Reading and talk
29 Nov 2023 · 7.00 pm

Always Near IV: Pizza Hawaii in Resteuropa

Venue: Leibniz-Zentrum für Literatur- und Kulturforschung, Pariser Str. 1, entrance Meierottostr. 8, 10719 Berlin
Organized by Christina Ernst, Moritz Gansen, Hanna Hamel, Alexandra Heimes (all ZfL), Natalie Moser (University of Potsdam), Eva Stubenrauch (HU Berlin)

Pizza Hawaii in Resteuropa
Reading and talk with Bov Bjerg and Christina Ernst

Bov Bjerg reads from his new novel Der Vorweiner (The Pre-Cryer) (2023). With literary scholar Christina Ernst (ZfL), he discusses realistic and grotesque conceptualizations of the future, inhabitable worlds this side and beyond the rain limit, the class society in the age of outsourced emotions, as well as the history after the end of history.

Reading and talk as part of the conference Always Near. Nahe Zukunft in der Literatur der Gegenwart


Always Near. Nahe Zukunft in der Literatur der Gegenwart

Every present has its own future. The genre of science fiction is known for explicitly reflecting the transformation of literary imaginations and designing principles of the future. Whereas classical science fiction prefers to tell stories of far-away worlds and times to speculatively explore the unknown future (and the status quo of their own present), contemporary literature is increasingly interested in such fictions that confront their readers not with the radical strangeness of faraway worlds, but instead with conceptions of the future that closely resemble our current reality.

But how, precisely, do contemporary literature’s speculative futures look like? What forms of representation and styles of writing are being employed? How are authors modelling events, turning points, and temporal structures? And to what extent are established differentiations—between utopia and dystopia, between realism and speculation—being put to the test or even subverted?

The event series “Always Near” is a cooperation between the project Neighborhood in Contemporary Berlin Literature at the ZfL and the University of Potsdam starting in fall of 2022. The different formats (readings and talks, podium discussions, and the closing conference) explore the question of what kind of future the most recent works of contemporary literature present us with. They will take place across different locations in Berlin.


Fig. above: Julien Girard: Mars, 2099?, 2012, © ESO/J. Girard, License: CC BY 4.0.