In the context of the exhibition about Paul Celan’s poem 'A grave in the clouds', the Jewish Cultural Quarter and Perdu are organizing a poetry reading on the experience of living and writing between languages.
Few figures were of such importance in the work and life of Paul Celan as was his mother, Friederike Antschel. It was through her that he learned the language he would write in for almost his entire life. Even after that language, German, had become the language of death, the language of the ones who murdered his parents, he refused to renounce it. ‘The motherword led me,’ he would write. Celan was also an extraordinary translator, whose versions of, among others, Mandelstam, Baudelaire, Dickinson, and Shakespeare are examples of what translation at its most radical can be and do. Growing up in polyglot Bukovina and then living in Paris after the war, Celan traveled back and forth between six languages, but always returned to the language of his mother. In fact, his entire oeuvre could be read as one great quarrel with his mother tongue.
Four poets will reflect on what it means to write in a language that is (other than) their mother tongue.
Dutch poet Alfred Schaffer has an Aruban mother and a Dutch father. In his new bundle, Wie ik was, he searches for the life story of his mother.
Ann Cotton was born in the US and grew up in Vienna. In her poetry she mixes her two languages: English and German.
Maria Barnas is a Dutch writer, poet and visual artist. She also tries to write poetry in English and will speak about her experiment.
Joost Baars is a Dutch poet and essayist. He is a great translator and included in his first book, Enclosure, several of his Gerard Manley Hopkins translations.
Microsoft Teams (link will be send via e-mail)
Date: Sunday, April 11
Restitution of tickets is not possible.