German controversy over award for Peter Handke


General Culture

“A political and cultural row is brewing in Germany over a decision to award the Heinrich Heine literature prize to Peter Handke, the Austrian author who courted controversy with his eulogy at the funeral of Slobodan Milosevic. […] The jury for the Heine prize said that ‘in his work, Peter Handke obstinately follows the path to an open truth. He sets his poetic gaze onto the world regardless of the public opinion and its rituals.’” (source)

“By declaring themselves ready to revoke the decision of an independent literary jury, German politicians are embarrassing themselves and damaging the fundaments of democratic culture. […] Whoever gets this award next should think twice before accepting it - unless things are made clear and the prize gets its name changed to ‘Heinrich Heine Prize for Political Correctness.’ Let’s be serious. Who needs literary critics and philosophers - not to mention literature itself - if local politicos will always know better?” (source)