23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Karosh Taha
© Havin Al-Sindy

Karosh Taha

Karosh Taha was born in Zaxo in Kurdistan Region in 1987. When she was nine years old, her family fled to Germany. Karosh Taha majored in English and history to become a teacher, and taught at a school in Essen until 2018.
Her debut novel, »Beschreibung einer Krabbenwanderung« (2018, tr: Description of a Crab Migration), which grew out of the story »Displaced Persons«, tells of an increasingly estranged Kurdish family. Sanaa, the 22-year-old protagonist, lives with her parents in a cramped high-rise apartment in a West German city. While the older generation seems paralyzed and absent, Sanaa relishes her young life – contrary to the traditions and values of society. Karosh Taha, who has cited American Hispanic author Sandra Cisneros as well as Max Frisch as her literary models, writes about memories and loneliness. »Die Welt« praised the debut, stating that »›Description of a Crab Migration‹ glosses over nothing, yet leaves the reader full of hope.« In 2021, WDR produces a radio play version of the story. Karosh Taha’s second novel, »Im Bauch der Königin« (tr: In the Queen’s Belly), was published in 2020 and is perceived as a »turning book« that can be read from both sides. From both female and male perspectives, the story of the protagonist Shahira branches out into two alternative readings. Perception is therefore a central theme of the book. Reading it from one side, one learns the story of Younes and his mother Shahira, who is rejected by neighbors because of her life style; reading it from the other side, the story of Amal, a young woman driven by the longing for her father, unravels. Through both perspectives, the author shows how differently female actions are valued, be it when a girl fights, be it the promiscuous behavior of an adult woman like Shahira. On the other hand, »Im Bauch der Königin« subjects the construction of storytelling and language to negotiation.
Karosh Taha has received several awards, including the Hohenems Literature Prize, the Rolf Dieter Brinkmann Scholarship, the German Literature Fund Scholarship, and the Alfred Döblin Medal. She lives in Essen.


Beschreibung einer Krabbenwanderung
Köln, 2018

Im Bauch der Königin
Köln, 2020