Focus on Literature in Germany

Exhibition “August 1914. Literature and War“; © Literaturarchiv Marbach

1914: Literature during wartime

How the First World War shaped a whole generation of authors.More ...
Crime writer Jörg Maurer; © Fischer Verlag

The book trailer – a colourful all-purpose tool?

In these days of Facebook and Youtube, publishing houses are placing their bets on short films.More ...
Jakob Hein; © Katharina Behling

Hostile to humour? German critics versus comic literature

According to the authors Jakob Hein and Jürgen Witte, representatives of the comic genre are being consistently ignored. Are the people in the culture sections really that narrow-minded?More ...
Terézia Mora, awardee of the German Book Prize 2013; © Claus Setzer

Diversity in Autumn – new German books

The publishers are vying for attention. What are the themes of the current German-language novels that have appeared in autumn 2013 shortly before the Frankfurt Book Fair?More ...
Khaled Al Khamissi; © Lenos

New Departures in Egyptian Literature

Current novels from Egypt tell about people’s daily struggle for survival. Egyptian literature is available in German translation in various forms – from the spontaneous blog to the social novel.More ...
Photo: Arne Schneider

“A Russian Is Someone Who Loves German Books?”

At the 2013 Leipzig Book Fair, the translator Maria Zorkaja, the critic Alexej Mokroussow, the publisher Michael Krüger, the President of the Goethe-Institut Klaus-Dieter Lehmann and Anne-Bitt Gerecke of discussed this definition.More ...
Sylvia Asmus, Director of the German Exile Archive 1933–1945, of the German National Library in Frankfurt; © Deutsche Nationalbibliothek/Stephan Jockel

“The subject of exile is experiencing a renaissance”. An interview with Sylvia Asmus

The Director of the German Exile Archive 1933–1945 speaks about the state of German exile research and new projects on Brazil as a place of exile in the 2013/2014 German Year in Brazil.More ...
Open Mike 2012; ©

‘Open Mike’ – Fireworks with the Buddha

The Berlin ‘Open Mike’ entered this year its twentieth edition. For the first time the competition for young German prose and poetry took place in its home port of Neukölln – but it arrived long ago.More ...
Poetry Slammer Finn-Ole Heinrich; © Fotograf: Dylan Thompson/ Quelle:

Event-Literature: Poetry Slam

When a poetry slam is staged at “Substanz”, a club in Munich, hundreds of young people come to listen. Such events are not exclusive to big cities, however – in small towns too, countless writers get together to pit their texts against one another.More ...
Thea Dorn, curator of forum:authors | © Munich Literature Festival, photo: Volker Derlath

“Journey into the unknown” – Thea Dorn talks about the Munich Literature Festival

In 2012 Thea Dorn, an author and critic who has undertaken a great deal for the forum:authors, takes centre stage as curator after Ilija Trojanow and Matthias Politycki.More ...
Books with crown; © Märchenland

Fairy-Tale Festivals and Storytelling Events in Germany

What better time for fairy-tale festivals and storytelling events to enjoy a huge wave of popularity in Germany than in the year of the bicentennial of the Grimm Brothers’ “Children's and Household Tales”.More ...
Carolin Emcke; © photo: Andreas Labes

Committed Literature – Describing and Changing the World

By “committed” literature is meant that form of writing which is done not for its own sake but so as to pursue a political, social, religious or ideological goal.More ...

Beyond Coffee House Romanticism – Contemporary Austrian Literature

Weighty writers left their mark on Austrian literature in the twentieth century. But what about the present?More ...
Event within the event series „Sprache-Heimat-Exil“ of the International Artists House, Villa Waldberta in Munich with Maynat Kurbanova, Adam Guzuev, Dirk Sager, Marie Bäumer (f.l.t.r.); photo: Volker Derlath

As on a Boat – Lives of writers in German exile

In cooperation with the German government, the writers-in-exile program of the PEN Center of Germany provides threatened journalists and writers in exile with help.More ...
The Wilhelminian Villa of the independent Literature House Lettrétage in Berlin; photo: Lettrétage e. V.

Innovative Literature in a Wilhelminian Villa – the Lettrétage in Berlin

The literary scene in Berlin has innumerable reading stages. A very special venue for young literature is the literature house Lettrétage in Kreuzberg.More ...
Thomas Zandegiacomo Del Bel

Verse on the Screen – The Berlin Poetry Film Festival

The diversity of poetry film may be seen every two years at a festival in Berlin. In autumn 2012, the national focus will fall on Poland.More ...
The Swiss flag; ©

From Lausanne to Grisons – A Tour of the Swiss Literary Scene

Switzerland is a small but diverse country. A tour ranging from Lausanne on Lake Geneva to the Grisons Alps provides a look at the diversity of current Swiss literature.More ...
Cover image of the German-Israel Literature Festival, 2012; © Maud Meinel

Microcosm: Family – German-Israeli Literature Festival in Berlin

beziehungsweise(n), “respectively”, is the title of the fourth German-Israeli Literature Festival, taking place in Berlin from April 25 to 29 2012.More ...
Presentation of the 2011 Joseph Breitbach Prize to Hans Joachim Schädlich. From left to right: Doris Ahnen, Minister of Education, Youth and Culture of Rhineland-Palatinate; Ernst Josef Lehrer, Chairman of the Sparkasse Koblenz; Ruth Klüger, keynote speaker; Prof. Dr. Joachim Hofmann-Göttig, mayor of Koblenz; Hans Joachim Schädlich, 2011 prize winner; Prof. Wilhelm, Vice President of the Mainz Academy of the Sciences and Literature; Egon Ammann, President of the Joseph Breitbach Foundation. © Kulturamt der Stadt Koblenz

Is This Necessary? – On Literary Prizes in Germany

Every day an average of three literary prizes are awarded in Germany. Does this help literature?More ...
The author Matthias Politycki, curator of the forum:autoren 2011, Literaturfest München; © Mathias Bothor

A Writer to Touch: The “forum: authors” at the Munich Literature Festival

The author and this year’s curator Matthias Politycki in an interview on his concept of the forum: authors 2011.More ...
Anne Birkenhauer at work. © private

Of the Translator’s Craft – An Interview with Anne Birkenhauer

In October 2011 in Frankfurt, Anne Birkenhauer was awarded the Jane Scatcherd Prize for her translation of the novel To the End of the Land.More ...
Alexander Skipis; © Stephan Sasek

“A German E-Book Market Is Emerging”. An Interview with Alexander Skipis

E-books are slowly becoming established alongside printed books – says Alexander Skipis of the German Publishers and Booksellers Association.More ...
Prosanova-Festival: „Inselsprachen“ with Peter Neumann; photo: Judith Grobe

A Horse Trots Out of the Text: Literary Festivals in Germany

The whole year round, in small cities and large, in green meadows and in dark clubs, there are countless literary festivals. Where does this trend come from?More ...
Lange Buchnacht: Performance mit Catriona Shaw, Malve Lippmann in der NGBK; © gooeyTEAM

Poetry, Performance, Party: The Berlin Literary Scene

The daily supply of author’s readings and literary talks in Berlin is virtually endless. In order to attract audiences, organizers are more and more staging literature as an event.More ...
Bridge-builders for German-language Literature | ©

Bridge-builders for German-language Literature

Even though promoting contemporary German-language literature is considered a laborious business, there is actually a whole series of institutions that are committed to this with plenty of ideas and great enthusiasm.More ...
Rüdiger Safranski; © Wikipedia/ Hans Weingartz

“Romanticism is still alive”. An Interview with Rüdiger Safranski

How relevant is romanticism? The philosopher and journalist Rüdiger Safranski spoke with about why the online encyclopaedia Wikipedia is romantic – and why Friedrich Schlegel would still not have written for it.More ...
Website of the literary magazine “[SIC]”; © [SIC] – Literaturverlag GbR

Big Ideas for Little Money: The Boom in Literary Magazines

Young literary magazines are enjoying a boom. Prizes are being awarded and new projects founded. Three of the most interesting new publications are testimony to the new dedication demonstrated by young people.More ...
Heinrich von Kleist; © Wikipedia/Public Domain

Kleist Is Dead, Long Live Kleist! On the 200th Anniversary of the Poet’s Death

2011 will mark the 200th anniversary of the death of the great German poet Heinrich von Kleist. The anniversary will be celebrated by a whole host of events and an extensive website.More ...
Illustration by Mathias Weber based on motifs by F.J. Tripp from `Jim Button and Luke the Engine Driver` by Michael Ende, published by Thienemann Verlag; © Thienemann Verlag

All the Best, Jim Button! The “fine little chap” turns 50

The two of them have made Michael Ende famous and brought an island with two mountains into the nurseries of many lands. Jim Knopf and his pal Lucas the Engine Driver are celebrating their fiftieth birthday.More ...
Halma logo; © Halma Network

Jump-starting Literary Networks: Halma

In the popular board game of Halma, pieces jump across the board and create a bridge. The game was the inspiration for the literary network of the same name which helps authors and translators from all over Europe to travel to other countries.More ...
Curt Meyer-Clason; © Lorenz Vierecke

“Translating into a new landscape”. Curt Meyer-Clason

Curt Meyer-Clason – one of the most important translators of Latin American and Portuguese literature – passed away on 13 January, 2012. An appreciation.More ...
Logo of the 10th International Literature Festival Berlin; © ilb

A Literary World Tour – The 10th International Literature Festival Berlin

15 September 2010 sees the start of the 10th International Literature Festival, bringing authors from every continent to Berlin. talked to Ulrich Schreiber, the festival’s director.More ...
Web site of the German-Israeli Literary Festival; © Goethe-Institut

“Home is where you can be private” – An Interview with Jenny Erpenbeck

“Home Today” is the motto of the literary festival that from May 27 to 30 will bring together German and Israeli authors. Among those present will be the Berlin author Jenny Erpenbeck.More ...
Fontane monument in Neuruppin © Stadt Neuruppin

Let Fontane Sort Things Out: The Fontane Festival in Neuruppin

Neuruppin, the town where Theodor Fontane was born, is officially known as “Fontane City”, with a festival now to be dedicated to the town’s most famous son. The Fontane Festival intends to bring the poet into the present day.More ...
Cover of „Axolotl Roadkill“; © Ullstein Verlag

The Hegemann Debate: A Short History of a Plagiarism

When it transpired that the Helene Hegemann copied text passages from the Berlin blogger Airen without acknowledgement, there followed a debate about plagiarism, copyright and intertextuality. A survey.More ...
Fix und Foxi with iPhone; © Worldcopyright Rolf Kauka 1953/2000 und Promedia Inc. 2001/2010. Alle Rechte vorbehalten

Relaunch of the Comic Foxes: The New “Fix & Foxi”

With the relaunch of “Fix & Foxi”, a German comic classic shines in a new guise. The makers Steve Jones and Martin Söffker spoke with about foxes with iPhones, Lupinchen’s emancipation and the digital sales of comics on the Net.More ...
Marcello Backes; © Archiv des Autors

“To Bring the Reader of One Country to the Author of the Other.” An Interview with Marcelo Backes

the Brazilian writer and translator Marcelo Backes explains what he finds fascinating about translation.More ...
Jürgen Boos, Mei Zhaorong and audience, photo: Andrea Pollmeier

With Microscope and Telescope – China and Germany in Dialogue

Is China drinking all Germany’s milk? Is German architecture spoiling Chinese cities? A report from the Frankfurt symposium “China and the world – perception and reality” in the run-up to the Frankfurt Book Fair 2009.More ...
Friedhelm Marx and Uwe Timm
Copyright: Bamberg University Press Office

Where Literature meets Analytical Studies – The Bamberg Poetry Professorship

In the context of poetry professorships, authors reflect publicly on the theory and practice of writing – and allow students as well as the general public a special insight into the contemporary literature scene.More ...
Screenshot of

Where Literature both Anchors and Sets Sail – Literaturport, the online contact point for literature, was started in 2006. Since then, its offering and the number of authors helping to shape it has grown. In 2008, the extensive research tool was the recipient of the Grimme Online Award.More ...
Kenzaburo Oe gives a lecture to mark the tenth anniversary of the Samuel Fischer Guest Professorship; © Free University Berlin/Stephan Töpper

Writers at Uni: The Samuel Fischer Guest Professorship in Berlin

Former Samuel Fischer Guest Professors at Berlin’s Free University include Feridun Zaimoglu, Raoul Schrott and Kenzaburo Oe. The guest professorship programme is intended to further critical reflection on world literatures, and the authors often take a highly original approach to their teaching – it is quite conceivable for seminars to take the form of telephone conferences or talk shows.More ...
The poetry film as important link between poetry and everyday life Copyright: Filmwerkstatt

Poetry and Everyday Life – the Poetry Film is Back

Poetry is having a hard time of it in the land of Goethe, Schiller and Heine. Too few buyers, complain booksellers and publishers. But help for poetry is at hand. The poetry film is back. Once a form of expression of the artistic avant-garde, it could in future become an important link between poetry and everyday life.More ...
Further articles

Goethe-Institut Residencies

Foto: iStockphoto Richard Prudhomme
“Space for new perspectives” – Information about residencies around the globe


News from the German book and media market: books, audio books and CDs from the world of fiction, nonfiction and music

Dossier: Autoren unterwegs

In der Reihe „Autoren unterwegs“ stellen deutsche und französische Autoren Orte des jeweils anderen Landes vor, die für ihre schriftstellerische Arbeit wichtig sind.

Books creating buzz

New publications in the German book market

Dossier: Book. Form. Content.

The book market is undergoing rapid change – in Germany and in Russia. At the same time, as far as content is concerned, it seems as if everything has already been said. But is this really the case?

Literature for children and youth

German language literature for children and youth

New Books in German

Reviews of new titles from Germany

Call For Entries: ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival

For the 7th time, the ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival is inviting entries for the competition to find the best poetry films. To qualify for entry, films should be short films based on poems. Deadline: 25 April 2014


The magazine “kutub:na” adresses publishers in the Arabic world. It proposes new german books for translation into Arabic.


News from Germany’s culture and society