Paul Maar

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Paul Maar became known to a wide audience with his stories about Sams. His other major successes include Lippel's Dream and Herr Bello und das blaue Wunder. He has received numerous awards for his books for children and young people, including the German Youth Literature Prize (1996). In his books, there are frequent allusions to works of the literary canon, including fairy tales by the Brothers Grimm. Maar is also active as an illustrator, screenwriter and playwright.

Image: Bodow (Wikimedia Commons; CC-BY-SA-4.0)
Paul Maar (Paul Maar Prize 2019)

This year, the Kassel Grimm Poetics Professorship will be integrated more strongly than before into the research and teaching activities of the University's Institute for German Studies. Thus, more than twenty courses in literary studies, but also in linguistics and subject didactics, will deal with the topic of "Children Literature Language" in the coming summer semester.

Prof. Dr. Nikola Roßbach from the Institute of German Studies explained Maar's choice: "Children's and young people's literature is often only considered from a pedagogical point of view: What is the child supposed to learn from it? Paul Maar shows how multi-layered, sophisticated and genuinely literary children's books can be," she said. "He is the most important living German children's book author; it honors us and our university that he has accepted the Grimm Poetics Professorship." Her colleague Dr. Andreas Wicke, who researches and teaches in the field of children's and young adult literature, among other areas, emphasized the many references in Maar's texts, saying, "They tie in with the narrative literature of German Romanticism as well as international literature. Again and again, there are also allusions to or adaptations of motifs from the Grimmʼs fairy tales."

Prizes and awards (selection):

  • 1982 Brothers Grimm Prize of the State of Berlin together with Knister for the play Das Spielhaus (The Playhouse)
  • 1982 La vache qui lit for Anne wants to be a twin
  • 1985 Austrian State Prize for Children's and Youth Literature for Lippel's Dream
  • 1987 Grand Prize of the German Academy for Children's and Youth Literature e.V. Volkach for the complete works
  • 1988 German Youth Literature Prize: Special Award
  • 1991 La vache qui lit of the city of Zurich for Potato Beetle Times
  • 1996 German Youth Literature Prize for the complete works
  • 1997 Hans Christian Andersen Medal for complete works
  • 1999 Bavarian Theater Prize for In a deep, dark forest...
  • 2000 Friedrich Rückert Prize of the City of Schweinfurt
  • 2000 E.-T.-A.-Hoffmann-Prize of the city of Bamberg
  • 2001 Wildweibchen Prize of the municipality of Reichelsheim im Odenwald
  • 2003 German Book Prize for Sams in Gefahr
  • 2004 Poetics Professorship of the Carl von Ossietzky University Oldenburg
  • 2009 Wolfram von Eschenbach Prize
  • 2009 German Reading Prize for complete works
  • 2009 Friedrich Baur Prize
  • 2013 Culture Prize of the Upper Franconia Foundation