Solothurn Literature Days
The Solothurn Literature Days are a forum for current literary work in Switzerland , for Swiss writers from all parts of the country to meet with one another, with the public, experts and publishers, with numerous readings, film screenings and exhibitions. They have been held annually on the Ascension weekend in Solothurn since 1979 . It is perceived by the media and the general public as the most important multilingual literary event in Switzerland.
Every year on the weekend after Ascension Day (Ascension Day), literature days are held in Solothurn. Since it was founded in 1978 through the initiative of authors such as Otto F. Walter and Peter Bichsel , the Solothurn Literature Days have developed into the most important forum for current literary work in Switzerland. They present the multilingual diversity of Swiss literature in various event formats, give writers and readers the opportunity to meet and talk in a convivial setting and, in particular, offer a stage for young literary talents.
Foreign guests from all over the world and the examination of the literary scene beyond the horizon of the four national languages are an integral part of the program; In addition, discussions about problems and refinement of translation work and their promotion, but also the discussion of political and cultural-political issues on current occasions.
In the past 40 years, the Solothurn Literature Days presented around 1,600 different authors and their works. While a foreign author was a guest during the first few years, the program committee intensified the international dialogue and since 1992 has been inviting more writers from all over the world. Nobel laureates in literature John M. Coetzee , Günter Grass , Imre Kertész , Herta Müller , Claude Simon and Wole Soyinka have read in Solothurn.
A comprehensive archive database with information on all guests and events since the first Solothurn Literature Days in 1979 is available on their website www.literatur.ch
The program of the Solothurn Literature Days is aimed at the interested public as well as the specialist audience. The focus of the Solothurn Literature Days is the “Werkschau der Schweizer Literatur”, which presents novelties in fiction, lyrical and essayistic styles in the form of moderated readings.
It is drawn up by a ten-person program committee, one third of which is newly elected each year (writers and critics). The commission sifts through and assesses the current literature production in an intensive process lasting several months and makes a selection that is as comprehensive and representative as possible, depending on the time and financial framework.
The main program is supplemented by numerous events on children's and young people's books, translations and expanded forms of creative and performative use of language in the border areas of literature.
A current focus is on the “future studios”, which since 2014 have been trying to reduce the distance between the traditional literary business and digital technologies through input presentations and workshops and to conduct a constructive dialogue.
During the Solothurn Literature Days, readings are held in the Landhaus Solothurn, the Solothurn City Theater and the Kreuzsaal. Exhibitions take place in the Künstlerhaus S11 or in the Friday Gallery. With three reading rooms and an information point, the country house in Solothurn forms the center of the literary days. Since most of the events take place in the old town of Solothurn and therefore in close proximity to each other, the public has the opportunity to attend successive events without spending a great deal of time. The spatial proximity of the venues is a unique selling point of the Solothurn Literature Days and contributes significantly to its family atmosphere.
Cooperation partner and sponsorship
The Solothurn Literature Days involve partners from abroad and inland at various levels in the organization and implementation of the Literature Days. There are collaborations with, among others, the Swiss Association of Authors of Switzerland (AdS), the Looren Translation House , the TOBS Theater Orchester Biel Solothurn , the Swiss cultural foundation Pro Helvetia , Bibliomedia Switzerland and the Federal Office of Culture .
The Solothurn Literature Days are supported by the Solothurn Literature Days Association, which was founded in 1978 with the aim of building a forum for current literary work in Switzerland in order to facilitate contact and exchange between authors, the public, the media and publishers on a regional basis to promote national and international level.
The association's board determines the strategic direction of the literary days, instructs the program committee to curate the exhibition and appoints the management. From autumn 2013, the art historian Reina Gehrig took over the management and will move to Pro Helvetia at the end of July 2020.
- Official website of the Solothurn Literature Days
- Charles Linsmayer: Solothurn Literature Days . In: Historical Lexicon of Switzerland .
- Sound recordings in the Swiss National Sound Archives (audible only in special stations in Swiss libraries)