Literary perspectives: An introduction
The re-transnationalization of literary criticism
Literary criticism in the more narrow (European) sense of the word – meaning texts discussing and criticizing recently published books – is today a very national affair. Almost all books reviewed in daily newspapers, weeklies, and journals are published in the country where the reviewing medium appears. Single reviews or general overviews of books written in other parts of the world and not (yet) translated – be they poetry, short stories, or novels – are extremely rare.
Eurozine's series Literary perspectives provides an overview of diverse literary landscapes, describing the current literary climate in specific European countries, regions, or languages.
Carl Henrik Fredriksson
Introduction: The re-transnationalization of literary criticism
Hungary: Mastering history through narrative?
Northern Ireland: Shaking the hand of history
Slovenia: A hollowed-out generation
Ukraine: Longing for the novel
The Netherlands: "Profound Holland" and the new Dutch
Estonia: Waiting for the Great Estonian Novel
Austria: Anything but a "German appendix"
Sweden: Beyond crime fiction, handbags, and designer suits
Croatia: Post-traumatic stress disorder
Denmark: The contemporary literary reservation
Lithuania: Almost normal
Tim Van Imschoot
The situation is not equally bad everywhere. In Germany you can – even in the cultural sections of the major daily newspapers – occasionally find well-informed reviews of, or at least comments on, newly published books from, for example, Poland, Ukraine, or Russia. Occasionally. In most other parts of Europe there is simply nothing.
There are several reasons for this development (the decline of the literary institution, changes in the publishing business, or even "globalization") but it is safe to say that there is still a need – in the idealistic as well as the practical or professional sense – for a "re-transnationalization" of literary criticism.
"Literary perspectives" is a step in this direction. Eurozine's new series of essays aims to provide an overview of different and diverse literary landscapes, describing the current literary climate in specific European countries, regions, or languages. The articles in this series are published bi-monthly. Written by renowned literary critics and authors based in the respective countries and regions, they will also represent different critical traditions and practices, and thus widen the meta-critical as well as the literary horizons of Eurozine and its readers.
Original in English
© Carl Henrik Fredriksson