Thomas Mann Fellows | 2023

Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct, Nov, Dec

René Aguigah | Journalist

René Aguigah | Image: Deutschlandfunk
René Aguigah | Image: Deutschlandfunk

René Aguigah, born in Würzburg in 1974, studied history, philosophy and journalism in Bochum and Dortmund. After several years of freelance work as a cultural journalist (with contributions to taz, FAZ, Frankfurter Rundschau, and others), he became an editor at WDR radio in 2002, and later at the magazine "Literaturen". Today he heads the literature department of Deutschlandfunk and Deutschlandfunk Kultur, where he has worked since 2010. In 2013-2015 he was a member of the jury for the Leipzig Book Fair Prize. He has two sons and lives in Berlin.

Publications (Selection)
2021| Living on Despite Everything, afterword to James Baldwin, Another Country. Novel, trans. from the American by Miriam Mandelkow, Munich: dtv.

Project Description
Racisms operate in social structures as well as in subtle interpersonal relationships. An eminent work for understanding racism on macro and micro levels is the work of James Baldwin. Part of the literary canon in the USA, Baldwin is experiencing a new boom in Germany; here as well as there in the context of "Black Lives Matter". René Aguigah's project aims to visualize Baldwin's work by sharpening the tensions it enacts. These include the polarities between artistic work and political intervention, between literature as fiction and as nonfiction, between particularism and universalism, even the marginalized perspectives united in Baldwin as black, poor, and homosexual. From all of these aspects, inspiration can be drawn for contemporary debates. The residency at TMH is intended to facilitate readings and conversations that are not accessible in Germany. The project will culminate in an essay to be published on Baldwin's 100th birthday.

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