Moderation : Mathieu Roger-Lacan
Speakers : Félix Terrones, Marlena Wilczac, Vincenzo Latronico
Photo Credit : Brice Robert
By stepping back and considering today’s literature scene at the continental level, are there any weaknesses that jump out at us? How could decentralisation and greater interaction between literatures help us to see Europe’s contemporary collective imagination in a different light? What would the resulting fiction — as freely read in Warsaw as in Madrid or Paris — look like?
It is literature that shapes our mental worlds, our dreams, our political and social psyches. A century ago, nobody would have challenged the notion that Kafka, Proust or Woolf expressed sentiments shared by other Europeans. These literary giants fused a singular sense of intuition and form with an ability to depict the world, the society and the time inhabited by readers all over Europe – and that readers around the world recognised as being uniquely European.
Americans have formed a similar relationship with literature, embodied by the so-called ‘great American novels’. Today, bringing the disparate literary scenes of Europe back together, helping with translation, fostering greater interaction and encouraging the collision of imaginations are essential steps in the construction of a European political and intellectual space. This task also requires the forward thinking that will allow us, over time, to identify the works worthy of being labeled as ‘great European novels’.
This conference was organised in collaboration with Le Grand Continent.
We also took this opportunity to record interviews with Sarah Gamrani, creator of poetry book “Au-Delà du Club” (Beyond Club) – read more here – , and Steven Van Lummel, founder of The Hague’s PIP – read more here.