6 May 2022

Imre Kertész: Homesick for Death. Working Diary on the genesis of "Fatelessness"
Reading and conversation with Daniel Kehlmann, Katalin Madácsi-Laube and Lothar Müller, 11 May 2022, Pariser Platz

On 11 May 2022, an event on Imre Kertész's working diary Heimweh nach dem Tod (Homesick for Death) will take place at the Akademie der Künste at Pariser Platz.'

Written from 1958 to 1962, Kertész's first diary was found in the estate of the Nobel Prize winner, who died in 2016, in the archive of the Akademie der Künste. On 44 closely written sheets, Kertész records his thoughts and writings and his remarkable struggle with the concept for his classic work Fatelessness.

The surprising find was recently published by Rowohlt Verlag. The book will be presented with a reading and in conversation with Daniel Kehlmann, Lothar Müller, the author of the epilogue, and Katalin Madácsi-Laube, who manages the Kertész estate in the Literature Archive of the Akademie der Künste. Among other things, the editorial background to the new publication will be discussed and a previously unknown first draft of Kertész's Fatelessness – translated by Christina Viragh – will be revealed.

Imre Kertész, born in Budapest in 1929, was deported to Auschwitz and Buchenwald in 1944 at the age of 14. His novel Fatelessness, in which he processes this experience, was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2002. The book was first published in 1975 in Hungary, where, however, the author remained an outsider throughout the socialist era and lived mainly from translations (including works by Nietzsche, Hofmannsthal, Joseph Roth, Wittgenstein and Canetti). It was only after the demise of the Eastern Bloc that he achieved world fame, with Berlin becoming his adopted home from 2001 to 2012. In 2012, the opening of Kertész's literary archive took place in his presence at the Akademie der Künste, of which he had been a member since 2003. He died in Budapest in 2016.

The event is being staged in cooperation between the Akademie der Künste and the publisher Rowohlt Verlag.

Event details
Imre Kertész: Homesick for Death. Working Diary
Reading and conversation with Daniel Kehlmann, Katalin Madácsi-Laube and
Lothar Müller
Wednesday, 11 May 2022, 8 pm
Akademie der Künste, Pariser Platz 4, 10117 Berlin
Admission € 6/4, ticket reservations: 030 200 57-1000; ticket@adk.de
Online tickets: www.adk.de/tickets

Press tickets: reservations from presse@adk.de and tel. 030 200 57-1514

Enquiries on the Imre Kertész Archive
Katalin Madácsi-Laube, Literature Archives of the Akademie der Künste,
Tel. +49 (0)30 200 57-3243, laube@adk.de or literaturarchiv@adk.de