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

GoetheInstitute

No morals without style

Thursday 31 May, 2007

Rainer Werner Fassbinder died 25 years ago. His ex-wife, the actress and chanteuse Ingrid Caven, is outraged at the way the Fassbinder legacy is being misrepresented. She talks to Katja Nicodemus about the cult of genius, lies and the Utopian days of great cinema.
read more

Black Christmas

Wednesday 30 May, 2007

In the NZZ's climate change series, Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie tells how Christmas changed in 2006, with choking heat and clammy bedsheets. Editor's note: The author has been announced the 2007 winner of the Orange Broadband Prize for Fiction
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 29 May, 2007

In The New Republic, Paul Berman looks at public debate surrounding Tariq Ramadan and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and identifies a reactionary turn in the world of ideas. Painter Neo Rauch gives The New Yorker a sting of the contemporary. In Trouw, sociologist Jolande Withuis says women make the better desperadoes. Literaturen travels to Naples. Al Ahram asks: what - aside from a dress code - does the Islamic party Al-Gamaa Al-Islamiya want? Die Weltwoche investigages the education of the creme de la creme in Swiss boarding schools. Peter Esterhazy beats his head against the wall in Tygodnik Powszechny. And The New York Times is astonished at the German ethics of repentance.
read more

La Scuola Napoletana sings again

Friday 25 May, 2007

Conductor Riccardo Muti describes rummaging through Naples' venerable music archive, where he discovered a number of slumbering opera manuscripts, among them Domenico Cimarosa's "Il ritorno di Don Calandrino," which opens the Salzburg Whitsun Festival tonight.
read more

Underwater

Thursday 24 May, 2007

Continuing with the series, originally published in the NZZ, of first-hand accounts of climate change by international writers, Hans Maarten van den Brink talks of arks and dykes and watersport and the Dutch obsession with the sea.
read more

Good solid cinephilia

Thursday 24 May, 2007

Why did no one think of it before? A film festival showing only the best films around. Cannes director Thierry Fremaux has done just that - much to the approval of Daniel Kothenschulte, who singles out the new films by Fatih Akin and Quentin Tarantino as his favourites.
read more

Seas of stone

Wednesday 23 May, 2007

The publication of the report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has kicked off a heavy debate which - as EU's the recent climate protection plans show - is affecting political decision-making. The NZZ feuilleton asked writers from far and wide to report on climate change from a personal point of view. The series begins with Swiss author Leo Tuor, who has felt the effects of the Earth's warming right up to his belly button.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 22 May, 2007

In the Spectator, Rian Malan asks why such an incompetent and corrupt politician like Robert Mugabe has so many fans outside Zimbabwe. Ayaan Hirsi Ali asks in ResetDoc what's left-wing about forced marriages. Il Foglio describes how the Agnelli family added class to their wealth. In Europa, director Agnieszka Holland fears the eviction of the Polish elite. Georges-Arthur Goldschmidt says in Le Point what he doesn't like about Günter Grass' autobiography. For The Guardian, Pankaj Mishra criticises the West's moral wasteland post September 11. And Asharq al-Awsat looks into the "Women's intifada" in Turkey.
read more

How to save the quality press?

Monday 21 May, 2007

When gas, electricity or water are at stake, the state must guarantee the energy supply for the population. Shouldn't it do likewise when the other type of 'energy' is at risk, the quality press? All over the world, financial investors are increasingly replacing patriarchal publishers and imposing their idea of profitability. Philosopher Jürgen Habermas argues for state support for the quality newspapers.
read more

I am a Goggomobil

Friday 18 May, 2007

Germans are said to be a bit obsessed with their cars - sleek, robust, fast. But the cutest thing to ever grace the autobahn had other virtues. In view of the green future where Germany is a small car nation, Georg Klein sings praise of the Goggomobil.
read more

The double Prussia

Wednesday 16 May, 2007

Brilliantly narrated, justly arbitrated: historian Christopher Clark has written a masterpiece on the Hohenzollern state of Prussia. By Volker Ullrich
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 15 May, 2007

In the Gazeta Wyborcza, Adam Michnik demands that Polish secret service files be thrown open to the public. In Nepszabadsag, Bela Tarr talks about his new film "Homme de Londres". In the New York Review of Books, Timothy Garton Ash is inspired by "The Life of Others" to wax lyrical about Germany's brilliant strategies of dealing with its past. Al-Hayat has noticed a sharp left turn in Islamist groups. In Letras Libras, Dariush Shayegan promises that Iran is about to become a brave new world. In Elet es Irodalom, Japanese businessman Morita Tsuneo complains about the post-socialist mentality of Hungarian conservatives. The New Statesman portrays the movement of "militant customers" and New York Times, the Artist 2.0.
read more

Escapology and the endgame

Monday 14 May, 2007

Germany's top theatre festival is taking place in Berlin, the Theatertreffen. But does the theatre still have anything to celebrate? Absolutely! A defence of the stage in the age of cable TV and computer games. By Peter Kümmel.
read more

Books this Season

Wednesday 9 May, 2007

German writers make a big splash this season, in all age categories. And we meet fairies at a holiday camp in Sweden, ill-starred souls in Denmark, Piedmont people-smugglers and down-and-out Bulgarian writers. Nonfiction highlights include works by Ian Buruma and Anna Politkovskaya, histories of the Cold War and Prussia, and a sudden overview of contemporary art.
read more

Books this Season: Nonfiction

Wednesday 9 May, 2007

Political portraits of the Netherlands and Russia come from Ian Buruma and Anna Politkovskaya. British historian Christopher Clark has revealed new sides to Prussia. The ever so well behaved Adolph Freiherr von Knigge has regained dignity in a new biography. And Jörg Heiser finally helps us with an overview of contemporary art.
read more

The press and Europe's public sphere

Thursday 9 May, 2007

Newspapers by nature cover local matters. That belongs to the rules of the game. But what happens when the rules change? Only when they take an active interest in affairs abroad will paper's coverage on their home turf improve. Arne Ruth, long-time chief editor of Sweden's Dagens Nyheter, tells why cross-border journalism can help make the separate realms of Europe a single public space.
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 8 May, 2007

The Nation would prefer a more sophisticated culture of debate among American politicians. In the Nouvel Obs, Bernard-Henri Levy and Andre Glucksmann clash over Royal and Sarkozy. Outlook India investigates the situation of women in Pakistan. Elet es Irodalom asks why the EU should be responsible for mousetraps but not missile defense systems. Gazeta Wyborcza reflects on the biggest difference between Europeans and Americans. In Die Weltwoche, Lawrence Wright wants to know just what Al Qaeda has to offer politically. And The New Statesman takes a depressed look at Tony Blair's legacy.
read more

Steppenwolf's archivist

Monday 7 May, 2007

Like a hunter-gatherer, Volker Michels has been foraging for traces of the life and work of author Hermann Hesse for thirty years now. For his private Hesse archive in Offenbach, he collects and cross-references all of Hesse's letters, pictures and manuscripts he can find. Roman Bucheli portrays an archivist on the brink of obsession. (Image © Gret Widmann)
read more

Time to back the Other Russia

Thursday 3 May, 2007

Russia has long since degenerated into morally bankrupt totalitarianism. Europe used to take a proud stand on freedom. So why isn't it doing anything? By Andre Glucksmann
read more

The unofficial documenta list

Thursday 3 May, 2007

Probable, silent, public, inofficial - there are many categories of participant in this year's documenta. What's lacking are the official ones. Because the exhibition organisers are keeping tight-lipped about what artists have been invited, we are left to guess, speculate, hope and dismay. By Ludwig Seyfarth
read more

Arnie of the ivories

Wednesday 2 May, 2007

After brilliant beginnings, bodybuilding pianist Tzimon Barto's career crashed as spectacularly as it started. Now the bizarre mixture of rancher, writer and keyboard collossus is back, with a fabulous new recording of Ravel. By Kai Luehrs-Kaiser
read more

Magazine Roundup

Tuesday 1 May, 2007

The problems in the Middle East are simply overestimated, suggests Edward Luttwak in Prospect. Al Hayat simply won't hear of imposed head scarves. Tygodnik Powszechny foresees technological messianism, in light of the European Soccer Cup 2012 in Poland. The Economist checks out the results of climate change at the Murray-Darling River. Russian opposition politician Irina Chakamada writes in the Hungarian magazine HVG that she fears a Chinese-style dictatorship in her homeland. Outlook India wonders if the denial of sex should really be a grounds for divorce.
read more