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Lenka Reinerova
 Prague's last German-speaking Author

Author: Frank Gutermuth

Lenka Reinerova

It is a lost world that only few remember today: Decades ago, Prague had been the centre of German culture and meeting point of the literary bohemia. After 1933, the gorgeous city by the Vlatva river initially became a haven and political exile for modern writers.

Lenka Reinerova still contains this spirit of enlightenment within herself and puts it into practice. At 91 years old, she is regarded the Grand Dame of the German literary scene in Prague. The German-Jewish author is the last German speaking author living in Prague, and is thus considered a literary heiress of Kafka. She also has this unmistakable accent, this Prague-German, for which Kafka was so famous. All of her life she stood up for humanism and enlightenment and the difficult circumstances of the 20th century kept making Reinerova a political dissident again and again. She also stands for a successful Jewish-German-Czech cultural symbiosis, she is a Prague citizen with all her heart. Since 1989 her books are only published in Czechoslovakia. For stories like "Mandelduft" she received the Schiller Ring in 1999 and the Goethe Medal in 2003 in Germany. Lenka Reinerova has published 9 books in German and an audio Book in which she speaks her unmistakable Prague-German as Kafka once did.

Her great goal and current project is the establishment of a museum for German literature in Prague: the works and achievements of her colleagues, all of whom she outlived, shall not be forgotten and be brought into the present time. Lenka Reinerova is the heart of the planning and the future museum is already calling attention to itself - with readings by the last German speaking author of Prague.

A 20-minute contextual film about the life of Lenka Reinerova is being developed for the future museum for German literature.  

Sponsored by the Robert-Bosch-Foundation

 

 





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