Hanna Schygulla / Etel Adnan Entre guerre et paix


Onstage at the Maison de la Poésie, Etel Adnan, poet, essayist, novelist and painter, and the actress Hanna Schygulla will be interchanging past memories. Both of them belong to the Second World War generation: Etel Adnan grew up in Beirut and watched the military leaders parading past in their trail of destruction, whilst Hanna Schygulla was one of the millions of German refugees who, in the face of the advancing Russian troops, had to flee her native area. This encounter, woven through their different accounts and punctuated by videos and readings, unravels the thread of the history of the second half of the XXth century. A time in history that bears the scars of conflict and bloodshed, but also that of an overwhelming aspiration for peace. Etel Adnan, who penned the phrase “Painting to celebrate, and writing to resist”, refused, at one stage in her career, to write in French out of solidarity with the Algerian pro-independence movement. From out of her first poems in English came a clear commitment to the anti-Vietnam war cause. Following the outbreak of civil war in 1975, forcing her to leave Lebanon, she published Sitt Marie-Rose, a novel which paid homage to a woman who was assassinated because of breaking party lines. Hanna Schygulla has experienced the aftermath of the war, and through the films in which which she has acted but also via creative projects of her own, she has looked into how these conflicts continue to exist inside each of us, even though the fighting has long since come to an end. With the the full weight of their pasts to draw upon, these two individuals will be conversing with each other, in a free and spontaneous manner, on the major questions that have shaped their biographies.