Welcome to the 21st century! The contours of a new world (dis)order are becoming ever easier to discern: the rise of China, the shift of the global political axis toward the Pacific, the USA an increasingly confused world power falling back into nationalism, Russia a frustrated nuclear power, Europe stagnating, and a shift of power in Afghanistan ... Since the decline of the USA as a stabilizing global power since 1989, there has been a dangerous new rivalry between nuclear powers that could escalate at any time: A new arms race is happening. There are trade and technology crises. In this…

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  • Fri. 22 October 2021
  • 18:00
  • Theater am Tanzbrunnen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Hamburg-based yachtsman Boris Herrmann has been an advocate of climate action and protecting nature for years. He gained global attention when he sailed Greta Thunberg on his zero-emissions yacht across the Atlantic to New York in 2019. Recently, he was the first German to take part in the Vendée Globe, the world’s most famous and difficult round-the-world solo regatta. He was a front-runner with his yacht Seaexplorer and ultimately came in fifth. In Allein zwischen Himmel und Meer [“Alone Between the Sky and the Sea”], he describes his experiences for the first time, the ups and downs of his trip, …

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  • Fri. 22 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • BALLONI Hallen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Does Western medicine always work better than alternative healing methods? Why do men and women think (and earn) differently? Can animal experiments be justified? Are vaccinations safe? Scientific questions have always – not just since the coronavirus outbreak – been very contentious in our daily lives and throughout society. The line between healthy skepticism and dangerous conspiracy myths can be blurred sometimes. That is why prize-winning science journalist, PhD chemist and best-selling author (“Funny How Everything is Chemistry!”) Mai Thi Nguyen-Kim dedicates her latest book to the burning…

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  • Fri. 22 October 2021
  • 21:00
  • Theater am Tanzbrunnen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Carolin Kebekus is Germany’s most successful female comedian, a singer, actress, feminist and author. In her latest book, There Can Be Only One, she writes pointedly, unequivocally and – as always, hilariously – to argue that throwing out the old (men’s) rules is long overdue. It seems there has always been an incredibly stupid rule that one woman at the top is enough, we don’t need more. Wherever you look, it’s always that one woman who prevails, who rises up, who gets ahead. Steeped in these influences, women are released into life, and then we act surprised when they’re constantly competing wit…

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  • Sat. 23 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • Musical Dome
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

In her essay collection Czuły narrator [“The Tender Narrator”], Literature Nobel Prize winner Olga Tokarczuk draws us a map of her various interests and inspirations and gives us a peek into her literary laboratory. How does she build her stories? Which realistic and fantastical themes does she use? How does she construct the characters who elicit such a wide range of feelings among her readers? Each of these essays is also an excursion into her efforts to understand the world and its endless complexity and to give new meaning to supposedly mundane things. It is an invitation to look behind the …

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  • Sat. 23 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • BALLONI Hallen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang
    • german polish

The Olympic Games, Berlin, summer 1936: This eighth volume of the Gereon Rath series from the master of historical crime fiction, Volker Kutscher, takes place against the backdrop of the German capital. Rath has to secretly investigate a murder that took place in the Olympic village. The powers that be are worried that Communists are trying to sabotage the games. Rath has his doubts and approaches the case unenthusiastically, as he also has some personal problems to deal with: He is hosting a group of American tourists and his wife Charly has moved out of their shared apartment in protest.…

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  • Sat. 23 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • WDR Funkhaus, Klaus-von-Bismarck-Saal
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

British author Helen Macdonald lives a life shared with falcons, hawks and budgies. In her celebrated books (“H is for Hawk”, “Falcon”), she finds an entirely new tone to describe the challenges of our existence and her fascination for birds. Her latest book, Vesper Flights, is a collection of essays about wild animals, myths and fairy tales, and leads us into hidden habitats which are currently disappearing. Helen Macdonald shows us that we can only understand ourselves in relation to our environment – and what we will lose if we do not radically rethink our role on this planet. It is a personal …

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  • Sun. 24 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • WDR Funkhaus, Klaus-von-Bismarck-Saal
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang
    • englisch deutsch

Jonathan Franzen is back and presenting an epochal book. It is about one family at a Crossroads, about yearning and sibling love, about lies, secrets and rivalry. The novel is the first novel of a trilogy called “A Key to All Mythologies” about three generations of a family from the American Midwest, one of the greatest literary projects of our times. The story takes readers back to the year 1971 and unfolds on one day in winter. It is a family novel of unprecedented power and depth – sometimes funny, sometimes incredibly moving and always enthralling: “Jonathan Franzen is one of the greatest living …

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  • Mon. 25 October 2021
  • 19:00
  • Volksbühne am Rudolfplatz
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • englisch deutsch

From a very young age, Elke Heidenreich was influenced by books by women. She later made talking and writing about books her profession. And books made her who she is today. Because reading and personal development are mutually dependent; reading permeates life. Books by women gave her the tools for everything: for life-long pleasure in analysis, for difficult reads, for constantly moving forward. Reading brings happiness and is the common thread running through Elke Heidenreich’s life. She wrote her new work, Hier geht’s lang! [“This Way Please!”], in order to understand how books by women make us…

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  • Mon. 25 October 2021
  • 19:30
  • Flora Köln
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

She may not be beautiful, but she can cook and lend a hand. That’s why Lorina has become a carer to the elderly, and she’s hit the jackpot with her appointment at the Alsfelder Villa - where there’s an endless coming and going of attractive massage therapists and affairs occur that are better kept secret. Further excitement is supplied by an abandoned baby, which visibly cheers up the rich old lady in Lorina’s care. Much to the disapproval of her great-nephew, who is waiting in the wings for his inheritance. Ingrid Noll, “still the most original crime writer in the German language” (NDR Kultur), ha…

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  • Tue. 26 October 2021
  • 18:00
  • BALLONI Hallen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

“Only in the second step do decisions make our lives what they are. The first step is what we see or don’t see.” Elise spends a summer working for socialites Margaux and Philippe at their holiday home in Normandy. Fascinated by their stream of illustrious visitors and by the couple’s lifestyle, disposition and marriage, the young woman becomes an acute observer of appearance and reality. She encounters the whole gamut of human duplicity and comes to realize that the pursuit of happiness and the willingness to deceive are two sides of the same coin. One evening, however, the carefree mood of the sum…

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  • Tue. 26 October 2021
  • 19:00
  • Kulturkirche Köln
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

It’s a precarious situation: Charlie, Ferdi and Raimund want to find fame and fortune with Glitterschnitter, but they’ll need more than a drill, drums and a synthesizer to get into Wall City Noise. Wiemer wants H.R. to paint a picture, but he’s more interested in setting up the perfect IKEA apartment. Frank and Chrissie want to turn an old bar into a cake-fueled latte hell, but Erwin would rather create a temporary meeting place for expectant parents. And they still haven’t figured out whether Klaus suffered two different wounds, or the same one twice... Sven Regener is a musician (Element of Crime) …

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  • Tue. 26 October 2021
  • 19:30
  • Theater am Tanzbrunnen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

The world is changing and we are right in the middle of it. Current news reports depict a gloomy future. Is humanity destroying itself? Or are we creating a new, shiny future together? What’s your view? We would like to read about your own personal visions of the future! For the first time ever, the OffSpring Award will be presented as part of the lit.COLOGNE special edition. This award was initiated and is sponsored by Flossbach von Storch AG. You have until September 30 to submit your own short stories, essays or poems to comingofage@litcologne.de. Our jury will select the three most i…

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  • Tue. 26 October 2021
  • 21:00
  • BALLONI Hallen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

It was a time when Jean-Paul Sartre was eating cheesecake with Simone de Beauvoir at Kranzler-Eck in Berlin, Henry Miller and Anaïs Nin were enjoying wild nights in Paris, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway were having passionate affairs in New York, and Bertolt Brecht and Helene Weigel and Katia and Thomas Mann were fleeing into exile. It was also the same era when the Nazis were seizing power in Germany, burning books and intensifying violence against Jews. Liebe in Zeiten des Hasses [“Love in Times of Hate”] is a sweeping panorama from the best-selling virtuoso author Florian Illies (“19…

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  • Wed. 27 October 2021
  • 19:30
  • Theater am Tanzbrunnen
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Former German Chancellor Angela Merkel retired six weeks ago and moved to the Uckermark region with her husband and her pug. After her turbulent life in Berlin, however, she finds it difficult to settle into tranquil country life. Just baking and hiking soon gets boring. When Baron Philip von Baugenwitz is poisoned and found dressed in knight’s armor inside a dungeon that is locked from the inside, Angela is revitalized. Supported by her loving husband and her gentle bodyguard Mike, she sets off on the dangerous search for the murderer. Successful author and screenwriter David Safier (“Lousy Kar…

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  • Thu. 28 October 2021
  • 19:30
  • KOMED-Saal im MediaPark
  • Accessibility

In ihrer jüngsten, eigensinnigen Veröffentlichung Der Beamte sagte erfindet Literaturnobelpreisträgerin Herta Müller eine neue, ganz eigene Form des literarischen Erzählens. Eine Geschichte in Collagen. Gezeigt werden Szenen im Auffanglager einer deutschen Kleinstadt. Einer der Beamten in der Erzählung ist ein gewisser Herr Fröhlich von der Prüfstelle B. Ein anderer breitet bei jeder Begegnung die Arme aus wie ein Vogel und sagt: „Oh, oh, oh.“ Aberwitzige Gespräche mit ihnen werden zu einem unfreiwillig komischen Schlagabtausch. Und dann ist da das Heimweh der Geflohenen, das immer größer wird und an de…

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  • Thu. 28 October 2021
  • 20:00
  • Stadthalle Köln-Mülheim
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Those who like to travel should take a trip to Sprachland [“Language Land”]. The people there are not interested in the despicable drudgery of proper speaking and grammatically correct writing. Quite the opposite: They are interested in the incorrect, the hilariousness of the highfalutin and the lowfalutin, being irritated, and poetry. Here, time is measured in “pampering minutes”, people work in “narcolepsy offices”, have “fowl-body tattoos” and the word zipper is written “kzipper” with a silent k. Species such as the “acorn pike,” “smoking mad salmon” and the “cindereela” have survived here. Every week, Axel Hack gif…

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  • Sat. 30 October 2021
  • 18:00
  • Stadthalle Köln-Mülheim
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Edgar Selge is one of Germany’s best-known character actors. “Hast du uns endlich gefunden” [“You Finally Found Us”] is his literary debut – breathless, radical, musical and personal. A 12-year-old boy is growing up in a middle-class home in 1960. World War II is not all that long ago and his parents are trying to make up for what they call their “lost years” with a devotion to classical music and literature. The boy senses rifts everywhere in this orderly world. Spellbound, he follows the political debates his older brother gets into with his father and mother at the dinner table. But he remains a spect…

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  • Sat. 30 October 2021
  • 19:30
  • Börsensaal der IHK zu Köln
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Climate change is a crisis for humanity. And it is up to humans to solve it – policymakers, scientists, businesses, society, each individual. We can only do this together. We have never had more breathtaking options, if only we are able to take action on a global scale. A girl with a cardboard sign was able to trigger a climate revolution. A new team in the Oval Office changes the course of the world’s most powerful nation. High technology, civic engagement, networking – it’s all there. We’re not lacking in ideas – what we lack is implementation. This evidence-based and captivating new page-turner…

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  • Sat. 30 October 2021
  • 21:00
  • Stadthalle Köln-Mülheim
  • Accessibility
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang

Ombra is the story of a man brought back from the brink of death: In the summer of 2019, Hanns-Josef Ortheil (born in 1951) discovers that he suffers from severe chronic heart failure. He undergoes an operation, but complications arise and he has to spend months in rehab. He is a prolific author (“The Invention of Life”) who rarely spares himself – but he now finds himself at a crossroads. His body has taken over, and is refusing to cooperate. Gradually, Ortheil emerges from his fear and his feeling of helplessness, and starts writing again. In what must be his most personal book yet, he recon…

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  • Sat. 06 November 2021
  • 19:30
  • Flora Köln
  • Accessibility
    • Induktionsschleife
    • Rollstuhlgerechter Zugang
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