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Olaf Terpitz: From the margins? Challenges to and perspectives of European Jewish literature studies

Monday, 10. May 2021, 18:00 - 19:30


Vienna Jewish Studies Colloquium

Hosted by the Jewish Studies Program at Central European University and the Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies

Please click here to register

This lecture focusses on the condition of contemporary European Jewish literature studies – its current academic position and scope, its epistemological challenges and its societal relevance. In an exemplary survey of the 20th and 21st centuries, concentrating on authors such as Adriana Altaras, born in Zagreb in 1960 and succeeding as author and actress since the 1990s in Germany, or Sasha Marianna Salzmann who was born in the Soviet Union and immigrated with her parents to Germany, or, finally, Sh. An-Ski, who documented in his Yiddish World War I diary the atrocities committed against the Jewish population, the talk will touch upon issues of migration, antisemitism, memory/ remembrance. It will address as much forms of Jewish experiences in Modernity, and thus the relation between Jewish literature and World literature, as well as the potential of Jewish literature(s) to take part in public discourse and mirror it.

Olaf Terpitz received his PhD in literature and cultural studies from the University of Leipzig, and his habilitation in Slavonic studies from the University of Vienna. He teaches Jewish literatures and cultures at the Center for Jewish Studies, University of Graz, where he serves as deputy director and co-editor of the center’s book series (Böhlau). His research interests encompass European Jewish literatures, Slavic-Jewish encounters, memory studies, and translation. Among his recent publications are the German translation and edition of Sh. An-Ski’s World War I diary Der Khurbn in Polen, Galizien und der Bukowina. Tagebuchaufzeichnungen aus dem Ersten Weltkrieg (2019); the edited volumes Places and Forms of Encounter in Jewish Literatures: Transfer, Mediality and Situativity, Rodopi/Brill: Leiden, Boston 2021 (together with Marianne Windsperger);Yiddish and the Field of Translation: Agents, Concepts and Discourses across Time and Space, Böhlau: Wien/Weimar/Köln 2020.

The Vienna Jewish Studies Colloquium (VJSC) is an informal forum for Jewish Studiesscholars in Vienna and its environs to come together, share their research and exchange ideas. Each lecture is hosted by a different institution. For the time being, all lectures will be online.

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The Vienna Wiesenthal Institute for Holocaust Studies (VWI) is funded by:


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