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Eva Menasse  [ Austria ]

Biography

ldw.Menasse.portrait.JPG
© Hartwig Klappert

Guest 2010.

Bibliography

Der Holocaust vor Gericht

Siedler

Berlin, 2000

Vienna

Kiepenheuer & Witsch

Köln, 2005

Lässliche Todsünden

Kiepenheuer & Witsch

Köln, 2009

Eva Menasse was born in 1970 in Vienna. She studied German language and Literature and History and worked as a journalist for the Viennese news magazine »Profil« and as a cultural editor for the FAZ. In 2000, she reported for weeks on the trial against the Holocaust denier David Irving. Menasse's first published book addressed this case and appeared under the title »Der Holocaust vor Gericht« (2000, tr: The Holocaust on Trial).

In light of Menasse's continued career as a journalist, it is not surprising that her first novel, »Vienna« (2005) is marked by her journalistic experience. The author gathered the material for her novel―which tells the story of a family with half Jewish, half Christian roots in Austria in the 20th century―by interviewing her own relatives and exhaustively researching the time around the Second World War. portrait of the lively family, whose anecdotal storytelling traditionmasks their fear of the terrible rifts in their own history, therefore in some parts echoes Menasse's own family biography. The novel was successful and has been translated into many languages. It was followed in 2009 by the short fiction collection »äe Todsü«(tr: Venial Deadly Sins). In these seven loosely-connected episodes about the disappointments of love »hear a distant echo of the ›sounds‹ of Karl Kraus and Robert Musil, of Thomas Bernhard or Helmut Qualtinger and Elfriede Jelinek: whoever learns―Eva Menasse in her garish and ironic literary vivisections―hear, to read and to write in Vienna, is immune to all sentimentality concerning love, illness and death.«(Die ZEIT) The characters in Menasse's »ü«are all from the Viennese intellectual milieu, on which the author shines an accurate and unsparing light.

Aside from her work as a journalist and novelist, Eva Menasse also wrote two children's books in the late 1990s together with her brother Robert and her sister-in-law Elisabeth Menasse, which were published as »letzte Mä«(1997, tr: The Last Fairytale Princess) and »mäMann«(1998, tr: The Most Powerful Man).

The author has received awards for both her journalistic work and her literary writing. In 1995, she received an honorable mention from the Claus-Gatterer-Prize for socially dedicated journalism. Her novel »Vienna« won the Rolf-Heyne Début Prize in 2005. Eva Menasse has lived in Berlin since 2003.

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