded over a million times, and now his new album, "R'nBesk" has just come out. With his music he wants to "make things happen in Germany." By Thomas Groß
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The future of journalism

Wednesday 17 May, 2006

Crisis is nothing new to the press. Newspapers will continue to exist, alongside the Internet, soon in paperless form. They must offer their readers exclusive news, bold opinion and captivating language. Mathias Döpfner, head of the Axel Springer media empire, answers Rupert Murdoch.
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Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 16 May, 2006

Historian Richard Pipes explains in Plus - Minus that the Russians don't in fact want an authoritarian state. Outlook India fears for the banana. In Espresso, Andrzej Stasiuk portrays the Kaczynski brothers as a double Sancho Panza. The Nouvel Obs bewails the decline of French cinema. Le Monde diplomatique bewails the decline of French literary criticism. Painter Howard Hodgkin explains in The Guardian that he hates painting. Die Weltwoche is amazed at young people, sex and the Web. Al Ahram documents a dispute about the Bahai faith. In Journal Culinaire, Adolf Loos rails against Vienese cooking. And the New York Times publishes a magnificent article on the universal digital library.
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The medium is English

Monday 15 May, 2006

Are there British intellectuals? Are they better than the rest? Or do they just happen to be speaking the right language at the right time in the history of public debate? By Naomi buck
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Let's poke holes!

Thursday 11 May, 2006

How do our religious, ethnic and national identites sway how we feel about toleration? Is human culture more like a jail or a window? Are there touchpoints between Europe and America here? These are just some of the questions broached at signandsight.com's panel discussion on "The Limits of Tolerance: Multiculturalism Now" at the recent PEN festival in New York, with participants Necla Kelek, Pascal Bruckner, Richard Rodriguez and Kwame Anthony Appiah.
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Eggs in socks in hot springs

Wednesday 10 May, 2006

In the third and final part of Wolfram Siebeck's Iceland trip, the gourmand spends the weekend in the treeless wilderness of spitting geysers and hot springs that remind him of Recklinghausen.
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Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 9 May, 2006

Orhan Pamuk defends freedom of speech as a universal human right in the New York Review of Books. In Folio we learn who will win the FIFA World Cup. In Der Spiegel, Elke Schmitter pokes fun at big German men's fears of pauperism. Clarin attacks the miserable state of leftist intellectuals. In The New Yorker, a priest tells how he was a classic case of 4-1-9 rip-off. Gazeta Wyborcza wants to rescue Polish liberalism. The Spectator talks about mortification with a celibate numerary. In Le Point, Malek Chebel calls the rejection of flesh un-Islamic.
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Me?

Monday 8 May, 2006

Were it not for Sigmund Freud, the couch would be a normal piece of furniture. But what's normal anyway? 150 years after his birth, the man who discovered the unconscious has been re-discovered, or maybe buried for good. By Daniel Binswanger
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20 kilos of drama

Tuesday 2 May, 2006

Berlin's favourite Russian writer Wladimir Kaminer sat on the scriptwriting jury at this year's Theatertreffen festival. He recounts the horrors of reading plays by the kilo and reminisces about his own dubious-sounding contributions to the dramatic arts.

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Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 2 May, 2006

In The Guardian, A.L. Kennedy outlines the perils of reading naked. In Die Weltwoche, Salman Rushdie defends the right to call other people idiots. For L'Express, Europe is anti-Enlightenment. Leon de Winter writes in Elsevier that we should fill our tanks with ethanol to outfox the mullahs. Merkur says new music should bridge the gap between itself and the listener. The Economist looks back on the life of filmmaker Shin Sang-Ok, who was abducted to North Korea to make films for the "Dear Leader". The New York Times is thrilled with Gary Shteyngart's novel "Absurdistan". And David Sedaris warns against gifts in The New Yorker.
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