Liebe Sevgi, ich habe nichts zu sagen nur zu zeigen: Reflexionen zu Emine Sevgi Özdamar
The dissertation traces Emine Sevgi Özdamar’s writing of love and death and stages questions on reading, thinking, and writing within an academic context. As one of the most talked about and celebrated spokeswoman of Turkish-German writers of migration in contemporary Germany, Emine Sevgi Özdamar’s work found itself at the center of academic discourse on German literature of migration and writing across cultures in the last two decades. The ever changing realities and constant flux of global migration and, with it, the desire to deconstruct static notions of supposed “otherness” has permeated the dialogue on the production and reception of contemporary German literature as well. Previous categorizations of “intercultural communication” and “hybrid writing” have been replaced by the attempt to reach beyond a dichotomous discourse of the in-between, of belonging. And with newly emerging terminologies of “transnationalism”, “cosmopolitism” and “post-monolingualism” academia has expanded its debates. Or so it seems. The unfolding of literary terminology and with it a newly established dialogue on literature of settlement rather than migration centers the discourses nonetheless along cultural hierarchies and concepts. This dissertation aims to stage a different kind of dialogue. It is an endeavor to read and write with Emine Sevgi Özdamar’s texts. By reading, assembling, and writing scenes along themes of love and death and as one unfinishable project, the text aims to draw attention to the work’s theatrical and fragmented quality, it gives voice to subtle political and philosophical dialogues, shows traces of poetical multi-lingual speech, and raises questions on scholarly writing and notions of analysis within the academic field of literary production.