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

27/09/2005

From the Feuilletons is a weekly overview of what's been happening in the German-language cultural pages and appears every Friday at 3 pm. CET.. Here a key to the German newspapers.

Süddeutsche Zeitung, 27.09.2005

On the literature page, Dutch author Cees Nooteboom pays tribute to Don Quichote, whose author Cervantes is an obligatory reference for every author, he writes. "And my own Don? I looked for him in Madrid, at Cervantes' grave which no longer exists, and at his so-called statue across from the Cortes, where the person who must have written the book stands, someone extinguished by his own creation like Shakespeare with 'Hamlet' and 'King Lear'. And I looked for him in that cellar in Argamasilla where Cervantes thought up – or didn't think up – the woman who never existed but whose house really stands in El Toboso. I'm sure on this point, because I was there, I saw her bed and kitchen, the real bed of an invented woman. And finally I looked for him by the windmills, which were of course giants."

Looking at Jean Nouvel's extension of the Museo Nacional Reinsa Sofia in Madrid (3D model), Holger Liebs is reminded of James Bond and Stealthbombers. "Standing in the new museum courtyard where Roy Lichtenstein's sculpture 'Brush Stroke' (something like this) stands – a five metre high, completely plastic signature of the artist – one sees primarily Nouvel's light effects. Cut into the flying roof are many quadratic angled shafts, which create alleys of light that fall on the shaded square, almost patronising – like the utopian dungeon pictures of Piranesi (example), the 'Carceri d'Invenzione' (1745), with its huge underground labyrinths, in which a ray of light is always worked into the top as a symbol of desire."


Die Tageszeitung, 27.09.2005

Reviewing the reader "Porno-Pop", Robert Defcon fails to understand all the fuss people are making about the 'pornoisation' of pop: "The hypothesis of an escalating trend of 'more and more turn-ons, harder and harder', to which the book 'Porno-Pop' owes its existence, sounds at times somewhat Protestant and tendentious. The simple fact is the business of lust has changed, the kicks and fetishes have shifted ground. Forty years ago at rock concerts you would see some people fainting, screaming and crying. Today at pop, rap and electronic events you see – among other things – the turn-ons."

Ronald Berg visited the exhibition "Metabolism and Symbiosis", featuring the Japanese architect and philosopher Kisho Kurokawa in the Deutsche Architektur Zentrum (DAZ) in Berlin. In the 1960s, Kurokawa was one of the founders of the metabolism movement in architecture, and remained faithful to its principles long after it fell out of favour following the World Expo in Osaka in 1970, convinced that "the planet will not endure the western model of horrendous energy use and garbage-making consumption". The Berlin exhibition is a rich sample of the 100 works that Kurokawa has completed around the world in the last forty years. "For Kurokawa there is no either-or. This has its roots in Japanese Buddhism. In Kurosawa's architecture, the spaces between serve to moderate the opposition between in and out, between the public and the private. In the 'Huge Cube' of the International Convention Centre in Osaka (2000), for example, the public passageway in the building is planted with trees. Another very Japanese aspect of Kurosawa's buildings: the middle is empty. There is no centre and no hierarchy in its parts."


Die Welt, 27.09.2005

Protestant bishop Johannes Friedrich explains why it will be impossible for his church to take part in a new inter-confessional translation of the Bible: "In 2001 a Vatican briefing appeared bearing the title 'Liturgiam authenticam', setting strict guidelines on Catholic Bible translations into the German vernacular. The translation should not be done from the Greek or Hebrew language of origin, but from the Latin Neo-Vulgata. It must reflect the sound Catholic doctrine. And it may not make use of language which is reminiscent of non-Catholic Christian usage. Thirty years ago these guidelines didn't exist."


Frankfurter Rundschau, 27.09.2005


Elke Buhr is dissatisfied with the new arrangement of the Flick collection "Fast nichts" (almost nothing) in Berlin's Hamburger Bahnhof. Friedrich Christian Flick's collection of contemporary art has been on display at the Hamburger Bahnhof for a year and caused much controversy, the owner's grandfather having been one of the main suppliers of armaments to the Nazis. "One can't do consistent thematic exhibitions and be a showcase for private collections at the same time; one should seek out the appropriate works from their respective donors, as is done in serious museum exhibitions. That would avoid the embarrassment of having to defend a show on minimalism - for example – without a single work by Donald Judd."


Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 27.09.2005

Is a civil war looming in Lebanon? Following the attack on the Christian journalist May Chidiac, Souad Mekhennet visits the country and depicts the unsettling conditions of his research. "'You should be careful' is the advice of the Lebanese colleagues. 'The greatest crime here is to be searching for the truth.' The sentence sinks in. Our driver waits in the car, even if the meeting lasts for hours. He'd rather not go because he doesn't know what might happen. One should avoid the obvious way to the hotel, as a rule, one should cover one's traces. It doesn't seem any less dangerous here than in Iraq these days."

Get the signandsight newsletter for regular updates on feature articles.
signandsight.com - let's talk european.

 
More articles

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 11 - 17 December, 2010

A clutch of German newspapers launch an appeal against the criminalisation of Wikileaks. Vera Lengsfeld remembers GDR dissident Jürgen Fuchs and how he met death in his cell. All the papers were bowled over Xavier Beauvois' film "Of Gods and Men." The FR enjoys a joke but not a picnic at a staging of Stravinsky's "Rake's Progress" in Berlin. Gustav Seibt provides a lurid description of Napoleonic soap in the SZ. German-Turkish Dogan Akhanli author explains what it feels like to be Josef K.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 4 - Friday 10 December

Colombian writer Hector Abad defends Nobel Prize laureate Mario Vargas Llosa against European Latin-America romantics. Wikileaks dissident Daniel Domscheit-Berg criticises the new publication policy of his former employer. The Sprengel Museum has put on a show of child nudes by die Brücke artists. The SZ takes a walk through the Internet woods with FAZ prophet of doom Frank Schirrmacher. The FAZ is troubled by Christian Thielemann's unstable tempo in the Beethoven cycle. And the FR meets China Free Press publisher, Bao Pu.
read more

From the feuilletons

Saturday 27 November - Friday 3 December

Danish author Frederik Stjernfelt explains how the Left got its culturist ideas. Slavenka Draculic writes about censoring Angelina Jolie who wanted to make a film in Bosnia. Daniel Cohn-Bendit talks   about his friendship, falling out and reconciliation with Jean-Luc Godard. Wikileaks has caused an embarrassed silence in the Arab world, where not even al-Jazeera reported on the what the sheiks really think. Alan Posener calls for the Hannah Arendt Institute in Dresden to be shut down.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 20 - Friday 26 November, 2010

The theatre event of the week came in a twin pack: Roland Schimmelpfennig's new play, a post-colonial "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" opened at the Deutsches Theater in Berlin and the Thalia in Hamburg. The anarchist pamphlet "The Coming Insurrection" has at last been translated into German and has ignited the revolutionary sympathies of at least two leading German broadsheets, the FAZ and the SZ. But the taz, Germany's left-wing daily, says the pamphlet is strongly right-wing. What's left and right anyway? came the reply.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 13 - Friday 19 November, 2010

Dieter Schlesak levels grave accusations against his former friend and colleague, Oskar Pastior, who spied on him for the Securitate. Banat-Swabian author and vice chairman of the Oskar Pastior Foundation, Ernest Wichner, turns on Schlesak for spreading malicious rumours. Die Zeit portrays the Berlin rapper Harris, and the moment he knew he was German. Dutch author Cees Nooteboom meditates on the near lust for physical torture in the paintings of Francisco de Zurburan. An exhibition in Mannheim displays the dream house photography of Julius Schulman.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 6 - Friday 12 November, 2010

The NZZ asks why banks invest in art. The FAZ gawps at the unnatural stack of stomach muscles in Michelangelo's drawings. The taz witnesses a giant step for the "Yugo palaver". Bernard-Henri Levy describes Sakineh Ashtiani's impending execution as a test for Iran and the west. Journalist Michael Anti talks about the healthy relationship between the net and the Chinese media. Literary academic Helmut Lethen describes how Ernst Jünger stripped the worker of all organic substances.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 30 October - Friday 5 November, 2010

Now that German TV has just beatified Pope Pius XII, Rolf Hochmuth tells die Welt where he got the idea for his play "The Deputy". The FR celebrates Elfriede Jelinek's "brilliantly malicious" farce about the collapse of the Cologne City Archive. "Carlos" director Olivier Assayas makes it clear that the revolutionary subject is a figment of the imagination. The SZ returns from the Shanghai Expo with a cloying after-taste of sweet 'n' sour. And historian Wang Hui tells the NZZ that China's intellectuals have plenty of freedom to pose critical questions.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 23 - Friday 29 October, 2010

Author Doron Rabinovici protests against the concessions of moderate Austrian politicians to the FPÖ: recently in Vienna, children were sent back to Kosovo at gunpoint. Ian McEwan wonders why major German novelists didn't mention the Wall. The NZZ looks through the Priz Goncourt shortlist and finds plenty of writers with more bite than Houellebecq. The FAZ outs two of Germany's leading journalists who fiercely guarded the German Foreign Ministry's Nazi past. Jens-Martin Eriksen and Frederik Stjernfelt analyse the symptoms of culturalism, left and right. Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht demonstratively yawns at German debate.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 16 - Friday 22 October, 2010

A new book chronicles the revolt of revolting "third persons" at Suhrkamp publishers in the wild days of 1968. Necla Kelek is appalled by the speech of the very Christian Christian Wulff, the German president, in Turkey. The taz met a new faction of hardcore Palestinians who are fighting for separate sex hairdressing in Gaza. Sinologist Andreas Schlieker reports on the new Chinese willingness to restructure the heart. And the Cologne band Erdmöbel celebrate the famous halo around the frying pan.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 9 - Friday 15 October, 2010

The FR laps up the muscular male bodies and bellies at the Michelangelo exhibition in the Viennese Albertina. The same paper is outraged by the cowardice of the Berlin exhibition "Hitler and the Germans". Mario Vargas-Llosa remembers a bad line from Sweden. Theologist Friedrich Wilhelm Graf makes it very clear that Western values are not Judaeo-Christian values. The Achse des Guten is annoyed by the attempts of the mainstream media to dismiss Mario Vargas-Llosa. The NZZ celebrates the tireless self-demolition of Polish writer and satirist Slawomir Mrozek.
read more

From the feuilletons

Saturday 2 - Friday 8 October, 2010

Nigerian writer Niyi Osundare explains why his country has become uninhabitable. German Book Prize winner Melinda Nadj Abonji says Switzerland only pretends to be liberal. German author Monika Maron is not sure that Islam really does belong to Germany. Russian writer Oleg Yuriev explains the disastrous effects of postmodernism on the Petersburg Hermitage. Argentinian author Martin Caparros describes how the Kirchners have co-opted the country's revolutionary history. And publisher Damian Tabarovsky explains why 2001 was such an explosively creative year for Argentina.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 25 September - Friday 1 October

Three East German theatre directors talk about the trauma of reunification. In the FAZ, Thilo Sarrazin denies accusations that his book propagates eugenics: "I am interested in the interplay of nature and nurture." Polemics are being drowned out by blaring lullabies, author Thea Dorn despairs. Author Iris Radisch is dismayed by the state of the German novel - too much idle chatter, not enough literary clout. Der Spiegel posts its interview with the German WikiLeaks spokesman, Daniel Schmitt. And Vaclav Havel's appeal to award the Nobel prize to Liu Xiabobo has the Chinese authorities pulling out their hair.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 18 - Friday 24 September, 2010

Herta Müller's response to the news that poet Oskar Pastior was a Securitate informant was one of overwhelming grief: "When he returned home from the gulag he was everybody's game." Theatre director Luk Perceval talks about the veiled depression in his theatre. Cartoonist Molly Norris has disappeared after receiving death threats for her "Everybody Draw Mohammed" campaign. The Berliner Zeitung approves of the mellowing in Pierre Boulez' music. And Chinese writer Liao Yiwu, allowed to leave China for the first time, explains why schnapps is his most important writing tool.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 10 - Friday 17 September, 2010

The poet Oskar Pastior was a Securitate informant, the historian Stefan Sienerth has discovered. Biologist Veronika Lipphardt dismisses Thilo Sarrazin's incendiary intelligence theories as a load of codswallop. A number of prominent Muslim intellectuals in Germany have written an open letter to President Christian Wulff, calling for him to "make a stand for a democratic culture based on mutual respect." And a Shell study has revealed that Germany's youth aspire to be just like their parents.
read more

From the Feuilletons

Saturday 4 - Friday 10 September, 2010

Thilo Sarrazin has buckled under the stress of the past two weeks and resigned from the board of the Central Bank. His book, "Germany is abolishing itself", however, continues to keep Germany locked in a debate about education and immigration and intelligence. Also this week, Mohammed cartoonist Kurt Westergaard has been awarded the M100 prize for defending freedom of opinion. Chancellor Angela Merkel gave a speech at the award ceremony: "The secret of freedom is courage". The FAZ interviewed Westergaard, who expressed his disappointment that the only people who had shown him no support were those of his own class.
read more