The Holocaust as Culture
Translated by Thomas Cooper
5 x 8 inches, 112pp. March 2018
ISBN : 9780857425805
Rs 399.00 (PB)
The underlying theme in the dialogue between writer Imre Kertész and translator and scholar Thomas Cooper is the difficulty of mediating the past and creating models for interpreting history, and how this challenges ideas of the self.
The title is taken from that of a lecture Kertész gave in Vienna for a symposium on the life and works of Jean Améry, reflecting on Améry's fear that history would all too quickly forget the fates of the victims of the Nazi concentration camps. Bringing together a lengthy conversation between Kertész and Cooper, combined with an introduction by the latter, this volume reveals Kertész's views on the lengthening shadow of the Holocaust as an ever-present part of the world's cultural memory and his idea of the crucial functions of literature and art as the vessels of this memory.
Imre Kertész, born of Jewish descent in Budapest, was deported to Auschwitz in 1944 and from there to Buchenwald, from where he was liberated in 1945. His books include Fateless, Kaddish for an Unborn Child and The Union Jack.
Thomas Cooper has translated works of poetry and prose by many contemporary Hungarian authors, including Imre Kertész, Zsuzsa Rakovszky and Péter Esterházy. He teaches course on literature and translation theory at the Károli Gáspár University in Budapest, Hungary.