Joachim Schnerf

  • The Cabaret of Memories
  • Literature

Tomorrow Samuel will pick up his wife and his newborn son from the maternity ward. He spends his last hours alone reminiscing: about the history of his family, of which only his grandfather and his sister Rosa survived the Holocaust. Of his own childhood, when, with his sister and cousin, he filled in with fantasy all that was left unsaid, and they spent their summer vacations perpetuating the myth of the distant great-aunt in Texas. And of how, at 17, he met his present wife and love at the Jewish scout camp.

Rosa’s story – pogroms, exile, deportation at 12, the death of almost the entire family, horrors in the concentration camp – Samuel knows only from a letter. Just as she told of it every evening in her Cabaret of Memories, which she founded in the Texas desert after emigrating from Europe. Or did the playing children just make up this cabaret in their imagination?

Joachim Schnerf, born in Strasbourg in 1987, is a writer and editor of international literature in Paris. The Cabaret of Memories (2023) is his third novel.

Languages: French/German
Translation: Nicola Denis, translator of the novel

In cooperation with the Deutsch-Französischen Kulturkreis (dfk) 


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