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Editorial no. 1

stadtsprachen magazin (2017)

Berlin is the city of myriad languages and stories. A literary tension, previously captured by Isherwood and Nabakov, comparable to Kafka’s Prague, Joyce’s Dublin and Pessoa’s Lisbon, haunts the streets of Berlin. For centuries the city has been home to people who speak languages other than German. The multilingual, contemporary Berlin literature, this one-of-a-kind mesh of voices, is now being publicly commended with the literary magazine stadtsprachen. A magazine that captures and celebrates the unique Berlin feeling.

The diverse, vibrant literary scenes of the city aren’t merely presented but furthermore invited to dialogue with one another. It is additionally an attempt to do justice to the perpetually shifting Berlin cityscape: a city, as ambivalent as it is multifaceted, in which languages other than just English and German have always been spoken. A new language is always an entry into another culture, another world.

The art of language(s) is what is central to the premise of the stadtsprachen magazin. The multilingual individuals of the Berlin literary world, who have long enriched Berlin with their prose, poetry, translations and publications will finally find their deserved place in the public spotlight. We see it as our duty and privilege to intertwine the multilingual threads of the swarming Berlin. Literary connections are found and nourished. Berlin gets to know itself. It celebrates its literary diversity. In the stadtsprachen magazin.

Joey Bahlsen & Birger Hoyer
Editorial staff stadtsprachen magazin

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