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Exil und Sprache
Panel discussion with Emine Sevgi Özdamar, Najem Wali and Stefan Weidner (Moderation)

Press release:  20.11.2014

Exile and migration can have a decisive impact on the artistic output of a writer. The move to a country with a different language can cut authors off from daily interaction with their native tongue and result in their no longer being able to register and aesthetically process the subtleties of a continuously evolving language. On the other hand, a change of language can also bring forth a special type of productivity. The event examines the impact which language and the experience of switching to a new language (or possibly even losing a language) can have on the work of a writer, and also the extent to which language is a precondition for participating in a culture.

Thursday, 27. November 2014, 19:00
German National Library in Frankfurt am Main
Admission is free of charge.

Emine Sevgi Özdamar
Emine Sevgi Özdamar arrived in Germany from Turkey in 1976 and has since published numerous novels and short stories in German.

Najem Wali
Najem Wali is a writer and journalist. He fled to Germany in 1980 following the outbreak of the Iran-Iraq war. His novel "Bagdad Marlboro" was published in spring 2014

Stefan Weidner (Moderation)
Stefan Weidner is an author, translator and Islam expert

Supported by Gesellschaft für das Buch e.V.

Event organised by Deutsches Exilarchiv 1933 – 1945 as part of the Goethe-Institut "DEUTSCH 3.0 – Debatten über Sprache und ihre Zukunft" initiative in cooperation with Duden, Institut für Deutsche Sprache and Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft.


For over a century now the German National Library has been collecting, documenting, archiving and making publicly available all written and sound recording publications issued in Germany, or in German, since 1913. It provides its comprehensive range of services at its twin sites in Leipzig and Frankfurt am Main, but also in digital form to a global circle of users. In addition the German National Library also houses valuable and extensive special collections in the German Exile Archive 1933 - 1945 and the German Museum of Books and Writing. It showcases its valuable collections and promotes the culture of books, reading and music by regularly staging readings, exhibitions, lectures and concerts. It houses almost 29 million media units and attracts roughly 220,000 visitors to its two sites in Leipzig and Frankfurt am Main with its collections and rich and varied programme of events.

Further information: Deutsch 3.0 – Debatten über Sprache und ihre Zukunft

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