Where we are going. A literary reading
Peggy Mädler’s new novel Wohin wir gehen will appear in February 2019. It tells the story of Almust and Rosa, two friends growing up in 1940s Bohemia. When Almut’s father dies suddenly and her mother commits suicide, Rosa’s mother, a German communist facing her own difficulties in Czechoslovakia, decides to take both girls with her to Brandenburg. There the girls share experiences of loss and uprootedness but also a growing attachment to the newly established East German state. Almut and Rosa become teachers and move to Berlin. But when Rosa turns thirty she wants a new beginning. Several months before erection of the wall, she enters a train bound for West Berlin with only her purse. Almut’s world breaks apart, she loses her sense of orientation, she searches for something that remains. Half a century later, Almut’s daughter Elli also has a best friend, the dramatist Kristine, and she is the one who cares for the aging Almut after Elli takes a job at the Basel theater. Experiences and memories accrue like sediment. Journeys through life become intertwined between families and generations as they grapple with questions of leaving, arriving, and remaining—and the moment when one finally realizes what really counts.
Peggy Mädler is a freelance dramatist and writer who holds a PhD in cultural studies. In 2007, she helped found the Berlin-based artists group Labor für kontrafaktisches Denken, and remained on as a founding chair until 2009. She is also a member of the theater collective She She Pop. Her first novel, Legende vom Glück des Menschen, appeared in 2011.