Can a poet tell the truth? Peter Rosei attempts exactly this – radical, self-critical and with the firm belief that life is wonderful.
“Wonderful life” is not simply Peter Rosei’s autobiography. It is the attempt to achieve literary truthfulness and tell at the same time the story of a writer who has lived many lives. His motto could be: Life is wonderful, even if it is dreadful at some points. After a humble upbringing, the young man quickly makes good money as the private secretary of the painter Ernst Fuchs. However, he decides to leave everything behind, in order to follow his vocation as poet. Years of deep crises are followed by an adventurous bohemian life side by side with artists and writers of the seventies and eighties, among them his closest and long-standing friend H. C. Artmann. And then there is the big turning point – but read yourself: truth and poetry complement each other in this text.
Together with H. C. Artmann Peter Rosei goes on numerous motorcycle tours starting from Salzburg. They just go with the flow, one time even until Venice. The novel “From here to there” is born out of this spirit of restlessness and desire for freedom. Published in 1978, it sketches the story of a young man, exploring Europe on a motorcycle. The atmosphere of the novel is characterized by a state of consciousness between reality and dream. Descriptions of a fleeting and intense moments of happiness are highlighted within this story in which constant movement is the leitmotif. The new edition reuses the emblematic cover design of Walter Pichler and allows a broad public to enjoy Peter Rosei’s novel which is often considered his best!
The forth volume of Lukas Kummer‘s highly praised graphic novel series based on Thomas Bernhard's “Autobiographische Schriften”.
His admission into the lung sanatorium Grafenhof heralded the start of a new chapter in the young Thomas Bernhard’s tale of suffering. In the isolation of the sanatorium he was at the mercy of the doctors, the nursing staff, his fellow patients and above all, himself and his will. In this hopelessness he practised revolt. It is his self-affirmation as a writer, the friendship with a musician, and singing which are stirring his will to survive and give him strength. In the end, Thomas Bernhard escapes the isolation of the lung sanatorium which is seems in Lukas Kummer’s illustrations like the coldest circle of hell, and emerges as the person we know today: one of the greatest writers of the 20th century.
Affectionate and accurate: Cornelia Hülmbauer‘s debut novel is a book to which we should listen closely and from which we cannot get enough.
Cornelia Hülmbauer describes childhood and teenage years in the country side using snapshots and images created from memory. A car workshop and a four-person family are providing the setting for this story of growing up; intimate experiences are mixed with poignant, witty scenes. Her text is so tightly intertwined and her descriptions so accurate that one is almost able to experience taste, smell, sensations and desires physically. In front of our eyes the “image of the author as a young girl” assumes shape. Seamlessly effortless, Cornelia Hülmbauer succeeds in revealing the past itself as well as the act of remembrance and the development of a literary sensitivity through short passages.
A posthumanist utopian novel, ecstatic and incredibly clear-sighted.
In Anemos, a post-apocalyptic irradiated city, a precariously balanced community of mixed beings and mutants has formed - for their common survival they need the luminous jellyfish Oberon, who ensures the city's water supply, but also the antlered Titania, who takes care of the city's wild festivals. But one year the festival of Walpurgis ends with Oberon's death in love - and the little slime animal Müxerl has to take over Oberon's duties, because: What you break, you must fix, so demands the law of Anemos. What, asks Elisabeth Klar, comes after the Anthropocene? And what laws can a society make for itself in order not only to survive under adverse circumstances, but also to want to live?
When you’re out of money but there’s still plenty of month left to go, you’ve got to get a bit creative.
Badly paid jobs, divorces; the highs and lows of life as an artist or a reckless propensity for the finer things in life – the reasons for poverty in old age are as varied as the women themselves, but the only remedies are creativity and solidarity. Erika, a retired teacher, Lilli, an unsuccessful musician, Anna, a widowed spendthrift, and Ursula, a nurse with a fatal fondness for exotic love affairs, set up ‘Learn with Gran’, organise flea markets, bake cakes and cultivate Erika’s allotment. When that isn’t enough, they decide to try their luck with rather less legitimate tactics …
Writing with her usual concision and black humour, Evelyn Grill offers a detailed depiction of loneliness in dark times.
An old woman sits in an armchair. Her mind turns to her Aunt Paula, from whom she inherited the piece of furniture, and to her own enforced solitude. Outside, the pandemic is raging, and she has been designated a ‘vulnerable person’. As such, she has been sequestered away as a precautionary measure – ‘kept in a sterile environment’. Maybe she’ll turn one hundred under this bell jar. Aunt Paula, on the other hand, didn’t even make it to fifty. She was deported, and the armchair is all that’s left of her. The old woman’s thoughts – sometimes clear as crystal, but growing increasingly confused – keep returning to the lives that are protected and those that are considered ‘worthless’, to social violence – and to the pleasures of not being bothered by anybody.
A man as a woman as a man? A woman as a man as a woman? Barbara Vinken revels in analysing fashion as a game played with gender and identity.
Do we dress as women or as men? Are our clothes simply a form of self-expression or are we also conveying a wealth of social codes? Fashion, according to Barbara Vinken, is always simultaneously a language, a set of conventions to which we are subject, and a means of defying those conventions – surrendering ourselves to the charms of dressing up. Only as a game played with gender, class and identity is fashion capable of performing gender as a sophisticated rhetorical construct. What fashion does, therefore, is not to erase gender, not to make gender fluid, but to radically unsettle and juxtapose the constructs of ‘femininity’ and ‘masculinity’. Provocative, witty and brilliant.
There’s no reason to give up, says Mieze Medusa, writing with humour and warmth – and especially not if you’re a woman!
Friends and partners, mothers and daughters: Mieze Medusa’s captivating new novel is all about women and their right to not give a monkey’s about ‘what people say about them’. Laura, a native of Tyrol, lives in Innsbruck and hates skiing, cosy romantic chalets and the magic of the Alps. Forty-year-old Frederike, known as Fred, still hasn’t settled down and is frequently out of work. She lives in Vienna, previously with Marlis – until she falls in love with musician Milla YoloBitch. Marlis wants a baby, Fred wants Milla, Milla wants to rap, Laura wants to draw comics, Laura’s sister Isabella wants a family and a career. And although not all their wishes will come true, in this novel Mieze Medusa makes a passionate case for allowing women to be, become and want anything they please.
In a novel at once merciless and tender, Moritz Franz Beichl explores lovesickness, depression and what it means to have a lust for life.
Moritz Franz Beichl’s compelling debut novel is an unrestrained hymn to desire, but also bears unvarnished witness to the realities of living with depression and bipolar disorder. When the narrator is abandoned by his boyfriend and – after a suicide attempt – is admitted to a psychiatric ward, he begins messaging his lost love. He texts obsessively, without hoping for a reply, but is lucid and ironic when discussing conditions at the hospital. After being discharged, he tries to find a precarious balance in his new life between ordinary everyday reality and excess. Building on these intimate, confessional passages, Beichl explores society’s treatment of feelings and bodies, of non-normative psyches and queer desires.