[csaa-forum] CCCS Seminar - 5th April - Dr Geoff Wilkes

Melissa Gregg m.gregg at uq.edu.au
Tue Mar 22 15:59:51 CST 2005


Dr Geoff Wilkes
University of Queensland
Irmgard Keun (Irmgard Who?) and the Prevention of Literature

Date:		Tuesday 5th April 2005
Place:   	Seminar Room 402, Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies,
		4th Floor Forgan Smith Tower, St Lucia Campus, University of
Queensland - (Bldg 1) [See map], 
Time:       2.00pm-3.30pm

Members of the university community and the general public are invited to
attend this free seminar with refreshments to follow.

Please scroll down for further information or visit the website at

The German novelist Irmgard Keun (1905-1982) is little known in the
German-speaking world, and even less known in the English-speaking one. This
paper argues that Keun's obscurity is in a sense the most significant aspect
of her career, and what makes her life and work relevant to anyone
interested in literature.
For Keun's career offers repeated examples of how social and political
factors inhibited authors in the 20th century. The production and reception
of her work was adversely affected at different junctures by her age, her
gender, the psychological and economic restrictions of both Nazi
totalitarianism and anti-Nazi exile, the sensitivities surrounding post-1945
attitudes to the Nazi past, the ephemerality of electronic media and
(largely in consequence of the factors already mentioned) alcoholism and
mental illness.
Thus Keun's life and work provide clear examples of the contingent nature of
how literature is produced, disseminated, received by critics and readers
and (dare one say it?) studied by scholars.

Dr Geoff Wilkes is a Lecturer in German Studies at the University of
Queensland, and was a Faculty Research Fellow at the Centre for Critical and
Cultural Studies in second semester 2004. His primary research interest is
20th-century German literature. He is currently completing a monograph on
Irmgard Keun, and has an article—"On a Railroad to Nowhere: Irmgard Keun's
D-Zug dritter Klasse"—forthcoming in the November 2005 issue of German
Studies Review.

For further information, please contact:
Ms Rebecca Ralph, Centre for Critical and Cultural Studies
Ph. (07) 3346 9764   Fax (07) 3365 7184   Email: admin.cccs at uq.edu.au

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