The Jena writer Kathrin Groß-Striffler will receive the Walter Dexel grant from the city of Jena for 2021. This was announced by the city and the jury these days.
According to a press release from the city of Jena, Kathrin Groß-Striffler’s narrative work is recognized far beyond the borders of Thuringia in the German-speaking area. »With her extremely precise language, not without laconicism, often with a gentle sense of humour, she is able to lift the blanket of everyday life. People’s actual longings, injuries, attempts to escape and hopes become visible. With this analytical narrative without strained metaphors, tolerance and empathy become important issues.«
This talent has not remained hidden in the past either. The author, who was born in Würzburg in 1955, received the Marburg Literature Prize in 2000 for her very first story. Three years later she was awarded the Alfred Döblin Literature Prize. Her last two novels are »Der arme Poet« (2018) and »Gott zürnt« (2018).
Her important themes of tolerance and empathy also shape the life of the writer: she has been involved in refugee aid in Jena for seven years, works as an integration teacher at the Euro-School and runs a writing workshop for Syrian migrants, the results of which were published in the book »Hope« . In 2021 a project will follow in the intercultural meeting place »WeltRaum«.
The Walter Dexel grant is named after the painter, commercial artist, designer and traffic planner Walter Dexel (1890-1973), who gave important impetus to the development of art in the 20th century. The city of Jena has been awarding the 5,000 euro scholarship since 1977.
The jury for this year’s scholarship included Jena’s Lord Mayor Thomas Nitzsche, the general music director of the Jena Philharmonic Simon Gaudenz, the director of the Jena City Museums and head of the Jena Art Collection Erik Stephan, the chairman of the culture committee of the Jena City Council Dr. Jörg Vogel, the plant manager of JenaKultur Jonas Zipf, the honorary chairman of Bookmark eV Dr. Martin Straub and the Head of Corporate Communications at Stadtwerke Energie Jena-Pößneck GmbH, Stefan Dreising. The funds for the scholarship are provided by Stadtwerke Energie Jena-Pößneck.
Due to the pandemic, the prize cannot be awarded until next year. A date for this has not yet been set.