Thursday, October 12th, 2017
University of Zurich, Rämistrasse 71, Aula, KOL-G-201
“Kierkegaard, in Either/Or, makes fun of the ‘busy man’ for whom busyness is a way of avoiding an honest self- reckoning. You might wake up in the night and realize that you’re lonely in your marriage, or that you need to think about your carbon footprint, but the next day you have a million little things to do, and the day after that you have another million things. As long as there’s no end of little things, you never have to stop and confront the bigger questions. Reading literature isn’t the only way to stop and ask yourself who you really are and what your life might mean, but it is one good way. And then consider how laughably unbusy Kierkegaard’s Copenhagen was, compared to our own age: we spend our days reading, on social media, stuff we’d never bother reading in a printed book, and bitch about how busy we are.”
Lecture in English. Discussion after the lecture.
Jonathan Franzen, born in 1959, is the author of five novels, the most recent of which being ‘Purity’ and ‘Freedom’, and five non-fiction books, including ‘The Kraus Project’ and ‘Farther Away’. He has received the following awards, among others: the National Book Award, the Welt-Literaturpreis and the Berlin Prize. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the German Akademie der Künste and the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.
*Please note that the number of seats is limited. A live broadcast will be provided in additional rooms. The events are recorded in sound and video and published on our website a few days later.
Pictures of the event: