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Language can never be private
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Current Texts

Axel Dielmann

“Can you imagine something like that?”

The curators were probably worried that someone would stumble carelessly up the stairs while looking at the exhibits—could I simply have gone past the first object at the bottom? Number 1, “Formless Veil, curtain” Must have been attached to the wall just between the entrance and exitus … “My dear colleague …!” and staircase. “… curtain, height 310 cm, width 475 cm.” I must already have seen it in the previous section, wall-high thing. What I’m overlooking, it occurs to me, is what’s essential. Which is the simplest form of analysis. I should actually go back down the gently curving stone stairs. But it’s over. Before me the Anatomical Theatre opens up along a last flat landing. Lights …

Set into the rectangular space is the oval of a gleaming brown wooden balustrade. From here you look down. Someone is whispering. The funnel of the auditorium declines in three narrowing...

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  • body
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Current Texts
Blood!

Ines Kleesattel

Blood!

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  • body
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Fragility is the only thing I really know about me
Fragility is the only thing I really know about me

Claire Denis

“Fragility is the only thing I really know about me”

I am not a very balanced person. I am fragile and sad – almost as described in Triste Tropiques by Claude Lévi-Strauss. I feel both those adjectives, I grew up with them. I was aware of my fragility even when I was very young – a baby, learning to walk, living somewhere in Africa and already feeling that the number of white persons was very small compared to the number of black persons and also noticing that most of the...
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  • autofiction
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Arts
About ‘how we treat the others’

Artur Żmijewski

About ‘how we treat the others’

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Let’s find the stage of human affairs
Let’s find the stage of human affairs

Marion Muller-Colard, Clémence Pollet

Hannah Arendt's Little Theater

While about to finish her last book, the philosopher Hannah Arendt is disturbed by her stubborn alter ego, 9-year-old Little Hannah. Reluctantly, the old woman lets herself drag out onto the streets of New York and into constant conversation by the inquisitive little girl. They enter a little theatre, and together they watch mankind, society, politics, power evolve – and they also experience the role of Evil (in the person of a wolf and of numerous wooden puppets) and its...
  • acting
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Fiction

Stephen Barber

Twenty-four hours in state of unconsciousness

Now the dead will no longer be buried, now this spectral city will become the site for execrations and lamentations, now time itself will disintegrate and void itself, now human bodies will expectorate fury and envision their own transformation or negation, now infinite and untold catastrophes are imminently on their way —ready to cross the bridge over the river Aire and engulf us all — in this winter of discontent, just beginning at this dead-of-night ­instant before midnight, North-Sea ice-particles already crackling in the air and the last summer long-over, the final moment of my seventeenth birthday, so we have to go, the devil is at our heels… And now we’re running at full-tilt through the centre of the city, across the square beneath the Purbeck-marble edifice of the Queen’s ­Hotel, down towards the dark arches under the railway tracks, the illuminated sky shaking, the air fissured with beating cacophony,...

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Be Jack!
Be Jack!

Michael Heitz, Hendrik Rohlf

Uma’s Face—Thurman’s Voice

When the only just 18-year-old Uma Thurman arose from a shell as a flawlessly beautiful film Venus in Terry Gilliam’s The Adventures of Baron Munchausen in 1989, it wasn’t necessarily foreseeable how persistently she would hold out her face for a system that is inadequately described by Hollywood, Miramax, Weinstein, and co. The fact that Uma’s face—her father sees her as a “reincarnated goddess”, and her name means “splendor” and “light” in Sanskrit, and is the epithet of the Hindu...
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Discourse
Mama Say Make I Dey Go, She Dey My Back

Jelili Atiku, Damian Christinger

Mama Say Make I Dey Go, She Dey My Back

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  • colonialism
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Saturnaaaaalia
Saturnaaaaalia

Sina Dell’Anno

Oratio Soluta

Saturn has entered our speech like a lion; as the wild beast of revolution, the limbs of a half-eaten child still hanging from its gaping jaws. This is Goya’s Danton: the bloody face of the untamable fear that human hunger for freedom could go out of control. The gaping jaws announce an appetite for rebellion. This physiognomy of the revolution, heightened tremendously by Goya, is already encountered where Saturn had not yet frozen into the grimace of a world-historical monster, but...
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Humanities

Maria Filomena Molder

So many egoists call themselves artists…

“So many egoists call themselves artists,” Rimbaud wrote to Paul Demeny on May 15, 1871. Even though that is not always obvious, ‘I’, the first person, is the most unknown person, a mystery that is constantly moving towards the other two, the second and third persons, a series of unfoldings and smatterings that eventually gelled as ‘Je est un autre’. That is why ‘apocryphal’ is a literarily irrelevant concept and ‘pseudo’ a symptom, the very proof that life, writing, is made up of echoes, which means that intrusions and thefts (Borges also discusses them) will always be the daily bread of those who write.

Words from others, words taken out of place and mutilated: here are the alms of time, that squanderer’s sole kindness. And so many others, mostly others who wrote, and many other pages, all of them apocryphal, all of them echoes, reflections. All this flows together into—two centuries...

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Humanities
Humanity is a metahuman concept.

Rolf Bossart, Milo Rau

Humanity is a metahuman concept.

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  • realism
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  • postmodernism
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