Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Our June Author: Ursula Hegi

This month we are reading Ursula Hegi's novel, Children and Fire. I was a little disappointed that there was not more information available about this book, which I very much enjoyed, and author. Hegi's publisher supplies a Q&A with a few insights into her favorite authors and other tidbits and a brief explanation of her relationship with the English and German languages. The interviews I was able to find were mostly focused on books other than Children and Fire, but as you can see from the video above, most of her work draws on similar themes, so they all contain interesting nuggets. In this NPR interview, she reflects on how the death of her mother when she was a girl has affected her writing. In this interview with the Seattle Post-Intelligencer she discusses her writing process and the reception of her work in Germany. And although this audio interview initially focuses heavily on her book, The Worst Thing I've Done, the discussion comes around to the political themes of her novels. For handy reference, here are links to the US Holocaust Memorial Museum's page on the burning of the Reichstag, and here is Wikipedia for more detail. Finally, here is Friedrich Schiller's poem, "The Diver" which is an important reference in the novel.
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