$11.00 • 99 pp. • 1992
Translated from the German by Gerald Williams
“Josef is dying, and while dying, he seems to radiate a strange black light, which attracts family, friends, and neighbors. Ulla Berkéwicz writes a text which could also be read like commentaries and indications of a film director for a silent movie: It is by a series of body movements and gestures, and a few utterances, that we witness the workings of death around and in the body of an old man, alive to the last fraction of a second of his life.”
What distinguishes this prose is above all the power of its imagery, an atmosphere which is rendered in its uniqueness with a quasi-hallucinatory intensity. A magic realism dominates the book.
Ulla Berkewicz was born in Giessen, Germany. At the age of 15 she entered the School for Dramatic Arts in Frankfurt, and then took part in the productions of prestigious theaters, such as the Munchner Kammerspiel and Theatre of Hamburg. She resides in Frankfurt-on-the-Main. Josef Is Dying is her first book, and she is the author of three other novels and a collection of short stories.
Gerald Williams is an editor and translator. His work experience includes 15 years in Europe where he worked at places such as Olympia Press, Paris; Delta Magazine; Theatrum Orbis Terrarum; and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam.