Die leere Zentrale. Berlin, ein Bild aus dem deutschen Nachkrieg fundamentally challenges our understanding of German literature after the Second World War. In his talk, Till Greite takes up themes he examines in detail in his forthcoming book (Wallstein Verlag, Göttingen, 2024(Opens in new window)). Greite outlines the literary landscape of the German capital between the 1930s and 1970s, focusing on authors who belonged to the so-called ‘lost generation’ – both those in exile and those in ‘inner emigration’ (who remained in Germany during the Nazi period). He explores the topography of the ruined German capital, notably the former heart of Berlin from a stereoscopic viewpoint, juxtaposing authors like Wolfgang Koeppen, Martin Kessel and Peter Huchel who remained in Germany as ‘inner emigrants’ with writers such as Günther Anders, Gabriele Tergit and Michael Hamburger, who fled Germany on account of their Jewish background, and who all used the destroyed centre of Berlin as a key metaphor in interpreting the completely changed situation post-1945.
Till Greite completed his doctoral thesis at the Humboldt University Berlin in 2022, and is currently a Sylvia Naish Visiting Fellow at the Institute of Languages, Cultures and Societies.
This talk will be held online, at which attendance is free. Advance registration is essential.
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