“Holocaust as Culture”.
The Poetry of Imre Kertész


The phrase 'Holocaust als Kultur' is a direct quotation from Imre Kertész and goes to the heart of his poetics. Jean Améry's reflections in At the Mind's Limits become radicalised in Kertész' writings. He even goes so far as to equate Auschwitz with "grace", a grace that allowed him, as a writer, to transform the experience of extreme suffering into art.

Writers, literary scholars, critics, translators and companions will devote three days to exploring the biography and elective affinities of the Nobel Prize winner and member of the Akademie der Künste, who passed away in 2016 and whose literary estate is to be found in the Akademie archives. Questions regarding a new canon in the Shoah literature and especially Kertész' literary achievements, which, as Péter Nádas has argued, was for too long hidden by the exclusive interest in his holocaust biography, will also be addressed in lectures and discussions.

The opening lecture on 12 April will be given by the Hungarian essayist László F. Foldényi, who will then participate in a panel discussion with the translator Christina Viragh and Akademie members Friedrich Christian Delius, Durs Grünbein and Ingo Schulze. On 13 Apr, 8 pm Ulrich Matthes reads unpublished diary notes on the making of Fatelessness.

Funded by the Federal Agency for Civic Education/bpb.

Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung

13 — 14 Apr 2018

Pariser Platz

Plenary Hall

Symposium with Irène Heidelberger-Leonard, Katalin Madácsi-Laube, Gerhard Scheit, Leonard Olschner, Dietmar Ebert, Lothar Müller, Volkhard Knigge, Rüdiger Görner, Irmela von der Lühe, Iris Radisch, Peter Gülke et al.

Starting at 10 am

In German

Free admission