Elleke Boehmer


Students of the Barenboim-Said Akademie
Approximate running time: 1h 30m without intermission

Reading: To the Volcano

Reading accompanied by musical performances featuring students of the Barenboim-Said Akademie.

Literature on migration from the past 30 years deals with phenomena as diverse as war, climate change, cosmopolitan sensibilities, and increased demands for labor mobility. The conference “Subjectivities of Migration,” hosted by the Barenboim-Said Akademie, discusses the poetic procedures of recent migration literature and interprets its genres as expressions of similar migration experiences. Two of the conference’s events are aimed at a larger public and will take place in the Pierre Boulez Saal: in her reading Whispers in the Armenian Quarter in Jerusalem, International Booker Prize–nominated Palestinian author Adania Shibli sheds light on the contemporary life of Armenians in Palestine who escaped the Armenian genocide but not the ensuing forced migration and expulsion. Elleke Boehmer, author and literary scholar at Oxford University, reads from her collection of stories To the Volcano. The authors will be in conversation with Kai Wiegandt after the readings. Both readings will be accompanied by musical performances featuring students of the Barenboim-Said Akademie.

Reading in English

An event organized by the Barenboim-Said Akademie with support of the German Research Foundation
Concept and Organisation: Prof. Dr. Kai Wiegandt


Elleke Boehmer

Professor Elleke Boehmer FRSL FRHistS FEA is Professor of World Literature in the English Faculty, Oxford, and Director of the Oxford Centre for Life-Writing at Wolfson College. She is a founding figure in the field of postcolonial and world literature studies in English. Recent work includes Postcolonial Poetics (2018) and Indian Arrivals (2015), which won the ESSE prize 2015-16. Her biography of Nelson Mandela 2008 has been widely translated, as has Colonial and Postcolonial Literature (1995, 2005). Boehmer’s fiction includes To the Volcano (2019) and The Shouting in the Dark (2015), winner of the EASA Olive Schreiner Prize for Prose, 2018. To the Volcano was commended for the Australian Review of Books Elizabeth Jolley Prize, 2019. Elleke Boehmer was awarded a British Academy Senior Research Fellowship 2020 for ‘Southern Imagining’—a project exploring understandings of the world from the Global South. Elleke also works on the UKRI funded ‘Accelerate Hub’ in which she researches how storytelling practices underpin and impact African identities. In 2019 Elleke Boehmer was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society.