For almost 20 years, the bi-national literature festival “Literarischer Sommer/Literaire Zomer” (Literary Summer) has been offering German and Dutch citizens the opportunity to learn about the own and the neighbour’s literature and to enter into discussion with the authors at readings.
On the German side, the cities of Aachen, Bedburg-Hau, Düsseldorf, Krefeld, Mönchengladbach, Neuss and Rommerskirchen will be participating in the festival that has been supported by the NRW KULTURsekretariat as part of the “Cooperated Projects” for years, and that has been continued as a separate programme since 2018.
Participating cities on the Dutch side are Amsterdam, Heerlen, Kerkrade, Maastricht, Sittard, Vaals and Valkenburg.
Current titles from both countries but also rediscovered older works will be presented. Dutch authors will present their books in Germany and German authors in the Netherlands.
In its anniversary year 2019, the concept will be continued in an enhanced form. For example, in some cities a programme will be offered especially for children. Moreover, musical readings and literary film adaptations will again be included in the programme.
A major focus is on the multilingualism of the festival. Authors and their translators are invited to talk about their work together. The bilingual poetry project TRIMARAN, which promotes active exchange of the poetry scenes in Germany, the Netherlands and Flanders, will be represented with two events in 2019 as well. In addition, another German-Dutch poetry slam is planned.
A total of about 40 events will take place not only in libraries and cultural institutions, but also in particular places, museums and cafés.
The popular Literature Walks in Amsterdam will be continued, as well as the series of readings of “Das Büro” (The Office) of deceased Dutch author J. J. Voskuil.
The “Literarischer Sommer” (Literary Summer) has become an established name in the festival landscape with a strong public demand and makes a valuable contribution to cross-border dialogue, in particular in the tri-border area.