3 photographs, 10 illustrations
Two languages—German and Romanian—inform the novels, essays, and collage poetry of Nobel laureate Herta Müller. Describing her writing as “autofictional,” Müller depicts the effects of violence, cruelty, and terror on her characters based on her own experiences in Communist Romania under the repressive Nicolae Ceauşescu regime.
Herta Müller: Politics and Aesthetics explores Müller’s writings from different literary, cultural, and historical perspectives. Part 1 features Müller’s Nobel lecture, five new collage poems, and an interview with Ernest Wichner, a German-Romanian author who has traveled with her and sheds light on her writing. Parts 2 and 3, featuring essays by scholars from across Europe and the United States, address the political and poetical aspects of Müller’s texts. Contributors discuss life under the Romanian Communist dictatorship while also stressing key elements of Müller’s poetics, which promises both self-conscious formal experimentation and political intervention.
One of the first books in English to thoroughly examine Müller’s writing, this volume addresses audiences with an interest in dissident, exile, migration, experimental, and transnational literature.
List of Illustrations
Bettina Brandt and Valentina Glajar
Part 1. Life, Writing, and Betrayal
1. Herta Müller: Writing and Betrayal
2. Nobel Lecture: Every Word Knows Something of a Vicious Circle
3. Collage Poems
4. Interview with Ernest Wichner
Valentina Glajar and Bettina Brandt
Part 2. Totalitarianism, Autofiction, Memory
5. When Dictatorships Fail to Deprive of Dignity: Herta Müller's "Romanian" Period
6. "Die akute Einsamkeit des Menschen": Herta Müller's Herztier
7. Facts, Fiction, Autofiction, and Surfiction in Herta Müller's Work
8. From Fact to Fiction: Herta Müller's Atemschaukel
Part 3. Müller's Aesthetics of Experimentation
9. "Wir können höchstens mit dem, was wir sehen, etwas zusammenstellen": Herta Müller's Collages
Beverley Driver Eddy
10. In Transit: Transnational Trajectories and Mobility in Herta Müller's Recent Writings
11. Osmoses: Müller's Things, Bodies, and Spaces
12. Herta Müller's Art of Reverberation: Sound in the Collage Books Die blassen Herren mit den Mokkatassen and Este sau nu este Ion
13. Accumulating Histories: Temporality in Herta Müller's "Einmal anfassen--zweimal loslassen"