A tribute to one of the most important lyrical voices in contemporary literature, this anthology offers a foray into Durs Grünbein’s more than thirty years of work.
A lucid inheritor of the traumas and failed utopias of the 20th century, Grünbein maintains a close dialogue with nature and history, with science and philosophy, from which he derives the preconditions for a disenchanted view of the world – be it the shadows of the German past, the precarious present of 21st-century Europe or the anthropological changes on a global scale. In each of these cases he argues clairvoyantly and without concession, and it is sarcasm that comes through as a characteristic note of the style: “Beneath the writing is the nerve at work”.
Durs Grünbein, born in Dresden in 1962, is one of the best-known and most highly regarded poets and intellectuals in the current panorama of European literature. He made his debut with the poetry collection Grauzone morgens (1988), which soon won him the prestigious Büchner Prize (1995). Grünbein is also the author of essays and narrative prose.
He has received numerous awards for his work to date, including the Nietzsche Prize (2004), the Pasolini Prize (2006), the Transströmer Prize (2012), the Herbert Zbigniew Prize (2020) and most recently an honorary doctorate of philosophical sciences (University of Milan, 2022) and the CetonaVerde Poetry Prize (2023).
Grünbein lives in Berlin and, by choice, in Rome, where he was, among other things, a fellow of the German Academy of the Villa Massimo (2009).
Valentina Di Rosa is Professor of German Literature and Literary Translation at the University of Naples L’Orientale.
She is the author of numerous essays and volumes. Together with Jan Röhnert, she recently published the volume Im Hier und Jetzt. Constellations of the Present in German-Language Literature since 2000 (Böhlau Verlag, 2019). Currently in print is Jenseits des 20. Jahrhunderts. Transformations of the Imaginary in German-Language Contemporary Literature (Edizioni Mimesis 2023).
She has translated a wide repertoire of texts (poetry, prose, theatre) by contemporary authors, including Lukas Bärfuß, Heiner Müller, Raoul Schrott, Lutz Seiler.