12. Graphic Novel Day – Max De Radiguès: Alerte 5/ Everett Glenn: Unsmooth

Max de Radiguès, Everett Glenn

The latest graphic novel by the Belgian artist depicts the explosion of a NASA rocket after launch. Because of the supposed terrorist context, alert level 5 is then triggered, which means complete isolation from the outside world for a team of five astronauts on Mars. The pressure pushes everyone involved to their limits … »›Alerte […]

Postsoviet Cosmopolis – Yevgenia Belorusets: Anfang des Krieges. Tagebücher aus Kiew

Portrait Yevgenia Belorusets

The photographer and writer witnessed the Russian attack on Ukraine from its beginning until she left for Germany in early April 2022. During the day, she roamed the streets of Kyiv, documenting people’s daily lives in diary entries and photographs – deliberately refusing to use polarizing war language. »When I started this diary, I was […]

Words of Love and Hate – Mieko Kawakami: Breasts and Eggs

Portrait Mieko Kawakami

On a hot summer day, thirty-year-old writer Natsuko is visited by her older sister Makiko and her daughter Midoriko in Tokyo. The three women come from working-class backgrounds and each struggle in their own way with their social gender, beauty norms, and the aging of their bodies. »Mieko Kawakami writes vociferously against Japan’s encrusted society« […]

Words of Love and Hate – Writing Motherhood: Pilar Quintana, Julia Weber

Pilar Quin

Motherhood is the central motif in the novel »Abyss«, which tells of growing up from the perspective of a daughter, as well as in Quintana’s debut »The Bitch«. This is about a woman with an unfulfilled desire to have children who, in her desperation, develops a maternal relationship with a puppy. The story, which ends […]

Words of Love and Hate – Vigdis Hjorth: Er Mor Død [tr: Is Mother Dead]

Portrait Vigdis Hjorth

»To mother is to murder, or close enough«, thinks recently widowed Johanna as she looks at the spelling of the two words in Norwegian. She is back in Oslo after a long absence, preparing for a retrospective of her art. Motherhood is thematically central, not necessarily to the delight of her aging mother, with whom […]

Contemporary Arabic Literature – Khaled Khalifa: No One Prayed Over Their Graves

22. internationales literaturfestival berlin [© Hartwig Klappert]

To kick off the series »Not Dead But Dreaming: Focus on Contemporary Arabic Literature«, the novelist and screenwriter, who has been nominated several times for the International Prize for Arabic Fiction, will present his latest novel for the first time in Berlin. In it, Khalifa weaves a hundred years of Syrian history and culture into […]

Words of Love and Hate – Bernardine Evaristo: Manifesto: On Never Giving Up

Portrait Bernardine Evaristo

Bernardine Evaristo, who in 2019 became the first Black writer to win the Booker Prize, tells of her life in her memoir that is »racy and funny, brute and touching, mostly self-deprecating and above all: uninhibitedly honest« [DIE ZEIT]. The formative influence of theatre on her as a teenager and her path to writing are […]

War diaries from Ukraine: Ulrich Matthes, Hildegard Schmahl

Ulrich Matthes und Hildegard Schmahl

Reading as part of the Worldwide Reading of Ukrainian Literature initiated by the ilb. Excerpts will be read from the war diaries written since February 24, 2022 by Serhij Zhadan, Yuriy Gurzhy, Yuri Durkot and Oleh Kozarev. Moderation: Barbara Wahlster