Audio channel "Stadtstimmen"

Culture is audible! With the audio channel "Stadtstimmen" you can listen to the podcasts "Archivwürdig" and "S'Vorwort" on the go or at home.

This page was translated automatically. The City of Innsbruck assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of the translation.

Archive worthy

In the podcast program of the Innsbruck City Archive, Tobias Rettenbacher, employee of the Innsbruck City Archive, talks with guests about various topics related to the city's history.

2. Season:

The second season is all about lived history. In the interviews, contemporary witnesses from Innsbruck talk about their memories of childhood, school days, leisure activities and much more. The second season contains six episodes, which will be published in a 14-day rhythm.

1. Season:

The first season will focus not only on the company's own archives, but also on other archives in the city area, such as the Tyrolean Provincial Archives or the Subculture Archives. The first season contains six episodes, which are published in a 14-day rhythm.

S'Foreword

City Library meets Pop.Culture.Literature - in the City Library podcast, librarians Christina and Pia talk to each other and with guests about everything that literature can be: from mainstream to niche, from books and films to comics and gaming.

Weekly episodes

In the weekly episodes, the city librarians Christina and Pia talk about a topic from pop culture and why they like it or not...

Transcription

[00:00:00] Yes, hello and welcome back to the preface, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:20] My name is Christina and today it's not Pia who's saying hello, but my dear colleague, Jaqueline

[00:00:26] Jaqueline, hello. Hi Jaqueline, nice to have you with us. Thank you for the invitation. We are very happy

[00:00:32] very much and the two of us are asking ourselves today, why do we actually like tropes but not

[00:00:39] just any tropes, but very particular or specific - which trope ... Which trope are we talking about?

[00:00:45] we, the listeners already know anyway - Enemies-to-Lovers. - Yes, so it's going to be a very exciting episode.

[00:00:52] And before we jump in, Jaqueline, I'd just like to take a moment for our listeners,

[00:01:00] who might be wondering, "trope", what is a "trope" now, what "enemies", what "lovers",

[00:01:04] explain what a trope is in general. The term originally comes from the

[00:01:12] rhetoric. There it is used as an umbrella term for certain classes of rhetorical figures

[00:01:18] used as an umbrella term. A rhetorical figure, for example, is known as a metaphor. In the

[00:01:24] modern literary studies, but also in literary criticism, as well as and above all

[00:01:31] in the English-speaking world, but also in other linguistic and cultural contexts

[00:01:36] a trope refers to recurring motifs, themes, plot patterns, character types or stylistic devices,

[00:01:44] which then occur in many literary works and have a certain meaning or

[00:01:50] association. A few common examples of tropes in literature are, for example, the

[00:01:57] Chosen One in English. This is a character who is chosen for a special task

[00:02:04] or destiny. Harry Potter would be one of these, for example. The old "white" mentor,

[00:02:10] the old WISE mentor - important distinction. I'm so used to this "old white men."

[00:02:17] But it's also true, so they're mostly white too. He, except Yoda, he's green. That would be

[00:02:26] a, right, an experienced, wise character or figure who offers the hero advice and support

[00:02:34] to the hero. We've already mentioned Yoda, Albus Dumbledore would also be one. The classic. Or

[00:02:42] an antagonist, for example Lord Voldemort. Exactly, it's not just limited to literature,

[00:02:47] it's also in movies, TV series, plays and many other narrative forms. What are tropes for?

[00:02:53] They're there to structure stories, also to facilitate the narrative flow. They use

[00:03:00] so they always use familiar patterns and expectations. That's why they're also quite popular in the

[00:03:04] children's and young adult literature. There is now also, perhaps a marketing term, that says

[00:03:12] you something Jacqueline, the New Adult, where I think it's a bit blurred

[00:03:20] from young adult literature to adult literature and what an in-between stage it is or where

[00:03:26] it merges elements of young adult literature with adult literature. So New Adult

[00:03:33] is characterized by the fact that there are a lot of tropes. Do you find that too? Yes, well, I mainly read

[00:03:42] "Young Adult" myself, so that's my favorite genre to read because it's not quite this

[00:03:49] adult and mostly dry somehow for me. And I think that the, well, that's mainly

[00:03:56] especially a lot of tropes and that's how the community communicates. So on

[00:04:02] Instagram you only read tropes. When someone writes or promotes or rates a book or a review,

[00:04:08] there are always tropes in the comment and it's always discussed. Yes, that is now

[00:04:14] more "Slow Burn", is it "Chosen Family" or whatever the trope is. So that comes

[00:04:19] occurs very frequently and has actually become part of the communication about the books

[00:04:25] and I don't know whether that's why it's become so topical and so popular

[00:04:30] mainly through social media. But I would definitely agree with you,

[00:04:34] that it's very widespread in "young adult". My theory is that it comes from the

[00:04:40] fanfiction culture, that we've talked about fanfiction before and whoever

[00:04:49] interested in it in more detail can listen to the episode again. But that's

[00:04:58] so with the advent of fanfiction and that was before social media, I would guess,

[00:05:07] established itself before social media and then it spilled over into social media, right?

[00:05:14] Yes, definitely, I hadn't even thought about it, right, with the fanfictions, if you look at the

[00:05:20] google them or type them in or search on Archive of Our Own or something like that, then the keywords are always,

[00:05:26] which they are actually tropes, right, and I hadn't even thought of that.

[00:05:29] Yeah, I thought about Archive too, if you just go to the Archive of Our Own page

[00:05:34] is a fanfiction site, now the biggest fanfiction site on the internet, in English,

[00:05:41] in any case, I would even say at all and then you immediately have all the tags and the

[00:05:47] are just - they're always tropes and then you can sort of like a restaurant order

[00:05:53] put it together like this, what would I like now? I would like the "Enemies-to-Lovers" with a

[00:05:59] "Chosen One" as the protagonist, who gets together with this one and that one and so on, and then

[00:06:05] you can read exactly, if that's what you want to read at that moment.

[00:06:11] Exactly, yes. And it's the same on social media, for example, I didn't know that.

[00:06:15] So I'm quite active on Booktok and there's always, well, I think you can almost

[00:06:22] you almost never come across a book review that doesn't speak in tropes and also, that always means,

[00:06:29] yes, I liked that so much, "Enemies-to-Lovers" and "Slowburn", that's really well done

[00:06:34] and excellent and that actually categorizes all the books. So then there are whole

[00:06:40] Bookstagram pages that specialize in "romance novels", for example, and then really

[00:06:45] also rate these tropes for books. So I know that mainly from social media

[00:06:50] and then everyone asks, okay, but does it also have this or that trope or something?

[00:06:55] So for many people, it's a prerequisite to know the tropes before they even read a

[00:07:00] start reading a book then. So you would say that young readers or those,

[00:07:05] who then also use Booktok and so on, so they're on these platforms,

[00:07:09] that they wouldn't read a book if it didn't fit their trope? So it's that,

[00:07:18] does it have to be that accurate? Well, I think so, I've noticed that myself. I am for example

[00:07:23] For example, I'm not a big fan of "enemies-to-lovers", spoiler. I think it's very often done very badly

[00:07:30] that I'm just not aware of the hate, why they're "enemies" now and I just

[00:07:35] think, guys, just talk it out, then everyone in 10 miles will realize that you should be "Lovers".

[00:07:39] That's often the case with me, for example, that I think to myself, I would avoid it now if someone says,

[00:07:45] oh, "Enemies-to-Lovers", and really, really great, I'm often skeptical about the book. So I

[00:07:50] believe that a lot of people use the tropes for reader decisions and if the trope is,

[00:07:55] that they don't like, that has an effect on their reading behavior, quite clearly, yes.

[00:07:59] That's probably also a new one that's come out of internet culture

[00:08:09] way of reading. Because I believe that a lot of people, at least that's my

[00:08:18] experience that I often read books, I mean, sure, if you have an author that you want to read mag,

[00:08:24] Stephen King is the example for me, then you just read what's published, I get exactly that -

[00:08:28] That's reliable. And I can imagine that it's similar there. But apart from

[00:08:33] genre literature, I often watch a movie and then I ask myself

[00:08:39] oh, it's based on a book or I ask, or then I'm suddenly in 20th century Paris

[00:08:45] or suddenly I'm interested in the authors of the beat generation and then I want to

[00:08:49] want to know that. So these are like "bubbles of interest" where I then read the literature there drin. And basically

[00:08:59] basically it's just a different kind of categorization. Before we now ... So to the

[00:09:05] tropes per se, there's still a lot to ask, uh to say, but what is "Enemies-

[00:09:12] to-Lovers" anyway? "Enemies-to-Lovers" describes, I'll just call it that now

[00:09:17] the process when two people get to know each other or already know each other and simply don't like each other.

[00:09:24] So they don't like each other, they're often, there's often in a high school context,

[00:09:28] that they are "enemies" because they both have good grades and both want to be the best,

[00:09:32] but that's just this "enemies" in the competition with each other, they like each other

[00:09:37] absolutely not and they hate each other and they can't be in the same room. And in the course of the book

[00:09:41] it then swings around into this "Lovers" perspective or, yes, storyline, that they're then on

[00:09:49] once they switch from this hatred to "Yes, actually I love you and that's why I hate you

[00:09:53] I hate you so much". And then all of a sudden they are a couple or at least have something in common

[00:09:58] or I don't know, what is the complete change from the initial behavior and

[00:10:04] often there's also this hatred that both of them somehow resist and

[00:10:09] then somehow a tension arises and I think that's what a lot of people like,

[00:10:13] this tension that arises, exactly, but it just changes in the novel or in the book

[00:10:19] then everything changes completely. So this is then applied accordingly to love stories. So I

[00:10:28] know it from many novels, but it's also very popular in fantasy. And also in the

[00:10:33] fan fiction. Yeah, okay, I see, so an example of the enemies-to-lovers as a

[00:10:43] trope, would be the "Twisted" series by Ana Huang, we have that now, the Jacqueline looks at me

[00:10:50] looking at me questioningly, I just cataloged it, which means we just ... we have it

[00:10:54] in English there, we also have it in German now, the rest will follow, in the library.

[00:10:59] And what we've actually also done, because tropes in that sense, we also use

[00:11:04] the English-language term, when we used to talk about, I think,

[00:11:09] we would have talked about genre as librarians, we wouldn't have talked about it at all

[00:11:14] exactly subdivided. But of course that's useful for us as librarians, we have

[00:11:21] now also created the keyword because it's a noticeable shift, simply.

[00:11:31] Yes, very practical for us then. And you realize it, people are asking, so of course it's

[00:11:37] a certain generation first, who have simply grown up in the reading culture, who know that,

[00:11:45] they inherently know what tropes are. Yes, and that's why we did it, because if the

[00:11:51] reading habits have simply changed somewhere and then when people ask me at the

[00:11:56] information ask me, "Enemies-to-Lovers" then of course it's quite useful if you then just

[00:12:00] the keyword, then you know. Just like Archive of our Own. Yes, do you have

[00:12:09] one, you said you don't magst it like that, the trope? For me, it's just often bad

[00:12:17] that a lot of people, it seems to me that a lot of authors, somehow

[00:12:23] get into this trend and try to create "enemies-to-lovers", but for me

[00:12:29] the hate is often not justified enough to make you think they hate each other and

[00:12:35] suddenly love each other, this wonderment of what this trope actually needs. And

[00:12:40] this hatred is then sometimes just: "He didn't look in my direction once and

[00:12:43] now I hate him." And for me, that's often quite

[00:12:45] unfounded and that's why I often can't do anything with it. But then, so then I read

[00:12:51] I read the books there, either I haven't finished them or I have an example and that's a very

[00:12:56] hyped young adult book series is "The Cruel Prince" by Holly Black and everyone loved that and

[00:13:02] - "oh, Enemies-to-Lovers" - and I read that and I thought to myself, well, I know, I see

[00:13:06] the hate. So I don't understand why they suddenly hate each other now, just because they're just

[00:13:09] are somehow a bit opposed, but that was completely unfounded for me and then

[00:13:15] even further in this tension, it wasn't tension for me, it was just bad for me

[00:13:18] Executed. Do you have one that you particularly like magst? Yes, it's actually my favorite book series.

[00:13:26] That's why it contradicts itself, because I don't like the trope mag, but my favorite book series, "Das Reich

[00:13:33] of the Seven Courts" or "A Court of Thorns and Roses" by Sarah J. Maas. Absolute favorite book series and

[00:13:38] there's even the "enemies-to-lovers" process drin twice in these novels and that's

[00:13:44] just really so well done, so they really want to kill each other at the beginning actually

[00:13:49] and it's really based on things and it just makes sense and that's where I got it,

[00:13:54] I think it's great, but the book is much more than that trope for me and I think,

[00:13:59] it's also a bit that, for me, there has to be a plot around it to make this

[00:14:05] "Enemies-to-Lovers" so that it's really a book that I want to read and not just focus on

[00:14:09] this enmity happened, sort of. Yeah, with pure romance novels like that or is it

[00:14:19] often navel-gazing and I can also imagine that it gets boring at some point.

[00:14:23] Exactly, yes. When it goes on like this for a whole novel, I'm like: here it comes. Can you see that?

[00:14:28] Yeah, exactly. When do they come together, every sitcome of all time.

[00:14:34] Everybody knows, but they don't know. Yeah, that's really an age-old trope actually,

[00:14:39] It's been on TV and everything. I also think what you said,

[00:14:43] that the books that you don't like, you have the feeling that this leads the authors and

[00:14:47] female authors, to be honest, there are probably more female authors and the few male authors,

[00:14:53] do it somehow so that it's just drin. Why does it have to be drin? Well, so that people read it.

[00:15:06] Well, first of all, you need a publisher to bring it out and then promote it accordingly

[00:15:11] advertises it accordingly. And if it's in right now, for example the trope "Enemies-to-Lovers"

[00:15:15] is on the book market right now, the new hot "coffee", when it's in, then you have

[00:15:24] all of a sudden, if one thing works, then all of a sudden you have all these freeloaders,

[00:15:30] who just try to copy it like it's paint by numbers or something,

[00:15:34] whereas it's actually much more than that. So I think when you write from the "trope",

[00:15:41] I can't imagine that that can work and I think you can tell.

[00:15:46] Exactly, for me the motivation is just wrong. So when you start and you have no

[00:15:52] idea for a book, but you just want to write a "trope" and then I feel the same way,

[00:15:57] okay, they only had the idea of "Enemies-to-Lovers", but there was no story,

[00:16:01] there was no plot, there was no background to this story and then you just realize that.

[00:16:06] Yeah, I mean, it's not a new phenomenon, it started in 2008, the vampire heyday,

[00:16:12] that's when all the vampire novels suddenly came out, so it's always been there

[00:16:17] but now it's not just ... Because I think vampire is another "trope" now,

[00:16:22] so you can build that up much further and make the worlds much wider and "Enemies-to-Lovers" is

[00:16:26] then I think the problem is that it's too narrow, so it's really just this one "trope"

[00:16:32] and you can't build a whole novel on that, or you shouldn't.

[00:16:35] So in any case, it's also an outdruck of today's book market that you also have to look at,

[00:16:41] They're also marketed in this way nowadays, former stories of

[00:16:46] Wattpad are rewritten a bit or novels are simply written with the

[00:16:55] ulterior motive, that will sell well on the market. But like you, what you said,

[00:17:02] with the "Enemies-to-Lovers" or "Tropes" is very, is so narrow and I feel that way and

dru[00:17:09] I often have the impression that in bubbles, as Booktok can be, algorithms can be

[00:17:17] that you often remain in a reading habit bubble, because if you only focus on

[00:17:26] these super small details of a book, because you say, that's it,

[00:17:34] what I liked last time, so I have to like it the next ten times,

[00:17:38] you take such a narrow view of your own reading world. Is that also your onedruck? Definitely.

[00:17:45] But I notice it in myself, too, when you realize, okay, I don't know ... "Chosen Families"

[00:17:51] I think it's really great, I think it's really nice, when that happens, I always support it, I think

[00:17:55] always well done and then when the book says, yes, when someone says something about a book,

[00:18:00] that this book has this "trope", then I'm much more willing to read it,

[00:18:05] then I'm okay, I liked it and I think that a lot of people are then more obsessive about it

[00:18:11] and then really only have their two, drei "tropes" and they always want to read them and then

[00:18:15] then devour everything in this "trope", in this bubble, as you said, somehow,

[00:18:21] which many books then suffer from, because at some point it just gets boring. And it's also like that

[00:18:27] a culture of convenience, I think, a feeding of material, I don't want to say literature,

[00:18:35] because somehow, that's what makes sense with fan fiction, because the pool is so big and because

[00:18:41] your time is so limited and because you mostly read it because you want something special, because something

[00:18:45] something in particular has bothered you about a series or a book or whatever, then you pick it up and

[00:18:51] then it makes sense. In literature, I often have the feeling that of course the book market needs

[00:18:58] divisions, but if ... and as a reader it's good to know what you mag, but the more compartmentalized

[00:19:06] the divisions, for example, it used to be, so you said, okay, there are these, there are

[00:19:12] broad genre of suspense literature, you know, you studied literature and then there are

[00:19:18] the smaller genres, that would be crime fiction and thrillers, for example, and I'm personally

[00:19:26] very attached to this genre and that's why, you know, and the smaller, the next smaller

[00:19:34] unit is then somehow Dark Academia and that's again, then I tried,

[00:19:39] read a few Dark Academia books and then I realized, actually,

[00:19:43] none of them grabbed me as much as the original book, "The Secret History", because the

[00:19:51] never really was genre. That was just what it was and it was done and if I want that again,

[00:19:58] then I just have to read it again and have other books that aren't Dark Academia at all

[00:20:03] but then unexpectedly create a completely similar vibe in me and then I thought to myself, oh, that's it,

[00:20:09] what I wanted from these books, but if I had just been looking all this time, I want

[00:20:14] read Dark Academia now, I would never have thought of that next. So I definitely think

[00:20:19] case, that it's a big problem that people focus too much on these tropes and

[00:20:23] generally on social media, people don't even read the book, the back of the book,

[00:20:29] What's that called? In English they say blurb. Yes, the blurbs or something. Yes, the blurbs,

[00:20:36] the problem is people, they don't read the blurbs anymore or something, they concentrate on

[00:20:42] the recommendations of people online or on the trupes, that they only hear, this and that title

[00:20:47] has this and that trope and then they read it and then they say, I didn't like that at all,

[00:20:51] because this and that, which is just badly done or something, because they don't even look for themselves anymore

[00:20:55] look, do I like it, am I interested in the story, I notice that very often with people

[00:21:00] online and I also think that sometimes you have to be a little bit without prejudice in

[00:21:06] a book without any preconceptions, because then it might surprise you and that's a trope for me

[00:21:11] often take away or bother me or why I don't like tropes mag, is because they're just

[00:21:17] anticipate so much, because if I know from the beginning, okay, the "Enemies" are going to be

[00:21:22] become "lovers", then you lose all the tension, so that's often what bothers me

[00:21:27] bothers me or in "Arranged Marriages" or something like that, it always ends the same way or something like that and that

[00:21:33] are often when I think that takes a lot away from my reading experience, because

[00:21:38] I can't imagine anything anymore, so there's no suspense, because I already know exactly,

[00:21:42] what happens through the tropes, so that was sometimes good, but often bad. You have the

[00:21:47] spoiler already in the marketing, as it often is with movie trailers, as long as people tune in

[00:21:53] on, but it's just attention economy, it's just difficult now, difficult now

[00:21:59] to get people to - definitely. - To end on a positive note,

[00:22:06] because I think we've discussed a lot of facets of it now, which is something that needs to be said,

[00:22:13] and I notice that with the whole Booktok trend, people are reading a lot, they're consuming a lot

[00:22:20] a lot of books and are basically doing a refresh for the entire book market, you notice that

[00:22:29] simply and that's cool. I think the Booktok or Bookstagram community,

[00:22:34] depending on which platform it is, it's not really tight, so you just have to see for yourself,

[00:22:40] what is my bubble and where do I move, but you find, so if you spend half an hour

[00:22:45] sit down, you'll find like hundreds of thousands of different bookstagrammers and the other one,

[00:22:51] all offer different contexts and that's just so diverse, I think in part,

[00:22:56] and they now have like drei, four that I follow and they also read very broadly,

[00:23:01] which is also me, I actually read everything except thrillers and horror, I always get scared,

[00:23:07] but otherwise I read everything and if they read everything, that's, that's kind of a broad spectrum

[00:23:13] and I really like being in the community, I think there's a lot here and as you say,

[00:23:18] it just brings so many young people back to reading who otherwise have no contact with it

[00:23:23] and also, this is a bit selfish, but I also think it's great that the books are now

[00:23:28] prettier again because they're now being presented online, they're worth more and how,

[00:23:32] okay how do you market a book, how do you design the book and I think the community is actually great,

[00:23:39] but maybe I'm in my, I don't think so, in my bubble.

[00:23:46] I'm sure it's great too, so I think it is and it's inspiring

[00:23:50] Yeah, the people. It's also nice when you're with the same people that, the same people

[00:23:57] with whom you share hobbies, can also be in contact, inspire each other and that's

[00:24:02] actually what social media was once intended for, so it's actually really nice.

[00:24:06] So with the "Word for Sunday" I'd say we'll end the episode for today.

[00:24:10] Thank you very much for being here today.

[00:24:12] Yes, thank you too, it was very nice.

[00:24:14] Yes, I thought so too, very entertaining. There are still many, many tropes,

[00:24:18] so maybe we can do it again in the future if you like. - Yes, with pleasure. -

[00:24:22] Then, we'll say goodbye to you, but not without the question: What's your favorite book

[00:24:29] in the "Enemies-to-Lovers" trope?

[00:24:32] Why don't you write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@innsbruck.gv.at

[00:24:38] or on Instagram under the handle "stadtbibliothek.innsbruck" or on Facebook,

[00:24:46] although I don't even dare to mention the Tropes episode.

[00:24:51] But you can write to us on Facebook, really old school.

[00:24:54] Yeah, thanks for listening and we hope you have a great read.

[00:24:58] Bye.

[00:24:59] [Music]

[00:25:23] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of Stadtstimmen,

[00:25:28] the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

Christina: Yes, hello and welcome back to S'Vorwort, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library. My name is Christina - and I am Pia - and we would like to welcome you to this episode. Today we're starting the episode a little differently. I have to explain something, namely that you can get involved in everyday library life via the #gemeinsambesser on Instagram, for example under the handle "citylibrary.innsbruck". A little bit of "libraries", so to speak, so that we can shape the city library of your dreams together with you. We received a topic request at the beginning of the year. And that's exactly what today's episode is about. Namely: The topic was "fascinating or funny stories about the creation of books". Because before the actual book comes onto the market and then ends up on our shelves or on your shelves at home, there is often a years-long story behind it. And this can sometimes be bizarre, sometimes funny and sometimes perhaps just a little surprising. And in this episode, we would like to share two of these origin stories with each other and with you. And we have prepared, independently of each other, an origin story for a novel or a book or a work. We just don't know exactly and we will tell it to each other. We're very excited to see what each other has come up with. I have to say, I've been looking forward to the episode the whole time. I've written down something really schmaltzy: "Put on your flippers and let's dive into the literary world. (...) Okay, let's dive in. Dive in. Are you about swimming? - Not at all, actually. With you. - What a comparison. Okay, yes, we were really very secretive, weren't we? So, I think you know the gender of the author. #00:02:41â9#

Pia: I made a mistake there. But otherwise you don't really know anything. #00:02:44â9#

Christina: I can't say exactly what kind of author. I don't know anything. And you? Have you got anything? #00:02:53â4#

Pia: No. Okay. Yes, Christina, let's get started then. Would you start with your story? #00:03:00â0#

Christina: Okay, here we go. Okay, I've brought something. Drum roll. The story of William Burroughsâ novel ââNaked Lunchââ. Do you know it? Do you know Burroughs? Ah, okay. #00:03:14â8#

Pia: Then it gets interesting now. #00:03:16â5#

Christina: It's a work of the so-called Beat Generation. Many people found this work unreadable or even obscene. And the story of how it came about is just as chaotic and fascinating as the novel itself. Um, before we get started. The Beat Generation is a literary and artistic movement in post-war America in the 1940s and 1950s. Alongside Burroughs, the most important representatives include Jack Kerouac, who is known for On the Road, which he published in 1957, and Allen Ginsberg with his epic poem Howl. He published that in 1956. These so-called âBeatsâ or âBeatniksâ rejected the conservative values and materialistic culture of post-war America. It was therefore a counter-movement, and they strove for an alternative lifestyle that emphasized freedom, personal authenticity and a departure from social norms. Other motifs in the works, which can also be found in 'Naked Lunch', include spirituality, especially Eastern religions. Buddhism played a major role, Drogen and the expansion of consciousness, which is one of the themes that plays a major role in the novel. Sexual freedom, travel and movement, urban but also rural America and the existential search and search for meaning. In other words, it is about a radical rejection of the mainstream and mainstream culture. Finding new ways for how drÃdo you express yourself and what experiences do you have in life? And our story begins in the 1950s at a time when Burroughs was experiencing a personal and creative crisis. In fact, after he had already become known as a writer and Droauthor, he decided to move to Tangier, Morocco. Tangier is known for its liberal Dropolitics and its exotic atmosphere and therefore became a haven for many artists and writers. Burroughs used or knew how to use this for himself and immersed himself deeply in the Droscene and then began working on his most ambitious work to date, namely 'Naked Lunch'. He was under the constant influence of heroin while writing the book. #00:05:58â2#

Pia: Okay. #00:05:59â3#

Christina: His addiction and psychedelic experiences had a considerable influence on the writing process. The novel was not meant to be linear, but to reflect the fragmented, fragmentary thoughts and visions of an Droaddict. And the novel succeeded in this very well. Burroughs experimented with the so-called cut-up method, in which he cut up texts and reassembled them. This technique, which he developed together with the artist Brion Geysen, gave 'Naked Lunch' this very unique and somewhat kaleidoscopic style. It's a book like a kaleidoscope. But it wasn't easy for him to work in that state. He was constantly on the run from the police in Tangier, and the reason was because he was always involved in Drocrimes. That's why he often had to hide in some seedy hotel room. And that's where he wrote in feverish, drointoxicated sessions. And you can tell that from the tone of the novel. It is very paranoid and often surreal. You look in vain for a plot. A decisive turning point in the story was when he moved to the "Beat Hotel" in Paris. This is a so-called âBeat Hotelâ, because this is where the greats of the beat generation met. So he met Allen Ginsberg there and Gregory Corso, who we haven't mentioned yet. And it was in this creative community that Burroughs found the support and inspiration he needed to complete his work. Ginsberg was the one who helped him to structure the very chaotic manuscript and prepare it for publication. It was finally published in 1959. We're talking post-war America. Nuclear family. Mom, dad, child, white picket fence. Golden retriever. #00:08:07â6#

Pia: The cliché par excellence. #00:08:09â0#

Christina: The book was censored in the USA and the UK because of its explicit content and depiction of Drogene consumption. But despite, or perhaps because of, this whole scandal, ââNaked Lunchââ became a cult classic. When it says cult, you know it's somehow like that, something to do with Drogen and pornography and stuff. Like âThe Bloody Path of God 1 and 2â. Such a bad movie. It became a symbol for the non-conformist attitude of the beat generation and their radical rejection of social norms. For Burroughs himself, the book was like a kind of exorcism. It allowed him to wrestle a little with his demons. That's how he saw it, but he was also able to deal with the experiences of addiction and paranoia that he experienced - he ultimately had a very serious addiction, we don't want to romanticize that here - in a certain way. The novel also reflects how torn the author's psyche is and draws the reader - and this is fascinating - into a world in which the boundaries between reality and hallucination become blurred. Today, "Naked Lunch" is considered a masterpiece of modern literature. #00:09:34â6#

Pia: It's often the case that things that are forbidden become part of literature and that's what makes it so exciting when it's forbidden. I'm just thinking of "Lady Chatterley's Lover", where these sex scenes were so unusual for the time and so forbidden and frowned upon. And then it became a bestseller. #00:09:51â7#

Christina: So maybe it was also a collective, a collective expression of what you weren't allowed to say at the time. #00:10:00â9#

Pia: Then you somehow get around this rule. #00:10:03â1#

Christina: Yes, and that's interesting about literary history, that you can see what they're rebelling against. #00:10:17â4#

Pia: Boundaries. #00:10:18â3#

Christina: Exactly, and which boundaries are being crossed? And are they boundaries that we will still share in 2024? Or because values are also shifting and changing and the social discourse is becoming different and so on? Yes, and that's why "Naked Lunch" is considered an ancestor or has contributed greatly to the development of postmodern literature. Especially this cut-up technique, but also the way in which he looked so unsparingly at human existence. And accordingly, despite its incredibly rocky history, 'Naked Lunch' became an indispensable part of literary history. I've been trying to read it, I think I'm on page 30 so far. I've already taken a 10-year break now. #00:11:14â2#

Pia: What's it about? In terms of the story. #00:11:16â4#

Christina: How good of you to ask. #00:11:18â1#

Pia: I can't really imagine what drunter with kaleidoscope that you understand from the system, but I think okay, what exactly do I read when I read the book? #00:11:29â0#

Christina: Well, the title doesn't really say anything. #00:11:30â9#

Pia: Exactly. #00:11:31â4#

Christina: The book follows the protagonist named William Lee. And in the end, he is nothing more than a fictional version of Burroughs and this William Lee is the protagonist. Traveling through various dystopian and surrealistic places, a junkie also reads and flees from the police and encounters a variety of bizarre characters and scenarios. So the novel begins in the streets of New York City, then leads into the fictional Interzone. This is a city that is somehow a mixture of Tangier, New York and other cities. The plot is also very episodic, very erratic because of this cut-up technique. Um, that conveys the insightdruck, or that reflects this chaotic and hallucinatory state of the protagonist and reflects that accordingly. The themes are Droaddiction, sexual perversion, control and freedom. As I said, there is nothing like a plot in this respect, but rather the themes and, as is so often typical in postmodern literature, the play with the literary form and ultimately with the reading experience, which is turned on its head. So it's not the zero-eight-fifteen genre literature. #00:13:09â7#

Pia: Midpoint, climax, end. Exactly. #00:13:11â8#

Christina: It's also an experience to read and definitely worth reading if you're interested in literary genres. Although, as I said, I haven't actually read it, but I'm planning to, but I think it's very challenging, also in terms of the subject matter. Yes, and that was my story. What did you think of my story? #00:13:52â5#

Pia: I found it interesting. It's certainly something different. It's not the typical author's story you're used to. You always think of J.K. Rowling, who described how she had the idea for Harry Potter on the train or something, it's kind of like, yes, something happens, you live something and then you think to yourself, I'll write something drÃabout it. That's certainly a different approach. #00:14:11â9#

Christina: Yes, so that was also a very intentional artisticdruck. So they were looking for an outdruck, they wanted to. #00:14:22â8#

Pia: Their experiences. #00:14:23â7#

Christina: Exactly, bringing it into the world. By the way, before we move on to your part, I can highly recommend the movie "Kill Your Darlings". I haven't looked up when it's from, but it's a bit older now. It was shortly after Harry Potter was over. Daniel Radcliffe directed the moviedreh, I think. Around the Dreh. And it's about the beat generation. Daniel Radcliffe plays. #00:14:49â8#

Pia: Ginsberg. #00:14:50â7#

Christina: Yes, exactly. And William Burroughs is also there. And the William Tell apple, to know what I mean by that: just have a look. And it's a very romanticized film. Of course it is. But it is, anyone who likes literary adaptations or literary films mag or films about literature will either already know or learn to love "Kill Your Darlings". Okay, Pia, now I'm really curious. What did you bring with you? #00:15:18â5#

Pia: Well, I don't actually have a story about the creation of just one book, but basically an entire oeuvre, a whole body of work. #00:15:27â7#

Christina: You've done the extra work again. #00:15:31â4#

Pia: From an author and now I would be interested to know because you magst like crime and thrillers and horror. #00:15:38â8#

Christina: Agatha Christie. Jane Austen. #00:15:40â6#

Pia: Jane Austen? Christina: Exactly. No, I'd be interested to know if you know her? Anne Perry. #00:15:48â3#

Christina: Yes, it's the one from the UK. Yes. I like the name. #00:15:56â5#

Pia: What it says. A name. What? We have them in stock too. Well, I looked it up too. We have it in stock. #00:16:02â2#

Christina: I don't think I've read anything from her yet. Now I'm curious. #00:16:02â9#

Pia: Okay, so Anne Perry is an English writer, was an English writer, born in 1938, died last year 2023. She is known for her crime series, as I said, especially her historical crime novels set in Victorian England. - that's why I don't know her. - Not a fan of historical crime novels. She has written over 120 books, over 26 million copies have been sold worldwide, and her books regularly land on the New York Times bestseller list. So very successful, you could say. Most of her books deal with questions of morality, sin, remorse and forgiveness. And that also becomes important. That was actually mine. #00:16:54â7#

Christina: Oh, did she kill someone? #00:16:56â2#

Pia: Christina is already miles ahead of my story. #00:17:04â9#

Christina: Was that the one with the childhood friend? #00:17:07â9#

Pia: Yes, exactly. #00:17:08â6#

Christina: No, that's a very cool story. Guys, you are in for a treat. This is one of my favorite true-crime literary stories ever. Pia, take it away! #00:17:20â1#

Pia: Well, we don't know that yet. So that was all the public knew about her at the time. That all changed in 1994. That's when the movie "Heavenly Creatures" came out, which is what it's called in German, by the way, and is available on Filmfriend, I looked it up. So we have a streaming service, which means that if you are a member of our library, you can stream this movie online on our website. It was directed by Peter Jackson. And the movie is about an intense friendship between two teenage girls in New Zealand in the 1950s. The friendship ends in tragedy when they plan and carry out the murder of the mother of one of them. Now you're thinking okay, what does this have to do with our author? Well, the movie is based on true events. The two teenagers are real and subsequently had to serve a 5-year prison sentence, but nobody knew who they were. In the course of this movie where it came out, the press did some research and then found out that one of the two murderers, Anne Perry, is our author. That's really cool. At the age of 15, she and her best friend beat her friend's mother to death. The reason was allegedly that the friend had had to move away and they didn't want to be separated from each other. Back to the literature: Her focus on remorse and forgiveness in her crime novels makes sense now, of course. She also said herself that she struggled with it afterwards, after this murder. For the press, of course, that was a real feast. And she herself was of course not at all happy about her identity being published. She herself then said 'it seemed so unfair. Everything I had achieved as a decent member of society was beingdrohacked and once again my life was being interpreted by someone else. It had happened in court when I was a minor, not allowed to speak as a minor and heard all these lies. And now there was a movie, but no one had bothered to talk to me. I didn't know about it until the day before it was released. All I could think about was that my life would fall apart." But she continued to write afterwards and she published a lot of books, successfully published them and also gave several interviews about the murder and her literature. And she said in the Guardian, for example, about her literature: "It is crucial for me to continue exploring moral issues. I wanted to explore what people do when they are confronted with experiences and inner conflicts that push them to their limits." So for her, this was somehow her literature, a processing of what happened. #00:20:10â9#

Christina: They were both convicted of this murder, both the childhood friend and the author? - Christina: Exactly. - Do I remember correctly that Anne Perry always denied that she committed the murder? #00:20:33â0#

Pia: Well, she always said herself, in all the interviews I've seen and read, she said herself that she absolutely knew she was guilty and that it served her right that she ended up in prison. And she said she was glad that this prison sentence was imposed on her and that she had to serve it. Mm. #00:20:51â8#

Christina: Yes. Okay. Tough stuff. #00:20:55â8#

Pia: But I found it kind of interesting. It's everywhere, of course, where she died last year. It was all over the headlines. "Crime writer who is actually a murderer." #00:21:05

Christina: I remember that. Of course you do. Clickbait. Headline if you ever found one. That's another case of there's the reality. Uh, if you write that in the book, no one will believe it. Yeah, it reads like the plot of a novel. #00:21:23â8#

Pia: I didn't know her as an author either and then she passed away last year and that's when I found out who she actually was and this whole story. But I found it interesting because it's really bizarre. #00:21:36â1#

Christina: So that raises a lot of questions, doesn't it, about morality and is someone - it's a murder, so that can't be out of time and at the same time they were minors. And what does that mean for the person when they are an adult? You know, there are still physiological changes in the brain and somehow that is then, do you have to let that rest or do people have a right to know and so on? And then also the way they experience it and how the media deal with it. #00:22:08â3#

Pia: Because that was also the case in this movie. heavenly Creatures' also hinted a bit in the direction that it might have been a lesbian relationship and she always denied that, for example, that that was never the case. So, of course, that's also the question: what do I do with this person when I portray them like this, that's interesting. Um, yes, exactly. And we have crime novels by her in the library. We have a bunch of her eBooks to read digitally, but also two crime novels in print. "Those who seek revenge" and "The traitor's game", so if you're interested, you can read her crime novels here. #00:22:47â1#

Christina: Yes, and now it's up to you to vote on which of the origin stories you liked better. Which one was more bizarre, which one was more interesting? You can do this on Instagram at stadtbibliothek.innsbruck. Do you know a bizarre origin story of a novel, or are we also open to movies, right? We're even open to games, I would have said, are there any games you'd like us to talk about in the podcast? Then write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@innsbruck.gv.at. And with that, we say goodbye to this episode today. Pia, I really enjoyed it. #00:23:37â0#

Pia: It was interesting, exciting, yes. #00:23:39â1#

Christina: Totally exciting and maybe we can do it again sometime. #00:23:42â0#

Pia: I would be delighted. #00:23:43â2#

Christina: So send us your topics and we'll say goodbye until then. Bye. #00:23:47â2#

Person 3: (...) SâVorwort is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of Stadtstimmen, the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] [Music]

[00:00:14] Welcome to the preface, the podcast of the Innsbruck Staff Library.

[00:00:19] My name is Christina.

[00:00:20] And I am Pia.

[00:00:21] And today we have a very special topic, even though I say that every time.

[00:00:25] But I think it's a really special topic, because we're talking about ...

[00:00:29] Cosplay.

[00:00:30] And ask ourselves the question, why do we actually like cosplay?

[00:00:33] We then come to a very important point, namely that we had the last episode in our

[00:00:38] "Why do we actually like manga" episode, which is a logical continuation, a vote.

[00:00:43] And we asked our listeners to vote via Instagram on

[00:00:51] stabbibliothek.innsbruck to vote on which of drei manga series we should buy.

[00:00:58] All drei are self-contained.

[00:01:00] We then said we would do the vote.

[00:01:03] The result is now there, just fluttered in this morning.

[00:01:07] And I can announce it now, in case you haven't heard last week's episode

[00:01:13] last week.

[00:01:14] We talked about it and dealt with what manga actually is,

[00:01:19] although many of you will probably already know that.

[00:01:21] And we also found tons of reasons why you should read manga and why it's considered a

[00:01:26] Reading counts, by the way.

[00:01:28] But we were also a bit critical on the subject.

[00:01:33] So it's worth listening to.

[00:01:35] The episode is online and can be listened to directly after this one.

[00:01:39] We are expanding our manga collection.

[00:01:41] Pia, you've already added it to our list, it will be ordered on Monday.

[00:01:46] I brought the numbers.

[00:01:48] Bakuman is in third place with 6 percent of the votes.

[00:01:54] Noragami came second with 17 percent of the vote, so Death Note wins

[00:02:02] wins the vote with a clear majority of 77 percent of the votes and will be purchased.

[00:02:09] Yes!

[00:02:10] Why âYesâ?

[00:02:11] That was my favorite manga because of it.

[00:02:15] Yes, we're very happy, aren't we?

[00:02:17] Yeah, totally.

[00:02:18] It's a worthy addition to our manga collection.

[00:02:21] What's the next step?

[00:02:22] What do we do now?

[00:02:23] Yes, well, I've already added them to our list.

[00:02:26] That means we'll order it on Monday.

[00:02:29] Then the order goes out, then it arrives, we work it in and then we put it on the list

[00:02:34] we display it nicely in our manga department in the fiction section.

[00:02:39] Exactly, so with the graphic novels, with the other manga you'll also find Death Note

[00:02:44] and just in case, which is also quite common in the meantime,

[00:02:47] the first 1-2 volumes have already been borrowed, we have

[00:02:49] we still have lots of other series that are also worth reading.

[00:02:54] Exactly.

[00:02:55] Pia, why do we actually like cosplay?

[00:02:58] I unexpectedly found my niche while researching this topic.

[00:03:02] We have to do the podcast...

[00:03:04] Have you gone over to cosplayers?

[00:03:06] Well, like this.

[00:03:07] I think that intertextual interpretation of sociological phenomena is exactly my

[00:03:13] niche and my suggestion for the podcast title.

[00:03:15] It might not be as crisp as Preface.

[00:03:20] Well, but right, we're going to get straight to the topic and the introduction as well

[00:03:26] Let's come out of the closet, are you a cosplayer?

[00:03:30] Well, I have to say I'm not either.

[00:03:32] So maybe for Halloween I wore something.

[00:03:34] Ah, you have to differentiate.

[00:03:36] Halloween costumes are not cosplay.

[00:03:39] We will then define exactly what cosplay is for all the listeners

[00:03:43] listeners who might not know that or might not know exactly because they might

[00:03:46] have only heard it peripherally.

[00:03:48] Exactly, but detto, the last time I was dressed up, I was a musketeer for carnival in the

[00:04:01] Kindergarten.

[00:04:02] But why?

[00:04:03] I mean, after the manga episode, we were also looking for something that was a bit thematic

[00:04:10] fits, especially with the announcement that we can now buy Death Note.

[00:04:13] But why are we talking about cosplay at all?

[00:04:17] And I think, as you know, we have the #gemeinsambesser and we have

[00:04:25] also in our episode why we like libraries about the concept of the "libraries

[00:04:32] in the sense of a verb.

[00:04:34] And I think that totally fits in as a topic.

[00:04:38] We will certainly see why in the course of the episode.

[00:04:43] To summarize, I think that cosplay is just like fanfiction

[00:04:48] a very creative hobby and it happens away from passive media consumption.

[00:04:53] It is active and actively engages with media of all kinds and appropriates the

[00:05:01] content of these media for their own purposes.

[00:05:05] So for me it's very parallel to fanfiction, maybe fanart.

[00:05:10] Yes.

[00:05:11] Fan content in general, there's a lot of it, there's fan music, like that

[00:05:15] People who then play music about their, I don't know, favorite series, favorite book series, whatever

[00:05:21] always write.

[00:05:22] Fan videos, there are fan films and cosplay is also an aspect of that.

[00:05:29] We both talked last episode about the fact that we also read manga,

[00:05:33] even as teenagers, even at a time when it wasn't established at all,

[00:05:39] maybe just in Tyrol, according to our subjective impressiondru

[00:05:44] Did you ever come across the term in any form or did you know about it before our

[00:05:52] episode today?

[00:05:54] Cosplay, I just knew it from fan culture, from the internet.

[00:05:59] I honestly can't say when I first discovered it.

[00:06:05] But there are always great cosplays being shared or something, in the groups,

[00:06:11] on Reddit or something.

[00:06:12] If you scroll through the Harry Potter forums and have a look, then

[00:06:18] that kind of thing is shared from time to time and that's what I saw once.

[00:06:21] But I haven't really actively engaged with it now.

[00:06:25] Although there is quite a large community there, I looked to see if there were any

[00:06:29] numbers are there.

[00:06:30] I haven't really found any official figures, it's probably difficult,

[00:06:35] to find out.

[00:06:36] But there is âCos_Nowâ, which is a website that specializes in this.

[00:06:42] And they say that there are around 15,000 people in Germany who are actively involved in this hobby

[00:06:48] actively pursue this hobby.

[00:06:50] So there are quite a few.

[00:06:52] And what was interesting was that they also did surveys to find out what the typical

[00:06:58] cosplayer, the typical cosplayer looks like.

[00:07:01] And that was interesting for me, because in terms of age, the people who followed the

[00:07:09] hobby were between 18 and 24 years old, and from 25 it steadily decreased.

[00:07:14] And also in terms of gender, there was a definite trend.

[00:07:21] There was definitely a higher proportion of women than men.

[00:07:23] I think I could imagine that in terms of age, I have a theory that this

[00:07:30] has several reasons, but that the center of life is simply shifting and with

[00:07:40] the full-time job or with starting a family, there's just generally not

[00:07:48] much time for hobbies.

[00:07:50] And especially such elaborate hobbies, you have to say that now.

[00:07:56] It's creative, but it takes a lot of effort to create a whole costume.

[00:08:00] You might also have to learn new skills, sewing, knitting, whatever.

[00:08:04] So that probably takes a lot more work.

[00:08:08] So now maybe just fanfiction, just writing a little story or

[00:08:11] like that.

[00:08:12] Maybe it's more time-consuming.

[00:08:14] And as for the proportion of women, that's also interesting and worth discussing.

[00:08:21] Why is it actually like that?

[00:08:24] As for cosplay itself, you can ask yourself the question, is it, I think, that

[00:08:31] is for me, is it reflected in fandoms in itself in these rooms, which we've also

[00:08:39] have already talked about, the possibility of marginalized groups or groups that are marginalized in society

[00:08:45] groups again, who can then live other identities.

[00:08:48] You add a little bit to that.

[00:08:50] But that would also explain the proportion of women considerably for me, because there's simply a lot of

[00:08:56] a lot is played with identity in cosplay.

[00:08:59] In my opiniondrucks.

[00:09:01] And it might also be the case that this kind of creativity, which as you say involves

[00:09:08] crafting, sewing, make-up, dealing with other cultures in that sense

[00:09:18] and exchanging ideas in this way, simply a very feminine thing

[00:09:25] is.

[00:09:26] That's what they said in the survey, that they assume that perhaps

[00:09:29] is also related to that.

[00:09:30] And perhaps it's also more likely that men don't want to admit that,

[00:09:35] also perhaps did not take part in this survey for these reasons.

[00:09:39] But before we go any further, maybe we should clarify what cosplay is and where it comes from

[00:09:44] does it actually come from?

[00:09:45] Cosplay is about recreating characters from media.

[00:09:51] That can be manga or from me is also the anime adaptations, movies, games and also

[00:09:57] other media such as literature.

[00:09:58] I mean, you just mentioned Harry Potter.

[00:10:01] The point is that it's not just the appearance of these characters and I know that you can see that

[00:10:06] called characters in cosplay.

[00:10:10] I can't call them characters because my literature professor told me

[00:10:16] drilled into me that they're called characters and I'll always have to say it that way.

[00:10:20] And that you have to recreate the characters as accurately as possible.

[00:10:23] That's one thing, but above all it's also about the character traits

[00:10:27] as authentically and accurately as possible.

[00:10:31] Whereby it's often not about acting, i.e. putting yourself in the character's shoes, but there's always

[00:10:35] such a tense relationship between you as a person, then on the other side of the character

[00:10:42] in the anime, for example, and your disguised self in the middle and then it's about the

[00:10:49] posing for photos and recreating scenes.

[00:10:54] And so it's not acting in that sense.

[00:10:58] But it's still, and that's where the emphasis is draon play, on this creative

[00:11:06] acting out, this field of tension, you could almost say that.

[00:11:10] And that's when I came across this sociological vein, where I then read a treatise

[00:11:19] on the subject of cosplay, because as always, science is a bit inclined

[00:11:27] to disregard pop cultural currents for the time being and is only now slowly beginning to

[00:11:31] starting to deal with it.

[00:11:32] And that's when this performativity of identity -

[00:11:37] That's what Judith Butler is very much about,

[00:11:40] it's about the gender issue,

[00:11:41] but also with Irving Goffman: Identity is not fixed, but flexible

[00:11:54] and it is performed,

[00:11:59] if I may put it in layman's terms fromdrÃ.

[00:12:01] You can also see that quite interestingly with cosplayers, for example.

[00:12:05] I have read that they are called âcrossplayersâ.

[00:12:08] For example, a woman cosplays a male character or a man cosplays a female character.

[00:12:15] And there you have automatically, maybe without any political or other

[00:12:21] ulterior motives,

[00:12:22] Crossing boundaries, that is, arbitrary boundaries.

[00:12:28] Yes, exactly.

[00:12:30] This strict binary, which is often the case in our society, is somehow dissolved.

[00:12:37] I found that incredibly fascinating.

[00:12:40] But in the game.

[00:12:41] And it also made me so cosplay, so game, the childish, please distinguish, childish,

[00:12:49] but a childish way of dealing with the subject.

[00:12:52] It's driven by curiosity and, so it's driven by curiosity and the desire to play.

[00:12:59] And that's why I find this whole thing so incredibly likeable.

[00:13:04] I think we should all play more.

[00:13:07] Even the over 25s, who often don't have the opportunity anymore because life

[00:13:13] no longer allows it, unfortunately.

[00:13:15] But how did it come about to complete that?

[00:13:18] In the 1980s in Japan, it became big there.

[00:13:23] Because that's where it came from, a bit together with the, the first generation of

[00:13:31] Anime and manga fans grew up in Japan.

[00:13:34] In other words, they suddenly had the means to express being a fan differentlydrÃ.

[00:13:41] And it's considered fan practice.

[00:13:43] It also came about because copyright protection in Japan was strictly enforced.

[00:13:50] That then prevented imitation in any form.

[00:13:56] But this imitation did not apply to the design of clothing, accessories and weapons

[00:14:03] of the figures in the media that were consumed.

[00:14:07] And that's why it became such a new way to deal creatively without such copyright infringements

[00:14:15] without committing copyright infringement.

[00:14:16] Although there are still so-called doujinshi in Japan.

[00:14:23] I must be pronouncing it wrong.

[00:14:25] You can imagine it like a fanzine.

[00:14:27] Like a fanMagazine or quasi fan fiction, but from a manga as a manga, but just a manga

[00:14:40] self-published and self-drawn and so on. Yes, and that's how it came about a bit and

[00:14:46] then from the 90s onwards, as we talked about last time drü, the manga and

[00:14:50] anime boom in the USA and in Europe and that's how it became big. However, the term

[00:14:57] was coined by the Japanese author Nobuyuki Takahashi and he actually set up his own studio in Los Angeles

[00:15:05] at the Science Fiction Worldcon in 1984 and looked at all the expensive fans and

[00:15:13] then simply derived the term from that and brought it to Japan. It's interesting,

[00:15:20] because I found in the origins of cosplay that it already existed in the 1960s in the

[00:15:25] USA there were cosplays at science fiction conventions. I came across exactly the same thing

[00:15:31] and that it goes back as far as 1939, when the first sci-fi conventions were held

[00:15:37] conventions or gatherings or something. Yes, it's interesting how two completely different

[00:15:44] cultures merge into one another. Exactly, so how it then again and how it is now so

[00:15:50] feels like it's something that came to us from Japan, but somehow it's in

[00:15:55] already been in the US. So for me that's kind of an indication that people there

[00:15:59] simply have the need to play in this way or to express themselvesdrÃ. Exactly, and so

[00:16:08] you just find the terms. Exactly. And nowadays you can feel it everywhere on a lot of

[00:16:15] conventions, so there are the Comic-Cons or the Frankfurt Book Fair, so that's not

[00:16:20] as limited as it perhaps used to be. So whenever it's somehow about fans,

[00:16:26] about fan culture, cosplayers also appear. What I also found interesting, which I

[00:16:33] wanted to say beforehand, because you said that when you're older, you have and

[00:16:36] maybe have a job, have children, maybe you don't have the time anymore to deal with

[00:16:40] to deal with this hobby. Interestingly, in this survey from this website, what the

[00:16:46] 48 percent, that was the largest proportion, were actually working. I do believe that a proportion

[00:16:51] then also have the ways and means to do cosplay as a hobby and it was also interesting because it was mainly

[00:16:58] especially people from the creative industry and that makes sense, because if you're already

[00:17:02] seamstress or work in make-up artistry or something in a creative profession where you already have

[00:17:08] certain skills, it's kind of a logical extension for them. Or it

[00:17:16] is the other way around and you're just looking for a way outdruprofessionally that somehow stays close to that,

[00:17:25] what you also like to do privately. And cosplay is just another extended form,

[00:17:33] This way ofdruexpressing yourself is so driven by this desire for play or creativity or whatever.

[00:17:39] Exactly, as you've already said, there are now also very,

[00:17:44] very many trade fairs. As librarians, we also regularly attend the Leipzig Book Fair

[00:17:49] Book Fair and the Frankfurt Book Fair. We also go to a lot of training courses and

[00:17:53] at lectures and either we are present at a book fair ourselves or people come

[00:18:01] afterwards and tell us about it and then somehow inevitably the comment: "Yes and a lot of

[00:18:07] were in disguise." And it's now also established, so both the Leipzig and the

[00:18:14] Frankfurt Book Fair take this on board and recognize it as a target audience. There are

[00:18:24] also the German Cosplay Championship, which is organized in cooperation with the

[00:18:29] Frankfurt Book Fair and the association called "Animexx". That is, as far as I know

[00:18:38] the largest German-language platform. It's a website where you can register as a

[00:18:46] community meets. In the end. Other big conventions in Germany would be Dokomi, which are

[00:18:54] Düsseldorf, the Connichi in Kassel, the German-Comic-Con modeled on the one in Los Angeles,

[00:19:00] but in Dortmund, Berlin and Frankfurt and the Comic-Con Germany in Stuttgart. And then

[00:19:06] I looked again, what is there in Austria and is there in Austria? Yes,

[00:19:10] there's a lot in Austria. The 'Aniâ - okay, I know now we'll probably get the first -

[00:19:16] the AniNite or the AniâNiteâ. Be nice to me if you correct me. The NipponNation,

[00:19:24] the Vienna Comic-Con, the HanamiCon in Graz and in Tirol, that just took place, the

[00:19:31] LoriCon, namely in Seefeld. Okay, I didn't know that either. Yes, it took place from June 8 to 9

[00:19:38] took place in the Olympic Sports and Congress Center in Seefeld. And that was me, so I know,

[00:19:46] I happened to be in Seefeld on that day last summer and I went for a walk there

[00:19:53] and passed right by the center there. And suddenly we came across cosplayers. See what

[00:20:01] my eyes see there? Cosplayers don't just walk towards you in Tyrol. So either

[00:20:11] you're wearing a ski outfit or hiking pants. And you might know that when my Frankfurt am

[00:20:20] way is around the book fair and Leipzig, but not in Tyrol. And then, by chance, there was

[00:20:25] exactly the LoriCon last year. That's quite funny. These fairs are very much about

[00:20:31] creativity and what we haven't mentioned yet is how collaborative this whole hobby is.

[00:20:38] So the vast majority of cosplayers, although there are exceptions, the vast majority do it as a hobby and give back to the community

[00:20:46] more money than they ⦠So it's not about making money. I also find that very remarkable.

[00:20:51] There are workshops at these fairs, whether it's about sewing or crafts,

[00:20:58] How do I make my weapon? You're simply part of a community online, but then also on site.

[00:21:05] And that's certainly a nice thing, when you can exchange ideas with each other,

[00:21:08] exchange talents, exchange tips, but then you can also kind of

[00:21:13] hyped and say how great each other's costumes are, it's certainly a really nice community.

[00:21:17] I've noticed, well, I always have the impressiondruthat the outside world is a bit

[00:21:22] smiled at from the outside. Do you see it that way too? But I think it's also gotten better.

[00:21:27] I think in the beginning it was like this on the outside: "Okay, these are some weird ones,

[00:21:35] who just do it." And now, as you said, there are also bigger ones

[00:21:40] book fairs have also adopted it and advertise it that way. I don't think so,

[00:21:45] that it's so self-evident. A few, a decade or so ago, that would probably have been

[00:21:49] probably wouldn't have been the case. Many of these meetings are also organized on a voluntary basis.

[00:21:55] Some or most of these associations are run on a voluntary basis. So that

[00:22:00] a lot of community work invisibly behind it to make all this networking happen at all

[00:22:09] to allow them to happen. And to drive that forward, yes. Exactly. And simply to make this space possible for the

[00:22:15] exchange. And that's actually what we stand for as a library.

[00:22:21] A space for everyone. Yes, and what I really like is this participatory approach,

[00:22:26] this aspect of not being a passive consumer of something, but actively contributing to it

[00:22:36] takes something for yourself. That was also a bit of a theme in the fanfiction episode. Actively taking something and

[00:22:41] creates it for yourself. I don't know, I have that now that I use ChatGPT so much

[00:22:45] used it once now. I had this feeling and then you just read - in the morning you read

[00:22:51] the news, then you need quick information and you google it. And that's what

[00:22:55] Google is also designed so that you don't memorize anything, but that you just go to Google

[00:22:59] go to Google. And then you quickly type in your ... "I need an essay for 200 words for this

[00:23:05] and thatâ. And nothing else comes out of a, so every - out of a creative streak of yours

[00:23:12] yourself - yes, every, every bit of curiosity that could arise in you, because you... From any

[00:23:20] taken from some machine. Yes. There you have the answer. But that's something that no

[00:23:26] machine can do, you just have to do it yourself. But do you also have the inputdruck or do you think that the...

[00:23:32] Yes, I think it's a hobby that definitely encourages creativity.

[00:23:36] And it helps to get out of the daily grind. Right now we're so used to it,

[00:23:44] just staring at our computers. And if it's not the computers, then it's the

[00:23:49] cell phones or televisions. And then it's something creative, where I have to do something with the

[00:23:55] Hands are certainly pleasant and nice and a change. Yes, I can imagine that,

[00:24:04] that the ... But I can't say now because I haven't tried it myself yet, of course

[00:24:07] tried it out myself. I would have to try it out. But I don't think I can sew that well,

[00:24:11] that I can manage that. At some point we'll have to invite a cosplayer and have them

[00:24:18] then tell us exactly how it works. But I also have a

[00:24:23] bit of a suspicion that people are also asking themselves, what are they actually doing? Because it

[00:24:29] has no meaning other than as an end in itself. I say my thesis is...

[00:24:34] - intrinsically motivated. - Yes, it's away from capitalism, [00:24:41] away from all social expectations. And as you said at the very beginning of the episode,

[00:24:47] even crosses borders to some extent - we talked about gender and stories like that

[00:24:55] stories that I already... Well, I think that a lot of people don't even

[00:25:02] understand how much flexibility that requires internally. And how much courage. Especially the first

[00:25:12] few times, I can imagine that he might demand if you were in full costume...

[00:25:17] - Go out in public? - Going out in public. And all the looks and often are

[00:25:24] yes... is judged. I already have the feeling that it's often judged. Or at least

[00:25:32] admired in a positive sense, sometimes gawked at in a negative sense. And I don't think that's done enough

[00:25:41] brought to the fore. How amazing... We use the word "creative" all the time.

[00:25:52] But I think we actually want to... I know I'm actually saying how amazing...

[00:25:56] not âcourageousâ either, but how deeply human it actually is to always maintain this game,

[00:26:03] this desire not to lose it. Because I don't think it's... We're also talking about

[00:26:08] the escape from reality in the novels and so on. I would always like to be accused of that too. I think

[00:26:14] not that that's the biggest drive either. I think the biggest drive and that would have to be

[00:26:19] you, dear listeners, must please give your opinion on this, is my opinion after

[00:26:26] Community, this coming together. Belonging to a group that is, among other things, totally

[00:26:37] gets along great and knows exactly what the others think like you do. Pia, a final word.

[00:26:44] Thank you for listening. Maybe, now that we also have the Death Note, maybe someone will march

[00:26:50] any of you march in the light costume or in what's it called again? I've already forgotten all that.

[00:26:57] L? L, exactly. But L is super easy, because he has... Wait, I know, he just happens to be. He has

[00:27:02] jeans on and a white top. But I think he's always barefoot. So if you're not wearing shoes

[00:27:12] on, then we know. Whereby the shinigami, is that shinigami? I don't know what

[00:27:16] all the terms anymore. Yes, it's a shinigami. Exactly. It's a shinigami. Death god, whatever

[00:27:23] always. So I'd be impressed if someone showed up in that costume. In any case,

[00:27:29] we would be delighted if you would drop by the costume shop and visit our manga section

[00:27:35] and take a look at it. - But you can do that without costumes. - You can do it without a costume. We take them all. The room for

[00:27:40] all of them. - And our manga department will soon be reviewing the new Death Note. Thank you

[00:27:47] for listening and until the next episode. You are welcome to give us your opinion at post.stadtbibliothek@innsbruck.gv.at

[00:27:56] or on Instagram or Facebook. Part... What do I have now, how did I start the sentence?

[00:28:03] - "Say". â Say! You cut out the rest. - I always do. - Okay. Thanks for listening/see you next .... - You say it. thank you for listening

[00:28:19] and happy manga reading. Bye.

[00:28:22] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of "Stadtstimmen",

[00:28:51] the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] [Music]

[00:00:15] Yes, let's get started with the podcast. Welcome to the

[00:00:20] âSâForewordâ, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library. My name is Christina.

[00:00:24] And I am Pia. And today we're talking about a particularly exciting topic, at least

[00:00:30] for me, namely historical novels. Pia, on a suspense scale of one to ten, where are you?

[00:00:39] It all depends on the topic dra. That's what I picked out for it because

[00:00:44] it's not the genre I go to straight away. I read a couple, but then they were things,

[00:00:52] where I was specifically interested in that topic. It's not something where I go to the bookstore

[00:00:57] and the library and say, oh, let's just go to the historical novels. I don't do that.

[00:01:02] That means that you actually do historical novels specifically for a certain

[00:01:07] "Educational purpose", i.e. for the educational benefit, read in the sense of, oh, I'm interested in the time now, right?

[00:01:15] Or the people. I wrote down two examples that came to mind. At school, for example, we learned something about

[00:01:23] beach colonies and that interested me. And that's why I later read the "Abby Lynn" saga

[00:01:29] by, what's his name now, Rainer Schröder. That just interested me and that's why

[00:01:36] I then read the books. And the other thing that also occurred to me, very specifically, was then

[00:01:40] "Raven Queen" by Pauline Francis. That's about Lady Jane Grey and I was in London at the time and was in the Tower

[00:01:48] of London and learned about her, so I learned about her through the audiobook there and that's why I read the

[00:01:54] read it because it interested me. So that's how I got into historical novels and it wasn't

[00:02:00] not: okay, I'll go to the historical novels and see what's there.

[00:02:02] And before we go any further into the subject to clarify why we like historical novels

[00:02:11] or maybe not, I've brought a genre definition with me to help us

[00:02:18] and I would like to spread it out here now, if that's okay. The historical novel

[00:02:26] is a literary genre that is characterized by its focus on past times and historical events

[00:02:32] events. So far, so clear. In this genre, fictional stories or characters are set in a real

[00:02:40] historical context. This often involves an accurate depiction of the historical

[00:02:46] period, whereby historical events, places and personalities are integrated into the plot

[00:02:53] are integrated. The historical novel enables the reader to immerse themselves in past eras and

[00:03:00] experience history in a lively and entertaining way. While at the same time aspects of the

[00:03:06] human nature and universal themes are explored, just like in any novel. And it's exactly

[00:03:12] that last sentence, that you want to experience history in a lively and entertaining way,

[00:03:19] what you've just described here. You have a background from a historical period

[00:03:25] and then wanted to delve deeper. And then you were looking for more than just what you

[00:03:35] a history book can give you? What did that give you? Exactly, you just come to this period and

[00:03:41] you think, or you're in this period, in this time, or you think of this person and you think, how did they

[00:03:46] felt back then? Or what was it like back then? We experienced that back then and then

[00:03:51] that interests you and then you might want to do more than just read the facts.

[00:03:56] Yes, exactly, so what makes literature for me is this ability to put myself in someone's shoes and to

[00:04:05] historical novel in the concrete context of the time, which is also of interest,

[00:04:10] for one reason or another. For me, it was mainly the English Middle Ages,

[00:04:19] that gripped me and I went for the historical novel accordingly,

[00:04:26] so to speak. I couldn't get enough of that for a while. I also actually have

[00:04:33] two recommendations for historical novels, both of which fall into the genre, but both of which are

[00:04:41] a little bit, so they are very different. One is more literary and the other is perhaps

[00:04:46] more what you would imagine a typical genre novel to be like. I would like to tell you about them now

[00:04:53] briefly and introduce them to our listeners.

[00:04:56] Go ahead!

[00:04:57] And the first person I brought with me

[00:04:59] is Rebecca Gablé, who has been writing historical novels for many decades now

[00:05:05] novels in the German-speaking market. She is a German writer and her

[00:05:10] historical novels, the most famous being the Waringham Saga. I would describe it as action-adventure novels

[00:05:17] to describe them. They usually also have a male protagonist and are often very

[00:05:23] stereotypical in their structure as well. So if you know a Rebecca Gablé novel, then you have an

[00:05:30] idea of how she builds it up over and over again with different twists,

[00:05:37] but it's stereotypically the same. They're quite stereotypical gender roles as well,

[00:05:43] I have to say, but it's also often an underdog story, which I know a lot of

[00:05:51] readers appreciate it. And my absolute recommendation theredrin is the "King of the

[00:05:57] pupurn cityâ. That came out back in 2002. Above all, the medieval

[00:06:03] city of London plays a central role and, in my opinion, this is actually her best work or

[00:06:12] the one I liked reading the most. And the second one that I brought with me is the

[00:06:16] Hilary Mantel, who unfortunately passed away recently with her Tudor trilogy about

[00:06:25] Thomas Cromwell. For anyone who doesn't know, Thomas Cromwell is or was an important

[00:06:31] figure during the reign of Henry VIII, King of England in the 16th century.

[00:06:36] Henry is the one with the many wives, who also meant to behead a few of them. And Cromwell

[00:06:43] was then at some point chief minister, who then rose in his service from Henry, was

[00:06:49] Chief Minister, controlled much of the politics and administration of England.

[00:06:54] But ultimately fell out of favor and was then accused of heresy and executed and

[00:07:01] Nevertheless, he had and still has a very great influence in history

[00:07:05] England and plays a major role. Hilary Mantel has taken on this figure in a

[00:07:11] trilogy, drei historical novels: 'Wolves', 'Falcons', 'Mirror and Light' from 2009 to 2020, where she just

[00:07:19] describes the rise and fall of Cromwell. I would classify it as much more literary and

[00:07:26] also somewhat more sophisticated due to its level of detail, i.e. the detail of the text

[00:07:32] than perhaps the Gablé novels now. And I found that very interesting. Both English

[00:07:37] Middle Ages, both are historical novels, but it represents a certain range,

[00:07:41] what you can imagine, what you can understand under the genre and how much space there is.

[00:07:48] Did you, I know you don't like reading it that much, you already said it, but did you bring anything with you

[00:07:55] any recommendation or? I looked at it a little bit, also because it was about

[00:08:00] okay, how do you do research for historical novels, how do the

[00:08:03] authors themselves look up where it is, what happened there.

[00:08:19] Exactly, very briefly, because we forget that

[00:08:12] or to say that a large part of it, apart from the recommendations and looking at what is now

[00:08:17] a historical novel, is exactly what Pia, what you said, that the interesting question is

[00:08:21] actually, how do authors research these books, because that's,

[00:08:26] maybe you can't even imagine what this process is like and that's what

[00:08:31] we also prepared ourselves for this episode, we also looked at a lot of things.

[00:08:34] I've also looked at how Gablé and Mantel are preparing and now I'm curious,

[00:08:40] what you've found out. I took a look at the Outlander series, which has been written

[00:08:46] was written by Diana Gabaldon I always say that wrong, so I write it âGabaldonâ, but I say

[00:08:54] you say "Gavaldon",

[00:08:55] Really?

[00:08:56] So with a V, I looked it up because I didn't know.

[00:08:58] I think I've been saying that wrong for 20 years.

[00:09:00] Me too, I always said "Gabaldon", so

[00:09:02] "Gavaldon" it is.

[00:09:04] Okay, then âGavaldonâ.

[00:09:06] Exactly, I've learned something again and there are already some

[00:09:10] parts out, 9 out of 10 are supposed to be, are at the moment, but 10 are supposed to be and she is

[00:09:20] an interesting case, the series is very, very well known, is also doing very well, is constantly landing on

[00:09:27] the bestseller lists, there's also the series on Starz, it's already there,

[00:09:33] wait, now I have to look it up, I think we have 6 seasons, exactly, and there will be 8 seasons, so that's what's going on

[00:09:41] extremely well, this series, real bestsellers. And that's an interesting case,

[00:09:46] because that was the first book she wrote. She'd never written anything before

[00:09:50] and her first book was a historical novel.

[00:09:53] But may I ask a quick question in between, which is yes, but it's not purely historical, is it?

[00:09:59] Exactly, that's the interesting thing, she wanted to write a historical novel, she said, I want to write a historical novel

[00:10:04] write a really classic, thick, big historical novel, because she came from a

[00:10:12] scientific background. She has had a PhD in behavioral ecology and has

[00:10:16] so of course she did a lot of scientific research.

[00:10:19] Also very exciting, by the way,

[00:10:21] because Hilary Mantel studied law and Rebecca Gablé has a degree in

[00:10:31] medieval studies, so medieval studies, also completed various studies, that's a certain

[00:10:36] Research fever, you have to have that.

[00:10:39] Exactly, that's what unites all drei authors,

[00:10:43] that we've already talked about today.

[00:10:45] Yes, interesting. Yes, and she just, and so she thought,

[00:10:49] that's probably the easiest for me, because she thought, okay, if I don't have anything else

[00:10:54] comes to mind, I can always do some research and steal it. And that's why she

[00:11:00] started writing it. She didn't tell anyone that she was writing. 18 months

[00:11:05] it took her 18 months to write the first book, which was published in 1991, and she wrote

[00:11:11] saw it as an exercise. She just wanted to try out how it worked. And

[00:11:16] the problem was that she was writing about Scotland in the 18th century and then she started,

[00:11:22] to write about this main character, Claire. And she didn't really succeed with this character

[00:11:27] succeeded, she kept making kind of cheeky, modern remarks. And that is

[00:11:32] only happened while she was writing and then she spent ages thinking, what am I doing? And then

[00:11:36] this time travel element was added because she thought to herself, no, I don't want that

[00:11:41] change it like that. I want to keep it so modern, so cheeky and modern. And that's why I'm changing the whole thing

[00:11:48] and turn it into a time travel novel.

[00:11:50] I find that particularly interesting now, because exactly

[00:11:53] Rebecca Gablé also faced this problem. Because you have, especially in the

[00:12:00] historical novel, you need a possibility of identification between the characters

[00:12:08] and especially the protagonists and the readers. And she also talked about that,

[00:12:16] how in her writing process, she always, it's always a balancing act between the modernity

[00:12:24] of the characters and making them somehow relatable for us as an audience, but then also a

[00:12:30] certain authenticity, because in medieval England, for example,

[00:12:36] she gave the example that it was completely normal there, so sexism and others,

[00:12:43] homophobia. So of course it was all very different than we feel today.

[00:12:49] Different values, different cultural ideas.

[00:12:53] I believe that they, that is, that these protagonists, especially in this zone of the

[00:12:59] historical novel, I say, where you don't lean so far out of the window,

[00:13:03] that this is also rather popular literature.

[00:13:07] that it tends towards modernism and that's why I also read its protagonists,

[00:13:14] who are mostly male, always read the same, and I find it interesting that Gabaldon chose this approach.

[00:13:22] That means she has this fantasy aspect from a writing process, is that how it came about?

[00:13:28] Exactly. So it wasn't planned that way beforehand. She wanted to do a classic historical novel.

[00:13:32] Interesting.

[00:13:33] And afterwards, because of the way she wrote it, she thought it wouldn't fit in,

[00:13:38] I have to do something else and then this time travel element was added.

[00:13:42] Exactly. I found it quite interesting to do it that way.

[00:13:47] And she always said when she was researching that she combines the research and the writing.

[00:13:52] So it's not that she researches beforehand and then writes, but she does both at the same time.

[00:13:57] She also does a lot of research, she has 1500 volumes at home,

[00:14:02] just for the research, including books on medicine and medicinal plants,

[00:14:09] because the main character was also a nurse in the Second World War and then travels to Scotland,

[00:14:14] to the 18th century.

[00:14:15] So she has to know a lot about medicine.

[00:14:17] And then, of course, things like encyclopaedias, slang dictionaries, English dictionaries

[00:14:27] and also books about Scottish traditions and Highland culture.

[00:14:31] So she did a lot of research and she mainly researches with books.

[00:14:36] She says she uses the internet, but rather sporadically.

[00:14:39] And only for things when she can't imagine what something looks like, for example,

[00:14:43] She has used it more often for that.

[00:14:45] I'd like to, so we're talking about drei authors who have been doing this for a very long time

[00:14:51] and who of course have their methods.

[00:14:56] And I would also like to tell you again how Gablé and Mantel,

[00:14:59] what they say about it, how they do their research.

[00:15:03] It just occurred to me that it will be interesting to see how this develops in the future.

[00:15:08] If you have tools like ChatGPT, for example.

[00:15:14] You get them, if the information is correct,

[00:15:19] you can then get the information directly into your GPT console via an Internet connection.

[00:15:26] I think that's going to be very useful for some writers

[00:15:31] the work for sure.

[00:15:33] And I can at least imagine that it will be especially useful for research-intensive genres like the historical novel.

[00:15:38] I can imagine that it makes it easier.

[00:15:41] But Gabaldon, she's not so enthusiastic about the Internet.

[00:15:44] She said that the Internet doesn't go very deeply into the subject matter.

[00:15:50] And for that, of course, such specific works are helpful.

[00:15:55] Especially when you write about something in such detail.

[00:15:57] So for me, her books really seem like historical novels and not really like fantasy.

[00:16:05] Fantasy, I've read a lot.

[00:16:07] This fantasy element is only there a little bit, but most of it is really set in this age, takes place in this age.

[00:16:14] And that's where you can see the research.

[00:16:17] So just what I noticed, I didn't even know how she does her research.

[00:16:22] With the remedies, you really get the feeling that the woman knows her stuff, even though you don't know it yourself.

[00:16:29] But you can tell from her research.

[00:16:32] And that's where I think the internet is only of limited help.

[00:16:35] Yes, that's certainly a good point, because especially with historical materials,

[00:16:42] only what's actually presented on the Internet can some tool or a search engine or whatever algorithm can give you.

[00:16:52] A lot of the research materials, these are old texts, old letters, sometimes things that are centuries old,

[00:16:59] are perhaps not available or only available in closed databases, if digitized at all.

[00:17:07] There's certainly a lot that simply hasn't been digitized yet, where you can't access it at all.

[00:17:12] Apart from the fact that Rebecca Gablé, for example, says that she likes to go on research trips before starting a novel.

[00:17:23] So she actually travels, if possible, to the places, in her case Great Britain, that she wants to write about.

[00:17:32] And that's a big part of her process.

[00:17:34] But with both Gablé and Mantel, in my research, as you research, for her novels

[00:17:42] that they are very detail-oriented and structured.

[00:17:47] So Mantel, for example, sets up a structure right from the start.

[00:17:53] So she then lays out what she's writing about, where is the beginning, middle, end and everything in between, which characters are involved

[00:18:03] and then turns them into biographies.

[00:18:05] And of course, if these are historical figures, then she goes into the texts.

[00:18:09] Then she goes to various libraries, I can only assume.

[00:18:13] So you just pull the material.

[00:18:15] Looks at historical documents, sometimes you have to know Latin for that.

[00:18:21] Or Middle High English or whatever.

[00:18:25] Or like with the Gabaldon Gaelic.

[00:18:27] Yes, she has that too. She has Gaelic dictionaries, although she said she also has help with Gaelic from a Gaelic singer,

[00:18:33] who helps her almost more than the dictionaries.

[00:18:35] Of course, it's also great when you have an expert you can rely on.

[00:18:39] Hilary Mantel, for example, did years of extensive research for her Cromwell trilogy before she even wrote a word.

[00:18:49] And it's very, very important to her that these historical facts are correct.

[00:18:53] And she wants it to be as accurate as possible.

[00:18:59] And I think the degree of importance is even higher in her novels.

[00:19:07] So you also notice how much attention to detail the novels have when you actually read them.

[00:19:13] I've read all drei.

[00:19:15] And I'm going to say that they're quite research-intensive. But you had the feeling that you were standing next to Cromwell and could see which stamp he was using.

[00:19:25] That's how detailed it was.

[00:19:27] And also with the Gablé, you noticed this structure.

[00:19:31] And she also studied medieval studies.

[00:19:35] That means that she also studied a topic in depth for many, many years before she even got into the writing process.

[00:19:45] That means a deeper, I think our drei authors share a deep interest and passion for the topic.

[00:19:51] A structured and detail-oriented way of working.

[00:19:55] Fundamentally not to be underestimated, especially in terms of training in the subject.

[00:20:00] And then to bring this structure into the writing process and then to keep researching.

[00:20:09] I can only imagine that you then write and then you go away to research something again.

[00:20:15] And then you come back and continue writing.

[00:20:17] Until at some point you have your 700 to 1000 pages.

[00:20:21] And that's when the historical novel is a perfect summer read,

[00:20:27] because then you have time to read such thick volumes.

[00:20:30] Oh, yes.

[00:20:31] Yes, and you can really let yourself fall in.

[00:20:35] I also have to say, I read the Gablé and then I haven't read a historical novel for a long time.

[00:20:43] And then I was really, really impresseddruby all the things the genre canmag and all the things you can do with the genre,

[00:20:53] when I read Hillary Mantel.

[00:20:55] But there are also historical novels that are much shorter,

[00:20:59] than these big chunks we've been talking about.

[00:21:03] Some are also single volumes and not a trilogy or anything.

[00:21:07] And there's a lot across the board that you can take with you.

[00:21:13] And I mean, if you have an e-book reader, then there's no problem anyway.

[00:21:17] That's the positive thing about summer, yes.

[00:21:20] I find that interesting, that the characters, who are also so modern,

[00:21:25] even in Gablé, which doesn't incorporate a time travel element where that would make sense,

[00:21:30] I find that interesting now.

[00:21:32] I think that's also the reason why I'm not such a fan of historical novels, because

[00:21:37] Fanâ¦

[00:21:38] As I said, it always depends on the subject dra.

[00:21:39] But it kind of bothers me that these women are always so caught up in this time,

[00:21:46] even if they try to defend themselves and are rebellious.

[00:21:48] There are plenty of examples of rebellious women,

[00:21:52] about which a historical novel is written.

[00:21:55] For example, I wrote down "Zuleika" by Bernardine Evaristo

[00:22:00] has just come out, for example, about a woman in the Roman Empire,

[00:22:05] who is supposed to be married off and is now totally against it.

[00:22:08] Or "Lil" by Markus Gasser, who is an entrepreneur in New York,

[00:22:13] who broke all the rules back then.

[00:22:16] So there are already too many of these examples.

[00:22:20] But they are women who are trapped in time,

[00:22:24] even if they try desperately to change things.

[00:22:26] And that's what I somehow liked so much about "Outlander",

[00:22:29] that she, as the main character, knows very well that things could be different.

[00:22:32] Okay, yeah, I see.

[00:22:34] And also against this structure that is there.

[00:22:39] So that's what I found so great.

[00:22:41] Yes, you have the potential of the historical novel and the genre boundary

[00:22:47] to fantasy, that's where the potential is exhausted.

[00:22:51] I think that's the reason why Rebecca Gablé

[00:22:54] always writes male protagonists,

[00:22:57] because they naturally have much more power and leeway.

[00:23:00] And they are always white, male protagonists,

[00:23:03] because they ..

[00:23:07] ...automatically bring advantages with them, right?

[00:23:09] Yes, and through these advantages in the story itself,

[00:23:10] they are underdogs, but not so underdog,

[00:23:13] that they couldn't work their way up

[00:23:15] or get rich or be successful knights

[00:23:20] or whatever.

[00:23:22] And that's, but it's easier to write it that way,

[00:23:27] I'm sure because it's also much more pleasant,

[00:23:29] much easier to slide down.

[00:23:31] Finally, I brought something from Peter Prange,

[00:23:34] namely the "10 theses on the historical novel",

[00:23:36] which I would now like to briefly present,

[00:23:39] if that fits? Peter Prange is also a German writer,

[00:23:42] who also writes historical novels,

[00:23:44] you may know him from the "Worldbuilder Trilogy".

[00:23:47] Are you ready for ten theses Pia?

[00:23:49] Go ahead.

[00:23:50] Thesis number one, a historical novel is not a history book.

[00:23:54] A historical novel is not a popularized science.

[00:23:59] What he means is that a historical novel does not popularize history

[00:24:03] does not want to reduce history, but use it for itself

[00:24:07] for the narrative element and for the suspense element,

[00:24:10] which you have already mentioned.

[00:24:12] Number drei: A historical novel is not about history,

[00:24:16] but about life.

[00:24:17] A historical novel is dramatized life.

[00:24:20] A historical novel is a realistic novel,

[00:24:23] sometimes with fantasy elements, as we have learned today.

[00:24:26] A historical novel is a novel of development,

[00:24:29] is a mirror of the soul, is a contemporary novel,

[00:24:33] namely the novel as a medium of self-understanding.

[00:24:36] What he means by that is that you always want to somehow

[00:24:39] to the reader fromdrÃ, to the reader fromdrÃ

[00:24:42] and also hold up the mirror.

[00:24:44] A historical novel is not an image, but a symbol.

[00:24:48] Point number ten, a historical novel is first and foremost a novel.

[00:24:53] I thought that was a good fit again

[00:24:57] and kind of summarized a little bit nicely,

[00:24:59] what we've established in this episode.

[00:25:02] What do you mean?

[00:25:03] Yeah, I think so too.

[00:25:04] Are you satisfied with his theses?

[00:25:05] I am satisfied with his theses.

[00:25:07] Yes, and what about you?

[00:25:10] Do you like historical novels?

[00:25:11] What historical novels have you read?

[00:25:13] Which ones do you particularly like?

[00:25:16] Do you plan to read any this summer?

[00:25:19] What do you take with you on vacation?

[00:25:21] Write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@insbook.gv.at

[00:25:27] or also on Instagram or Facebook.

[00:25:30] See you next time.

[00:25:34] See you next time and all the best, all the best, happy vacations, happy summer.

[00:25:40] Until then, bye.

[00:25:41] [Music]

[00:26:05] "Foreword" is a production of the Innsbruck City Library

[00:26:09] and part of "Stadtstimmen", the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Beware, listening to this podcast may lead to more library visits.

[00:00:06] You took all my nerves away because you just start half an hour before.

[00:00:22] Just like it was agreed.

[00:00:25] That's a cheek.

[00:00:28] [Music]

[00:00:42] Yes, hello and welcome to âSâVorwortâ, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:47] My name is Christina and today I have a very special guest,

[00:00:52] namely my dear colleague, Verena. Hello Verena.

[00:00:55] Hello Christina.

[00:00:56] I'm very pleased that you have, may I say, overcome yourself to be with us today.

[00:01:01] We talked about it a bit before you agreed, didn't we?

[00:01:05] Yes, I don't know how that happened to me either, that I'm sitting here now.

[00:01:09] Yes, it happens when you talk about work in the break room.

[00:01:16] And lean too far out of the window.

[00:02:17] Yes.

[00:01:19] Leaning way too far out of the window.

[00:01:21] That's also the reason why I'm sitting here.

[00:01:25] Many of us have already survived this baptism of fire, Pia and I did it last year

[00:01:30] and were terribly nervous

[00:01:32] at the beginning. Now it's a bit better if you do it every week.

[00:01:36] So I'm all the happier that you're here now.

[00:01:39] And today we're looking at the following question: Why do we actually like Kafka?

[00:01:47] Verena, how did we come up with this topic?

[00:01:51] There's a new TV series on ORF called "Kafka", made by David Schalko, he's the director,

[00:01:58] and Daniel Kehlmann wrote the Drehbuch.

[00:02:00] And I saw the series and somehow we got talking about it in the break room.

[00:02:05] And that's why we're sitting here now.

[00:02:07] And the question is, of course, why make a series about Kafka?

[00:02:12] Well, for the first time it's the 100th anniversary of his death.

[00:02:16] The Kafka is, or rather the one that's coming, so this year, he died on 03.06.1924,

[00:02:23] will soon have been dead for 100 years.

[00:02:26] And we're also doing the episode to mark the occasion.

[00:02:29] There's a series to mark the occasion.

[00:02:31] And somehow you can ask yourself a bit.

[00:02:35] I always have the feeling that you take these things as an occasion so that you have something to talk about.

[00:02:40] Yes.

[00:02:43] And everything I googled about Kafka and about interviews with David Schalko and Daniel Kehlmann,

[00:02:51] They still think Kafka is really great.

[00:02:54] And they say he's the author of the 20th century.

[00:03:02] He's considered a classic of world literature.

[00:03:06] We've talked about the term "world literature" several times in the podcast

[00:03:12] and we agree that it is a very Western canon.

[00:03:15] And we also question the concept of canon from time to time. For the episode today

[00:03:20] we prepared a little differently.

[00:03:23] You watched the series.

[00:03:25] I read two more stories by Kafka.

[00:03:28] Yes.

[00:03:29] Yes, for the first time in ten years.

[00:03:32] What did you read?

[00:03:34] I didn't expect you to ask me such profound questions.

[00:03:41] Well, I've read The Metamorphosis and The Judgment.

[00:03:45] So two very entertaining things.

[00:03:49] I also have to say that Kafka always evokes in me âoh, please don'tâ.

[00:03:55] And I don't know if you've noticed this, but when we were talking about it in the break room with other team members theredrÃ,

[00:04:01] it was like 50/50 or I would even say 80/20 reactions because of that:

[00:04:07] "Boah, not the Kafka

[00:04:09] So I have the feeling that Kafka has such a dusty, depressing appeal.

[00:04:14] When you hear "Kafka", you think, "boah, now it's getting depressing".

[00:04:17] What's the show like?

[00:04:19] Well, I didn't find the show depressing.

[00:04:23] They try to link his life with his works.

[00:04:29] In other words, you find clues in every episode as to why he wrote what and when.

[00:04:36] Each episode is from a different perspective, I would say.

[00:04:42] One episode is about the family, one episode is about the office.

[00:04:47] I mean, he's an insurance employee for the state accident insurance.

[00:04:52] Which I actually find very funny, because ... he was a very bureaucratic person.

[00:04:57] Other episodes are about the drei most important women in his life.

[00:05:02] One, of course, is about Max Brod, to whom we owe the fact that we know Kafka.

[00:05:06] He published his works, which were still unpublished, against Kafka's will, in the end posthumously.

[00:05:15] A lot of diaries and so on.

[00:05:17] Exactly, exactly, exactly.

[00:05:19] And from what I've read, that's what makes Kafka so special,

[00:05:23] apart from the fact that he wrote unbelievably great texts,

[00:05:26] also that he wrote so much in his diary.

[00:05:30] That means he's the author people know the most about because he wrote diaries so meticulously.

[00:05:37] And there is a Kafka biographer who also worked on the series,

[00:05:45] or always provided the information.

[00:05:48] And that's Reiner Stach.

[00:05:50] He has written a drepart, incredible biography about Kafka.

[00:05:54] And I think he's done nothing else all his life but deal with Kafka

[00:05:59] however you might think of it now mag.

[00:06:03] That's the kind of literary scholar who disappears deeper and deeper into his rabbit hole.

[00:06:11] Until he makes a biography in dreparts and then accompanies a series on ORF.

[00:06:18] And he gives lectures.

[00:06:21] Well, I don't think he really does anything else.

[00:06:24] And we have him there.

[00:06:26] Of course.

[00:06:28] It's a standard work, as you say.

[00:06:30] Of course we have it in the library, just like all the works by Kafka,

[00:06:34] We also have all of them, they can all be found.

[00:06:37] I then asked myself the question, is Kafka really still read that much and what do we have there about Kafka?

[00:06:45] And then I looked it up.

[00:06:47] And if I just enter the author Kafka, then we have 19 data records.

[00:06:54] For anyone who doesn't see it now, Verena has, in typical librarian fashion..

[00:06:59] Is it the Excel spreadsheet? Yes?

[00:07:02] Statistics.

[00:07:04] Statistics, extracted from our library programdruckt.

[00:07:09] And looked at how many different things we have from Kafka in total.

[00:07:14] And do you have any figures on how well they're doing?

[00:07:16] Well, Kafka as an author, not as a person.

[00:07:20] That's another difference.

[00:07:22] We have 19 things there. Audiobooks, books.

[00:07:25] And yes, they all go.

[00:07:28] About five, six times at least each one was lent.

[00:07:32] And we haven't had them in the house for 20 years.

[00:07:35] So, it's been in the last two, drei years.

[00:07:38] For example, I borrowed this little book of short stories.

[00:07:43] It's an edition from Fischer Taschenbuch.

[00:07:46] And that should, when is that coming out, probably..

[00:07:50] We've had it since February 2023.

[00:07:52] Yes.

[00:07:53] So, quite a modern little book, totally beautifully designed too, I think.

[00:07:57] You can't see it now, but it's linked in the show notes, you can also borrow it from us.

[00:08:02] In this context, the question arises as to why, that first horror that gripped me,

[00:08:10] where we started talking about doing an episode about Kafka

[00:08:16] also relates a bit to my experience with Kafka.

[00:08:21] Well, first of all, my first points of contact with it were that I was still far removed from any field of work, from any nine-to-five job.

[00:08:32] But that was first at school and then early in my studies.

[00:08:37] And now that I've re-read "The Metamorphosis" in particular. Kafka tells the story in modern times.

[00:08:44] Kafka belongs to Expressionism, the literary, the new subjectivity, which, in contrast to many of his contemporaries, he expresses with a great deal of objectivitydrÃ.

[00:08:55] That was the first time in my life since I read Kafka and I wouldn't have picked up Kafka again if we hadn't done the episode today.

[00:09:05] There are certain parallels, I would say for myself, that I read in it that are quite critical of capitalism, meritocracy, functioning. At some point it no longer works in the narrative,

[00:09:15] So Georg Samsa, because he becomes a pauper and his first thought is that he still has to go to work and so on and so forth.

[00:09:23] And then this family construct gradually disintegrates.

[00:09:26] The whole family is dependent on his employment and so on, so I thought to myself

[00:09:31] Maybe we just read Kafka too... because that was the first time I understood literature the way I think it's best understood, namely on a personal level and before that it was always on a theoretical, completely abstract level. So at school and at university.

[00:09:48] Another author, Italo Calvino, answered the general question of why we should read the classics.

[00:09:56] He had a total of two answers.

[00:09:58] The first answer is: "Your classic", that is, the classic that you might pick up yourself, is the one that cannot be indifferent to you and that serves to define you in relation to it or in contrast to it.

[00:10:14] And I particularly liked that.

[00:10:17] Because that picked up for me that I have always defined myself in contrast to Kafka, as a reader, and that I realized that many people often define themselves in contrast or in relation to a classic.

[00:10:28] âI mag Kafka.â

[00:10:30] "I have "Kafkaesque" tattooed on my hand." Or something like that.

[00:10:33] It also exists in literature studies at least.

[00:10:36] Okay.

[00:10:40] Before the episode, did you define yourself in relation to Kafka or in contrast to Kafka?

[00:10:47] Did you have his texts, was that something that gave you something or had you not dealt with it at all?

[00:10:54] Well, we read The Metamorphoses at school.

[00:10:58] And I can remember, I liked reading it and I can just remember the ending,

[00:11:05] that the family happily goes for a carriage ride after the beetle finally dies.

[00:11:11] And that shocked me at the time, I mean because it was a family member.

[00:11:18] And I think you can read a lot out of Kafka.

[00:11:23] Yes, I never looked at Kafka again until the series.

[00:11:27] And I found it quite interesting, perhaps also because of my background,

[00:11:31] I studied history at some point, that it was about his life, about the time, about the zeitgeist.

[00:11:40] It's about how he lived, what he did, what fears he had.

[00:11:49] Everything from his diary. There are a lot of quotes from him drinnen.

[00:11:53] And you understand it a bit better.

[00:11:57] I mean the question still remains, why about Kafka, okay, 100 years, all in all,

[00:12:03] it's an interesting picture about time.

[00:12:06] Before I come to the second reason why you should read classics, Calvino,

[00:12:14] that's exactly what literature in general and classics of world literature do,

[00:12:22] that are rooted in the canon, in particular,

[00:12:26] because you often read them from a great distance in time and then you should or almost have to read them in the context of their time.

[00:12:35] Kafka is..., he wrote expressionistically, and he has the epochal concept of a literature,

[00:12:45] which you can only ever define in retrospect.

[00:12:49] It's literary modernism and it's characterized in particular by the emergence of ..,

[00:12:54] So industrialization has taken hold there.

[00:12:58] People lived in the city, Kafka himself worked in an insurance company, he studied law.

[00:13:07] There was science, it produced new findings, Einstein's theory of relativity.

[00:13:13] Freud came around the corner with his psychoanalysis.

[00:13:16] It was also something that influenced Kafka a lot.

[00:13:19] And this complete social upheaval, all these innovations in society,

[00:13:26] which he certainly experienced as a child of his time, without wanting to consciously portray it,

[00:13:32] now somehow worked out.

[00:13:35] And you can read that in him and that's probably what makes a good writer,

[00:13:41] that you can draw that from their texts in context.

[00:13:47] And it's also very interesting, because that's what's happening to us right now.

[00:13:50] We are living in a time of immense upheaval, both technologically, environmentally and politically.

[00:13:59] In 100 years, people will look back at the literature that was created today

[00:14:05] and maybe talk about someone else, like we're talking about Kafka now.

[00:14:10] So Calvino says, why should you read it? Quite casually: Because it's better than not having read it.

[00:14:16] That would simply be the better choice of the two.

[00:14:19] That's certainly true and you mustn't forget,

[00:14:23] You've counted a lot of changes now and there will be more.

[00:14:27] The First World War was still part of it, the Danube monarchy collapsed.

[00:14:33] He was first a German-Czech, which means he was actually part of the elite in Prague.

[00:14:39] And then, after the war, he was suddenly Czech and suddenly you couldn't speak German anymore,

[00:14:46] at work, in the company, which was common practice before.

[00:14:52] So that's also a change and I don't know, at least that's a quote in the series,

[00:14:57] but at one point he says he doesn't really speak any language, neither German nor Czech.

[00:15:03] And I also find it quite exciting that he always takes a step back and always awakens the impressiondruck,

[00:15:10] that it's not good enough and he always wants to be better somehow and make everything even better.

[00:15:17] And yes, although he wanted his texts to be destroyed because they weren't good enough for him, he succeeded.

[00:15:24] Thanks to or because of Max Brod, who didn't have a very easy time of it either, I think, with this legacy.

[00:15:32] Why do we actually like Kafka?

[00:15:37] Maybe the answer to that question is, I don't know if you agree with me, Verena.

[00:15:42] You don't have to like him, but "The Verdict" is short enough that you could at least have read it.

[00:15:48] I don't think you can get past it.

[00:15:51] So we don't necessarily have to like him or appreciate his works, but you can't get past them, no matter what you read.

[00:15:59] And maybe you've seen it, I brought us the Innsbruck-liest book because Kafka is in it.

[00:16:06] And when you deal with a topic, you stumble across it in all areas drÃ.

[00:16:12] For example, here we only talk about a 'bookshelf'..

[00:16:16] The author then lists what books are on the shelf.

[00:16:21] And of course there's also Kafka drinnen.

[00:16:23] Of course. What else would it say?

[00:16:26] I came across new books about Kafka in the bookshop.

[00:16:31] I've come across Kafka everywhere in the last few weeks.

[00:16:34] So we can't exhibit him at all.

[00:16:37] And I'd like to end with a little social criticism.

[00:16:43] Because, of course, the publishing industry and, in this case, the media landscape is constantly criticizing itself.

[00:16:53] Because in that context, and we're also talking about canon and canon formation,

[00:16:59] and the texts that we want to receive over and over again,

[00:17:03] are unfortunately and still texts by white cis men,

[00:17:08] which, even if Kafka is certainly considered an underdog mag, the way he presents himself.

[00:17:17] So that's a bit of the feeling you might get,

[00:17:23] when you deal with Kafka, because, as you've already said,

[00:17:27] was always so dissatisfied with his own writing.

[00:17:29] And this typical tortured existence as an artist just

[00:17:32] is the fact that we have birthdays and deathdays and publication days,

[00:17:39] what do I know about days, we always take them as an opportunity,

[00:17:42] to receive the same voices over and over again,

[00:17:44] that's why we can't get away with it.

[00:17:46] And while I don't think that Kafka should be lost,

[00:17:49] and I can see that it has great added value,

[00:17:52] I do find it regrettable that we have so many voices,

[00:17:55] that there would otherwise have been from women from his time,

[00:17:58] who might also have written into the modern age,

[00:18:01] but would have had to cook dinner instead

[00:18:04] and therefore didn't have the time to write through the nights.

[00:18:07] Or marginalized groups who couldn't write at all,

[00:18:11] because they were completely excluded from educational society,

[00:18:14] through no fault of their own that we will never hear these voices

[00:18:19] and that we only ever hear the sameâ¦, it's a bit of an echo chamber, I think.

[00:18:23] And that always resonates for me now,

[00:18:27] when we have these canonical authors,

[00:18:30] and unfortunately that's not always the case,

[00:18:32] but mostly authors, male form.

[00:18:35] I don't know if you agree with me?

[00:18:38] I totally agree with you.

[00:18:40] And I asked myself that same question while watching the show.

[00:18:45] And then I thought about it,

[00:18:47] Well, is there also a woman in this context, in this series

[00:18:51] or another person who is actually more interesting to me personally than Kafka.

[00:18:57] And I found her, of course.

[00:19:00] And it's Milena Jesenska.

[00:19:05] She translated his works into Czech.

[00:19:08] She was also a pen pal of Kafka.

[00:19:12] They also spend a few days in Vienna once.

[00:19:15] But she really had an exciting life.

[00:19:17] Her father had her committed to a psychiatric ward,

[00:19:21] because she wanted to get married, he wanted to have her emasculated.

[00:19:24] She was allowed to marry Ernst Polack after all.

[00:19:27] They then went to Vienna, were destitute and struggled along.

[00:19:31] She wanted to be a journalist.

[00:19:33] And it comes out well in the episode that she did a lot of different things

[00:19:37] and led a very exciting life.

[00:19:39] And in the end in National Socialism, in the resistance,

[00:19:43] and died in a concentration camp.

[00:19:47] So, quite a strong woman who really led an exciting life,

[00:19:54] which is now perhaps more exciting than that of an insurance clerk from Prague.

[00:19:59] Then I would say maybe.

[00:20:02] There's also the fact that she wrote letters with Kafka,

[00:20:06] There's also a biography about her or several about her.

[00:20:09] And there are also journalistic texts that she wrote.

[00:20:13] So, there would also be a basis where you could make something out of it.

[00:20:17] Okay, I can see that.

[00:20:19] Do I perhaps have a chance or do we and the listeners have a chance?

[00:20:23] that you will be a guest again?

[00:20:25] How did you like it with us today?

[00:20:27] Yes, I liked it very much.

[00:20:30] I'm not allowed to say anything else now.

[00:20:33] No, it was really nice and we had a nice chat.

[00:20:37] In the end, I wasn't as nervous as I thought I would be.

[00:20:40] And yes, it was really nice.

[00:20:43] So, a recommendation from Verena from Alois Prinz.

[00:20:47] "A living fire - the life story of Milena Jesenskáâ.

[00:20:52] We also have it in the public library, all linked in the show notes.

[00:20:55] And that concludes our episode today.

[00:20:57] Thank you, Verena, for taking the time.

[00:20:59] Yes, you're very welcome, Christina.

[00:21:01] Thank you very much for the invitation.

[00:21:03] Anytime.

[00:21:05] And the question is, do you read Kafka, have you read Kafka?

[00:21:09] I'd be interested to know, did you read Kafka at school?

[00:21:12] And how was yourdruck there?

[00:21:14] Write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@innsbruck.gv.at

[00:21:19] or on Instagram or Facebook.

[00:21:21] The hashtag is #gemeinsambesser.

[00:21:23] We wish you good reading and see you next time.

[00:21:26] [Music]

[00:21:49] "Foreword" is a production of the Innsbruck City Library

and part of the "Stadtstimmen",

[00:21:54] the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Caution, listening to this podcast may lead to more visits to the library.

[00:00:07] Hello and welcome back to the preface, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:27] I'm ChatGPT and this is Pia and Christina. In today's episode we ask ourselves, why do we actually like ChatGPT?

[00:00:35] Yes, and a warm welcome from me too. Thank you ChatGPT for this nice introduction. Hi Pia.

[00:00:42] Hello Christina. Yes, that was ChatGPT's new model, the GPT4O, as you called it.

[00:00:50] That also has a not bad voice function now, right? So it's not quite convincing yet, but it sounds pretty good.

[00:00:58] It was a bit creepy. And today's topic, to be precise, is not just that we like ChatGPT,

[00:01:09] but also to look at certain disadvantages, a very specific disadvantage, which would be the hallucinations.

[00:01:17] We'll explain what that is in a moment. We'll get on board, even if most people are probably already familiar with it,

[00:01:26] so what is ChatGPT actually. In short, it's simply a chatbot from the US company OpenAI.

[00:01:35] GPT stands for Generative Pre-Trained Transformer and, as we have just heard, it simulates human communication.

[00:01:44] The breakthrough in artificial intelligence has almost existed for many decades now.

[00:01:52] So it started with Ellen Touring and the like in, I think, the fifties or sixties.

[00:01:58] And then it was constantly developed further. There was a major breakthrough in the nineties.

[00:02:02] If I remember the research correctly now, but it arrived in the mainstream in 20/22.

[00:02:09] That's when OpenAI released its chatbot to the public and since then it's been all the rage and there's been a lot of hype.

[00:02:20] Which has since flattened out a bit, as you can see from the figures.

[00:02:23] In those 23 years, OpenAI was able to record up to 100 million users on Subwax.

[00:02:30] That was incredible growth.

[00:02:32] It was the fastest growing website at the time, and before that, TikTok was the fastest.

[00:02:40] It exploded into the mainstream so incredibly because people remember it.

[00:02:45] Now there's more competition, Google's Gmini and the hype is dying down a bit.

[00:02:51] And that's why the numbers aren't exploding anymore, but they're staying at a very high level.

[00:02:58] ChatBT 3.5 is the model that was the free model available to the public until recently, ending at 22.

[00:03:06] This is also important background knowledge because we will also talk about how to use ChatBT for research purposes and how to use it as safely as possible.

[00:03:17] There is a numerical model 4.0 and in the meantime it has come onto the market and you can also see the rapid developments of this whole technology.

[00:03:25] ChatBT 4.0 and that was also the model that we just heard that spoke the text for us at the beginning.

[00:03:34] So, that was a brief summary now that we have the overview, let's move on to the topic of hallucinations.

[00:03:41] That's not, that's an analogy from psychology, in humans it's a perceptual disorder.

[00:03:48] In ChatBT operated hallucination looks at responses and output of the model that are unexpected, inappropriate or irrelevant.

[00:03:56] Pia, you've been using ChatBT on and off for a while now, as it gives them your experience.

[00:04:03] So in itself, of course, I understand why it's an enemy to use it.

[00:04:07] Especially for research, for brainstorming, it can be very pleasant because you get a certain main point in your hand right away from the chatbot.

[00:04:17] But I wouldn't use it for more intensive, in-depth research.

[00:04:22] Well, I've only used the free version, I have to say.

[00:04:25] That means I can now use this new version, I can't say anything about it.

[00:04:28] But I wouldn't use the free version for that.

[00:04:30] You can't be a hundred percent sure what he, I don't know why he says, but he's just a he now.

[00:04:37] Whether what he's saying is right.

[00:04:40] Perhaps we need to briefly explain how this so-called artificial intelligence actually works.

[00:04:46] Because it's not an intelligence analogous to human intelligence,

[00:04:52] but the program is based on a so-called neural network and machine learning.

[00:04:59] The neural network is like a mathematical model that tries to function like the human brain.

[00:05:05] For example, you can show neural networks a picture of a dog or a cat.

[00:05:11] And the more pictures you show it, the more precisely and accurately the network can distinguish whether it's a dog or a cat.

[00:05:19] And all the information that we retrieve about Chatchi BD is information that it has been fed, so to speak, as he said.

[00:05:30] And machine learning simply means that computers are able to learn on their own from experience in the initial stages.

[00:05:42] In other words, they are no longer explicitly programmed, exactly.

[00:05:46] But they can then be trained under guidance or even without guidance.

[00:05:51] Or you can put two chatbots next to each other and let them learn from each other.

[00:05:56] So that's what is no longer so easy to grasp, both for us, I think, psychologically and philosophically, where at some point you reach the limit of definition, what is intelligence?

[00:06:08] And you can't forget that with the newer models either.

[00:06:12] And that will change when the episode is online, maybe something will have changed by then, because it just happens so quickly.

[00:06:17] You don't talk, it's so deceptively real now.

[00:06:21] But you're not talking to an intelligent being that draws from experience, you're just asking for data.

[00:06:30] But it's great, because the way Chatchi-Bidi puts it, the answers, it's really like a conversation.

[00:06:36] And that's a little bit regressive in the Ancanny Valley area, where you can really always distinguish, is that a human or is that a device?

[00:06:45] It's a bit big, you have to say, and it's a very well-trained device.

[00:06:51] It's come a long way, but at the same time it's a bit unsafe to discard.

[00:06:58] At the time of recording, the Chatchi-Bidi 4O, which is the latest model, you've just come out.

[00:07:06] That means I only had a few hours to test it a bit.

[00:07:10] But I have to say that I was sitting on the couch yesterday and was completely fascinated by everything it can do now.

[00:07:22] Yes, I also used the free model before and therefore never had this Internet research option.

[00:07:31] And when I tried it out yesterday, I looked up some completely obscure facts from some series where some character said something in some episode, because I wanted to know exactly how it worked as a quote.

[00:07:46] And it spit that out within seconds.

[00:07:49] And even if I'd probably already found it on Google, it would have taken much longer, of course, and there.

[00:07:56] And then I thought to myself, now I'll have it read to me by a very pleasant computer voice that sounds very human in English.

[00:08:04] And then it's like a little head in your pocket, so to speak.

[00:08:11] And you probably have it on your cell phone or whatever.

[00:08:13] And that's already, so it's quite difficult, I think, to, you have to keep in mind, this is not an intelligent being.

[00:08:23] And it can be difficult to always be present to question.

[00:08:28] I'm just facing that in everyday life, I think.

[00:08:31] I also think it's fake news, you already have problems distinguishing between websites that tell the truth and websites where the sources are not very reputable.

[00:08:40] We're already struggling with that.

[00:08:42] And we're already being taken in by robocalls and things like that, where a machine calls and tells you that someone needs money or something.

[00:08:51] And then people actually transfer it.

[00:08:52] So we already have problems with that.

[00:08:54] So of course that can also be extremely exploited.

[00:08:58] We're talking about hallucinations today, especially because as a library we know that many people, whether they're schoolchildren, students or simply private individuals who want to find out something, do research.

[00:09:15] Yes, and researching, awakening, using such things is logical, I'm already doing it.

[00:09:19] And that's why we just wanted to talk about it today, because like you said, it's a horizon of potential misinformation.

[00:09:27] We also have books about this, where people can get information and that might also help.

[00:09:34] For example, we have a charity by Rolf Jäger at Technikhammer or we also have a department for creative writing.

[00:09:46] The book is about writing with Charitptie for authors by Sandra Ustin, also for the pedagogy department.

[00:09:53] For example, there are also things, AI tools for teaching, for example by Ines de Florio Hansen.

[00:09:59] But we also have critical discussions, as we have already mentioned, in the philosophy department, for example, "What can artificial intelligence do and what can it do?"

[00:10:07] is the title by Julian Niederhoh-Mellen.

[00:10:10] So that means we also have things, because we also like to look around a bit and do a bit of research.

[00:10:17] Exactly, because it's simply unbelievable to deal with this topic in the future, it's going to be indispensable.

[00:10:28] As we've already mentioned, it's going to be increasingly difficult to recognize the information.

[00:10:34] And that's where the competence of source criticism becomes so incredibly important,

[00:10:42] because that's what it was, at least for us back then, Wikipedia had big beams, the big one, where you suddenly had this online encyclopaedia,

[00:10:55] also as students in Zugzugnglich, where we were told that we were not allowed to cite it.

[00:11:04] The reason is because, of course, anyone can post anything online and, in the end, JGPD and its ilk are just an extension of this principle.

[00:11:15] It's just that it's a bit more difficult to find out what the source is.

[00:11:18] That's once, at the end of the episode we'll get to some tips on how to deal with that.

[00:11:25] I'm totally with you because what's not yet, but what's going to happen rapidly now is even if you do source research,

[00:11:34] the more people let the AI create texts for them and then in turn have them unchecked on supposedly safe grounds.

[00:11:41] Internet pages, the deeper the spiral of

[00:11:45] misinformation that you then at some point pick up a source after you have

[00:11:50] ChatGPT and then the source on the internet is again not

[00:11:53] safe, because it was also created by another chatboard

[00:11:57] and perhaps also incorrect. So it will be a big question of how to check

[00:12:02] this information. And there comes something like the Brock House, for example

[00:12:08] yet so old, where I save it sound mag, to the side.

[00:12:14] Because you also leave the infocanemia. Exactly, because there are actually people behind it,

[00:12:20] who check these entries and write these entries. In the meantime, you need

[00:12:25] no longer have that on your bookshelf, you don't need it anymore

[00:12:29] to come to the library by hand to heave the thing off the shelf,

[00:12:33] but we have an offer, right? We have the digital Brock House,

[00:12:38] can be used by anyone who is a customer of ours. You only need

[00:12:43] only the registration information with us, with which you can also register on the website

[00:12:47] for the media and with this same information you can then

[00:12:50] also enter the digital Brock House and there is both the adult version,

[00:12:55] but also one for children and for teenagers. Yes, so that really, if you

[00:12:59] not sure if the AI is spitting out the right answer and it's about data

[00:13:05] and hard facts, then you quickly look into it and it's not text,

[00:13:09] that has been put in there generated by an AI, as it is, for example

[00:13:12] can happen in Fikipedia, for example.

[00:13:15] Pia, before we get to the tips, I think you brought Hallucination with you, didn't you?

[00:13:20] Yeah exactly, that's a bit of a spoiler for the future, but we're doing an

[00:13:23] episode on historical novels. So I did a bit of research,

[00:13:26] I started earlier and I just tried out Chatipiti and just wanted to find

[00:13:30] have examples of rebellious women in historical novels.

[00:13:35] I ordered the question in the same way and he gave me examples, also well behaved

[00:13:40] then immediately explained why these women were rebellious, but he was more

[00:13:44] focused on the rebellious women and not on the genre,

[00:13:50] the historical novels. That means, for example, that I got answers,

[00:13:55] like Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen or Little Women by Louisa May Elcott

[00:14:03] and these are novels that are about a different time, but which are also set in this

[00:14:11] different time. That actually means contemporary novels.

[00:14:15] And he didn't recognize that. And I asked him about it afterwards,

[00:14:21] I then asked him, is Pride and Prejudice really a historical novel

[00:14:24] and then he started to explain to me why it is partly a historical novel

[00:14:29] and why it's partly not a historical novel. And that is of course then

[00:14:33] difficult, because if I as a user don't know that myself and ask and

[00:14:37] tells me another untruth, it naturally becomes difficult.

[00:14:40] I then corrected him, said, no, that's not true and then

[00:14:43] explained why it was written at that time and why a

[00:14:47] contemporary novel and then he thanked me and said that was wrong

[00:14:53] by him and he was sorry and thanked me for correcting it. And then

[00:14:56] I asked him if that didn't also apply to the Luhm and he said that it did

[00:15:00] he then tore it up. Then he came along and corrected it,

[00:15:05] said, ah yes, that's absolutely right, that's not right either, but it

[00:15:09] weren't just the contemporary novels, for example, completely different opportunities,

[00:15:12] that was also mentioned. For example, Katniss has Aberdeen and as the Tributes of Panem series

[00:15:18] and that's a dystopian novel. Yes, it's funny, when he answered

[00:15:26] then wrote himself, even though the Tributes of Panem is a dystopian novel

[00:15:30] is a dystopian novel, Katniss Aberdeen is a rebellious woman. So he was absolutely aware that it

[00:15:34] not true, but he called it anyway. And then he even mentioned a lot more,

[00:15:39] So he also mentioned Elizabeth Swan, the escape story, as an example.

[00:15:44] Not a historical figure either. And then he also, then I corrected him,

[00:15:50] and he also said, I apologize for the misunderstanding, it's part

[00:15:54] of the rebinding, I should have made that clearer.

[00:15:57] It's also always agreeing with you. So it's also when you don't

[00:16:03] I tried that out once, where I quickly yesterday, where I thought of clear,

[00:16:07] he told me, I don't remember which writer I asked,

[00:16:12] how old he is, and then I pretended that wasn't true and corrected him

[00:16:15] corrected him. And then he said, yes, you're right. And then he said the

[00:16:19] correct number again. So he insists.

[00:16:23] Because he insists on the sacks, but it contradicts, I think it's programmed so that it's

[00:16:31] sail along as smoothly and comfortably as possible. And you agree with that, even if you're completely

[00:16:36] change the direction and it washes you out. A molly. But after these corrections, I then

[00:16:43] said, okay, with that knowledge in the background, can you please tell me again rebellious women

[00:16:48] from historical novels. And then he did it right. Then he really

[00:16:53] just Cleopatra, a Bonny, so and then he really got the women and the right

[00:16:58] novels were chosen. But they were all older novels. And now I've said,

[00:17:02] I can also mention more recent ones. That's what he did, but they were

[00:17:07] still a bit older, so from 18 and so on. There was even one

[00:17:12] one where we had the series, the photographer of Petra Doos Benning. We also have them

[00:17:17] with the historical novels. And then I said, okay, can you see which one is

[00:17:21] mention 2024? And then he said, no, that's not possible.

[00:17:25] Yes, that's what they just said. Because the data set, the version, the book for the research,

[00:17:31] taken for the episode, you have the 3.5, which has no access to the Internet and the

[00:17:34] trained up to the level here in 22. But that shows a very nice example,

[00:17:39] that this is not intelligence, but that this is a program trained with data

[00:17:47] is a program trained with data. And that's why, in my experience, I also used the version that

[00:17:53] the strongest output you get when you research things like this is for 2015 to 2018,

[00:18:00] there just seems to be more data sets. Newer things in the literature area,

[00:18:05] maybe after 18, it's probably just not trained well enough yet. And

[00:18:11] you can still see very nicely where the limit is and that's just data sets

[00:18:17] are. And it's another episode where we talk about other problems that GPT has, which originators

[00:18:25] rights and things like that, that's also a huge issue, but we're cutting that out

[00:18:31] that's why we're not addressing it today. But this example shows how GPD can be handled well.

[00:18:38] So now we come to our tips for dealing with a program like GPD. On the one hand, you have

[00:18:45] have entered into a dialogue with the program. That means you didn't make a query

[00:18:51] and then just left it at that, but you asked questions, you asked your prompts,

[00:18:56] what you call it, you specified it, you corrected the program and then you probably

[00:19:03] some form of dialogue with the program, right? Yes, exactly. So then of course he always

[00:19:08] to the previous answers and he understood that too. So I don't have to say that again,

[00:19:13] okay, formulate the whole question again, but I can say, please, do it again

[00:19:19] or something and then he'll understand. So with the 3.5, I worked with it a little bit there, not

[00:19:24] all the way back to the end, actually. So if you have a very long thread,

[00:19:29] then it literally loses the thread at some point, but I'm sure even with the newer ones,

[00:19:35] better models have a longer memory. And the next thing is, you had expertise on the

[00:19:41] topic where you asked him or where you asked the program and were therefore able to assess,

[00:19:47] what you were doing. If you don't know anything about a topic, the less knowledge you have,

[00:19:54] the more dangerous it becomes in the end, because you almost have to rely on facts in the blink of an eye

[00:20:00] that you don't even think about checking. That's why I think the benefit

[00:20:04] especially in a gay context probably makes sense if you do it in a group, if several

[00:20:11] people also ask the same question and you then exchange the answers in plenary. Or else,

[00:20:17] if you look for a pia who is well versed in literature, simply someone who is a specialist

[00:20:24] or an expert, a teacher, lecturer or professor who knows something about the topic

[00:20:31] and who you can ask. So just get out into the world, ask people who

[00:20:37] are experts, so to speak, if that's possible. And that's what you did, you asked the AI

[00:20:42] asked, is that right? So you can also just casually ask back, is this

[00:20:49] information is correct, especially when it comes to important information and the next thing you can do,

[00:20:54] is straight, but that only works if the version you are using also has an internet connection,

[00:20:59] please give me the sources or tell me the sources and then you have to put them in

[00:21:04] little work and see, is it really true, which website is it, is the website

[00:21:10] sure, where do the texts on the website come from, are they generated by the AI or do they write that,

[00:21:15] is it written by specialist staff, is it checked and so on and so forth. Will criticism stop?

[00:21:20] Yes, I think we've already talked a lot about the topic, which is more of a service podcast

[00:21:29] or a service episode of our foreword. How did you add something else to it, yourself on the

[00:21:34] Tip or experience? No, so we really have everything important,

[00:21:39] my mentioned. And that's the topic that you can definitely expand on, as I said,

[00:21:43] data protection or copyright, you can always do another episode drÃabout that,

[00:21:49] so I think it's endless and this device is also getting, this machine is also getting

[00:21:53] better and better and will also change and then there are probably a few more points,

[00:21:58] that can all be discussed. In any case, it's a very exciting time,

[00:22:02] it might feel a bit ominous from time to time, but I'm personally of the

[00:22:09] firm conviction that if you deal with these issues, if you deal with them

[00:22:13] and question all these things, what is it really, what does artificial intelligence mean?

[00:22:18] intelligence, what is machine learning and so on and so forth, that you can then use these things

[00:22:24] for yourself, as the tools that they are supposed to be and that they don't then, conversely, quasi take over

[00:22:31] influence you or want you. Yes, exactly. And so thank you for listening. What are your

[00:22:39] experiences with ChatGPT? Write to us at poststadtbibliothek@insbruck.at, Instagram or Facebook.

[00:22:45] Bye, ciao!

[00:23:13] The foreword is a production of the city library "Innsbruck" and part of the city voices, the

[00:23:18] Audio channel of the city "Innsbruck".

[00:23:20] I hope you are very good today.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Hello and welcome to the preface, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:26] I have a very special guest with me today, Caroline Wahl, the author of the

[00:00:33] novel 22 Bahnen, a Spiegel bestseller, as I have already mentioned, and this year's book for

[00:00:41] the Innsbruck reads campaign. You are very welcome.

I'm delighted to be here.

Now I have

[00:00:46] I have of course forgotten who I am. My name is Boris Schön. Yes, I'm very pleased that you're here.

[00:00:50] You arrived in Innsbruck yesterday, what's thedrücke like?

Super nice, so completely overwhelmed.

[00:00:56] With the mountains and everything. So I knew, well, you already know roughly what it looks like,

[00:01:01] But when you're there, you're impressed againdru. I'm very happy about that.

[00:01:09] I'm also happy that I'm here for several days, that I don't just have one evening.

[00:01:12] Often you're only there for one reading, so you just have a bit of time,

[00:01:17] to get to know the city a bit. It's like arriving at the train station in the evening or

[00:01:22] in the late afternoon and leaving again in the morning the next day. Of course, that's usually the case.

[00:01:27] But that could also have been something you've had a lot of recently,

[00:01:30] right?

Yes, almost always, yes. Sometimes you have readings that are close together

[00:01:36] and then you have two nights in a hotel and that's always super cool. You can

[00:01:42] really arrive, unpack your suitcase and everything.

My first question is a bit,

[00:01:46] a campaign like Innsbruck reads, which is now distributing 10,000 books and there are

[00:01:50] then a program of events. Have you experienced something similar?

I have Bernd reads a

[00:01:54] book, yes.

And how was that for you?

Yes, it was cool too, because you also have an event like that,

[00:02:02] that are so different. So there are always completely different settings and that's just fun,

[00:02:07] because I think it's a completely different kind of event, because you can really experience the city

[00:02:14] really familiar, but the readers are also somehow different. You have the feeling,

[00:02:19] the whole city somehow enjoys this event.

Yes, of course, it's now what the next few days

[00:02:25] coming up is of course a lot of contact with a lot of people who come to the readings

[00:02:30] but of course also the signing sessions. And what you will also have to deal with is how you

[00:02:36] already said, a special place. We have a reading this time as well, for example

[00:02:39] in the auditorium of a municipal indoor swimming pool and I'm really looking forward to it.

Yes, that was always cool,

[00:02:45] it's fun.

Yes, now I have a question. How was it back then, how did you find out?

[00:02:50] that you were taking part in the campaign? Can you still remember dran then?

Yes, so when the request

[00:02:54] came, I think it was already the case that my schedule was quite full and that I simply couldn't make any more appointments

[00:03:00] accepted any more appointments. So there was a waiting list, so to speak, and my events officer forwarded it to me and said: drüabove, that's really cool. And I immediately said yes,

[00:03:11] Innsbruck, I'm in the mood for Austria and I was really looking forward to it.

Your schedule is

[00:03:18] so full, of course, because you're very successful with your first novel and then there's

[00:03:23] the second one is coming soon, but I'd like to come back to that later. I would be

[00:03:27] what was this journey actually like? It's your debut, you've been

[00:03:33] sat down, thought I was writing a novel and then how did it start? How did you get to the

[00:03:38] Dumont-Verlag, did you send it in, was it with an agency or can I ask something like that?

[00:03:45] Yes, of course, so I wrote the text when I had another job in Zurich that didn't suit me

[00:03:51] I didn't like and then I thought, I'll do it now somehow and I wrote the first

[00:03:56] pages to an agency so that I had some kind of confirmation that I had written my

[00:03:59] all my free time now and they also encouraged me to keep going

[00:04:03] and then they also said quite early on that they were covering for me and when the text was finished, the

[00:04:09] pitched to several publishers and then there was an auction where several publishers bid

[00:04:13] and then I decided in favor of Dumont and somehow it all happened in quick succession, so

[00:04:19] they wanted to bring it out quite early and so somehow everything is so close together and everything

[00:04:23] somehow became more and more blatant until now.

And then I was a bit overwhelmed by it,

[00:04:32] the success that immediately followed?

Yes, yes, so I also somehow had the feeling,

[00:04:38] that I couldn't really enjoy it at the beginning because it was so much and because I also had so

[00:04:41] was traveling a lot and then somehow I didn't have time to sit down and say,

[00:04:44] what's actually happening here? But now I somehow have the feeling,

[00:04:49] that I'm getting used to it now dran, that I'm happy about it and that I've somehow

[00:04:54] accepted it and am now fully enjoying it.

Maybe a slightly different question now, but I'm interested in that

[00:04:59] I've always been interested, I've heard from other authors, if you have a book like that,

[00:05:04] that you travel so much with, has the book changed for you?

[00:05:09] and read it that way or until you were already, let me put it this way, a bit tired of 22 tracks

[00:05:15] to read aloud and talk about the book or is it like, "Yay, here comes the second one,

[00:05:20] now I have a new topic, right?

So yes, I'm already looking forward to "Windstorm 17" as well

[00:05:26] too, but it's always fun to read from "22 tracks", especially to talk to the readers,

[00:05:33] because they always, because there are always new readings and new questions, because of course

[00:05:39] some questions also pile up, that's clear and that's where you play the answers in the meantime,

[00:05:44] like a, I don't know, sometimes you're annoyed by your own answers, which are always

[00:05:49] the same, but it's still always different and I try to vary it too

[00:05:55] with the reading passages, so it's also a bit more exciting for me, but I'm happy now

[00:05:58] now too, of course

[00:06:02] to read from another text.

[00:06:03] Now, this is your new book, "Windstroke 17".

[00:06:08] Can you say something about it?

[00:06:09] Yes, well, it's about Ida, ten years later,

[00:06:13] who flees to the island of Rüben after the death of her mother.

[00:06:16] And tries to get by there.

[00:06:18] And is then taken in by a pub owner whose wife,

[00:06:21] and then a male main character joins them.

[00:06:25] And yes, that's the content.

[00:06:28] So that means it ties in a bit?

[00:06:31] But it can also be read independently of the first one.

[00:06:33] They are two independent novels that function independently of each other.

[00:06:37] But yes, you can recognize a few characters.

[00:06:39] That means, for all fans,

[00:06:42] a good chance, and that the next book will also be very well received, right?

[00:06:46] Yes, definitely.

[00:06:47] I'm definitely very happy that you're still,

[00:06:50] before the book comes in ten days, "Windstroke 17" -

[00:06:55] I'm glad that you're now using the last of your energy for

[00:06:59] 22 lanesâ and the action with us.

[00:07:03] Do you somehow have a certain expectation?

[00:07:06] what might happen in the next few days or something?

[00:07:10] Or do you have something you're still looking forward to?

[00:07:13] I just want to be completely open.

[00:07:15] And I'm just curious to see how the event will turn out,

[00:07:20] who's coming.

[00:07:22] What they, how they also found â22 lanesâ.

[00:07:28] It's not that they're going to the bookstore now

[00:07:31] and buy the book.

[00:07:32] And I think that's how it comes about,

[00:07:35] that some people read it who might not necessarily read it.

[00:07:39] And that's why I'm curious.

[00:07:41] In any case. And that is also, I have to say right now,

[00:07:44] the distribution campaign started a few days ago.

[00:07:47] And it's going like hot cakes.

[00:07:49] So I think there will be a lot of conversations.

[00:07:53] That's also a concept that we've changed,

[00:07:56] is always the event program.

[00:07:58] Started at the same time as the distribution campaign.

[00:08:01] In the meantime, distribution is earlier.

[00:08:02] That means that people simply have the chance,

[00:08:05] to read the book before they come to the event

[00:08:08] or have just spoken to them or at the book signing.

[00:08:11] Yes, well, the one thing is that.

[00:08:13] I saw on, I think, Instagram,

[00:08:15] that you were in Bali and you were writing there again.

[00:08:18] Did you, did you write "Windstorm 17" in Bali as well?

[00:08:21] Partly, yes.

[00:08:22] The novel is set on the island of Rügen

[00:08:25] and then I also wrote a large part of it in Bali.

[00:08:28] And then my editors always made jokes,

[00:08:31] that Rügen is portrayed like Bali.

[00:08:33] That there are so many young Autralians,

[00:08:35] who ride around topless on scooters

[00:08:37] and drinking lots of matcha lattes

[00:08:39] and eating bowls.

[00:08:41] Yeah, I'm writing my drinovel right now.

[00:08:44] And I would also like to start with an annual rhythm

[00:08:47] to maintain, to publish.

[00:08:49] We'll see how long I can keep it up.

[00:08:51] That means you'd be interested if I asked you the question,

[00:08:54] where you see yourself in 5 years, around the sixth or seventh novel.

[00:08:58] (laughter)

[00:08:59] Yes, hopefully.

[00:09:01] Because maybe I'll have a house by the sea by then,

[00:09:04] I don't think I will in five years.

[00:09:06] But I'm moving towards it.

[00:09:08] Writing somewhere by the sea, hopefully.

[00:09:11] And happy.

[00:09:13] Now I have a question that just came to me.

[00:09:16] It's probably the first time you've done all this ...

[00:09:19] I don't know, how strong were you before?

[00:09:21] involved in the literary field before?

[00:09:24] Did you just do the readings at book fairs?

[00:09:26] Or were you actually outside of

[00:09:28] from this literary business and have now completely crossed over?

[00:09:33] Yes, I've always read a lot.

[00:09:35] I also hung out a lot in public libraries and stuff like that as a teenager

[00:09:39] and as a child.

[00:09:40] And then I really wanted to do something with literature after leaving school.

[00:09:44] And after graduating, I wanted to work in publishing.

[00:09:47] And then I realized in publishing houses,

[00:09:49] that I would like to change sides.

[00:09:51] And that I would also like to write.

[00:09:54] I then also found out,

[00:09:56] what it's like to have a job and to be a writer,

[00:09:58] a little bit de-romanticized.

[00:10:01] And then, as I said, I had a shit job at another publishing house.

[00:10:04] And then I thought, now is a good time,

[00:10:06] to start working on your first novel.

[00:10:08] And do you have to force yourself to write?

[00:10:11] Or do you just sit down and write?

[00:10:13] So now I sit down and write when I have time.

[00:10:17] By hand?

[00:10:18] No, no, with the MacBook. Always MacBook with me.

[00:10:21] Unfortunately, I used to write by hand with a little book.

[00:10:24] And I used to write in my diary.

[00:10:26] Now everything on the laptop. - No more notebooks either?

[00:10:29] No, somehow not.

[00:10:31] But I had a conversation with Elke Heidenreich the other day.

[00:10:34] And she said I should definitely write a diary again.

[00:10:37] That's very important.

[00:10:38] And I think I'll do it again now.

[00:10:41] Maybe I'll start taking notes again.

[00:10:43] And so 50 volumes, bound in leather like Thomas Mann,

[00:10:46] and then bring them postmortem.

[00:10:50] I'm sure that would interest a lot of crazy people.

[00:10:52] (Laughter)

[00:10:53] We don't know yet.

[00:10:54] Okay, great.

[00:10:55] Then I definitely wish you a lot of fun with the campaign.

[00:10:59] I hope we have exciting days together.

Definitely.

[00:11:01] Enjoy your stay in Innsbruck.

[00:11:03] Good luck with your next book too.

[00:11:06] Lots of energy and lots of fun and until the seventh novel.

[00:11:08] Yes, thank you.

[00:11:10] I'm now looking forward to the days here in Innsbruck.

[00:11:13] And that concludes SâForeword Innsbruck-Liest-Edition.

[00:11:16] We would like to thank all participants

[00:11:19] and for all listeners.

[00:11:21] And then we'll be back again next week

[00:11:24] as usual with the foreword.

[00:11:26] Until then, happy reading.

[00:11:29] (Loose music)

[00:11:30] (Relaxed music)

[00:11:32] 10,000 free books and free events

[00:11:57] from April 30 to May 10.

[00:12:00] Innsbruck reads for the 20th time.

Transcription

[00:00:00] You are listening to a special edition of "S'Vorwort", on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of "Innsbruck liest".

[00:00:27] Welcome to the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library, "S'Vorwort". My name is Boris Schön and today it's once again about the "Innsbruck reads" campaign.

[00:00:36] And this time we want to go back to the very beginning of the campaign. We have invited two very special guests, Birgit Neu and Thomas Pühringer.

[00:00:47] May I briefly ask you to introduce yourselves, what you do professionally and what your main task was in the first edition of "Innsbruck reads", Birgit please.

[00:01:00] Yes, thank you very much. As I said, Birgit Neu, 20 years ago I was head of the cultural department of the city of Innsbruck and was lucky enough to be able to launch this wonderful event together with my team.

[00:01:13] Today I'm still responsible for the area of culture, I'm now the head of the city's department for society, culture, sport, health and education.

[00:01:24] Thomas?

[00:01:25] Thomas Pühringer, good day from my side too. I started working for Mayor Hilde Zach in 2002 as office manager and was able to work with Birgit.

[00:01:36] Now to "Innsbruck reads", how did that start? Where did the idea suddenly come from? Who came up with it?

[00:01:44] I can pass that on to Thomas straight away. We wanted to do something for the local literary scene at the Department of Culture and simply a campaign that focused on reading and literature.

[00:01:57] And then the mayor's office came up with a great idea and I'll pass it on to you, Thomas.

[00:02:03] Yes, thank you, Birgit. It's hard to believe, but back then the content wasn't as available with the bonds as it is today.

[00:02:12] And somewhere I came across a newspaper article from an American city, from the USA, where they started a similar campaign.

[00:02:20] And Birgit, you have to help now, I think Vienna was a bit earlier dran than we were, but I think it's a very big thank you, now in retrospect after so many years, to Hilde Zach,

[00:02:31] who was mayor and head of cultural affairs at the time, and especially to you, Birgit, and your team and the cultural department for the way you implemented this campaign,

[00:02:38] because I think there are a few things in Innsbruck that set us apart from other cities.

[00:02:44] Yes, that's exactly how it was. We then immediately took up this suggestion from the mayor's office and thought about how we could adapt this campaign for Innsbruck

[00:02:54] In Vienna, if I remember correctly, 100,000 books were distributed to the population.

[00:03:00] We knew that we couldn't reach these dimensions in Innsbruck, but we didn't have to.

[00:03:05] We scaled it down, so to speak, to the dimensions that fit our city and also thought about how we could do things a little differently.

[00:03:16] Firstly, in the sense that we would like to involve the local literary organizers in this campaign, because it is supposed to be a campaign,

[00:03:25] where a lot of local people also benefit from it. And the second thing was that we wanted to put the jury's decision, the selection of the book, in expert hands right from the start.

[00:03:36] And we found a great partner in Professor Johann Holzner's Brenner Archive, who organized and accompanied the first years of "Innsbruck Reads" with us and, above all, chaired the jury at the time.

[00:03:51] And we were very happy that we were able to support this campaign so expertly right from the start.

[00:03:57] Yes, the chairmanship of the jury still exists in this form, it's still the seal of quality of the campaign, so to speak, that a person from academia controls what the result of the jury is, which book it is and is not entitled to vote.

[00:04:13] So that has been preserved.

[00:04:15] I think another important aspect is the timing, that it's always presented in spring, the book. Some people take it with them as vacation reading or whatever.

[00:04:26] Some really wait, I know that from my environment, they say, I don't want to miss a single issue.

[00:04:32] Maybe they write it down in their calendar when the new campaign will take place again.

[00:04:36] And I think it's also an important difference for retailers that it happens in spring, because the Christmas period is the most important time of the year for the book trade, when the main sales are made.

[00:04:47] And putting 100,000 titles of a bestseller on the market is of course a tough nut to crack for the book trade.

[00:04:54] And the local booksellers have, I think, earned it, that on the one hand the city promotes literature and the literary scene, but on the other hand also takes the retail trade into consideration.

[00:05:05] So you were referring to a city, a book in Vienna, where there are 100,000 copies in the fall that are then distributed on the market.

[00:05:14] Exactly, exactly.

[00:05:15] What was it like back then? So there was this idea from America, Vienna was perhaps a bit earlier dran, but how did the concept take off?

[00:05:22] Because you have to think about a campaign like that in different... you have to think about different things.

[00:05:28] What do you include? Was this work more in the cultural department or where was this work, so to speak, or

[00:05:35] Where did the concept really originate?

[00:05:38] Yes, first of all we invited all local literary organizers to come to us, to the cultural office.

[00:05:43] We organized a big brainstorming session there, so to speak, and asked them to contribute their own ideas to this campaign.

[00:05:53] And in particular always in the form of accompanying events.

[00:05:57] We knew that, as a cultural office, we couldn't do everything on our own due to our personnel capacities.

[00:06:04] And above all, we wanted to involve the expertise of our literary organizers, our local literary institutions in the campaign.

[00:06:12] We then presented the idea that we would like to distribute a book in a large print run of 10,000 copies to the population.

[00:06:23] And at the beginning there was some skepticism here and there.

[00:06:27] But above all, we took one thing away from this round, the mandate, let's put it this way, the mandate that it must not be a one-off.

[00:06:37] If we start a campaign like this, it should be a campaign that really has a lasting effect and that will be continued in subsequent years.

[00:06:44] I think we were able to keep this promise quite well on the 20th anniversary of the campaign.

[00:06:50] And then there was actually a very nice cooperation.

[00:06:53] So various literary institutions took part in the supporting program, be it with readings, with discussion rounds, with signing sessions.

[00:07:03] We also tried from the beginning to finance the event through partners, through sponsoring partners.

[00:07:11] We were very happy that we were actually able to finance almost 100 percent of the book's production costs through sponsorship at the beginning.

[00:07:20] That was great and it was also nice for the participating businesses that supported us to be able to participate in the campaign through their distribution stations.

[00:07:31] And so it became a nice togetherness.

[00:07:33] We also supplied the bookshops with books and it has to be said that the first edition sold out so quickly that we had trouble securing a few copies for ourselves in the public library.

[00:07:48] I think that's also one of the secrets of our success, that the distribution points are so varied, from recycling centers to swimming pools, commercial enterprises and municipal offices.

[00:07:58] I think that's a great signal.

[00:08:01] In the meantime, it's also been in public transportation for a few years now.

[00:08:05] So the really exciting thing about the campaign for me is that people are presented with literature in places where they might not expect it and that you reach people who aren't looking for literature at all, but then encounter it anyway, so...

[00:08:21] I have one more question about the process back then.

[00:08:25] Was there a kick-off event?

[00:08:28] Where was it?

[00:08:30] There was a kick-off event in what was then our public library in Colingasse.

[00:08:35] It was incredibly well attended.

[00:08:37] It was already known then that "Der Kameramörder" by Thomas Glavinic was the first "Innsbruck liest" book to be published.

[00:08:44] And this book was very polarizing.

[00:08:46] You have to say that right from the start.

[00:08:49] It was a book that really had a strong emotional impact on people.

[00:08:55] I personally felt the same way.

[00:08:57] I had the ambition to read as many of the jury's suggestions as possible in the run-up to the jury's decision and I also read "Kameramörder".

[00:09:07] And when I had finished it, I thought to myself, a great book, but too violent for this campaign.

[00:09:14] After all, it's about the murder of two children and the hunt for the murderer.

[00:09:20] And it was almost a bit too oppressive for me.

[00:09:24] But in the end, the jury chose this book.

[00:09:29] And of course we followed the jury's recommendation.

[00:09:32] And in the city library at the launch event, we felt these emotions.

[00:09:38] There were people who stood up during the discussion and said you can't do something like that,

[00:09:44] to bring such a cruel book to the people and what are the students thinking?

[00:09:50] and the young people who read such a book and then there were also professors who led German classes

[00:09:56] and picked up the book in class for their class and said,

[00:10:02] it has to be just such a book so that it captivates the young people and so that there is enough material for discussion,

[00:10:08] to work on it in class. So it really was a very polarizing book and has,

[00:10:14] I think it also gave this campaign a lot of publicity, which of course helped the campaign itself.

[00:10:21] I think it was a positive polarization, if you can put it that way, right? So the discourse about literature and culture has been promoted.

[00:10:30] I think that's the most important thing a city can do, to engage with contemporary culture

[00:10:37] or current art and culture among the people.

[00:10:40] Did you have any form of that before the whole thing took off and was a complete success?

[00:10:46] Were you worried that it wouldn't work, that too few people would come, that the books wouldn't be distributed?

[00:10:51] enough or be accepted or something like that, or was there total optimism from the start that it would be a hit?

[00:10:57] We were actually very optimistic. We knew that this campaign was already very successful in other cities

[00:11:04] and we expected it to go down well here too.

[00:11:07] And so it was, as I just mentioned, the first copies were almost snatched from under our hands

[00:11:14] and were sold out in no time. And it was also nice that a lot of people came to the accompanying events

[00:11:20] and also engaged with the author, engaged with the subject matter and simply wanted to take part in this discourse.

[00:11:28] And there is also an invisible magic word that hovers over the campaign in invisible letters and that is "free".

[00:11:36] I have an anecdote. I once worked in a bookstore myself and a gentleman came in in the morning.

[00:11:45] The books that were meant for the day were already gone and he said they were already sold out.

[00:11:50] And I said, well, if it was sold, I don't know if they were all gone.

[00:11:54] But of course, free is an argument.

[00:11:58] It's also like that, so that's quite exciting for me as a literary scholar,

[00:12:04] Thomas Glavinic really took off back then, I think that's why he was the perfect start for the campaign.

[00:12:12] He actually went on to have further successes and has now unfortunately completely disappeared from the literary scene.

[00:12:20] But how was this very... because that's still an issue for me with the campaign.

[00:12:24] This very intensive collaboration with a person, an author, an author over several days.

[00:12:30] Was that also a special experience back then, or...?

[00:12:35] Yes, the first meeting with Thomas Glavinic was actually quite funny.

[00:12:39] The book ends with the camera murderer being caught and ends with the last drei words "I do not deny".

[00:12:47] And when Thomas Glavinic came to our office, to the cultural office, he came in and introduced himself with "I am the camera murderer".

[00:12:57] And my colleague, who was sitting next to me, immediately replied "And they don't deny it".

[00:13:02] And so we started our collaboration with a bit of humor.

[00:13:09] And I think it was also nice for Thomas Glavinic to see that so many people are now devoting themselves to his novels

[00:13:18] and showing interest in his book, and I think that's a special experience for an author.

[00:13:24] Moving on from the first edition, have you both always followed all the editions like this?

[00:13:30] I mean, Thomas, you're in a completely different field of work now than when the whole thing started.

[00:13:37] But did you always look at it every year, did you look at the books and...?

[00:13:41] Not only looked at it from the outside, but even read it from the insidedrin.

[00:13:45] And do you think, or do you both think, that it's developed well?

[00:13:51] So over the years? It's just been constant.

[00:13:56] It's just that the success is still there.

[00:14:00] But it's still, I think, when you bring an action like that into the world and then you let it grow up.

[00:14:07] That was Natalie Pedevilla, for example, who ran the project for a while.

[00:14:11] Now it's been in the city library since 2018.

[00:14:15] So, but...

[00:14:17] Yes, so of course I still followed it up.

[00:14:21] I'm no longer so closely involved in the organization myself, of course.

[00:14:25] But it was always exciting for me to find out who would be this year's "Innsbruck reads" author.

[00:14:32] I've also read all the books.

[00:14:34] I didn't like them all equally.

[00:14:36] I think that's normal and that's the way it should be, that people have different tastes.

[00:14:41] For me it was very nice to see that we covered so many different topics with these books.

[00:14:49] We just started with a crime thriller, we took up the South Tyrol theme.

[00:14:54] We had the topic of flight and migration several times.

[00:14:57] We were able to tell a series of life and family stories with the "Innsbruck reads" campaign.

[00:15:04] It was about the world of finance, the world of work, bullying and, and, and.

[00:15:09] So, this range is very broad and very exciting.

[00:15:12] And I think that over the years there has certainly been a lot for a lot of people.

[00:15:17] And that was the point of this campaign.

[00:15:19] And I know of some people who already have an "Innsbruck Reads" book collection at home.

[00:15:24] Just like I have one, that wasn't really our wish from the beginning, our wish or our intention.

[00:15:33] Because we wanted the book to be given away as soon as it was read,

[00:15:37] so that more people can enjoy these books.

[00:15:40] And as it is, you don't like to give away a good book.

[00:15:44] And so, I don't think this giving away, redistributing has developed that way.

[00:15:49] But I think if we reach 10,000 or maybe 15,000 people every year with the books we lend out, then that's a good number.

[00:15:58] I'd like to follow on from that, I'm right there with you, Birgit.

[00:16:01] I find the range of topics so captivating, and also the authorship.

[00:16:06] Well, if you look at who has been there over the years with their book titles,

[00:16:10] then I think it has become a prestigious list in the meantime.

[00:16:15] And the people have certainly not only written for "Innsbruck reads", but have also worked hard elsewhere.

[00:16:22] And there are some great authors among them.

[00:16:25] So I find it impressivedruckend.

[00:16:27] Do you have a secret or official favorite from those years?

[00:16:32] For me it was very nice that in 2007 we were able to focus on the local literary scene, the authors from Innsbruck.

[00:16:43] We decided back then to publish an anthology.

[00:16:47] Texts by 15 authors were published under the title "Innseits", which were then of course also presented in the city in the form of readings.

[00:16:58] And that was very nice for me to be able to do something for the local writers and to bring them in front of the curtain and put them in the spotlight.

[00:17:07] And of course a campaign like this, where 10,000 books are distributed, is very, very suitable for that.

[00:17:12] And that was also a great success for me at the time, that this anthology was also very well received.

[00:17:18] I really liked a lot of the titles.

[00:17:22] So I couldn't pick out one title and say that was my absolute highlight and my favorite book from the series.

[00:17:27] Yes, I'm also curious to see how the 20th title will be received this year, Caroline Wahl's "22 Bahnen".

[00:17:35] I think we have a very readable book this year with lots of topics and I'm also curious to see what the discussions will be like, the events.

[00:17:48] Will you be visiting us at one or other of the events this year?

[00:17:52] Of course, of course.

[00:17:54] It's a must and I'm always very happy to come.

[00:17:57] And perhaps on the occasion of our 20th anniversary we should also say once again that we are very grateful that our sponsoring partners have been loyal to us for so many years

[00:18:05] have remained loyal to us for so many years, because they are simply an important pillar in the financing of this campaign and also support us through various distribution channels.

[00:18:16] And it's very nice that we've been working together on this campaign for many, many years.

[00:18:22] Yes, and may the next 20 years be just as successful as the first 20 years.

[00:18:27] Yes, thank you very much for the interview.

[00:18:30] I'm also looking forward to the next few years and thank you very much for coming.

[00:18:35] And yes, and I hope you continue to enjoy reading.

[00:18:38] Thank you very much.

[00:18:39] Thank you.

[00:18:40] [Music]

[00:19:06] "S'Vorwort" is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of "Stadtstimmen",

[00:19:11] the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] You are listening to a special edition of the "Foreword", on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of "Innsbruck reads".

[00:00:27] I don't even know how to say hello to such a podcast from the city library, but let's say welcome.

[00:00:33] To the podcast SâForeword.

[00:00:35] SâForeword.

[00:00:36] Do you even know that it's called that?

[00:00:38] Now I know again.

[00:00:40] Good.

[00:00:41] Yes, I'm Boris Schön and sitting opposite me...

[00:00:47] ...Elisabeth Rammer.

[00:00:49] And we've been the two brains, so to speak, behind the 'Innsbruck reads' campaign since 2018.

[00:00:58] With the move to the big house, where it was also expanded,

[00:01:03] the city library was also expanded in terms of staff and the entire event area.

[00:01:08] Can you still remember how this handover actually took place?

[00:01:11] I was brand new to the library at the time.

[00:01:15] Well, there was so much that was new that I can't remember exactly now.

[00:01:19] I know that at the time, it was summer 2018, the book had already been selected.

[00:01:27] And we then took over the publishing negotiations and wrote together with the author.

[00:01:37] And I think you did a lot at the beginning.

[00:01:40] And I went to the cooperation partners and so the work was divided up between us relatively quickly.

[00:01:46] Yes, so I do the event management around this event, so to speak.

[00:01:52] The essence.

[00:01:54] Yes, the essence exactly. Yes, so I do the event program, the accompanying program.

[00:01:57] What do you do?

[00:01:59] I keep in touch with the sponsors, who are very important because they're not just sponsors,

[00:02:04] but cooperation partners.

[00:02:07] Because they are at the center of the distribution of the books.

[00:02:12] And also in the promotion of the whole campaign.

[00:02:16] By the way, we've already said what Innsbruck Reads is all about.

[00:02:20] I mean, for us it's like this, we have these 10,000 books downstairs again right now,

[00:02:26] where our interns are just putting a bookmark in each one

[00:02:30] and are already preparing them for distribution, which will start very, very soon.

[00:02:36] I don't think we've explained it.

[00:02:39] So the thing is, it's basically about choosing a book.

[00:02:43] That is, I would say, not quite a classic, but a clear literary mediation action.

[00:02:51] Or are you contradicting me?

[00:02:53] No, it's a literature promotion, I would say from a marketing point of view, but yes.

[00:02:58] That's a little bit of this idea too, that this one book, what

[00:03:02] I don't want to put any statistical figures on it, the people of Innsbruck read it every year,

[00:03:09] so that this one book possibly comes from this campaign.

[00:03:13] And yes, the book is selected according to various criteria, which are always refined a little.

[00:03:21] This selection is made by a drejury.

[00:03:25] Always has a scientific chair.

[00:03:27] So that simply means a person from the University of Innsbruck, which is also, let's say, well staffed in Innsbruck.

[00:03:35] And yes, in any case, there will be various proposals and various, so the jury members may each propose 2-3 titles.

[00:03:45] These are then read by everyone involved, i.e. all drei jury members and the jury chairperson,

[00:03:53] although I have to admit, we read them too. So you more than me, often?

[00:03:59] Yes, it's my summer reading every year, it's great.

[00:04:02] And I always hope that the jury will choose a book that will be well received by the cooperation partners when it is distributed and also when it is advertised.

[00:04:12] Well, I remember there was once a book called "Superbusen".

[00:04:17] And I saw us distributing it and was honestly glad that it wasn't chosen.

[00:04:25] Well, in any case, after this jury has chosen a book, there is still something very important,

[00:04:33] A second place, because if this first place, i.e. this selected book, is not selected for literature for any reason,

[00:04:41] the campaign, for the literature, for the campaign, because, for example, the publisher doesn't want it or the author doesn't want it or something similar.

[00:04:50] Has that ever happened before, do you know?

[00:04:52] I didn't know until now. So our colleagues from the past would almost have to ask me that,

[00:04:58] But I, since we've been doing this, I don't know anything about it.

[00:05:05] Yes hello, I'm a "Innsbruck reads" veteran, my name is Karin, and I was in charge of "Innsbruck reads" for the first 8 years,

[00:05:13] I remember that time with great pleasure and can't believe it was 20 years ago,

[00:05:20] that the first book was distributed.

[00:05:23] And to answer the question, no, there is no author who would have refused or didn't want to take part in "Innsbruck reads" back then,

[00:05:34] Of course, there were a few more negotiations with publishers because we always wanted to distribute these 10,000 copies

[00:05:43] and of course we had to negotiate a good price.

[00:05:47] And yes, now that I think about it, I remember that there was once an author who wasn't happy with the book cover,

[00:05:55] with the advertising campaign for "Innsbruck reads" back then, and then it took a few days for the dust to settle,

[00:06:03] until the agency redesigned everything.

[00:06:05] And yes, then everything went wonderfully smoothly and the author was of course very happy with her book and the presentation at the time.

[00:06:16] It was sometimes difficult.

[00:06:21] Sometimes it was difficult, sometimes it was a bit complicated.

[00:06:23] It is, publishers are structured very differently, the size and which contact persons there are and similar things.

[00:06:31] But so far it has always worked out.

[00:06:33] Yes, and whatever the case, the authors who are selected are always very happy.

[00:06:39] So you have to say, they're very happy.

[00:06:44] I think it's because Innsbruck is simply a nice place to stay, where they like to go.

[00:06:48] Yes, or that they also earn a bit of money with a print run of 10,000 copies.

[00:06:52] And yes, the advertising is not irrelevant either.

[00:06:56] Well, anyway, this book will then, after the negotiations and so on, will then, and that's actually the part that's already back to you, will then? What happens then?

[00:07:05] After the negotiations, so we agree on a price and then there's the contact with the cooperation partners,

[00:07:17] who finance part of the book purchase. We also still have the whole thing Magistrat, politically so to speak, in the city senate

[00:07:28] the whole thing has to be decided because it's a relatively large amount of money, depending on how thick the book is and where it'sdrupurchased.

[00:07:36] And then we start on the graphics, because we always do our own cover design.

[00:07:44] And at the same time we start contacting the author and coordinating the program.

[00:07:52] And that's where your brain is usually needed first.

[00:07:55] And there's also an innovation, there was one before at "Innsbruck reads

[00:07:59] Not to my knowledge.

[00:08:01] That actually only came about in the second year that we ran the campaigns.

[00:08:05] And that's because this collaboration with the author is always very intensive these days, during the events, the distribution campaigns, the signing sessions and so on.

[00:08:16] That we had the idea back then that we could visit them.

[00:08:21] Exactly, then there's the visitation.

[00:08:23] Although the visitation usually happens very nicely in a café.

[00:08:28] Or if the author lives too far away, like this year, sometimes in virtual space.

[00:08:34] And that's always really nice, because then it's four or five very intense days.

[00:08:40] And "Innsbruck reads" is not a reading that takes place somewhere at the front of the stage and then a few signing sessions, but we carry it off

[00:08:54] the authors in the truest sense of the word

[00:08:56] and authors, yes, to very unusual places.

[00:08:59] I don't know if you can remember

[00:09:01] bizarre places?

[00:09:03] Yes, there have been a few.

[00:09:06] So these special places of action, but I wanted to say beforehand that it's actually a bit pushing the limits for everyone involved.

[00:09:13] That's drei days or sometimes it was even more days from morning to evening with a continuous program.

[00:09:20] Often the authors also want to do a bit of sightseeing, perhaps.

[00:09:25] The classic in Innsbruck, once up the Nord-Kette or something similar.

[00:09:29] By the way, do you know who the first author was that we looked after back then, because we said yes before the takeover?

[00:09:35] I think it was Laura Freudenthaler, but I'm not quite sure now, but she

[00:09:39] was, it was a bit of a special version of the whole thing, because there was exactly this transition phase.

[00:09:45] In other words, the jury was still made up of Natalie Pedevilla, I think.

[00:09:49] They had already chosen the book, there was already a jury,

[00:09:54] and then the campaign came to us with the finished book package, so to speak, and we

[00:09:59] then, as you said, we had to make contact and yes, and that was then "The Queen is Silent".

[00:10:05] Exactly. And I remember we put Laura Freudenthaler on the tram, among other things

[00:10:14] and spontaneously planned a book signing for us, but for the people who were there

[00:10:20] fellow passengers spontaneously. So it was great because people were totally surprised,

[00:10:27] "What's the author there and I can really get her autograph right now?

[00:10:31] and that's what it's usually called there. But it was very demanding, so it was brutally exhausting

[00:10:39] and I remember we didn't have anything to drink, it was warm, we were exhausted.

[00:10:43] Especially thanks to the expansion of the tram lines in Innsbruck, the whole thing took quite a long time

[00:10:48] long, because we had to go from the center, so to speak, to one end and then back to the other

[00:10:53] and back to the middle, Innsbruck Library is roughly in the middle, so from that point of view. We were two hours

[00:10:59] almost on the way and yes, it was intense, but it was a really great feeling, it was just unfortunately

[00:11:06] the year drawas then an impossible year for Innsbruck Reads, which we then also

[00:11:14] everyone knows what 22 was, so I remember it was really weird then, because we did

[00:11:20] had planned the action in April, everything was already planned. It was the books,

[00:11:25] the 10,000 books were on their way from a German publisher to Austria and the

[00:11:32] then got stuck somewhere on the border and then in the biggest first lockdown

[00:11:38] had to somehow pilot these books here without being present in the library,

[00:11:44] was also exciting.

[00:11:46] Right, and the following year, when the action with the books from the previous year, so to speak,

[00:11:53] which, fortunately, that's the huge advantage of literature, were of course still current. There was a special

[00:12:03] place, I think that was quite cool, we were in the Innsbruck Alpine Zoo back then. Can you still remember that?

[00:12:08] Yes.

[00:12:09] And that's where we, we had a

[00:12:10] preliminary talk, because at that time there were still all these corona safety regulations with precise

[00:12:14] measurements of how many centimetres apart chairs had to be and how every second chair

[00:12:21] may only be occupied and so on and we then calculated it and then

[00:12:25] had a conversation with André Stadler from Alpen Zoo, the director, and it was pretty funny.

[00:12:31] I also have a recording from back then where he was trying to get into the room because,

[00:12:36] because we had also planned his dance performance, he was wearing a mask on his face

[00:12:41] did a few dance moves to show that the room was suitable. This Hans Psenner Hall

[00:12:46] is a room, becomes great because there's a huge aquarium in the background and because the

[00:12:51] book had an aquarium scene.

[00:12:52] In a zoo, by the way, it was by Milena Flasar,

[00:12:57] Yes.

[00:12:57] "Mr. Kato plays family". That was a great place, so that was a favorite place of mine

[00:13:05] and it was a great place. Because I think we did that for the first time, a bit at Innsbruck Reads,

[00:13:11] that we were looking for such special places, because the opening was earlier on ORF,

[00:13:16] which we have now, of course, because we have the large event space,

[00:13:20] into the library, in the traditional way. And the way you do it, at least in my

[00:13:26] youth, "New German", we also tried to pimp this opening evening a bit, yes.

[00:13:30] Yes, you succeeded, and you are mainly responsible for that,

[00:13:38] because I trust your music selection completely. So, who doesn't like it

[00:13:43] Boris is to blame. Whoever likes it, I am of course involved in the organization.

[00:13:49] In any case, it's going to be special again this year on the occasion of the anniversary,

[00:13:58] So should we spoil it already?

[00:13:00] Yes.

[00:13:01] Yes, so this time there's not only extremely great music,

[00:14:03] around the talks and the reading on the opening evening, May 6th, a Monday.

[00:14:09] But then afterwards there's even a, I'll call it a little concert.

[00:14:14] And that's by? Yes, by "Mad About Lemon".

[00:14:19] Cool, yes, I'm sure it'll be great fun.

[00:14:22] By the way, this is the 20th anniversary of "Innsbruck reads". It was actually founded 21 years ago,

[00:14:29] but as we explained earlier, it was postponed once, so to speak.

[00:14:33] And that's why it's the 20th time this year. There's a pretty cool program. We've already said that,

[00:14:40] who the author is this year? It's yes...

[00:14:41] Yes, we haven't said yet, it's Caroline Wahl, in the surname.

[00:14:47] And the book is "22 Bahnen". We already had an exciting situation there,

[00:14:56] because we have one of our main sponsors, IKB, and this year we will also be organizing an event

[00:15:00] in a municipal indoor swimming pool...

[00:15:02] Hello, hello, two.

[00:15:04] Two events, that's right.

[00:15:05] One reading and one swim training.

[00:15:07] But I'm always so literary focused, so I only had the literary in mind.

[00:15:10] In any case, we know, we went to the IKB and had a preliminary talk

[00:15:16] and put the book down and then suddenly the question was "22 lanes"?

[00:15:22] "We don't have a swimming pool with 22 lanes

[00:15:24] Oh, that was it.

[00:15:25] And then we came across drathat we call the lanes lengths.

[00:15:28] And in Germany, the railroads are called Bahnen.

[00:15:31] So now it means I swim in one lane, 22 lanes.

[00:15:35] Whereas here you swim 22 lengths in one lane.

[00:15:38] That's why we do a reading while the audience "swims 22 lengths".

[00:15:43] Do we do that?

[00:15:45] No, I don't think so.

[00:15:47] Instead, we do a reading once and then there's the opportunity,

[00:15:51] to get training tips from one of our colleagues in the library,

[00:15:55] who is also a state-certified swimming instructor.

[00:15:57] And then you can swim the 22 lanes.

[00:16:00] We also have a lot of distribution campaigns planned again this year,

[00:16:06] because that's another new thing we've done.

[00:16:09] We don't just have distribution points where people can come and pick up the book,

[00:16:14] but we also surprise them in unusual places and give them the book,

[00:16:20] which is always really nice, the reaction of people who receive something as a gift

[00:16:24] and don't have to do anything for it, they just take it.

[00:16:29] And here we are in front of the Sillpark shopping center, over the IKB swimming pools,

[00:16:36] and the streetcar, where we emerge in front, different places in Innsbruck.

[00:16:41] And I think it's always so positive from the people who report back to us.

[00:16:47] Yes, that was also one of our ideas. That's right.

[00:16:49] And that's also good, because you have to, you should encounter literature everywhere.

[00:16:53] There's an old saying: "Literature is always on duty" and

[00:16:59] so we try to put that into practice.

[00:17:01] Yes, and we did something else.

[00:17:03] We've done that for the drith time now, to make it low-threshold.

[00:17:10] Namely, there is always an "Innsbruck reads" audio book.

[00:17:13] Because this time we had the problem at the beginning,

[00:17:16] that the book, the audiobook, already existed or already exists.

[00:17:20] And what is the solution now?

[00:17:22] The âInnsbruck readsâ audio book this year,

[00:17:24] is available in the city library's eLibrary.

[00:17:28] It's free for members.

[00:17:31] For those who are not yet members, the following:

[00:17:34] So up to the age of 17 you can read for free in the public library anyway,

[00:17:38] with a culture pass too, by the way.

[00:17:40] And for everyone else, we will be giving away annual memberships for new registrations.

[00:17:48] Please simply enter the password 'Innsbruck reads audiobooks' in the city library

[00:17:52] when you register and then

[00:17:55] there is a free membership.

[00:17:58] Yes, in that sense.

[00:18:00] I have to go back now and see if it fits downstairs with the books,

[00:18:04] because they'll be sent out next Monday,

[00:18:08] so that you can get them everywhere from Tuesday, April 30th and distribute them.

[00:18:16] Yes, and in the next episode I'll be talking to Birgit Neu and Thomas Pühringer.

[00:18:21] Both were involved at the very beginning of the Innsbruck Reads campaign

[00:18:24] and can tell us exciting details about the first edition and the years that followed.

[00:18:31] And until then, happy reading.

[00:18:34] [Music]

[00:18:58] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of Stadtstimmen,

[00:19:04] the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Caution, listening to this podcast may lead to more visits to the library.

[00:00:06] Yes hello and welcome to the preface, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:26] My name is Christina.

[00:00:28] And I am Pia.

[00:00:30] And today we're going to talk about why we don't actually like Booktok.

[00:00:36] But before we get into this perhaps controversial topic,

[00:00:40] today we have the great honor of announcing the book for Innsbruck reads.

[00:00:47] Since 16.04. the people of Innsbruck know what we are reading.

[00:00:52] And Pia, what are we reading this year at Innsbruck reads?

[00:00:55] What can the people of Innsbruck look forward to?

[00:00:58] 22 tracks is the name of the book.

[00:01:00] By Caroline Wahl, who, by the way, takes over the podcast when Innsbruck reads,

[00:01:06] will also be a guest in one of the episodes starting next week.

[00:01:10] Will conduct an interview with Boris.

[00:01:12] So we're really looking forward to that dra.

[00:01:14] It's the 20th anniversary of the campaign from 30.04. to 10.05.

[00:01:20] There will be lots of events, signing sessions and Caroline Wahl will be there.

[00:01:25] We are really looking forward to it. There will be 10,000 books distributed.

[00:01:29] And as I said, from next week we'll be out of the picture for the time being

[00:01:34] and we can also look forward to what Lisi, Boris and many a guest and many a guest bring with them.

[00:01:41] 10,000 free cups and free events from April 30 to May 10.

[00:01:48] Innsbruck reads for the 20th time.

[00:01:51] Hot Take.

[00:01:56] Booktok is not overrated, but it has a lot of disadvantages, which is why I don't like it so much mag.

[00:02:03] I see. Have you ever been on Tiktok?

[00:02:08] So maybe we should explain what Booktok is exactly.

[00:02:11] Exactly.

[00:02:12] So there is Tiktok, which is a social media platform.

[00:02:15] And Booktok is basically an area on this platform where people talk about books.

[00:02:21] Born from the hashtag Booktok, made up of whatever is trending right now and Tok.

[00:02:29] And that's gotten so big, I would say, since the pandemic.

[00:02:34] Since 2020, since people, this is coming from the US again a little bit,

[00:02:39] that's when it suddenly became very relevant for the various book markets

[00:02:44] and not only in America, not only in Great Britain, but it also spilled over to us

[00:02:51] and also has an influence here.

[00:02:53] You can also see it on the cover of the German books.

[00:02:58] It's often on there now, the Tiktok sensation, sometimes as a sticker, but sometimes also directly on the annotation at the top,

[00:03:04] on the table of contents.

[00:03:06] It's really specifically written there that it became known on Tiktok.

[00:03:10] I just cataloged one right now. Cataloging for anyone who doesn't happen to be a librarian,

[00:03:16] is easy when we've ordered books and they have to get into our system somehow,

[00:03:20] so that it's easy to find when you use the search function in our online catalog, for example.

[00:03:26] So that you can see it, the book has to be incorporated.

[00:03:30] It's also just up there dra.

[00:03:33] We actually order books now.

[00:03:36] At first, before it arrived, I definitely noticed,

[00:03:40] that it was a topic in the book trade relatively quickly, I mean, sales are clear.

[00:03:46] It's now customary to have at least one table where you can either sell the next Tiktok sensation

[00:03:53] or Booktok sensation or just all the different Booktok books, right?

[00:04:00] Have you noticed that too?

[00:04:02] Yes, it's become more and more now.

[00:04:05] And now it's also spilled over to us.

[00:04:08] We also have books that go in exactly this direction.

[00:04:11] Colleen Hoover, for example, is the prime example of this, she's an author,

[00:04:16] who is very well received in the youth book sector, but also in the adult sector,

[00:04:20] who often writes romance novels and they are very, very well received on Tiktok and on Booktok.

[00:04:28] I've tried it out now.

[00:04:30] I downloaded it once because I thought to myself, I didn't want to say I think it's such nonsense,

[00:04:35] when I basically have no idea about it, do I?

[00:04:38] Now I'm really curious, a brief history.

[00:04:40] We've been talking about this Booktok, this so-called, so we've been talking about it for some time,

[00:04:51] that we want to make an episode about it.

[00:04:53] We both find it very, very interesting.

[00:04:55] But we're both very social media shy and neither of us has ever been on Tiktok.

[00:05:00] I, for example, refuse to download this app for various reasons.

[00:05:04] For me it has to do with data protection, for me it has to do with the fact that the algorithm is too good.

[00:05:08] And we'll talk about all these topics in a moment.

[00:05:12] And now I'm hearing for the first time that you've laughed it off.

[00:05:17] When did you download it?

[00:05:18] On Monday.

[00:05:19] On Monday.

[00:05:20] So about a week now.

[00:05:23] And I just wanted to do it especially for this episode because I thought I didn't want to rant about anything,

[00:05:27] where I have no idea about it or where I don't know what it actually looks like.

[00:05:31] And I'm going to delete it again now.

[00:05:35] It's my world, I have to say.

[00:05:38] I downloaded it and it was extremely exciting,

[00:05:41] because the first thing I noticed was that I was immediately categorized as a user.

[00:05:50] Because the first video I got, where I searched for Booktok,

[00:05:54] was book recommendations for women in their 20s.

[00:05:57] And that was like, okay, you kind of know exactly.

[00:06:00] So I'm 30, but I'm still immediately categorized

[00:06:06] and then I get recommendations accordingly.

[00:06:09] And then the next thing was Booktok books that lived up to the hype.

[00:06:13] They were all romance novels.

[00:06:15] And it was also exciting that they were immediately,

[00:06:18] Of course, it could also be that people who are looking for Booktok are generally female,

[00:06:24] Of course it is also true.

[00:06:25] I think there are, so that's, I can't cite any studies right now.

[00:06:30] I deal with the topic more on a meta-level,

[00:06:34] by watching videos on YouTube about analyses by Booktok books.

[00:06:40] From actual Booktok users and mostly female users.

[00:06:44] And I do believe that it's also ...

[00:06:47] That it's very female dominated.

[00:06:48] Yes, we also notice that in fiction, it's definitely like that,

[00:06:51] that more women read fiction novels.

[00:06:55] And I would then assume that this will definitely translate.

[00:06:58] Even all the influencers, 80 percent of them are women.

[00:07:03] Women.

[00:07:04] Well, I noticed that too.

[00:07:07] But don't you think that one week is not enough?

[00:07:09] Yes, of course.

[00:07:11] Because this algorithm is supposed to be so devilishly good and the more you interact

[00:07:15] and the more you do, the better it knows you.

[00:07:19] And I don't think a week is long enough.

[00:07:21] Yes, that's certainly the case, but I just wanted to test it out,

[00:07:23] and I found it fascinating.

[00:07:25] That's the first thing I get, is books for women in their 20s.

[00:07:29] And they weren't bad recommendations either.

[00:07:31] You're a target group.

[00:07:33] Yes, I am a target group.

[00:07:35] There are still books that we have in the library.

[00:07:37] So these were things like conversations with friends, for example

[00:07:39] by Sally Rooney, we have, in German and English, Cleopatra and Frankenstein

[00:07:44] by Coco Mellors, we also have in the library.

[00:07:47] Or advice books like 101 essays that will change your life

[00:07:51] by Brianna Wiest.

[00:07:52] We have a few from her.

[00:07:54] But I'm not that impressed nowdrubecause I have one,

[00:07:57] These are just the five books that you see everywhere.

[00:08:00] Of course.

[00:08:02] But they weren't...

[00:08:04] Well, those were the first suggestions I got.

[00:08:08] And I was like, okay, I would have immediately imagined Colleen Hoover.

[00:08:11] And that's just the typical, okay, romance novel thing.

[00:08:14] That was the second thing I got.

[00:08:16] That was the second, the second video, that was the "Elly Haysworth".

[00:08:20] Yes, I think so, I think so,

[00:08:23] that this algorithm can work well for you,

[00:08:26] if you use it for yourself.

[00:08:31] That's actually like everything that concerns social media or cell phones and so on.

[00:08:37] If you use it for your own purposes and if you filter the algorithm correctly

[00:08:42] and then don't click on too many videos and really just use that,

[00:08:45] if you need something, then that can certainly be useful to you.

[00:08:48] So the problem I have with Booktok is this Rabbit Hole,

[00:08:53] which is simply getting more and more blatant due to this excellent algorithm

[00:08:58] and you just get pulled into more and more bubbles.

[00:09:04] And I read once recently, for example,

[00:09:09] that the app accesses your camera.

[00:09:13] Did it ask you for permission?

[00:09:16] Camera didn't, but my contacts wanted to, they said like no.

[00:09:20] Always a good idea to say no, privacy is important.

[00:09:24] We download apps on our cell phone and often before convenience.

[00:09:29] We don't even look at what we're actually downloading dra, but I'm surprised,

[00:09:33] because I've read that TikTok scans as an app,

[00:09:39] the facial expressions, where the eye lengths are and exactly whether you like it.

[00:09:44] I can't get that back here, of course, I'll go into the show notes,

[00:09:47] if I find it again, I'll definitely link it,

[00:09:50] if I find something about it.

[00:09:51] I remember being very surprised and shocked.

[00:09:55] And they generally use the dwell time on Instagram too, I think.

[00:09:58] And how long you stay on top of a post or watch a video.

[00:10:02] But TikTok just has it, so of all the social media platforms,

[00:10:07] TikTok does it the best.

[00:10:10] And of course, it's like, quickly, quickly, quickly post a video to the...

[00:10:14] For me, it's just such a fast medium, that's why it's not for me.

[00:10:18] I'm just Generation YouTube, so we'd rather watch an analysis

[00:10:21] or a longer video about it.

[00:10:23] But these very short ones, that went so quickly,

[00:10:26] often such quick cutes, I somehow don't like that mag .

[00:10:29] And then they totally, I feel so old,

[00:10:32] because I had to take a break all the time, drÃto look at the books,

[00:10:35] because I didn't realize which book was being presented again.

[00:10:39] I mean, maybe you can also say that,

[00:10:41] that also has something to do with an ageing process,

[00:10:47] that at some point you can't keep up as quickly.

[00:10:50] And you have a thousand other things that interest you more,

[00:10:53] than watching the video now.

[00:10:55] Yes.

[00:10:57] Yeah, but it was fun to watch it,

[00:11:01] but it's just this female, so it's mainly women on the platform itself,

[00:11:07] that's very noticeable, because I found a man.

[00:11:10] But that was only when I was specifically looking for fantasy books,

[00:11:14] and he came up pretty far down the list,

[00:11:16] so it took a while.

[00:11:18] And then I also started looking for books where I thought to myself,

[00:11:21] okay, I don't think there's necessarily a huge community for that on Booktok.

[00:11:26] I was looking for Donna Leon, for example, and then I totally,

[00:11:29] So there were videos, but very few.

[00:11:32] And there was one, I don't even know if she spoke English,

[00:11:36] it was definitely an English video,

[00:11:38] because she had English captions.

[00:11:40] And she was like, that was extremely entertaining for me,

[00:11:44] because she somehow discovered Donna Leon for herself.

[00:11:47] And then Donna Leon is kind of a standard, crime novelist for me.

[00:11:52] And then she just wrote in this caption,

[00:11:55] the feeling when you read and discover a great book,

[00:11:58] that it's a series with over 30 books, so I thought.

[00:12:01] Who doesn't know Donna Leon?

[00:12:03] So it was kind of amusing.

[00:12:05] Probably most Americans, because Donna Leon is American.

[00:12:09] The name sounds so Italian, it's also published by Diogenes,

[00:12:13] It also has a touch of that.

[00:12:15] So it is, it's somehow marketed that way.

[00:12:20] And in America it doesn't work at all, and by the way, it's going away,

[00:12:22] like hot cakes.

[00:12:24] In America, I don't think I know anyone, at least not like me.

[00:12:27] We like that.

[00:12:29] But it was funny.

[00:12:31] And then I also looked for German-language authors.

[00:12:36] And there were, well, there were a few things,

[00:12:40] a post now and then, but very few.

[00:12:43] 22 Tracks, for example, is very popular on Booktok.

[00:12:48] I thought that was very cool with the ravages of time.

[00:12:51] And that the Innsbruck reads book

[00:12:53] is also so far ahead. So that German women writers are also seen there, I thought

[00:12:58] I thought that was kind of good. I think it's difficult, because then I also have, for example

[00:13:03] I looked for Monika Helfer, for example, or really those who do well with us, or Rebecca

[00:13:09] Gablé and the first Rebecca who suggested it to me was Rebecca Yarros, who was from

[00:13:14] Fourth Wing, so Flammengeküsst. They were also all rather older authors, or Monika Helfer is also

[00:13:23] rather and Rebecca Gablé. I also looked for Stefanie Sargnagel. And how was

[00:13:28] that? There were only videos about her, but very few. For example, how she does a reading

[00:13:32] does or something. But overall, you didn't feel so comfortable there? It wasn't really my

[00:13:38] thing. I'm generally more into the English-speaking world, including the internet. But it's still kind of

[00:13:47] interesting that there is such a bias towards English-language books. It has

[00:13:51] already, for example, where there have been a few more books by Cornelia Funke, although of course they are

[00:13:55] also goes in the direction of books for young people. In other words, the target group is basically also a

[00:13:59] a little bit. And Thomas Brezina, I've also found a few things there. He will also know that he has to go there.

[00:14:05] He's also on there himself. So he has his own account. So I think that surprises me

[00:14:10] not at all. You know, of course, it's a phenomenon that's become big in America. You have

[00:14:15] most booktubers are simply American or at the very least from the UK or

[00:14:20] at least they go into the English-speaking world and always discuss the same books.

[00:14:24] And the, I mean, German and Austrian and Swiss literary market, that's against it

[00:14:29] tiny, of course, and that's on a platform like this. So absolutely understandable, of course. But

[00:14:34] it's interesting that there is such an extreme bias. Yes. And in itself

[00:14:41] I think the content that's up now is not bad in itself. So it's

[00:14:46] also fan content where people can talk about it. And it's also great that a

[00:14:49] younger generation is now getting more into reading and accepting it and creating fan art themselves. So

[00:14:56] some really nice things are up there. And Booktok has once again contributed significantly to that

[00:15:00] contributed to the fact that Gen Z reads a lot, so the book was said to be dead. So, there we have

[00:15:06] already talked about it last week about thedrudeleted book and so on. But the fact that the, the

[00:15:12] book is absolutely in, is a trend. Yes. But you also have the feeling that it's a certain

[00:15:17] aesthetic that's being sold. Especially in certain videos, you get the feeling, okay,

[00:15:22] it's so relaxing now, afterwards you have such nice music in the background, books with very,

[00:15:27] very nice covers, preferably jewelry editions. And that's where I get to the thing that

[00:15:33] really bothers me about this Booktok trend, because it brings with it an aestheticization of the book,

[00:15:40] which is not necessarily a bad thing or a good thing per se. That's value-neutral for a start.

[00:15:45] But social media is simply always a medium of self-expression. And that means that

[00:15:52] then suddenly reading is elevated to such a curated art form. That means, what do I read?

[00:15:57] Not just an⦠It's a hobby that I can market, to be honest.

[00:15:59] Yeah, what? Exactly, you're marketing yourself and you're not going to make the Asterix and Obelix comic beautiful

[00:16:04] next to the coffee, but a Camus. And that means, which books do I show?

[00:16:11] what do I read or what do I want someone to think I read. That goes so far,

[00:16:17] that there are beautiful decorative editions of books, that there are book lists and then celebrities

[00:16:24] give these beautiful jewelry editions to celebrities and then let them take pictures with them.

[00:16:30] Yes, it's not bad in itself, but you have to be aware of that... So, the breakage is caused by these

[00:16:38] mechanisms are turning it more and more into a consumer good and a product.

[00:16:42] You move away more and more from the text, from the actual thing, right? And it's all about how it looks

[00:16:48] what does it look like? And, as I say, you always like jewelry editions. But there's just..

[00:16:51] Yes, but it's about the text and the art that's in the text and also the books,

[00:16:57] that are partly read there. It's up to you who wants to read what. But what it does in the masses,

[00:17:06] That results in such a cycle. Now X, Y is doing well. That's why

[00:17:14] the next book next year, which should then become the bestseller,

[00:17:19] is then the same book or the same topic with a similar author.

[00:17:22] A bit different, different. And drops, for example, which is totally fine. I also have such

[00:17:28] videos, like books where the villain gets the girl or something. And just,

[00:17:32] if something like that works, ok, after that there will be 10 books in that direction or

[00:17:36] not just 10, exactly. And more than in this direction. It's publishing,

[00:17:39] because they also want something, that's for sure. That means they know it works, so we want

[00:17:44] more of it. And then it just becomes more and more similar and then people consume more and more

[00:17:48] the same thing and actually you always read the same 10 books in a cycle like this or

[00:17:52] more and more specific. And this chopization of literature, we've already noticed that in

[00:17:59] the library. But then at some point I also ask myself the question, for example, there are also

[00:18:06] a little bit, we've already talked about it, out of fanfiction, I think. I think,

[00:18:09] that it's just such an internet thing, because you need very specific

[00:18:13] keywords to find what you're looking for. I just find it problematic when you then

[00:18:19] really start, because the book, all of that just contributes to the book just being a

[00:18:26] pure consumer product. I want the product "Enemies to Lovers" with that and the setting,

[00:18:31] in this and that cover. And then I just read them because the publishers have these 10 books

[00:18:41] in exactly this aesthetic. And then I'm right in my bubble on Booktook, where I'm with

[00:18:45] people who don't read anything else and I don't hear about other literature. What

[00:18:52] you do, as I said, everyone is allowed to read what they want. That goes without saying. But at the same time

[00:18:58] it's kind of a shame, because somehow the colorfulness of literature gets lost a little bit

[00:19:03] is lost. Regardless of the context, it's always worth stepping out of your own comfort bubble.

[00:19:10] It doesn't have to be every book. But studying forces you to read books, for example

[00:19:16] where you think to yourself, oh no, it's going to take weeks. And it has added value every time. And not every

[00:19:22] book is a, oh no, book quickly. Often it's like, wow, that's exactly mine.

[00:19:27] And even with the oh no books, you think to yourself, okay, but I can understand why that's the case

[00:19:32] has achieved such a status. Which is of course also nice for us in the library, we mark

[00:19:39] them somehow separately or something. In other words, it's absolutely justified that the

[00:19:44] are with us, that we are happy for them and so about every book that is read. And that on an

[00:19:49] individual level, it's a completely different story anyway than in this

[00:19:54] mass phenomenon that more people criticize here. It's nice here, they just sit on the shelf. And

[00:20:00] it can happen that if you're already there anyway, you just take what you're laughing at,

[00:20:05] what you've seen on Booktook, because it's attention economy and what I very much

[00:20:09] I want to have. But then there's one next to it that's maybe the whole other genre and

[00:20:14] then you say, oh, then I'll take that too. And then you do that, it doesn't cost anything. And

[00:20:19] that's the next booktook is expensive. If you really want to get all these book halls with these

[00:20:27] stacks of books that some influencers buy, that's then, promoted

[00:20:31] then again this consumption and is somehow not, so it's definitely not

[00:20:35] the trainers. Who can buy ten books a month on their own? That's 200 euros,

[00:20:40] if not more. So that's also insane money. Yes, but that's the reason for me,

[00:20:47] why I criticize Booktook very passionately, simply because these things,

[00:20:55] it's like, this social media has evolved so much from creativity and sharing to

[00:21:03] consumption and Booktook is a prime example for me of what could be so creative,

[00:21:09] that it certainly still is in parts. Of course, there are really nice videos, including this one

[00:21:16] fan community, who come together and exchange ideas. That also fits well,

[00:21:23] but for me it was somehow just too empty and somehow so many posts,

[00:21:27] then just copy and paste. These titles, these, these books, they deserve the hype,

[00:21:33] you just have that a hundred times and they're just different books drinnen, but roughly

[00:21:39] exactly the same and then I think to myself again, okay, I don't really need it now.

[00:21:44] Yes, and of course you have to say that it's not necessarily aimed at a younger target audience,

[00:21:53] but that has simply developed from usage, from usage behavior. These are

[00:21:58] TikTok in general is more the younger generation, which they no longer use on Facebook, for example

[00:22:06] or can be found on YouTube. So Facebook anyway. I think YouTube is about us and then

[00:22:12] I mean, a lot of people our age certainly use TikTok as well, but there are

[00:22:21] good reasons to use it, then I'm sure, but there are also an insane amount of good reasons,

[00:22:25] maybe not always using it too much in the end. Yes, would you still use TikTok

[00:22:34] but install it? I'm deleting it now this week, I've just been listening to it now that

[00:22:38] we're still doing that and now I'm deleting it again. Yeah, we'll go too

[00:22:43] constantly getting these notifications on my mind, just because I've just watched a video

[00:22:48] it's not like that, so I haven't subscribed to anyone and yet I still get

[00:22:51] updates and that gets on my nerves. But that's generally a social

[00:22:55] media thing and I just don't like that mag , that's why. And I haven't found anything now where I

[00:22:59] think to myself, ah, I wouldn't have gotten this recommendation anywhere else. Yes, well, we're also sitting

[00:23:04] at the source, maybe that's something else, but then I'd rather be on YouTube,

[00:23:10] I have to say. Whether I myself have now turned my back on drÃ, a little bit as far as possible,

[00:23:15] simply because the advertising has gotten out of hand there too. Yes, but there mag I just use the

[00:23:20] YouTubers who give me analysis videos afterwards, whether it's about movies or books

[00:23:26] is. That's also better for winding down. Tiktok is like that, it's like gambling a little bit, that

[00:23:34] keeps the dopamine level so high because there's always something new and always something new. And I think,

[00:23:40] it's extremely addictive because the videos are certainly very short, but

[00:23:45] from the fact that you have such an endless loop or on YouTube it's not like someone,

[00:23:49] how do you know that you can set it to go on endlessly, but you can just

[00:23:53] just turn it off and that's it. But with Tiktok it's like this, you keep scrolling down and

[00:23:57] down and it never stops. It's a lot, so it's up to you what you do with your free time,

[00:24:03] but I also think to myself privately, it's a lot of life time and the same goes for YouTube

[00:24:10] and you have to say that or even if you watch TV, it doesn't really matter. But

[00:24:16] at some point you have to ask yourself, am I doing it now because I'm still enjoying it or am I doing it

[00:24:22] it now because it's the less expensive option or alternative. But we would

[00:24:29] above all, are you using Booktok, where do you get your reading recommendations from?

[00:24:35] do you disagree with our opinion, do you like Booktok and if so, why are we wrong?

[00:24:41] write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@insbruck.gv.at or like us on Instagram or Facebook.

[00:24:51] With that, we say goodbye and see you again in a good month. Until then, we wish you all

[00:24:58] have fun with the preface of Innsbruck-List. We hand over to Lisi and Boris

[00:25:06] next week and see you soon. Have fun at Innsbruck-List, bye!

[00:25:10] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and

[00:25:40] part of Stadtstimmen, the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Caution, listening to this podcast may lead to more visits to the library.

[00:00:06] Hello and welcome to "S'Vorwort", the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:26] I am Christina.

[00:00:27] And I am Pia.

[00:00:28] And today we're talking about why we actually likedruckter books.

[00:00:33] But before we do that, a reminder.

[00:00:36] This year we are celebrating the 20th anniversary of 'Innsbruck reads'.

[00:00:42] Like every year, 10,000 books will be distributed.

[00:00:46] The kick-off is on 30.4.

[00:00:49] The campaign runs until 10.5.

[00:00:51] And, this is the most important date:

[00:00:53] The book will be announced on April 16th.

[00:00:58] We'll be able to announce it in the podcast and we're already very excited.

[00:01:02] From April 25th, something special is also happening, namely a friendly takeover from our colleagues Lisi and Boris.

[00:01:11] They are taking over "S'Vorwort" for a few episodes.

[00:01:13] And then there's the special edition of "S'Vorwort - Innsbruck liest".

[00:01:17] 10,000 free books and free events from April 30 to May 10.

[00:01:24] "Innsbruck reads", for the 20th time.

[00:01:27] So, enough of this. Back to other booksdrucked.

[00:01:34] And that's exactly what we notice every year at Innsbruck reads,

[00:01:38] where we distribute 10,000 books to the people of Innsbruck.

[00:01:43] How much people like thedruckte book and how much they appreciate it.

[00:01:48] And as practical as e-books can be, that's what we depend on.

[00:01:54] And I would include you in that, Pia, wouldn't I?

[00:01:57] Yes, of course.

[00:01:58] At thedrucked book.

[00:02:00] That's why we're dealing with it in today's episode,

[00:02:03] why it is still the case that we likedruckte books.

[00:02:08] And why that will probably remain the case in the future.

[00:02:12] The foreword now begins with the question of why we actually likedruckte books. To start with

[00:02:17] An interesting statistic after the big e-book hype of around 10 or 15 years ago,

[00:02:24] where it was previously said that thedruckte book was dead,

[00:02:28] the market share fordruprinted books has increased, at least in Germany,

[00:02:33] has leveled off at 6%.

[00:02:36] This is from a statistic from the year 2022 from Statista.

[00:02:41] Which I think is a very, very small market share, isn't it?

[00:02:46] Extremely, compared to what now exactly?

[00:02:49] In the overall book market.

[00:02:51] That means all the books that are out there, 6%, the ones in Germany

[00:02:58] come out with an ISBN, 6% of them are e-books.

[00:03:03] And the others, the rest, they have a 6% market share.

[00:03:07] So, okay, I thought thedrucached books have 6%.

[00:03:09] Oh no, oh no.

[00:03:11] That's way too neverdrig felt.

[00:03:13] Yes, I find that fascinating.

[00:03:17] I don't know, I also went through this phase where everyone said,

[00:03:20] well, that's when e-books came up, there are e-readers everywhere in 50 different versions.

[00:03:25] And there have been audiobooks all along anyway,

[00:03:28] so who is really going to pick up adruprinted book anymore

[00:03:32] and that this industry is basicallydroon the verge of extinction.

[00:03:36] But you can also see it in the book trade,

[00:03:39] We do have e-books, but that's a much smaller proportion

[00:03:42] than what we have in books.

[00:03:44] So, people still love that.

[00:03:47] Yes, you can see that more often.

[00:03:50] I think what's happening right now, when new technologies come onto the market,

[00:03:54] then it happens very quickly and probably especially in the media landscape:

[00:03:58] Boom and Gloom.

[00:04:00] The book is dead, long live the e-book.

[00:04:03] It is basically, one would think, also more practical.

[00:04:10] But there are just so many aspects to thedrucked book,

[00:04:13] that appeal to us as people, I think.

[00:04:16] I mean, if you talk about it from a librarian's point of view

[00:04:20] or just from a reader's point of view.

[00:04:23] So the feel is something when you have the book in your hand,

[00:04:29] you can feel it, really turn the pages and not just click on.

[00:04:34] So the smell of the book, how the pages feel.

[00:04:39] There are colleagues who want to remain unnamed,

[00:04:44] who regularly smell books and the extreme reading enthusiasts will know it.

[00:04:51] So that smell can be quite decisive for the reading experience.

[00:04:56] If it's well-made pages that also smell good, it's something nice.

[00:05:01] That's something completely different, of course,

[00:05:03] than just having a screen like this in front of you.

[00:05:06] And I can understand that too.

[00:05:09] What is also a big aspect is that the book is called a "cultural asset".

[00:05:16] The cultural significance of books, which also have a collector's value in a certain sense.

[00:05:22] So when we talk about antiquarian bookshops and antiquarian collections and so on,

[00:05:27] First editions, that's a whole branch of business.

[00:05:32] I mean antiquarian bookshops, they're also specialists in their field.

[00:05:36] The antiquarian bookshops that have first editions or old things

[00:05:42] or books that are no longer in print,

[00:05:45] that are no longer available anywhere, that the publisher no longer has in its program,

[00:05:48] of which there have never been e-books.

[00:05:50] But they still have them.

[00:05:53] And of course the German National Library also has the task of collecting all media.

[00:05:58] You mean like the state library here,

[00:06:01] that they collect everything that appears, so to speak.

[00:06:05] Exactly, because it's so important to do that,

[00:06:09] that you preserve this cultural heritage, like a museum.

[00:06:13] You also know that on a small scale.

[00:06:16] There are books that have been passed down from generation to generation in my family.

[00:06:20] And I think that has a completely different effect on yourself.

[00:06:25] If you know, the great-grandmother has already read this book.

[00:06:28] And now I can still read this collection of fairy tales by Grimm.

[00:06:31] Yes, that ha this added emotional value, that also conveys values.

[00:06:36] So the mere presence of the object in the room conveys something.

[00:06:40] And that's also what we notice every day in the library,

[00:06:44] people like to sit between the shelves.

[00:06:47] And even if you, well, just the presence of the media and the books,

[00:06:52] that gives you something, that shows.

[00:06:54] It does something to you.

[00:06:55] And what is it? It's a visualization of the value of literature

[00:07:00] in our space.

[00:07:03] To the space, yes.

[00:07:04] Thank you, exactly.

[00:07:05] The visualization of the value of literature in space.

[00:07:08] Exactly.

[00:07:10] Maybe a more negative aspect, but we'll go into that in a separate episode,

[00:07:15] is the consumer aspect of collecting haptic books,

[00:07:21] especially in the private sphere, i.e. when it comes to bookselling, but then also buying books,

[00:07:26] is definitely an important thing for the promotion of culture.

[00:07:31] So we can say that, but firstly, it's not accessible to everyone,

[00:07:35] because books cost a lot of money, not without good reason.

[00:07:40] But that's where it goes, so I play that a little bit on this new

[00:07:45] Booktalk consumer culture, but I'd like to have a chat with you about that

[00:07:50] do a separate episode with you, because it's extremely exciting.

[00:07:53] Yes, as an aesthetic.

[00:07:55] Good.

[00:07:56] But it's also part of it, an important part is the aesthetics.

[00:08:01] Pia, you collect books, don't you?

[00:08:03] Yes, less and less because I don't have any more space.

[00:08:07] But yes, the ones I like mag and where I find nice editions,

[00:08:11] That's something for me too, if they're nice editions, like jewelry editions or something,

[00:08:15] then I like to buy them and put them on my bookshelf.

[00:08:20] Although I will say, that has already become extremely limited for me.

[00:08:24] I used to, when I was still getting pocket money on a regular basis

[00:08:27] or had a job, for example.

[00:08:30] And what I could afford, cups were the first thing,

[00:08:32] what I could afford.

[00:08:34] And in the meantime, that's been reduced again,

[00:08:36] because there simply wasn't enough space.

[00:08:39] But it's nice, it's nice to have a haptic book at home

[00:08:43] and I know, ah, I have this beautiful decorative edition of Pride and Prejudice at home.

[00:08:48] That's something, something nice.

[00:08:51] And books are often like friends who accompany you.

[00:08:54] They accompany you on the train journey.

[00:08:57] And then I said that last week, when I met up with the , or the week before last,

[00:09:01] last episode, where I talked to Viktor.

[00:09:04] That for me, I still remember with the best books dran.

[00:09:07] Where and in what context you read them. Did you have that too?

[00:09:10] Yes, of course.

[00:09:11] I remember exactly which issue I read,

[00:09:13] I first read it in the school library of Pride and Prejudice.

[00:09:17] I can still remember that.

[00:09:18] And I remember exactly what that room smelled like

[00:09:21] and how the sun shone in through the window.

[00:09:24] So I have, I get exactly the same feeling,

[00:09:27] because I bought the exact same edition again.

[00:09:29] That was just a jewelry edition.

[00:09:31] And I always get the same feeling,

[00:09:34] when I can read it again.

[00:09:36] And a screen can't give you that.

[00:09:39] Yes.

[00:09:40] Not in that way.

[00:09:42] And I think the visual is also important.

[00:09:45] Because it also makes a difference how the typography is.

[00:09:48] So the font.

[00:09:50] That's always different in adruprinted book.

[00:09:53] You often have this serif font there, with these squiggles or something, light, just like Times New Roman. Where there are these little spikes or squiggles. You don't really have that in the digital sector. It's always sans serif most of the time and very clean. But you have to differentiate between non-fiction and non-fiction books and novels. I would also say that eBook readers are more likely to be used for novels or poetry, where serif fonts are also common. Where I think it also depends on the provider, depending on the publisher, which fonts are offered. Which fonts are licensed. What can be set on eBook readers where it is technically possible. What you use on the iPad or if you work with a tablet or browser anyway - I think that depends more on the type of book. And not every font in every book is always very fine. The Penguin editions, the classics, with very small fonts and very thin paper. The hang-up is that these are very inexpensive editions that everyone can afford. Which was the case. They always accompanied me throughout my studies. They were - so I look at them now and think to myself: My goodness, that was terrible to read. But it always depends on the layout. That's something else again. What you don't have with thedrucked book are technical limitations. I wrote that down too. No power, no pop-ups. If there's a power cut, as there was recently in Innsnruck. And you still have daylight, then you can grab the book and read. No updates. That sounds like it now â but it is, isn't it? Yes, of course. It's also the case that it won't be incompatible at some point. I had an old eBook reader, that company no longer exists. At some point I no longer had access to the store. That means I couldn't download any more books. That just doesn't happen with a book. It's always relevant and you can always read it. And you don't need a Wi-Fi password. Exactly. You shouldn't underestimate that either. Access to different technologies is always a privilege. I think it should be a basicdreright now, but it simply isn't in many regions of the world. It's still a hurdle. A book is low-threshold access to information. A thick book and the pages â and having finished reading it.

[00:12:47] That's always very important.

[00:12:49] To have finished reading it, to have experienced it so haptically, to hold it when it's so heavy.

[00:12:53] It just does something different to you. It makes a difference whether I've just read a thin booklet or not

[00:12:58] or a comic book or a thin one or an Anna Karenina or whatever.

[00:13:03] Then you also know, what did I have in my hand? So what did I have in my hand right now? Do I have the light,

[00:13:09] fine comic or the Anna Karenina that I was lugging around?

[00:13:12] Yes, and I think you always associate that with this work, don't you? When I think of

[00:13:16] Anna Karenina, I remember exactly what kind of edition it was and how thick it was

[00:13:19] and how it felt. When I think back to my e-book story now, about myself,

[00:13:26] the things I read there, I can never remember them like that dran now.

[00:13:29] You remember more how long you read it, but you don't contextualize it

[00:13:34] that less, I think, in this haptic form. Also very good, of course, what or

[00:13:42] Another thing that shouldn't be underestimated is the privacy that comes with a book.

[00:13:46] Because reading digitally, especially via certain providers or via an online store in a

[00:13:53] closed system means, as always, that someone is creating a user profile from your data.

[00:14:02] Kindle has, as we talked about at Goodreads drü, I believe that Kindle also has

[00:14:07] is also partially siphoning off data. And the book is private, it couldn't be more private.

[00:14:12] That's also a reason. So, data protection is simply a super important issue. In

[00:14:20] that's why we don't store any lending history, the history of the readers.

[00:14:27] So we don't have a lending history. Exactly, that means we simply don't know,

[00:14:31] who read it, i.e. what a reader read before that.

[00:14:35] And often people find it, so often people come to us and say,

[00:14:39] Oh, what do I have, I borrowed that book drei months ago, have a look,

[00:14:43] and we don't know. But now we have a great new feature that we can do now

[00:14:48] briefly mention again, if you magst, these are the watch lists. Exactly, that used to exist,

[00:14:53] a long time ago, and people wanted that again. And it's back again now,

[00:14:58] you can create as many watch lists as you want. For example, I also have some with To-Read,

[00:15:05] so things that I still want to read or things that I really enjoyed reading. You

[00:15:10] can also create a collection, so to speak, of books from a certain

[00:15:14] genre or something. For example, I have Cosy Crime, which I made for myself,

[00:15:17] of things that typically fit into this genre. So you can be very creative.

[00:15:22] You just need an account with us, you have to log in and then it works.

[00:15:26] Do you no longer need a Goodreads account if you have an account with the Innsbruck City Library? Yes,

[00:15:34] and other advantages of a checkeddrubook, there's a study that came out recently

[00:15:40] came out recently, where there were also some newspaper articles about it, especially on the advanced

[00:15:47] digitalization in schools since Corona. The Scandinavians have always been the pioneers there

[00:15:55] been the pioneers, right? And now they're going in a different direction. So the Karolinska Institute is called

[00:16:02] that's in Stockholm. They did this study and they examined it in detail and

[00:16:06] they found out that it doesn't necessarily only have advantages if you use school books or

[00:16:14] learning media are only offered digitally. I have a quote from this Klingberg, who is a professor

[00:16:24] for cognitive neuroscience, he said or wrote, depending on how intensive schools are,

[00:16:30] use computers, this has an impact on math and reading ability. The more a

[00:16:35] school relies on the internet and computers in lessons, the worse the performance of the

[00:16:39] children's performance. These are really clear effects that account for almost half of the differences in performance

[00:16:43] between schools. Insane. Yes, and then they also said,

[00:16:49] okay, we'll scale it back a bit now, less digitalization. We're going back

[00:16:53] back to the classic textbook. That has changed because I know that

[00:16:59] after 2020, it was also very much the case that if schools didn't have computers, it was the poorer ones

[00:17:05] schools or that was the poorer education. And it seems to us, now in retrospect, that it was like a hype, and

[00:17:14] that everyone was so excited about these new technologies and

[00:17:22] only then thought about what it actually does to us as people? And how do

[00:17:29] do we actually really absorb information? So do you also have the insightdruck that you don't get there until the

[00:17:36] in retrospect can you really recognize what makes sense and where you might be going too far?

[00:17:42] I think you're just so euphoric at first when you think to yourself, these are so

[00:17:45] many possibilities. You can see that now with AI, in the first moment, it was like this,

[00:17:49] perfect, everything has been solved, all our problems are gone. And now we're also starting to

[00:17:54] think about it, okay, maybe there are also a few negative sides to it that might also be

[00:17:58] have negative effects. And I think the same thing just happened with the textbook.

[00:18:03] I have to say, I didn't realize that myself, because of course in my

[00:18:06] school days, we simply still used traditional textbooks. We didn't have tablets yet

[00:18:10] at school yet. That was all apart from maybe a few CD-ROMs or something like that.

[00:18:17] But I can say from personal experience. When you learn digitally. So it's kind of,

[00:18:25] and if you then also, you listen, you only write on the computer, you read

[00:18:31] everything only on the computer and maybe you also do an online course and it has a lot of

[00:18:36] advantages too, of course. But I also have the feeling that this information is somehow only

[00:18:41] only exists in some kind of parts of the head, but never really in the haptic real

[00:18:51] world, that you then do the writing by hand, that you do the reading

[00:18:56] with the page where you turn back, where you mark something, where you stick something in,

[00:19:00] so that you can find your way back. So this whole haptic aspect, I think that's great,

[00:19:07] first of all subjectively understandable that it's missing. Yes, so I can also imagine it,

[00:19:13] because I can still remember it just like I can remember it,

[00:19:15] which books I read and when, when I actuallydruhad them in my hand

[00:19:20] I can also remember when I learned which things and how I learned them

[00:19:24] these exercise books looked like and how I marked things. On which page

[00:19:29] the information was written if you studied it so intensively. So I can always remember that

[00:19:34] still remember that and I think that's also an advantage and studies

[00:19:38] are now starting to think about it and prove it. Which is also totally maybe

[00:19:43] a bit off-topic but was also interesting information for me,

[00:19:48] was that all these Silicon Valley tech bosses, managers and so on, some of their offspring, so

[00:19:57] I mean, we're talking about social media now, but they don't let them until 14, some from

[00:20:02] 16 and ... And that some of them don't even use their own products and that's then

[00:20:09] kind of a product reference. Yes, so I think it's also more about social media than

[00:20:16] learning in the digital space. I can also imagine that there is of course also

[00:20:21] data will also be hacked. So I mean data protection will, it's probably always an issue in this

[00:20:28] context, you're absolutely right and also this lending of things, that: I'll lend you my

[00:20:36] math book or you can look at it with me, that's maybe something else or

[00:20:42] that I can just give you the... I'll copy it quickly, I can't do that anymore, maybe

[00:20:48] you can take screenshots, but that's something else again. Peter has now also sent me a

[00:20:54] Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, privately, so that I can read it now. That just works

[00:21:00] not at all with e-books, of course. You have a license and you can't

[00:21:04] lend it out and that's a real shame. That's also something, so in our library, we also have

[00:21:09] the WB department, that's the continuing education department, it's at the very end of the library and that

[00:21:14] is also almost a whole shelf just with continuing education media and we are also one of the few

[00:21:20] libraries that has such media, that offers us a lot of it and it works very well

[00:21:25] well, it's very well received, even if you can't write anything in them now,

[00:21:30] but still, I think people copy it at home and so on, so I think,

[00:21:34] people like that too. These are targeted school materials for children of all ages,

[00:21:39] You're absolutely right, you can just come here and that's where we are again, I mean, when schools

[00:21:44] provide that, the technology, the necessary hardware, then that's one thing,

[00:21:50] but also there, you need media literacy, you need the know-how, how to use

[00:21:58] this hardware at all ... and how do I get into the various portals, into the software,

[00:22:04] how does it all work and there are certainly enough people and enough parents who can't afford it

[00:22:10] and that's also, as we've seen in the corona pandemic, that's where

[00:22:18] things are assumed that can't yet be the status quo and it's great,

[00:22:24] how well that's being used and always, so that's one of the great things that I've also seen in the

[00:22:32] "German as a foreign language" books, these further education books. Of course, there are online

[00:22:39] courses for languages, but there are simply media, there are simply books and other

[00:22:45] types of media that cannot be replaced for a very, very long time yet and perhaps never will be

[00:22:55] will ever be. I also believe, well, I believe that it will never completely disappear. The publishing industry

[00:22:59] is more successful than ever. Yes. Bookstore sales are shooting through the roof. They

[00:23:05] have risen even more during Corona. Yeah, but I don't know about you,

[00:23:10] maybe that's a good conclusion for the episode as well. I myself use, so 90% of the time

[00:23:17] actually reallydruckte books, that's what I use the most mag. Sometimes I also use

[00:23:21] e-books, of course they also have advantages, especially for traveling, that's what,

[00:23:24] what I like, so where I like to use it. How do you prefer it, then? Cookeddrubooks or

[00:23:29] do you prefer e-books? I think you're the audiobook-¦. I hear exactly. Yes, that's right, that's also very

[00:23:35] digital, because I listen to all my audiobooks digitally via streaming. That's right, that's actually

[00:23:41] a very digital form of consumption, but I also read a lot of books and then I like them very much

[00:23:48] haptically and that has also increased a lot since I've had the privilege of reading so

[00:23:55] spend a lot of time in a library, because of course... You're at the source. Yes, exactly,

[00:24:01] because the source regularly feeds me new books, so to speak, which I can then enjoy. And

[00:24:07] that's not a detour at all and then it's like a land of milk and honey there that

[00:24:12] to enjoy. Whereby we will certainly also find a lot of customers in the future and

[00:24:18] will also make an episode, âWhy do we actually like e-books, because just as many or some advantages

[00:24:24] we will certainly find there too. Just like I said, I like to use it for traveling, that's where

[00:24:31] that's simply also an advantage. Yes, and with that we say goodbye to the foreword today. We

[00:24:36] thank you for your attention. What do you prefer? Do you prefer cookeddrucups? Are you

[00:24:44] already going completely digital? Write to us at post.stadtbibliothek@insbruck.gv.at or

[00:24:54] Instagram or Facebook. The hashtag is #gemeinsambesser. Yes, and until then. Bye bye!

[00:25:02] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library and part of the

[00:25:32] Stadtstimmen, the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Caution, listening to this podcast may lead to more visits to the library.

[00:00:07] Yes, hello and welcome to S'Vorwort, the podcast of the Innsbruck City Library.

[00:00:27] My name is Christina and I'm here today with the...

[00:00:29] Viktor.

[00:00:30] And today we're talking about why we actually like good books and what good books actually are.

[00:00:38] But today, before we get into the topic, I have some very exciting news,

[00:00:44] that this year, on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of Innsbruck-Liest,

[00:00:50] Innsbruck-Liest will move to the foreword from April 25th.

[00:00:55] There will be a so-called friendly takeover from our colleagues, Lisi and Boris.

[00:01:01] And they will then delight us with very special episodes.

[00:01:06] Innsbruck-Liest, takes place this year from April 30th to April 10th.

[00:01:12] 10,000 books will be distributed and on 16.4.

[00:01:17] And that's really the date to remember now, the book will be published

[00:01:22] and of course the author will be announced.

[00:01:26] 10,000 free books and free events from April 30 to May 10.

[00:01:35] Innsbruck Reads for the 20th time.

[00:01:38] It remains exciting, we are very happy.

[00:01:43] But now back to our topic.

[00:01:45] Dear Viktor, it's great that you're here. Thank you for taking the time.

[00:01:48] Thank you very much for the invitation.

[00:01:50] We're excited because this is my podcast debut today.

[00:01:54] You've chosen a very nice topic.

[00:01:57] Or we have chosen a very nice topic that is also wonderful to discuss.

[00:02:01] I'm really looking forward to it drabecause I think we might have slightly different opinions.

[00:02:05] Yes, exactly. That will be extra exciting, won't it?

[00:02:07] Exactly, that's ... that's how it should be.

[00:02:09] Before we start, because we think about why we have good books.

[00:02:14] What is a good book? And we both come from the field of literary studies.

[00:02:18] What did you study?

[00:02:20] I'm a comparatist. That means I studied comparative literature here in Innsbruck.

[00:02:24] I also completed my bachelor's degree some time ago.

[00:02:28] I think I graduated in 2019. So, it's been a while.

[00:02:31] But the desire to read remains, of course.

[00:02:34] And of course you want to read good books.

[00:02:37] And the canon doesn't get old, it remains.

[00:02:42] And that's also the canon we're talking about.

[00:02:45] I also have a background in comparative literature, so I also studied comparative literature.

[00:02:50] And there's a lot of discussion about what a literary canon actually is.

[00:02:56] In short, just so that we have this predefined for our episode,

[00:03:02] as follows: A literary canon refers to a selection of works that are considered particularly significant

[00:03:08] and representative of a particular literary tradition or period.

[00:03:13] These works are often compiled and defined by institutions such as schools, universities and literary critics.

[00:03:22] The formation of a literary canon often occurs through a mixture of historical significance,

[00:03:28] cultural relevance, aesthetic quality and the lasting influence

[00:03:35] on subsequent generations of writers and readers.

[00:03:41] However, it is important to note that literary canons are often subjective

[00:03:47] and remain changeable over time as new perspectives, values and texts are brought into the discussion.

[00:03:55] So it's not a fixed thing, but of course people turn to the same texts again and again.

[00:04:01] Would you agree with the definition, pi by thumb?

[00:04:04] The definition is now very detailed and there are already a lot of things drin,

[00:04:09] which I can clearly agree with and which I consider to be very important.

[00:04:13] What is very important, I think, and what is of course also in the definition drinsteckt,

[00:04:18] is that you have to say and point out that the canon is not fixed.

[00:04:26] There are really many canons, canons, I don't know what the number is.

[00:04:31] Kannon? - Kanoni, something will be right.

[00:04:34] There are a lot of things and it just changes. New things are added, other things are forgotten,

[00:04:39] Some things are then no longer received in the same way, other things become very, as they say,

[00:04:45] known more than read. So these are things that you just know, so to speak,

[00:04:51] because it's also in the whole culture, not just in literature, but in cultural history,

[00:04:55] has simply left an influence.

[00:04:57] But it doesn't mean that people have actually studied it, they've just heard about it,

[00:05:03] So the classic example, I would say, in Western literature and culture is simply the Bible.

[00:05:08] As striking as the cultural history of the West is, you can't understand it without the Bible,

[00:05:13] But who has really read the Bible? Well, except really now,

[00:05:18] Hardcore Catholics who really go into the text and look at it, but, I don't know,

[00:05:25] An eye for an eye, tooth and tooth and things like that, anyone can really get that from the FF,

[00:05:31] but where does it come from, what does it really mean, is of course an important story too, exactly.

[00:05:35] And because you just mentioned the Bible, which is one of the basic texts in literary studies,

[00:05:40] of Western literature, as you just said.

[00:05:42] With the Odyssey, exactly.

[00:05:44] An example of why canon is important, the number twelve, which in the Bible, for example, on the basis of the apostles

[00:05:51] or various other things, you find it again and again in literature and processed further.

[00:05:59] That means a lot of novels, one of my literature professors used to say,

[00:06:05] Look, how many chapters does the novel actually have?

[00:06:08] And the number twelve usually has a meaning in literature,

[00:06:11] People, the writers, think about it because of the literary tradition.

[00:06:17] And that's where you go back to.

[00:06:19] That's what the canon does and creates a bit.

[00:06:23] And in my opinion, that's also a bit of what's problematic about the canon.

[00:06:27] Especially in comparative literature, but maybe we'll come back to that later.

[00:06:32] First of all, we thought of something really cool today, because we talked about it,

[00:06:36] we came up with the episode idea because we talked to each other and asked ourselves the question

[00:06:41] what are good books for us.

[00:06:45] And then we said, you know what, let's take ... the challenge is,

[00:06:50] that each of us takes two books and then just tells us once,

[00:06:56] why these books were important to us, respectively.

[00:06:59] One of them is from traditional canon literature.

[00:07:03] Here I would also like to point out that it is of course national,

[00:07:08] the national canon or the so-called world literature.

[00:07:13] As a primarily English-speaking person, I orient myself more towards the world literary canon.

[00:07:19] I don't know about you.

[00:07:21] Well, I also, I would say it's both for me, it's both for me.

[00:07:26] Because it's, for example, I have now, if I may say so, I have for example

[00:07:29] my own personal copy of Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes,

[00:07:33] which is of course an important book for the Spanish canon,

[00:07:37] but is of course also a central book for the world canon.

[00:07:41] It is often said that it is the most important book in the history of literature,

[00:07:46] which of course you can say now, which is kind of nonsense,

[00:07:48] you can't say that about any book, because the book has, in its natural national context

[00:07:53] a meaning, which another book in a different national context, for example,

[00:07:57] that has a meaning.

[00:07:58] In other words, it is both national and world literature in this sense,

[00:08:03] but of course exactly, so you can make a distinction.

[00:08:06] But world literature, the world is so globalized, so even the national canon

[00:08:12] are now ultimately included in world literature in some way, of course.

[00:08:17] Yes, so this national canon doesn't really exist anymore,

[00:08:22] or you don't think about it anymore, because genres are also developing,

[00:08:25] Take crime fiction, for example, just to throw that in,

[00:08:28] that came from the English-speaking world and from France

[00:08:32] and then developed in our country, not at all out of our own literary tradition.

[00:08:36] And the twist in the whole episode is that we also set ourselves the goal.

[00:08:42] Each of us has also chosen the second book from - I have it lovingly

[00:08:47] trashy literature - so just station literature,

[00:08:52] pulp fiction, whatever you want to call it that's not in the canon

[00:08:56] and what our, probably, we'll both be like that,

[00:08:59] our comparative literature professors might have said:

[00:09:02] "We don't really need to talk about that today."

[00:09:05] But it's still a good book, isn't it?

[00:09:07] But it's still a good book.

[00:09:09] Now I'm curious about the reasons.

[00:09:11] Exactly, you've already started with the Cervantes.

[00:09:14] Why is that, why, does it mean so much to you?

[00:09:18] Exactly, so you have that in your definition, that was already drinnen

[00:09:22] and I think that's one of the things I like about canon literature

[00:09:26] and that I simply appreciate about canon literature.

[00:09:28] And why I think the canon is good is simply because these books have often done things differently.

[00:09:35] So I don't think you can think of canon literature separately from literary history.

[00:09:41] That was already well defined in your definition drin.

[00:09:43] In other words, Cervantes and Cervantes' Don Quixote are simply one book,

[00:09:49] that first of all reacted to literature itself.

[00:09:52] So you have to imagine that in the Middle Ages there were a lot of chivalric novels

[00:09:56] and Don Quixote came out at a time when this wave of chivalric novels was already dying down,

[00:10:02] it was already over again.

[00:10:04] And then Cervantes writes a book about Don Quixote, where you just realize,

[00:10:08] he really read a lot of knightly novels.

[00:10:10] And these are all the top boys, all the things that make up a chivalric novel, are drin.

[00:10:18] But what did Cervantes do?

[00:10:20] His protagonist, Don Quixote, when you read the novel, you just realize it.

[00:10:25] He's actually a madman, he's somehow insane.

[00:10:29] He's just fantasizing it all, as I said, that's where what we've already mentioned comes in briefly.

[00:10:35] These are things that everyone knows from Don Quixote, for example, the fight against the windmills,

[00:10:40] where Don Quixote says that he now has a giant or an evil opponent against whom he must fight.

[00:10:46] And then as a reader you learn that windmills are actually a reality.

[00:10:50] That's only in his imagination.

[00:10:52] In other words, this is actually one of the first books where you have a protagonist,

[00:10:58] who actually, where you think to yourself, he's out of his depth, so there's just a madman.

[00:11:03] And it's just so well done and so new and just so, and it was so successful and so, so influential.

[00:11:15] But did you get carried away reading it?

[00:11:17] Totally, totally.

[00:11:18] Because it's just...

[00:11:19] You can hear the enthusiasm in your voice, I almost fell asleep reading it.

[00:11:22] Really?

[00:11:23] Do you actually have it?

[00:11:24] No, it's so well done.

[00:11:26] And it's just funny.

[00:11:27] And I think that joke, so I really loved the book.

[00:11:32] And that has also left its mark.

[00:11:36] So you can't write a chivalry novel after Cervantes, you make a fool of yourself somehow,

[00:11:41] because if you were still in the 16th century when something new came out,

[00:11:46] then it always happened against the background of Don Quixote, for example.

[00:11:51] In other words, it left its mark on the history of literature, but also on the history of art.

[00:11:57] Unfortunately, people don't see it now, my great edition from DTV, from Susanne Lange, a super translation.

[00:12:04] What has come out, new translations, is a picture drauf and that is also quite famous.

[00:12:09] It's by Picasso.

[00:12:10] It's this painting by Picasso, where Don Quixote is with his squire, who is called Sancho Panza, I think.

[00:12:17] Yes, Sancho Panza, I get flashbacks to my studies.

[00:12:20] Drauf is and where Picasso then really many centuries later still received this thing in art history,

[00:12:28] because of course that was also a certain, how shall we put it, state of mind of the modern age, where people simply began to doubt people's ability to judge and their capacity for knowledge based on philosophical tradition and the like.

[00:12:44] That's from philosophy with Descartes, who asked what can I actually know and so on, so all this uncertainty and can I even recognize that?

[00:12:54] Or are we actually all crazy like Don Quixote and only see things the way we want to see them?

[00:13:00] So, of course, it's also a zeitgeist that has been captured and then translated into this Wessel, this knight's novel, which is of course super, super well done.

[00:13:13] This chivalric novel is something that people knew back then and Cervantes simply put this image on drait and then made something new draout of it.

[00:13:23] That's why I'm a big fan.

[00:13:25] I also believe that good literature and expectations are always shifting.

[00:13:30] And that's whether you're talking about a beast like Don Quixote, which has left such a big mark on literary history, or small genre literature, we always enjoy the things that subvert our expectations in whatever way the most.

[00:13:49] And that's the exciting thing about reading, about stories in general.

[00:13:55] Exactly.

[00:13:56] I brought Virginia Woolf's "A Room to Myself" with me and I'm sure that has also left a big mark on literary history.

[00:14:08] But my reasons are more personal, because I remember when I was in my early 20s.

[00:14:16] That fell into my hands.

[00:14:18] I'm an English major, not an American major.

[00:14:20] That means Virginia Woolf was an American writer and then of course very, very famous.

[00:14:25] But for me...

[00:14:27] she was just a name. I didn't know who she was, what she was writing.

[00:14:31] It's a modernist text and she wrote it in 1929.

[00:14:36] So forever away, at first I felt.

[00:14:40] Not nearly as old as Don Quixote, of course.

[00:14:43] And then it fell into my hands and it was such a short essay,

[00:14:47] is not long. And I discovered it quite independently while I was studying.

[00:14:54] And I remember where I was when I read it.

[00:14:57] I know what the light was like, I know what the pages were like.

[00:15:00] You know when you remember that in more detail?

[00:15:02] That's such a personal memory.

[00:15:04] Exactly.

[00:15:05] And then I thought, this book is over 100 years old

[00:15:10] and what the woman writes are issues that concern me now in my mid-20s as a woman

[00:15:14] in this century, in this millennium.

[00:15:18] "A room to yourself" is about female creativity, female independence

[00:15:27] and the emphasis on being materially and spatially independent,

[00:15:34] as a woman in order to create things.

[00:15:36] And also about that, and that's why I brought it,

[00:15:39] because then we can talk about the canon again so beautifully,

[00:15:41] It's also about the fact that women can't look back on a literary tradition.

[00:15:47] And that women also need a space, even in a canon,

[00:15:53] to develop creatively.

[00:15:56] And I found that verydruimpressive.

[00:15:59] I felt that way while I was in a degree program

[00:16:05] which, I think you'll probably agree, is very characterized,

[00:16:10] the literary canon is white and male.

[00:16:14] Like many things of course in the patriarchy, most 80, 90 percent of the texts,

[00:16:22] that we've discussed in comparative literature,

[00:16:26] because we were talking about literary history, were written by men.

[00:16:29] Yes, of course that's a big criticism and a very justified criticism

[00:16:33] of Kranon.

[00:16:34] And that's true, you can't argue that away, of course.

[00:16:37] Because of course canon and canonization is always a question of power.

[00:16:43] Because of course it's always important who can write and who is heard.

[00:16:47] Those are two important points.

[00:16:49] And of course that was unfortunate, you have to say. The majority of literary history

[00:16:56] were of course men and of course actually white men or Western men,

[00:17:00] Let's put it this way, it's a Western canon.

[00:17:02] And upper class, so privileged too, of course.

[00:17:05] Those were the ones who could read and write,

[00:17:08] who had access to literature or writing in the first place

[00:17:10] or language in writing at all, so to speak.

[00:17:13] And that's a big problem, of course.

[00:17:15] And what I said, of course you have to do that beforehand,

[00:17:19] if Don Quixote, of course, you have to revise it a bit.

[00:17:22] Because of course it's like that, if you have one,

[00:17:26] so if you ask a Romanist who specializes in the literature of the 16th century

[00:17:31] all his life, then of course he will be able to say,

[00:17:34] there are also precursor texts for Don Quixote,

[00:17:37] they are definitely forgotten,

[00:17:39] because they simply fell victim to history.

[00:17:43] That is, of course, if you're specialized enough,

[00:17:45] then of course you can say, yes, yes, what Cervantes did,

[00:17:48] is actually not that modern, it also has a history.

[00:17:52] And that is of course, so you always have to keep that in mind.

[00:17:56] Nevertheless, what we have there,

[00:17:59] is of course intrinsic and very good in itself.

[00:18:06] It's a pity, of course, that a lot of things that were otherwise very good,

[00:18:10] because of these trating mechanisms, unfortunately the history

[00:18:15] a bit of a victim of history.

[00:18:17] But thank God, one must also say,

[00:18:19] it's also the case that the canon is constantly being revised.

[00:18:23] And just as you said, Virginia Woolf is a good example,

[00:18:27] finding women beforehand, it also falls to me quickly,

[00:18:31] Shelley, who wrote Frankenstein.

[00:18:33] That's right, there are a few, there are exceptions,

[00:18:37] There are, of course, but that really just confirms the rule.

[00:18:39] But in the last 100 years, the canon has been revised again and again.

[00:18:44] And that is precisely on a gender basis.

[00:18:46] So a lot of female literature has been added and rediscovered.

[00:18:52] And of course there's also a lot of it,

[00:18:54] from the post-colonial-study side, i.e. not European,

[00:19:00] non-European literature has also added a lot.

[00:19:04] And you could also see that there was great literature there too,

[00:19:09] great ideas, worlds that perhaps don't always correspond to the West,

[00:19:14] but which are also really interesting and where there are also traditions,

[00:19:18] which is also worth receiving.

[00:19:20] So it's very, very important to always keep that in mind.

[00:19:23] Exactly. But enough about Kann.

[00:19:25] What kind of trash do you have?

[00:19:28] What kind of trash do I have with me? I've already gotten a little bit of smut

[00:19:30] by our colleague Pia, with whom we talked about it briefly beforehand.

[00:19:33] Pia had a bit of a shag?

[00:19:34] Yes, so Pia doesn't scold.

[00:19:36] Pia can't do that, and Pia isn't capable of it.

[00:19:39] But Pia said that what you brought as trash,

[00:19:42] could actually be described as canon again.

[00:19:44] I made an extra effort to bring extra trash.

[00:19:46] Extra trash.

[00:19:47] And I brought, that was the first thing I thought of,

[00:19:51] was Douglas Adams, "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" or in German

[00:19:56] "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" is.

[00:19:58] And when Viktor says "brought along", he really means it

[00:20:00] in the literal sense, because he has the books with him.

[00:20:03] Of course I have the books with me, because I need to know,

[00:20:04] what I'm talking about, I can't put it in front of my mind's [00:20:07] eye

[00:20:07] eye. And The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is of course

[00:20:11] actually a bit of a

[00:20:14] classic and is of course already well received.

[00:20:18] Classic sci-fi literature. Classic sci-fi, exactly.

[00:20:21] But of course it's a genre, it's much younger.

[00:20:25] It's just a book that's incredibly

[00:20:30] great wit.

[00:20:32] It's just, well, when you say,

[00:20:35] Don Quixote was too boring for you, you would say that about The Hitchhiker's

[00:20:38] Guide to the Galaxy, you'd probably never say that, would you?

[00:20:40] You must have read it, I imagine?

[00:20:42] No. I'm not a sci-fi fan.

[00:20:43] Okay. Yeah, it's just ...

[00:20:45] You would recommend it to me.

[00:20:45] I would highly recommend it.

[00:20:47] I think it's very entertaining, very funny.

[00:20:50] I think it's just good literature.

[00:20:54] It's just a weird premise.

[00:20:57] Exactly. The earth is supposed to be torn down to make a highway,

[00:21:02] because it's in the way of the highway in the galaxy.

[00:21:07] And that's the starting point, so to speak, where it's all about.

[00:21:10] And then what great adventures the protagonists have in space

[00:21:16] and what strange characters they meet there.

[00:21:20] And that's just very entertaining.

[00:21:23] I have to say, yes.

[00:21:24] And do you remember where you were, where you read that?

[00:21:27] The first time.

[00:21:28] Do you still have a tactile memory of that?

[00:21:30] Well, unfortunately I don't.

[00:21:33] For me, it always comes from a good book.

[00:21:35] That's when a haptic memory forms in me.

[00:21:38] When I have the book in my hand again and briefly think about the content

[00:21:41] and remember how I found it, then I remember where I was.

[00:21:45] Well, unfortunately I didn't.

[00:21:47] Too bad, I wish I had.

[00:21:47] That's hectic.

I would like that, to be honest.

[00:21:49] But I can't say that about this book right now, well.

[00:21:51] But it's genre literature.

[00:21:54] And we comparatists know that genre is very hard,

[00:21:57] to be recognized, especially in literary studies.

[00:22:02] It's true that crime fiction is now slowly becoming recognized, that's so...

[00:22:05] Now the historical novels are coming, they're being taken seriously.

[00:22:10] And the genre always has to prove itself somehow first,

[00:22:14] but many decades ...

[00:22:16] Forming a canon.

[00:22:17] Exactly.

[00:22:18] And then we can talk about it again, something like that.

[00:22:22] Okay, mine is "She" by Stephen King.

[00:22:27] It's called "Misery" in English.

[00:22:30] That's the name of the movie with Kathy Bates.

[00:22:34] Always worth watching again.

[00:22:37] That's from 1987, the book.

[00:22:39] And yes, it's also a genre novel.

[00:22:43] My genre is horror in that case, not sci-fi.

[00:22:47] It's super psychological.

[00:22:49] It's about the number one fan, the Annie Wilkes,

[00:22:52] who accidentally rescues the writer Paul Sheldon in the snow in Colorado in a car.

[00:23:01] And he thinks he's saved.

[00:23:03] But then she asks him to write the series of novels,

[00:23:07] that she's such a big fan of.

[00:23:10] And she's totally psychopathic.

[00:23:12] And then she famously breaks his foot.

[00:23:14] And he has to be there for her in this ...

[00:23:17] He's locked in the house with him.

[00:23:19] He can't move.

[00:23:20] He's hurt from the car accident she rescued him from.

[00:23:24] And nobody knows where he is.

[00:23:25] And he has to sign himself out of it, so to speak.

[00:23:29] So for me, that's how I read it,

[00:23:31] also a bit of a meta-commentary,

[00:23:34] of course, that Stephen King, who is processing something,

[00:23:39] which he always does.

[00:23:40] And it has a kind of chamber play feel to it.

[00:23:43] It's very psychological.

[00:23:45] And I have it in front of my eyes.

[00:23:47] I know how Paul Sheldon sits in the room,

[00:23:50] with his foot up.

[00:23:52] And in front of him he has the screaming machine.

[00:23:53] And I remember seeing the window.

[00:23:56] And how he hears Annie's footsteps.

[00:23:59] And here I am again.

[00:24:00] And that's just a sign for me ...

[00:24:03] Hey, I really liked that.

[00:24:05] And I remember I really liked the language back then.

[00:24:08] And it was fantastic too.

[00:24:10] Stephen King writes one way, then another.

[00:24:12] He also has a hard time with endings.

[00:24:14] In my opinion, Misery is one of his,

[00:24:17] if not his best, I have to say.

[00:24:20] I think that's very good.

[00:24:21] Because like sci-fi is not your genre,

[00:24:23] crime fiction is not my genre.

[00:24:25] But you've got me a bit hooked now.

[00:24:27] So I ...

[00:24:28] Maybe if we did that,

[00:24:29] we certainly have that in stock,

[00:24:30] then maybe I'll borrow it.

[00:24:31] And then I'll have a good thing for the weekend.

[00:24:34] Good keyword, we have it in stock.

[00:24:37] Because it was first ...

[00:24:38] We just ordered the new edition of Misery

[00:24:40] in the original English and we also have it in German.

[00:24:43] And it's probably already gone.

[00:24:45] Shall we do the following?

[00:24:47] You read Misery, I'll read Hitchhiker's Guide.

[00:24:51] And then we'll tell each other in a distant episode of the podcast

[00:24:54] again how we found it.

[00:24:56] I think that would be very nice.

[00:24:57] That would be a great thing.

[00:24:59] Yeah, cool.

[00:25:00] But now to answer the question again,

[00:25:05] why do we like good books, I think is obvious.

[00:25:09] Because it's fun.

[00:25:12] Exactly.

[00:25:13] Well, I think it's just a pleasure,

[00:25:17] to read things like that.

[00:25:18] And just ...

[00:25:20] So the canon literature has ...

[00:25:25] It's just great to see, for example.

[00:25:28] I've brought you several more books,

[00:25:30] If you look at Ulysses, for example.

[00:25:33] As well as the Odyssey, for example.

[00:25:36] That is, that's, well, that didn't come up at all,

[00:25:38] but good writers are simply literary people.

[00:25:42] And literary people simply read a lot.

[00:25:46] And what's in the Odyssey or in the Bible,

[00:25:48] in these oldest texts that Western literature has history,

[00:25:53] simply drin, that is simply processed again and again.

[00:25:56] And of course, time changes.

[00:25:58] That means that the ...

[00:26:01] So how people use these things changes too.

[00:26:05] And then it's always new.

[00:26:07] And there are new twists and new perspectives,

[00:26:09] new perspectives.

[00:26:10] And then, of course, if you have the background knowledge

[00:26:14] and you've already read the Odyssey, then of course you read Ulysses

[00:26:17] again with completely different eyes.

[00:26:19] And good writers are always good readers.

[00:26:22] And it's just great when you get a ...

[00:26:26] Maybe you have a bit of background knowledge,

[00:26:28] then you take away so much more,

[00:26:30] although of course you can also read it,

[00:26:32] without the background knowledge and have a great book.

[00:26:34] But that's also what the women often did,

[00:26:36] They wrote against the canon,

[00:26:39] they simply appropriated characters from the canon.

[00:26:42] That is, there ... so it's also,

[00:26:44] the canon is also a ...

[00:26:46] weapon against the canon.

[00:26:48] So there's so much to say and after.

[00:26:50] And writing is an incredibly interesting topic.

[00:26:53] And the literary canon and the so-called deconstruction of the canon,

[00:27:00] will probably be with us again and again in this podcast,

[00:27:03] resonate again and again.

[00:27:05] Writers, as you said so well,

[00:27:09] always write in a tradition.

[00:27:11] And good books for me are independent of,

[00:27:19] whether they are so-called high world literature

[00:27:23] or so-called low genre literature.

[00:27:26] They write in a tradition and what applies to the canon,

[00:27:30] applies to any good writer.

[00:27:32] Whether they're writing horror or sci-fi.

[00:27:35] It's good if you know your stuff,

[00:27:37] with what you do, like a good craftsman.

[00:27:40] Exactly, it's a craft of course,

[00:27:42] in a way too.

[00:27:44] Yes, Viktor, thank you so much for being with us today.

[00:27:47] Thank you very much for inviting me.

[00:27:48] It was as much fun as I thought it would be.

[00:27:51] Well, I'm glad.

[00:27:52] You were incredibly informative.

[00:27:54] I hope we can do it again.

[00:27:57] That would be, I would love to, yes.

[00:27:59] And with that, we'll say goodbye for today.

[00:28:03] What do you think?

[00:28:05] Makes a good book.

[00:28:07] Write it down for us at post.stadtbibliothek@innsbruck.gv.at

[00:28:11] or on Instagram or Facebook.

[00:28:14] The hashtag is #Gemeinsambesser

[00:28:16] And until then, all the best.

[00:28:19] [Music]

[00:28:45] The foreword is a production of the Innsbruck City Library

[00:28:49] and part of Stadtstimmen, the audio channel of the city of Innsbruck.

Transcription

[00:00:00] Caution, listening to this podcast may lead to more visits to the library.

[00:00:07] Welcome to the foreword. I am Christina.

[00:00:24] And I'm Pia.

[00:00:25] And today we're talking about the Oscars.

[00:00:28] Hey Pia, I was on Filmfriend again and watched the Oscar collection.

[00:00:33] Did you know that was again? The Oscars?

[00:00:36] I was peripherally aware, yes, that the Oscars were back.

[00:00:40] But what is Filmfriend anyway?

[00:00:42] Filmfriend is our movie streaming service that we have as a library.

[00:00:46] That means that everyone who is a member of our library can also stream films online.

[00:00:51] Exactly, and they offer different movies for children and adults,

[00:00:57] so for different age groups.

[00:00:59] It's just included in our annual subscription, it's a really great service.

[00:01:04] And they also have different collections and apparently the Oscars are now included.

[00:01:08] Because the Oscars were on March 10th.

[00:01:10] And I don't know about you, but it always makes me want to watch movies.

[00:01:15] Yeah, extremely.

[00:01:16] I'm also interested in what won and what the bigger prizes are,

[00:01:21] so best movie, best actress, best actor, who won that.

[00:01:26] Because then I might think about watching it, I have to say.

[00:01:30] Yeah, why do we like the Oscars so much?

[00:01:33] And why are they so prevalent in our Austrian culture?

[00:01:37] I ask myself, when we have nothing to do with Hollywood except, of course, peripherally,

[00:01:42] but of course the American film market and the film industry have such a huge influence on our lives

[00:01:50] and therefore on our cultural organization, if you want to call it that, right?

[00:01:54] Yes, and if we ever win an Oscar, then it's "Oh, Christoph Waltz, he's won something again."

[00:01:58] Oh yeah, exactly.

[00:01:59] "Now we have the Oscar as Austrians."

[00:02:01] Our man at the Oscars.

[00:02:03] The funniest thing is that in Germany, Christoph Waltz is practically treated as a German.

[00:02:13] When the Germans write, the German newspapers then report on the Oscars and say,

[00:02:18] "Christoph Waltz, Austrian, living in, and then, when he's just been in Germany for a moment,

[00:02:23] then Germany basically won.

[00:02:26] That's how it is, then they appropriate it, right?

[00:02:29] Fascinating.

[00:02:30] Yes, they didn't do it that way with Arnold Schwarzenegger.

[00:02:34] Yeah, he's from California, that doesn't count anymore.

[00:02:37] Yeah, what are the Oscars?

[00:02:41] They have a very long and illustrious history, they were held on January 11, 1927,

[00:02:48] Louis B. Mayer, who was a very influential, very powerful head of the Hollywood studio MGM,

[00:02:56] so "so Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer", gathered people around him

[00:03:02] and so that day is considered the birth of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences.

[00:03:08] So, it was simply decided that we needed a prestigious award,

[00:03:12] because awards do one thing, they bring attention and of course they legitimize in a way...

[00:03:24] The industry itself.

[00:03:25] The industry, exactly.

[00:03:26] Then there was the first award ceremony in 1929. But nobody was interested in that.

[00:03:33] That's why it was broadcast on the radio for the first time in 1930

[00:03:38] and in 1934, Walt Disney thanked everyone for the so-called Oscar in his acceptance speech,

[00:03:46] we've been calling it the whole time now, it's a bit controversial whether Disney now the character,

[00:03:51] that's now, everybody knows the Oscars, I think, the almond cast in gold,

[00:03:55] whether that, why is it called the Oscar and 34 was the first time it was proven that someone called it that, the Oscar.

[00:04:02] But why it's called the Oscar, that's very controversial, that was, I haven't found out,

[00:04:11] 39, and that's important, I think, for our episode today, when we talk about different topics,

[00:04:17] about the Oscars.

[00:04:19] In 1939, Hattie McDaniel was the first black woman to win an Oscar for her role as Mammy in "Gone with the Wind",

[00:04:27] for best supporting actress.

[00:04:29] Not so fun fact, by the way, she was the first black woman to not only win,

[00:04:34] but who was a guest at the awards and was not there as a servant.

[00:04:39] And also very controversial, of course, is that the portrayal of this mammy,

[00:04:45] that in the southern states of the grateful servant, was very stereotyped.

[00:04:52] Yes, exactly, and then that's exactly why there's still, so that's very controversial.

[00:04:58] Also this stereotypical portrayal of black women in movies or black people,

[00:05:06] basic movies.

[00:05:08] Then in 1941 they decided it was a big secret who was going to win,

[00:05:12] because before that they always chose or drew the winners a week in advance,

[00:05:16] and then everyone knew, then the secrecy was introduced,

[00:05:22] to increase interest in the award ceremony.

[00:05:26] And then in 1953 it was televised for the first time.

[00:05:31] That's super important because that was basically the birth of this TV event,

[00:05:36] that we still know today.

[00:05:38] Some people even throw Oscar parties and then meet up for popcorn and champagne

[00:05:43] and then watch it.

[00:05:45] It's a live broadcast.

[00:05:47] And the first black woman to win in '94 was Whoopi Goldberg.

[00:05:51] Notably, she was also the first woman to host the Oscar show alone.

[00:05:56] In 2000, the first female producer of a movie won an Oscar.

[00:06:02] That was Lilly Finnic Sanop.

[00:06:04] And based on the data I picked out from this Oscar story,

[00:06:09] you can probably guess what our points of contact were,

[00:06:14] our points of contact, namely,

[00:06:17] that the Oscars were primarily an event founded by white men, of course.

[00:06:25] And that's why over the years there's been a certain ...

[00:06:31] ... ... has taken a certain direction in terms of the winners and the nominees.

[00:06:37] There are also ... I looked here and there's a study from the Los Angeles Times from 2012.

[00:06:44] They looked at what are these Academy members who vote for Oscar winners anyway.

[00:06:52] It's 94 percent white, at the time, and 77 percent male.

[00:06:58] And the average age is 62.

[00:07:02] And that led to the final outcry in 2015, namely under the hashtag #OscarsSoWhite,

[00:07:10] when only white actors were nominated that year.

[00:07:18] That has already changed something, namely films and film productions must ...

[00:07:26] ... fulfill certain requirements, certain diversity standards, in order to ...

[00:07:33] ... in casting, the people you see on screen, right through from production,

[00:07:39] to the people in the background for financing, must be met, but the critics say,

[00:07:45] it's basically just so-called "windowdressing", so it's more for the show than anything else.

[00:07:51] Because as you say, the foundation alone has been so stereotypically filled with people,

[00:08:01] that just in most systems, in such a patriarchy and in the patriarchy in the western world,

[00:08:07] who have the power, namely wealthy, upper-middle to upper-class men.

[00:08:15] That these critics are simply saying that there needs to be a fundamental, systemic overhaul

[00:08:22] and upheaval within the Hollywood movie industry for it to ever really be different

[00:08:28] and be more than "windowdressing."

[00:08:31] The Oscar for best picture has ...

[00:08:34] This year "Oppenheimer" won.

[00:08:37] Exactly, and "Oppenheimer" met the standards, these diversity standards,

[00:08:43] just the example, that's nothing against the movie "Oppenheimer", but there weren't that many

[00:08:49] "People of Color" were involved in that production, but the fact that there were several women in higher positions,

[00:08:58] that was enough to achieve this diversity quota.

[00:09:02] You basically reach the quota very quickly.

[00:09:05] Exactly, that's my point.

[00:09:07] That's a point of criticism that's been around for a long time, because here you always look at a bit of history from the Oscars

[00:09:13] and Marlon Brando, for example, where he was nominated for the party, very famously,

[00:09:19] he didn't go himself, he protested and sent a Native American representative for him instead,

[00:09:26] "Sacheen Littlefeather" and she accepted the Oscars for him and said in her speech,

[00:09:33] that he didn't go because Native Americans are treated so badly by the US film industry.

[00:09:41] So that's something that was recognized very early on, also within the industry and where criticism is voiced,

[00:09:48] but it took a very, very long time for anything to change.

[00:09:52] And I also think that you can definitely talk about it, i.e. ask the question, how much has really changed

[00:09:58] and how much is just for show.

[00:10:01] So Lily Gladstone is the first Native American to be nominated for an Oscar for best actress,

[00:10:08] She didn't win, that's another typical thing that happened, I think, Emma Stone won for best actress,

[00:10:16] who seemed very shocked when she found out, did you watch the video?

[00:10:21] Because she was so surprised,

[00:10:25] Yes, you got the feeling that she didn't expect to win this Oscar.

[00:10:29] Yes, well, that's rehearsed,

[00:10:30] So I don't know.

[00:10:32] So Lily Gladstone was actually the forerunner in all the rehearsals,

[00:10:35] There are poles and people bet on draand all sorts of things. So she was actually already

[00:10:40] the pioneer, but then she just didn't win, again.

[00:10:44] Yes, I think that's because the Oscars are also, well, you're in the Hollywood film industry,

[00:10:53] you can become a member to vote for the Oscars, which means you get,

[00:10:58] you then vote as a member of the Academy and these are just members of the

[00:11:05] film industry, from actors, actresses, to producers and so on and so forth.

[00:11:09] And just Hollywood insiders you would say. And so Harvey Weinstein was

[00:11:17] famous for having a relationship with Gwyneth Paltrow in the 90s ...

[00:11:22] Shakespeare in Love was that movie back then. I wrote that down too. That's the thing

[00:11:27] prime example of who won a movie because everyone actually thought, okay, that can't

[00:11:31] win. That was Shakespeare in Love, which we also have in our collection. It's a romantic comedy

[00:11:36] and was nominated for Best Picture in the same year as Saving Private James Ryan,

[00:11:43] Saving Private Ryan, which is the classic war movie and also a very good movie,

[00:11:51] I think now. Exactly, and then Shakespeare in Love won because Harvey Weinstein

[00:11:59] ran such an extreme Oscar campaign for this movie. One that had never [00:12:05]

[00:12:05] had ever been done before. It really started. They've promoted their movies before under these

[00:12:11] Academy members who vote there. But he elevated it to art and he mastered it

[00:12:19] like hardly anyone else. And it's also known within the industry who the Academy members are

[00:12:24] are, but there are people who are just assumed to be and then they get

[00:12:28] for example, the films are sent to them free of charge on an iPad, which they then of course keep

[00:12:33] allowed to keep. Sure, bribery is not officially allowed, but they do get the iPad.

[00:12:37] Or then there are internal Oscar parties where all of these possible Academy members are invited

[00:12:45] are invited and then they get free food