NO | FEAR deutsch

Literary Spectres and Overcoming FEAR

International Literary Festival Erich Fried Days

Fear, like all elemental human feelings, is not easily defined or put into words. Fear is a shape changer—it is impenetrable darkness, the pulse of blood in the angry brow of the Other, the thunder of approaching doom, the abyss opening under our feet…
But fear can also be a spark—the impulse we needed for a new start. Fear is the horrible paralyzed moment before liberation begins, the rock bottom from which we set out to break new ground.

The International Erich Fried Days 2019 are an invitation to explore the almost endless literary investigations of this topic. Ingenious authorial explorations of the subject seem to be inexhaustible: writers evoke vague feelings of uncertainty or the uncanny or sheer horror, they describe emotional abysses, sociopolitical threats, concrete manifestations of terror or dystopian visions of the future.


Members of the International Erich Fried Society, including Lukas Bärfuss, Julia Franck, Sabine Gruber, Josef Haslinger, Elfriede Jelinek, Gila Lustiger, Friederike Mayröcker, Robert Menasse, Rainer Merkel, Teresa Präauer, Kathrin Röggla, and Robert Schindel have been invted to contribute an exhibit on the festival topic—an object or a text that is linked to fear.


International book launches, discussions, lectures, and author talks are all part of the program. Guests of the festival—in the tried and true format of previous festivals—will read in their native language, a German translation is projected behind them. This chorus of multiple languages and idioms creates a unique literary experience for the audience.
In 2019, the festival will again include a spotlight on interdisciplinary arts. It shall explore transitional spaces between literature and music and/or film and also prsesent top-notch graphic novels.
The festival closes with the awarding of the twenty-ninth Erich Fried Prize. The award ceremony shall take place at the traditional time and place, early Sunday afternoon at the reference library of the Literaturhaus Wien.

Young Student Literary Competition

The International Literary Festival Erich Fried is committed to engaging young readers.
Again in 2019, we are hosting a young student literary competition for writers and readers between the ages of fourteen and twenty who attend an Austrian school below (applied) university level. Three winning texts on the festival topic, chosen by a jury of experts, will be awarded a prize and publication in the festival issue of the literary journal


Once more in 2019, we are pleased to announce a special issue of the literary journal kolik with contributions by all guests of the International Literary Festival Erich Fried. Collaboration between the festival and kolik began in 2011, since 2013 kolik has produced a festival issue of about two hundred pages including numerous full color illustrations.