Serbian writer and literary director Biljana Srbljanović became internationally known for her Belgrade Trilogy which was written in 1999 during the NATO war against Yugoslavia. Excerpts from it were printed in Spiegel. She will be reading from her earlier works and in so doing comments on the present. Srbljanović considers herself part of the Thomas Bernhard tradition of critical thought, though not without a pinch of self-irony. This event, with the cryptic title Bernhard–Kugeln, is divided into an interview and a conversation. It provokes by leaving open the cross references, analogical links, borderline manoeuvres, and self-empowerment strategies with which Srbljanović wants to confront the public. Here, questions arise such as the socio-political relevance of contemporary literature, the expectations people have of present-day writers, and just how effective strategies such as provocation and exaggeration still (or more than ever) are in formulating social criticism.
Biljana Srbljanović (*1970) is a writer and dramaturge. She lives and works in Paris.
Cathérine Hug (*1976) has been a curator at Kunsthalle Wien since 2008. She lives and works in Vienna.