Reading and discussion

Kossi Efoui and Bartholomäus Grill

Literature and Racism – Colonial Surveys and Narrative Counter-Strategies

Thu, May 26, 2011
8 pm
Admission: 5 €/3 €

In French laguage, translated into German

Kossi Efoui, Foto: Hermance Triay

Kossi Efoui fled from Togo for political reasons and now lives in Nantes, where he works as a political journalist, theater director and writer. Bartholomäus Grill is the Africa correspondent for “Die ZEIT” and is based in Cape Town.

The topic of their discussion is the involvement of European literature in colonialism. On the one hand, it reflected Europe’s claim to a leadership role in civilization, which was closely connected to anthropological surveys of the “others”. On the other hand, literature is characterized by an anti-deterministic openness. What power of resistance can emerge from literature as a result of its ability to narrate life? The participants in this reading and subsequent discussion examine the colonial power of description in Africa. Moderation: Markus Messling, University of Potsdam.

This evening, a joint cooperation between the Haus der Kulturen der Welt and German Research Foundation project “Philology and Racism” (University of Potsdam), is the first event in the conference “WORT MACHT STAMM. Rassismus und Determinismus in der Philologie des 19. Jahrhunderts”, which takes place in the University of Potsdam from 27 to 29 May 2011.