The project Europa Weiter Schreiben brings together authors living in exile in France and Sweden with authors living in exile in Germany in individual tandems. The literary website weiterschreiben.jetzt allows them to exchange views and experiences of their life and writing in European exile through written correspondence.
Weiter Schreiben (Writing On), the prize-winning literature project for authors from war and crisis zones, was initiated in 2017. Through 2019, Weiter Schreiben worked with writers who lived in exile in Germany. Europa Weiter Schreiben now continues this literary exchange, giving it a European dimension as well.
In public European discourse, there is plenty of talk and discussion about people from war and crisis zones – Europa Weiter Schreiben lets them speak for themselves. Exiled authors living in France and Sweden exchange letters, emails, messages or postcards with exiled authors in Germany, focusing on their lives and experiences in European exile. Their correspondences will be published from the summer of 2022 onwards on the literary website weiterschreiben.jetzt.
Europa Weiter Schreiben thereby wishes to continue the successful work of the award-winning project Weiter Schreiben on a European level. In the spirit of littérature engagée, the project examines which stories enable authors from war and crisis zones who have found asylum in other European countries to make a difference in public discourse. As writers who have experienced flight and seeking refuge, how do they experience their new country in times of a pandemic, the rise of right-wing forces, the sealing off of Europe’s outside borders? And how are these experiences expressed in their artistic output?
The correspondences are accompanied by the principle of tandem work, tried and tested during the project Weiter Schreiben: Weiter Schreiben Europa starts with two tandems in France & Germany and two tandems in Sweden & Germany. This literary exchange is also illustrated by images created by artists with refugee or migration backgrounds. All letters are translated from their original language (Arabic / Persian) into German resp. French/Swedish by professional translators. The authors will then present their texts during readings in France and Sweden during the summer and autumn of 2022.
From its beginning, the project was based on an international approach. In addition to working with artistic creators from war and crisis zones, the project cooperates with literary agencies and authors’ associations in Switzerland, Austria and Poland, hosting events in these neighbouring countries since 2020. In 2021 the sister project Weiter Schreiben Schweiz was initiated with cooperating partners in Switzerland. On the website weiterschreiben-schweiz.jetzt, authors and artists in exile in Switzerland have since been publishing their works regularly. Early in 2022 the project launched Untold – Weiter Schreiben Afghanistan, featuring texts and letters by Afghan writers and their German tandem partners. In the spring of 2022, Weiter Schreiben will grow beyond the European borders and publish texts by authors from Egypt, Angola, Belarus, Burkina Faso and Iran as part of the project Weiter Schreiben International.