Feridun Zaimoglu is Professor for the Brothers Grimm Poetics Professorship 2023

Feridun Zaimoglu is receiving the Grimm Poetics Professorship from the University of Kassel this year. The Turkish-born writer and artist, who lives in Kiel, Germany, has frequently received awards for his extensive body of work.

Bild: Stefanie Kreuzer.
Feridun Zaimoglu.

"Zaimoglu is an extremely productive and linguistically diverse experimenting author who has published a good dozen novels of different genres to date," explains Prof. Dr. Stefanie Kreuzer, a literature and media scholar at the University of Kassel and responsible for the poetics professorship. Zaimoglu was born in Turkey in 1964 and lives in Germany since 1965. He became known with "Kanak Sprak" (1995). The text plays with documentary and fictional facets. In 24 monologues by migrants, it illuminates the live as a 'Kanake' in Germany. "Kanak Sprak" was also adapted for the theater using monologues from Zaimoglu's third book "Koppstoff." Zaimoglu himself participated in the radio play version. "Abschaum - Die wahre Geschichte von Ertan Ongun" (1997) was filmed in 2000 by Lars Becker as "Kanak Attack."

His best-known novels include Leyla (2006) and "Liebesbrand" (2008). "Leyla" tells the story of the titular protagonist who grows up in Anatolia and eventually comes to Germany as a migrant worker. "Liebesbrand" is about a largely unfulfilled love story following a serious bus accident. In the historical novel "Evangelio" (2017), Zaimgolu tells the story of Martin Luther as an outlaw before his Bible translation at Wartburg Castle. "Bewältigung" (2022) is a fictional approach to Adolf Hitler. Zaimoglu has also published several volumes of stories - including "Kopf und Kragen" (2001), "Zwölf Gramm Glück" (2004), and "Ich gehe durch das Deutschland meiner Tage" (2018). He has also written plays in co-authorship with Günter Senkel for theaters in Frankfurt, Bremen, Kiel, Munich, Düsseldorf, Berlin, Salzburg, and Worms. Since 2011, Zaimoglu has again devoted himself intensively to painting. His works have been shown in many solo and group exhibitions.

Zaimoglu has received numerous awards for his work. In 2003, for example, he received the jury prize at the Ingeborg Bachmann Competition in Klagenfurt for his story "Häute." In 2004 he received the Adelbert von Chamisso Prize. In 2014 and 2015, he was longlisted for the German Book Prize with "Isabel" and "Siebentürmeviertel." In 2019, he was nominated for the Leipzig Book Fair Prize in the fiction category with his novel "Die Geschichte der Frau." Zaimoglu has also been a visiting professor at the FU Berlin, held the Poetics Lectureship at the University of Tübingen in 2007 and the Heinrich Heine Visiting Lectureship in Lüneburg in 2012.


Wednesday, July 5, 2023, 6-8 p.m.: Public Poetics Lecture "Poetics(s) of the Everyday - or: 7 mm to Kopfnebel" (Campus Center, Lecture Hall II).

Thursday, July 6, 2023, 6-8 p.m.: Public reading as a 'text walk': "Love, Dream and Death" (Campus Center, Lecture Hall II).

On Thursday, July 6, from 12-14 p.m., the poetics seminar "Foto-Text-Strecke-Kassel" will take place. It is exclusively for Kassel students by registration.


Background: The Brothers Grimm Poetics Professorship

The Poetics Professorship has been awarded yearly by the University of Kassel since 1985 and is currently endowed by the Kassel Savings Bank. So far, important authors, playwrights and filmmakers have been honored - including, for example, Herta Müller (1998), Volker Schlöndorff (2011), Felicitas Hoppe (2019), Terézia Mora (2021) and Doris Dörrie (2022). In public events, the award winners reflect on artistic processes and their work.


Info at: www.uni-kassel.de/go/gpp-zaimoglu



Prof. Dr. Stefanie Kreuzer

Modern German Literature / Media Studies

Tel.: 0561 - 804-3336 (secretariat)

Mail: stefanie.kreuzer[at]uni-kassel[dot]de

Home: www.uni-kassel.de/go/kreuzer