Okay, so this weekend has been like Culture-Extreme. Saturday I went to a book reading by a woman who wrote about Simone de Beauvoir, and her book is a biography with quotes and excerpts from de Beauvoir embedded in the text. It was really fascinating and really informative. The author is French but spoke perfect German and was really easy to listen to.
She talked about Simone de Beauvoir's youth, her relationship with Sartre and her book La deuxième Sexe (The Second Sex) and its impact on the feminist movement. She also talked about her personal philosophy and emphasis on personal freedom, as well as her later political work, support of legal abortion and, later, communism.
I don't know if this has been in the press at all, but 2008 is the 100th anniversary of her birth, and here there are lots of books coming out in commemoration.
On ne nait pas femme, on le devient.
(One is not born a woman, but becomes one.)
Then, on Saturday night I went to see "Die Fälscher", I think the English title is "The Counterfeiters". It was the Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film. Really, really great. I recommend it.
I have also been able to read a lot this week, I read Thomas Mann's Der Tod in Venedig (Death in Venice) and Ludwig Harig's Kalahari.
This is totally me (about a guy who "explored the German language down into the fine hairs of its roots, read German books, untangled its hide-and-seek games, deciphered its puzzles of meaning, and in the end no one could sell him an X for a U"):
"Er durchforschte die deutsche Sprache bis in ihre feinsten Wurzelhaare, las deutsche Bücher, entwirrte ihre Versteckspiele, entschlüsselte ihre Bedeutungsrätsel; schließlich konnte ihm keiner mehr ein X für ein U vormachen."
And on Sunday night I went to the musical Jekyll and Hyde in the Saarland Theater. I was a bit skeptical about making a musical out of this story, but it was well done. Also interesting: there were French supertitles above the stage! I kept getting distracted by them, wanting to read the French!
So yes, I have been keeping busy. I never really know where the time goes. I waste a lot of it on the internet. :)