New Berlin Novels

First off, metblogs appears to have cheated death, for now at least. The donation drive to keep things going continues, though, and there are no guarantees for the long term.

Back to Berlin. This article reviews three recent novels set in the city, and uses that format as an excuse to make some sharp, but accurate, comments on us aimless expats:

The Berlin of the present exists in a state of rare double-consciousness, hurtling into the future while keeping a steady grasp on its past. From a writerly perspective, the coexistence of multiple selves is inspiring\u2014what writer wouldn\u2019t want to summon so many layers of injury and experience when creating a character? Aridjis and Winger have both, for better or worse, written books representative of their expat brethren\u2014the city is just one more instrument in the arsenal of their (our?) solipsism. It can\u2019t possibly stay that way forever. As manicured greens and glassed-in apartment complexes crop up in all those empty lots, they need not represent loss or erasure, but simply the city moving on.

1 Comment so far

  1. R. W. Rynerson (unregistered) on June 16th, 2010 @ 4:00 pm

    How disappointing to just discover this blog and then get that feeling that a big yellow bus is just pulling away from my stop!

    This is yet another reminder of how ephemeral web material is. Unless it’s something lurid, it’s sort of in between radio and newspapers in terms of its lifespan. This is coming from one of the thousands of website providers whose site was closed by AT&T in a marketing decision. When they gave us notice, I made sure it was backed up, but reconstructing ten years worth of links and on-line relationships with other sites is a lot of work to do as a hobby.

    A skilled web user can find some of the historical pages in the Wayback Machine, but you have to already have some idea of what you are looking for. For most users, when a website becomes a webseit, it’s all over.

    Berlin ist eine Webseite wert!


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