Friday 30 September, 2005

If you want something nice to put over the sofa, Berlin is the place to be this week. A media campaign is also under way to force a smile onto Gemany's miserable face. Andrzej Stasiuk winces at the orange juicer smiles of Poland's zombie media politicians. The NZZ looks at the role of literature in promoting anti-American sentiment in the Arab World and the FAZ reviews Laurel Leff's book on the NY Times' coverage of the Holocaust.
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Thursday 29 September, 2005

Author Christa Wolf recalls the good old days of East Germany in the 1950s. The SZ sees self-hatred in Austria's rejection of Turkey's entry into the EU. In film reviews, the taz asks why not make fun of the East German national army - as in Leander Haußmann's "NVA", while the director of Israel's Film Fund asks why not show the Palestinian side of the story - as in Hany Abu-Assad's "Paradise Now". And, rather than announcing who the winner is, enfant terrible Christoph Schlingensief tears up the envelope.
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Wednesday 28 September, 2005

Writer Kazuo Ishiguro talks about the deeper philosophical issues faced by clones. Aleksander Smolar is worried about Russia's imperial pretensions. The SZ reports on a case of fraudulent one-upmanship: a fake gallery. The FAZ is sceptical of a Sino-German military meeting and the new pro-government make-up of Turkey's main research institute. And Die Welt is critical of critics who praise Hany Abu-Assad's film "Paradise Now".
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Tuesday 27 September, 2005

Cees Nooteboom discovers the giants that were Cervantes' windmills. Jean Nouvel's extension of the Reina Sofia museum in Madrid is reminiscent of Stealthbombers and baroque dungeons. The FAZ reports on the menaces of practicising journalism in Lebanon. And from Berlin: the new Flick exhibition in Hamburger Bahnhof is, as its name suggests, "almost nothing" and the Deutsche Architektur Zentrum celebrates the space between either and or in the work of Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa.
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Monday 26 September, 2005

Conductor Michael Gielen gives Verdi new meaning at Berlin's Staatsoper and the opening of the Jörg Immendorf exhibition at Berlin's Neue National Galerie was a Cafe Deutschland in action. 15 years after the respective facts, Tienanmen pop star Cui Jian returns to the stage and the economic recovery of East Germany is declared dead. And a bumper crop of flops: Ibsen in Hamburg and Shakespeare in Berlin.
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Friday 23 September, 2005

Green Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer bids farewell to the political stage, and director Peter Stein explains why he prefers growing peaches in Umbria to being panned by pretentious German critics. Reports of violent repressions in Belarus and astonishing musical talent in Venezuelan ghettos. And Marek Krajewski's evocation of Breslau of yore.
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Thursday 22 September, 2005

German writer Juli Zeh bemoans the one-sided concentration on economic issues in the recent elections, the Frankfurter Rundschau is relieved that the breasts of the SPD parliamentarians are no longer split and political scientist Alfred Grosser suggests deleting the word "reform" from the rhetoric of the moment. Politics aside, Diedrich Diederichsen enjoys looking though Romain Duras' head in "The Beat that my Heart Skipped" and the FAZ provides an etymological explanation of prostitution in Spain.
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Wednesday 21 September, 2005

Christian Bommarius foresees a grand coalition without Schröder or Merkel, while Daniel Cohn-Bendit and Claus Leggewie see in the weakening of the major parties, a real chance for the Greens. The Süddeutsche Zeitung asks why Germany is so enamoured of Scandinavia and the Frankfurter Rundschau wonders why the Western world has such a twisted view of sexuality. And the FAZ counsels technical specialists looking to leave Germany that they might want to consider India.
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Tuesday 20 September, 2005

Election theatre continues to enliven the feuilletons today. Six FAZ editors report from post-election parties at Berlin party headquarters, and historian Paul Nolte writes in the taz that we should talk less about left and right than about optimists and pessimists. In other stories, Jörg Immendorff talks in an interview with Die Welt about a major exhibitions of his works, the NZZ covers the premiere fireworks at the Theater Basel and the SZ writes home from the Istanbul Biennal.
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Monday 19 September, 2005

All the word's a stage - especially in Germany today. The results of yesterday's elections have provided much grist for the feuilleton mill: we link to the major reactions. In other theatre stories, the NZZ glimpses behind the scenes at Vienna's Burgtheater 50 years after its reopening, the FR writes glowingly on commodious seducer Josef Ostendorf, and critics are divided on a new staging of a love comedy by Botho Strauss in Zurich's Schauspielhaus.
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Friday 16 September, 2005

In the SZ, Georg Klein points to a less humorous future for Huey, Dewey, Louie and their Auntie Angie. The FAZ accompanies Günter Grass on his pro-SPD tour through Germany. The NZZ looks into China's recruitment of Internet censors and Die Welt visits the Moscow Book Fair which has been sullied by a flood of anti-Semitic publications.
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Thursday 15 September, 2005

Robert Menasse takes a dim view of today's "babble room" democracy, and Axel Honneth reproaches Germany's political masterminds for their one-dimensional concept of social justice. Filmmaker Christian Petzold comes out as a fan of "Halloween" and Die Zeit reports on superstition in Africa.
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Wednesday 14 September, 2005

The FAZ berates the CDU for distancing itself from its former economic darling Paul Kirchhof, and Günter Grass rallies for the SPD. For Tom Segev the withdrawal from the Gaza Strip is a victory for Tel Aviv over Jerusalem and Peter Stein describes the erotic thrill of communing with dead authors.
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Tuesday 13 September, 2005

For the SZ, the tax schemes proposed by CDU's Paul Kirchhof are so 18th century, while for the FAZ, Schröder's paradoxical politics pave the way to Caesarism. The taz is nostalgic for the torch-bearing Left and Julian Barnes dreams of an anarchistic Europe.
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Saturday 10 September - Monday 12 September, 2005

Kenzaburo Oe expresses concern over growing nationalism in Japan, Dan Diner explains how Karl Marx can help us understand Islamic culture, and the FR praises Ang Lee's Confucian gay Western "Brokeback Mountain". Thomas Hettche bemoans the missing centre in the German novel, and the taz talks to documenta 12 curator Roger M. Buergel on politics, art and idiots.
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Friday 9 September, 2005

The NZZ looks at the effect of a death threat on Egyptian religious scholar Sayyid al-Qimni, and Julia Jusik writes that the Beslan failure was planned. The FAZ puts the blame for falling birthrates on Germany's "maybe later" men. Isabel Mundry is lauded for her "Odyssey" opera while the SZ wonders why New Orleans is being blamed for its own downfall. And the FR explains why chancellor candidate Angela Merkel has to come across looking like a man.
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Thursday 8 September, 2005

Germany's probable next Finance Minister Paul Kirchhof celebrates the freedom to earn money - or not - and Jim Jarmusch explains why he prefers Paul Valery to Victor Hugo. We also learn why the Russian eagle needs two heads, why the Spanish like to stay up till the wee hours and what drove Yuri Gagarin into outer space.
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Wednesday 7 September, 2005

For Marlene Streeruwitz, the Salzburg Festival is a contact-court for conservative bigwigs, while for Charles Simic, the pity evoked by Hurricane Katrina belies a deeper hypocrisy. Ahmed Alaidy describes election-day resignation in Egypt and photographer Wolfgang Tillmans is incensed by the idea that his photos from aeroplane windows betray a "snapshot aesthetic".
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Tuesday 6 September, 2005

The FAZ notes the pedagogical eros between Gerhard Schröder and Angela Merkel, Thea Dorn doesn't understand why so many women are haranguing about a woman chancellor candidate and sociologist Sighard Neckel sees Merkel's social policy as revenge against Erich Honecker. Relief from the elections comes from the depth of Gerhard Richter's grey and the innovation of Swiss jazz.
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Saturday 3 September - Monday 5 September, 2005

Esmahan Aykol figures writers have it better in Turkey now than in the 90s, despite Orhan Pamuk's indictment for "defaming the national identity". Michael Thalheimer discusses the Berlin theatre landscape, Silke Hohmann found some gems among the otherwise mainstream pop of the Pet Shop Boys' "Battleship Potemkin" soundtrack, and Mike Davis examines the Russian doll of neglect around New Orleans.
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Friday 2 September, 2005

The lawsuit against writer Orhan Pamuk reflects Turkey's deep rifts, writes the FR, while Die Welt calls it an anti-European media coup. The NZZ has us on tenterhooks over the question "Is Google good or evil?", the taz rocks to atomic jive and paranoia pop, and for Manfred Kittel, Germany is way ahead of Japan when it comes to facing the past.
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Thursday 1 September, 2005

Turkey's EU entrance is looking more precarious now that Orhan Pamuk faces a prison sentence. After 25 years of Solidarnosc Adam Michnik looks back on a beautiful time and Piotr Bura worries about the conservative hijacking of hopes. Radical Islam is on the rise in Egypt and Germany's young revolutionary writers support the status quo.
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