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Martin Zähringer

Portrait of the critic Martin Zähringer
Photo credit Jan Michalko

»textual criticism must be accompanied by contextual analysis«

Martin Zähringer grew up in South Baden and has lived in Berlin since the 1980s, where he works as a literary critic and moderator, translator and literary journalist, traveling feature-author and curator. In 2019, he founded the CLIMATE CULTURES network berlin, which aims to establish a network for those working at the interface of climate, crisis and culture. He is the founder and artistic director of the Climate Fiction Festival Berlin 2020. You can find more recent texts on "Climate Writing" here: ↗ The international spectrum of his literary criticism can be found in LAURIN, a collection of articles from the University of Innsbruck: ↗LAURIN

Martin Zähringer works as a literary critic, predominately with translated literature from various linguistic and cultural areas. For him, textual criticism must be accompanied by contextual analysis, for without a certain knowledge of the historical, cultural, social and political background of the authors and their works, it is not possible to understand them fully. This attitude toward international literature results in a systematically expanded perspective and allows for an ongoing analysis of world knowledge in literature. Within this logic, it is inevitable that global phenomena such as the climate crisis come under the scrutiny of literary critics. The climate crisis thus becomes a central challenge for the engaged literature of our time; and the result is what we call climate fiction.