U n i K a s s e l - J u l y 0 9 - w w w . b l a n k p a p e r. d e students have interesting thoughts


p04 K19

Rock Concert Concert Dreams

p06 Desasta p08 Wildest

p10 Wetlands p14 Art

Exhibition Zusaks “The Book Thief”

p20 Markus

art opinion creative

p26 A

New Twist to Magic the Gathering on war, rationality, and free will

p12 Thoughts p16 You

shall not bear false witness ... You

p17 With p18 The


p19 HIM!!! p19 Music

of Aggression

p22 Blueday p23 Neptune’s

Milk over the rainbow

p24 Somewhere

2 <table_of_contents>

Ah, the agony ...
Damnit, this semester went by too fast. We could barely feel it getting warmer outside, and then, exams! Pesky little things, those module tests. There are so many of them, one has to wonder if we are going to get graded for sleeping, too, in the future? Of course, sitting in my English course right now and looking around, I can‘t help but notice that some of us already receive credits for being alive and breathing regularly. I can feel their pain. The agony of involuntary wisdom. But thanks to some rule changes that came with the new system of bachelor and master degrees, those types of students wont pass Level I Sprachpraxis. Or so I sincerely hope. Which means that they are going to drop after 2 semesters, idealy, while the people before them dropped only after 6 or more years, mostly because of not being ably to make it through the finals. No one ever told them the truth, when truth should have been told: „You‘re no good at English! Better study something you‘re good at!“ Most of us „leftovers“, that is you and me, feel a different kind of pain later on. The agony of wanting to gain wisdom, but not being alowed to do so. If you ever tried to study abroad, you know excactly what I am talking about. Thinking back to our Sit-In this semesters, I really can‘t shake the feeling that instead of visiting the chancelors office, we should have paid the AAA a friendly visit. But for that, a third kind of pain would have to be overcome. You surely know what I mean, right? In this issue, you can see what can be done by only a handfull of students all over the Institut. There are reviews and lots of photos from the <blank>fest, a short review and another round of photos from the latest theatre performance by the Red Bricks, and of course lots of creative writing and opinion pieces. We wish you all the best for your exams and a great „free time“ (jokealert) in hopefully warmer and drier weather than we have enjoyed so far. Yours, <blank>

<editorial> 3

Kassel is without a doubt a cultural hot spot in North Hesse. Unfortunatly, this does not hold true for live rock music. That’s where <blank> comes into play: We invited five extremely talented bands and artists and asked them to play a rock concert at K19, all of them eager to entertain, rock out, kick ass, ...you name it. A dark hall. Four musicians are waiting on stage. Some 300 guests have gathered to watch them perform. They have high expectations. Silence. The drummer shoves his stick through the hot air and hits the drumset. The sound fills the room, while the other band members set in to open Hybrids’s Lo-Fi Punk performance. Singer Tom Clark did not wait long until he turned into a human energy bomb and captivated the cheering audience. Reminiscient of bands like the Pixies, Clark’s infamous band of rock veterans turned out to be just the right choice for an opening band that night. Our favorite teenage band Atlas was the second band to play. Being quite famous among Hesse’s indie scene, they took the opportunity and presented some songs off their new album “Talking in Headlines”. The band plays their own brand of indie rock with strong melodies and vibrant vocals. The musicians who have an average age of 18 performed like seasoned professionals. Their young age combined with an outstanding musicianship might be the reason why their music sounds so fresh. Think a young Interpol sprinkled with some Bloc Party... or just skip descriptions and go see them play! After so much electric rock music Edmund Lowman set a musical counterpoint with his acoustic love songs. The audience enjoyed the poppy performance by the ex member of popular bands such as Red Jumpsuit Apparatus and Rosebud. He did not only play songs from his own repertoire, but also some covers ranging from Katy Perry to Justin Timberlake. Once he hit the stage, there was barely a girl in the room without her cell phone

K19 rock co

4 <blank>fest

out, taking pictures, making videos, screaming things we are not allowed to print – Yes, that guy is a rockstar. Springfield was next on the list. We are convinced that the Gießen-based newcomers have great prospects and are able to become one of the top alternative bands. Energy might be the keyword here, and though it was getting late, the audience got their moves on and danced until sweat covered the instruments. And once again, Katy Perry was cited onstage...weird coincidence. Springfield can be seen as the groove element in our line-up, as their straight forward indie rock features great hooklines and a seething groove. It was already past midnight when Oceans And Elephants began to perform their intensive songs. They were supported by a lively crowd and showed no signs of sleepiness at this late hour. In fact, the crowd was still so very unsleepy, they demanded encores even past 2 o’ clock. The attentive observer must have noticed: Unique sound apparently appeals to people. Enchanted by several hours of live music, the remaining audience members stayed until the doors were closed at 5 in the morning. And that was it – We couldn’t think of a more diverse line-up for a festival like <blankfest>. We really hope each of you who went there got a lot out of it. By the way, we are thrilled to announce <blankfest 2010>! Our idea is to take <blankfest> to the next level and make it even better. Until then, watch out for other <blank> events! Marc Motyka and Franz Mutschler For more inFormation about the bands: Hybrid - hybrid-music.com Atlas - myspace.com/atlasmusik Edmund Lowman - myspace.com/edmundrock Springfield - myspace.com/springfieldhome Oceans and Elephants - myspace.com/oceansandelephants

<blank>fest 5


review desasta

Nadine Lena
Despite being busy with organizing the poetry and philosophy slam as well as embedding the Red Brick Company into our program, I managed to catch the performance of my good friend Nadine Fingerhut and her younger sister Lena just in time for their performance inside the Desasta café. Despite the fact that the audience had shrank a bit, probably because many people were eager to see Professor Tom Clark´s band perform at K19, the siblings put on a show that put goose bumps on everyone’s skin. Their set included a selection of their own songs as well as two cover versions: Creep by Radiohead and Pokerface by Lady Gaga; While I consider Creep to be a staple on the soundtrack of my youth, I was sceptical at first when I detected the Pokerface lyrics. It turned out that my worries were misplaced, however, because they managed to turn an average popular song into a heartwarming acoustic ballad. Impressive guitar play by the 14-year-old Lena and a voice by Nadine that sends shivers down your spine completed a very enjoyable evening. Murat Sezi For more Info: Nadine and Lela Fingerhut- -myspace.com/nadinefingerhut

Gudrun Hahn and D a v i d We n d e r o t h
When Gudrun said she would like to play an acoustic set at <blank> fest I had no clue what to expect. I assumed, from her poetry, some caustic sarcastic lyrics about life, politics and maybe even love. When she told me that she and David practiced for the first time a few hours before the performance I laughed anxiously. All those worries were put to rest as soon as Gudrun started singing. She had a beautiful voice that was accompanied by poignant and often mocking lyrics. They had a way with the crowd, and while they did have some slip ups, due to the lack of practice, they more than made up for it with their hilarious diatribes and Gudrun’s voice.

Lars Heiler

Lars Heiler showed off his impressive guitar skills and his vocal stylings for us at café DesAsta. A packed house enjoyed classic Irish folk songs and a few well known covers. Particularly stunning was his rendition of Johnny Cash’s haunting cover of “One.” 6 <blank>fest

-sponsoren / anzeigen -

fitnessFitness für Frauen center professionelle

Als Frauenfitnessstudio mit ca. 700 qm² Trainingsfläche befinden wir uns in der Wilhelmshöher Allee 137 in Kassel. Unser Ziel ist es auf die individuellen Bedürfnisse unserer Kunden einzugehen um dann gemeinsam die optimalen Trainingsmöglichkeiten für Sie auszuarbeiten.

Neben den hochwertigen Kraftgeräten modernen Einzelbildschirm-Geräten im Cardiopark und dem neu renovierten Wellnessbereich, halten wir noch mehr Fitness- und Relaxkurse für Sie bereit! Nicht ohne Stolz können wir sagen, dass die Anzahl unserer Kurse begleitet von den qualifizierten Trainerinnen uns zur Nummer 1 in Kassel machen!

Wenn wir Ihr Interesse geweckt haben, so vereinbaren Sie doch mit uns Ihr persönliches Beratungsgespräch oder kommen gleich vorbei. Sie sind uns immer herzlichst Willkommen!

w w w. s h e b o d y - k a s s e l . d e
The <blank> team is proud to call SheBody our best and most loyal supporter. Thank You!

<sponsors> 7

From top left: Babett Schultze, Benjamin Stutz, Daniel Bode, Peter Carqueville, Julia Rausch From lower left: Julia Schmitt, Marvin Herbring, AnneKathrin Paddags

performed by the Red Brick Company
Regular <blank> readers will no doubt have seen the series on role-playing games (RPGs), and should really also have seen a production or two by the Red Brick Theatre Company. Well, this semester these two subjects were spectacularly brought together in Alan Ayckbourn’s Wildest Dreams. Arriving expecting to see a play about RPGs, I was astonished to see a play unfold which included two strokes, one broken nose, a forty-something baby and then, that kiss. A seemingly fairly straightforward group of role-players soon reveal themselves to be much more complex: we see a harassed and rather unfulfilled middle-aged couple (Peter Carqueville and Anne-Kathrin Paddags), a previously abused recluse (Julia Schmitt), a teenage fantasist (Marvin Herbring) and a malevolently pedantic VAT inspector (Daniel Bode). However, when they are joined by a beautiful and charming young woman (Babett Schultze) fleeing from an abusive husband, the group is cast into disarray and forced to confront real problems instead of retreating into their fantasy world as before. The play is a finely-judged examination of the human condition, from teen angst to mid-life crisis and the Red Brick Theatre Company deftly balanced drama and dark humour, fantasy and real-life. An intelligent and innovative use of the stage meant that we could see up to three threads of the plot at once and the acting was, as has become customary for the Red Bricks, impeccable. However, the on-stage fireworks were this time rather more literal… Helping the actors to shine, Lars Heiler was joined as director this time by Dagmar Hasenkamp and Dennis Wienert, with music composed by Marc Motyka which was easily the equal of many commercial pieces. Considerable amounts of hard work by others behind the scenes also helped to make Wildest Dreams a great success. Well done to the Red Brick Theatre Company for daring to take on such a challenging play and for making it such a success! We impatiently awaiting the next production. Alastair Purves 8 <culture>

Wildest Dreams

<culture> 9

<Sabine Krause> Some people described the book as entertaining and humorous, others as perverse and provocative. I would simply describe it as disgusting. In a way, it’s also entertaining because once you start reading, you don’t want to stop before you have finished it. But I’m sure that this book is responsible for my water bill being so high because ever since I read it, I make sure to wash my hands much more often and my showers are longer to make sure that I’m completely clean. I’m not conservative at all and I usually like reading about masturbation, sex or the exchange of body fluids. I can recommend a very exciting erotic novel in German which is called Zuckermond by Astrid Martini. The dialogues are a bit flat but the sex scenes are amazing! And who reads an erotic novel for the dialogues anyway? But in Wetlands, the protagonist describes how unhygienically she lives her life and that on purpose. She tells us, how she wipes the toilet seat with her “pussy” and how she leaves used tampons all over the hospital to make sure that other people benefit from her bacteria. She goes on describing how she doesn’t wash her vagina for weeks at a time, so that the smell is overpowering which is supposed to attract men. Is that true? If it is, I’ll stop dating at once! Or do guys really like it when girls wipe some wetness of their vagina behind their ears? I also wasn’t so keen on reading about her haemorrhoids surgery and how deliberately she hurt herself with pushing a pedal of a hospital bed up her butt to be able to stay longer in hospital because she fell in love with a male nurse. And for everybody who likes happy endings, I can assure that there is one. I, however, hate happy endings and that’s why I will stick to reading more horror fiction; it doesn’t make me feel so uncomfortable about people around me. I can deal better with murder than with bacteria. I’m not telling you not to read Wetlands. Read it! It’s definitely binding; just make sure you’ve already eaten and preferably already digested your food before reading it because you might loose your appetite. before reading it because you might loose your appetite.

by Charlotte Roche


10 <review>

Dear Bob, THANK YOU. <blank>fest would not have been possible ...

... without your help, support, and patience! Your audiophiles, The English Students of Kassel University
<sponsors> 11


review art exhibition
Art always lies in the eye of the beholder, but the art exhibit on <blankfest> has shown that it is impressive nonetheless. As a participant myself, I can call my Steampunk-exhibit a huge success. My goal was to show people my definition of Steampunk and to make them aware of this special retrofuturistic movement. Judging from the response to my work, I am pretty satisfied with the result. This is partially due to the fact that my part of the exhibit stood in direct relation to the work of another artist from the “Kunsthochschule” who presented his „Dr. Schnabel“-costume, which he had done as a semester-work. The artist, Lars Gnerlich, called Dr. Schnabel a modern reinterpretation of the famous plaque doctors from the Middle Ages and it stood representatively for our very ancient fear of illness and our modern way of dealing with it. Interestingly enough, as the artist told the visitors, we do not react to illness as progressively as we might think. Some of our modern methods of prevention and cure are as old as the original plaque-doctor paintings. The pictures shown in this article were taken by one of the exhibition artists himself. Marius Stein presented some of his pictures and, as young as this person might be, his eye for detail and his understanding for the different angles and methods of photography are definitely something to behold and his pictures have shown this very impressively. Speaking of impressive: the paintings shown by the young artist Lennart were not only impressive from a technical perspective, they were nearly as outstanding in scale. His paintings juggled with their own hugeness and the contrast to our small perception, contrasted contrasts, color and several

12 <review>

painting techniques and one might be reminded of the famous artist M.C. Escher when looking at the confusing stairways of one of his smaller paintings. Art does not always have to be big to be remarkable. This was shown imposingly by R13. Especially his several canvas works impressed me as they broke the border between the paintings and their surroundings. His creativity and the realization of his ideas have definitely left an impression. The only female artist who presented her paintings on <blankfest> was Natalia Bogorad, whose works could be described as modern Gothic Paintings. The play with perspectives shown in her paintings and her ideas prove great creativity and I wouldn’t mind having one of her works on my wall at home. Last but positively not least, the airbrush paintings of the tattoo-artist David, from Udopea Tattoo Kassel consisted of in-your-face-creativity. The pictures were not only worth mentioning from a technical point of view but also from their content. I, for one, have never seen something like this before and if you haven’t been there, I don’t think the pictures in this issue will do this work credit. This is true, of course, for all of the pieces shown on <blankfest> and I can only give you my subjective perspective but I think I speak for all participants when I say that this should not have been the last art exhibit presented on our campus. Although we all know how artists see their own works, their names are definitely worth remembering (except for mine of course). Dennis Wienert

<review> 13

Thoughts on war, rationality,
A couple of weeks ago I watched a movie called „Sweet November“. It stars Keanu Reeves and Charlize Theron and is, essentially, boring as hell. A romance/drama that follows the standard Hollywood guidelines for movies of this genre, but I guess it is one of those movies you have to watch with the girlfriend some of the time to keep her happy. There was one good thing about this movie, however: it inspired this article. “Sweet November” featured the song “Only Time” by Enya, which reminded me of the corresponding MTV video, which showed the airplanes crashing into the two towers of the World Trade Center. And then I remembered what I was doing on the 11th of September 2001, or more specifically, how I had just gotten back from New York on the 10th of September 2001. On the 11th, I was sitting in my living room, not really doing anything, while my mother was ironing shirts. Then my phone rang, and it was my neighbour, telling me to turn on CNN. I turn on CNN, realize what is going on, start up a conversation with my mother, and out of the corner of my eye I see the second plane heading for the second tower. I then proceed to tape the next 6 hours or so of the coverage. At some point in these 6 hours, I realize that I had agreed to go bowling with friends. I am somewhat reluctant about this because I am really shaken up, but I decide to go anyway. But I digress; let me get back to what “Sweet November”, an Enya song and what the attacks of 9/11 have to do with this article. Basically, for a long time I have been interested in things like free will, destiny, and the rationality/irrationality of mankind. So my question is this: why do we have wars? Is there any coherent logic behind it? Granted, men and women much smarter, educated and more qualified than me have raised these questions, but guess what: that is not going to stop me from asking. There is no greater danger than to cease reflecting upon our own actions and the actions of others. Let us first look at some of the most commonly postulated reasons to start a war: money/natural resources, territorial interests, and religious differences. For individuals, participating in war might have to do with patriotic belief, national doctrine, the possibility of spoils or the wish to “prove” one-

“Hell is other people” - Jean-Paul Sartre, E

self. Are these “rational” interests? I think they are, the religious one possibly aside. However, I still consider any kind of war to be madness. There is a StudiVZ group that is called “Stell dir vor es ist Krieg und niemand geht hin” which roughly translates to something like” Imagine there is war and no one goes there”. I have been told that this was actually said by a German writer and taken out of context, but the truth of it remains the same. Oftentimes, I have been told that I am an idealist, and people have often, not always, said this in a way that led me to believe that they hold this to be a negative attribute. I, however, pride myself on this, even though I listen to less Ton, Steine, Scherben these days and attend fewer Antiwar demonstrations. But let me get back to rationality and irrationality. I firmly believe that humans are completely irrational, and the funny thing is that we actually pride ourselves on being rational. We demand of others to act rationally. Well, then let me ask you this: if we are so rational, why do we kill for trivial reasons? Has history not taught us anything? Let me examine this question by using Germany as an example. World War II. 65 million people dead. Granted,

14 <opinion>

and free will
us anything? Are the religious and moral teachings we receive not enough? And finally: why do people feel that it is necessary to be “proud” of your country, and what do they expect of it? I feel that more evil than good comes of it. I have always thought that there was something within the human “soul” that would prevent humans from killing one another, but I only need to turn on the television or take a look at the paper to know that I am wrong. Let me quote from “Blood Meridian” by Cormac McCarthy: “War was always here. Before man was, war waited for him. The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner. War is God.[...]” I think that there is a lot of truth contained within this quote. There is no single event in history that would have propelled mankind to stop fighting wars. Instead, we continue to construct more dangerous weapons, find better ways to desensitise soldiers, find more clever ways to justify war. We are not enlightened and we are not rational. War will always be. Unless… I did tell you that I am an Idealist. So do I think that war will always have to exist? No, I do not. Without getting into a debate about determinism versus free will here, I am going to say that I do not believe in free will. I would, however, wager that something like 99% of the people who are going to read this are. So my appeal is this: use it! If there is free will, then we are the ones who are shaping our future. If free will exists, then yes, a world without war is possible. It is not “the government” or “the others” who make the rules. You make the rules. Following Immanuel Kant´s categorical imperative, we have to do the right thing or the system breaks down. From this we can derive that if the system if flawed, that we have to do the wrong thing. What I am trying to say is: do not be afraid to use your mind, and do not be afraid of being chastised for standing up for what you believe in. Murat Sezi


Germany, or Germans, or the Germans living at that time, were not directly “responsible” for all of these deaths, but lately it has come to my attention that young Germans want to distance themselves completely from these events. They want to be “proud” of their country and heritage. They do not want to carry the blame for actions their forefathers took. They do not want to be stereotyped via their history. All of this is understandable. And all of this is very, very dangerous. Germans are actually in a very unique position; we have the benefit that we have to carry this burden around with us! I cannot imagine that there is another country that has spent as much time challenging its own history, its own identity. Why can’t we be proud of this? Is it not much more difficult to accept ones fallacies than to deny them? One would think that learning about the events of WW II for something like 8 years during school would sensibilize a nation for things like war and prejudice. Judging from recent studies, however, this is not the case at all. Ethnic prejudice among students is steadily increasing. History has a tendency to repeat itself if the players are not careful. How can this be? I repeat: has history not taught

<opinion> 15

God says:
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.”
“You came back late yesterday! It was two o’ clock in the morning. Where were you?” my 80-year-old neighbour asked me last week. She likes to concern herself with the lives of other persons, preferably her direct neighbours. Sounds funny, but you’d stop laughing if your neighbour puts private details about you on the internet. RottenNeighbour.com is a website which allows everyone to do that: Simply type in your neighbour's address, some facts about him and click on send. The entries are then shown together with a map, indicating where the most annoying neighbours live. Surprisingly, thousands of people are using this platform to spread rumors and neighbourhood gossip. There’s no need to provide evidence – an interesting story and the corresponding address are enough. Originally, RottenNeighbour.com was created to help persons looking for a new home. It is supposed to show where good and bad areas of a city are situated. Instead, the website became a startling spot for world-wide denunciation. “My neighbour beats his dogs and I suspect he has beaten his wife and kids.” writes one user. Others emphasize how nice their neighbours are: “This family is always together. They are friendly, involved with the community through church, school, and the neighborhood watch.” On RottenNeighbours.com, one can see that privacy is loosing its value. Most posts are submitted anonymously, although the authors don’t hestitate to publish name and address of their detested neighbours. Sometimes pictures are added. Sometimes even a video. The newest feature of RottenNeighbour.com is a search engine for sexual offenders and criminals. A small excerpt: “My neighbour digs big holes in his back yard very late at night. Very noisy. Drives on wrong side of the road.” A worried user answered: “I'd be careful sounds like a serial killer.” Sure. If you are an American resident, you can enter your zip code and find out whether dangerous people lurk in your area. No one seems to complain about the ever-growing database. The voyeuristic website has so many visitors each day that it actually slows down at peak times. On the official forum of RottenNeighbour.com are a few desperate complaints. A private user says: “My ex-girlfriend is attempting to ruin my reputation in my community and my dating life. Her comment on this site could be considered libel, slander, and defamation. People can use this site as a tool for revenge. It is useless.” He got one answer: “If your potential dates are reading this message board, just find some new girls to date in the next town.” Who’s crazy now? Marc Motyka

16 <opinion>

With You
A red balloon takes off at noon. I beckon and walk back alone. A famous band will play here soon. I wish them fun and leave for home. The only thing I want to do is to share my time with you. (Marc Motyka) Y | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |

<creative> 17

The Island
I always had such a good connection here on the island in the middle of nowhere. And even my German phone didn't work. It actually scared me a bit because now I couldn’t reach anybody in case something happened. But I thought that something must be wrong with the network. I had a quick lunch/dinner. However, I wasn’t really hungry because I felt quite lonely and I convinced myself that my host family would be back soon with delicious sausages for the bbq. But it became later and later and there was still no sign of them. Although the island isn’t big, there is one more house on it, but it also just serves as a summer cottage. So, I walked along the gravel road to find it and looked inside, but it seemed to be empty as well. I was sure that something must have happened to my host family. Maybe they had a terrible accident or maybe they all drowned. However, I decided to go to bed and hoped that it was all just a bad dream and that I would wake up and everything would be back to normal. The next morning, the birds, mosquitoes or ducklings still hadn’t returned and the main house was just as deserted. Since I was feeling like I was stuck in one of those horror movies I like to watch, I decided to try out the kayak to get to the main land. I had never used it before, but it wasn’t so hard. You just had to be careful not to turn it over when you got in. When I got to the main land, the car of my host family was gone. I walked along the street to the next few houses and all of them were empty. I didn’t see one cat or hear a dog barking. I didn’t know what else to do and went back to the island. Back there I realized that the electricity in the main house wasn’t working: the fridge wasn’t cold and none of the lights were working. I hadn’t realized it before because here in Finland it is so bright at night that you don’t need any artificial light. I have now been alone on the island for 4 days. I barely have any food left. I did a few more trips to the main land and walked along the streets to knock on the doors of other houses, but all of them are empty and everything around me seems to be dead. I have the feeling that even the trees are dying. I have no idea what happened. Was there some kind of attack? But of what? Poison? An atomic bomb? And why did my host parents leave me alone? Did they have to flee so fast that there was no time to inform me? I don’t know what to do except to stay here and wait for somebody to turn up to rescue me. Where else should I go? My laptop battery is nearly empty and since the electricity isn’t working, I can’t charge it. So, I need to go. Bye! Sabine Krause (Foto: Sabine Krause)

I thought that being an au pair in Finland would be a new and maybe even adventurous experience. But I didn’t know how adventurous! I’m sitting in a little hut by a lake with no electricity and water in the middle of Finland and having a fire burning by my side. I can see the movement of the water and the wind in the leaves when I look out of the window. Sounds romantic, doesn’t it? But there is a problem; a big problem! The hut I spend my nights in belongs to the property of my host mom’s mother and it is on an island which can only be reached by boat. The main house is quite small and doesn’t have enough space for all of us. And I was quite glad to have my own place to sleep in because I tend to wake up very easily when I share a room with somebody else. But the hut is about 500 m away from the main house. However, so far, I’ve made my way through the forest every morning to have my morning toilet and breakfast and it seemed good to have some fresh air right after getting up. But one morning something seemed to be wrong. It was quieter than normal: I couldn’t hear any singing of the birds, the ducklings were gone and even the mosquitoes seemed to have disappeared. However, I still got up and went to the main house, but even that was quiet: No screaming of the two wild boys I take care of, no flickering TV and no Finnish voices. I figured that my host family must have gone to the main land to get some groceries because the boat was gone. So, I had breakfast alone and got dressed. I decided to sit by the lake and read while I was waiting for my host family to come back. But when it was afternoon, I became worried. They still weren’t back and I was seriously getting bored. I tried calling them, but my Finnish phone connection was dead although 18 <creative>

There are times, where I feel his COLD gaze, For I realize that I did something wrong. There are times, where I feel his WARM gaze, I only want to embrace him, with arms so strong. A bird is flying around its hidden nest, Feeding its offspring, the one which is blest. Because one day it will know what is best, Even I feel “abuzz” in my chest. Flowers catch your eyes, they are oh so marvelous Radiate scents, while I am passing by I am forgetting my words, which are libelous Believe me, for I am telling you no lie! I recognize the beauty of my surroundings And ask myself; where do they come from Blue, green, yellow and red Colors conspire together into something full-fledged. You want to know what I mean?! It is very simple, open your eyes and you will see! Wonders are presented on a silver platter There is no real time, for a chatter. Time is passing by oh so fast But for everything there is an “end”, at last He probably says “There is no real me, only an entity, or maybe something illusory” I can sense his presence, though he is not there I can´t see him, and where he is, I don´t know But one thing that is for sure, we must live too far below! Please! But let me say this one last thing: “God, it is so not fair!” by: Yasemin Cakmak

Music of Aggression
There is this something, living inside, That will not easily subside. Lord help me, for I do not want it to reside. That noise; oh so loud, My ears get annoyed by its trembling sound. It shares your body and despises distance, In a second, your mouth becomes its victim. That something is not minor like hums, It is more like the tempting African drums. Dangerous and wild; awaits to be set free, For it does not want to live like an isolated tree. Oh! But there is this one thing you know for sure, At the end there is no cure! Once it reaches the mouth, It does not differ between north and south. Within seconds it radiates its poison, Which leads to shouts in unison Where it comes from nobody knows, Where it comes from, nobody knows! by: Yasemin Cakmak

<creative> 19

Markus Zusak’s
during World War II. Death’s description of the story is rather apt: “It’s just a small story really, about, amongst other things: • A girl • Some words • An accordionist • Some fanatical Germans • A Jewish fist-fighter • And quite a lot of thievery.” Markus took time out from his busy writing and touring schedule to discuss music, his life as an author, and what inspired him to write the mesmerizing, comic and devastatingly touching novel, “The Book Thief,” amongst other things. how and why did you become a writer? It was the magical feeling of reading books and not noticing that I was turning the pages...You know when you get so lost inside a book that you see everything so clearly, and you're believing every word, even though it's fiction? That was when I thought, 'That's what I want to do with my life.' any advice For aspiring authors? Learn to endure and even enjoy failure. Failure has been my best friend as a writer. You work and work and you throw things out, but it's during that process that you're refining not only your ideas, but your own writing style. what role, iF any, does music play in your liFe and your writing? Favorite artists? I usually listen to music when I work. I know things are going well if the CD finishes and I didn't hear my favourite song. At the moment I'm particularly inspired by Eels. It's fantastic - work that stands on its own and only behaves completely as itself, if that makes sense. what inspired you to write the book thieF? Do you have some connection to Germany? My parents are from Austria and Germany, and I grew up hearing about their childhoods. Whether it was stories about the sky being on fire, or kids

„I am haunted by humans“ quips Death, the narrator of Markus Zusak’s „The Book Thief.“ Strong words from someone who has made a career out of collecting souls and uses the color of the sky to distract himself from the task at hand. “HERE IS A SMALL FACT You are going to die.” Death, admittedly, tries to be cheerful about the subject and interjects his own musings as he narrates the story of Liesel, a young foster child,

20 <review>

“The Book Thief”
giving bread to prisoners on their way to concentration camps, my siblings and I were always glued to our seats in the kitchen as we grew up in Sydney. I didn't realise then that those stories were the seeds of The Book Thief, twenty years later. there have been several books written about wwii, in the book thieF you look at it through the eyes oF a child. why? It was natural for me, purely because my parents were extremely young when World War II was raging in Germany. I saw that world through their eyes, and they saw it as children. i Fell in love with rudy aFter " the Jesse owincident," where did this idea come From and what should people take From it/learn From rudy? Rudy became my favourite character as soon as he became Jesse Owens. I originally wanted the kids to idolise footballers from that era, but then I went to the library and saw the spine of an Olympic history book. For some reason Jesse Owens entered my head and when that happens, you pay attention. I thought, 'I don't need footballers, I've got Jesse Owens'. I struggled for a while, thinking maybe that people might not believe a German boy would have such an obsession, but the more I researched, the more young rebels I found, and Rudy made sense. All I want people to get from Rudy is to feel his life force. He is someone who lives a short time, but here's a boy who jumps into a freezing river to rescue his best friend's book, who scatters bread on the road for suffering people, who loves, gives cheek, who steals and gives.

Liesel and Rudy are both very compassionate people seeing past, or rather not seeing at all, different races and religions. is
this touching on the point that hate is

learned rather than inherent and that perhaps we have a lot to learn From children?

Not really. I never think of myself as a thematic writer. I just hope that ideas come to the surface as the story unfolds. I never sat down and thought, 'This is the set of ideas I want to get across.' I just want the relationships to feel real, and hopefully, if the story's strong enough, the themes will rise. the book thieF isn't Just about "some Fanatical germans" there is a very powerFul coming oF age story here as well. was there an event(s)or person(s) in your liFe that has had a proFound impact on who you are today? No, I think there's just a collection of things that contribute. I was always ambitious. I fell in love with stories. I decided I wanted to be a writer. I had parents who worked hard for everything. I loved and fought with my brother and sisters. I guess everything adds up. what have you read recently? I just read Out Stealing Horses (Per Petterson) and The Model (Lars Saabye Christensen). I must be going through a Norwegian phase... Christensen is one of my favourite writers, The Half Brother especially. when are you coming to visit us at the university oF kassel in germany? :) Soon, I hope! death leaves us with a very chilling last note; any last thoughts? Not really...Death is a lot more profound than me! Okay, I'll try. My last thought comes back to writing. For me it gets harder, and I think that's how it should be. Hopefully it means the challenges are always increasing. Don Lowman

liesel steals books so that she can improve her reading, in a time when books were being burned For their content, it seems she was stealing more than Just the books. can you explain? It was a simple idea. On one hand, you have Hitler destroying people with words. On the other you have a girl stealing them back, and using them to write her own version of history, her own story and it's a beautiful story written amongst an ugly world.

<review> 21

Looking back now I’m rather sure it must have been a Tuesday, when out of that peculiar feeling which ties you up on days like Tuesday I evaded my room to hit the road and breathe some easement from the air of the city. And on the street that day I saw a child, running, whining. Twas a sound so shrill that it brought it all right back all the nights and sighs the splintered parts of distant grieve, trying to put your life at ease and blood-shot eyes which cries reveal, when feeling melts to amplitude: the horror in the positive and anger as the gush recedes through foggy clouds and narrow streets, and that one window with the colored pane – I saw the glance fixed at the ceiling carving dolphins: sound, unbreakable poignant manifesto of silent streams, when all you seek is a friend to share believes – honestly, I felt my skull shape changing or hurry rather, from the boy’s to the neglected design of my fathers, and I do sometimes, in wonder, ask myself when the moment passed that first I forgot to set my lands at order. And later on the same day I found myself walking homewards with a notion of anxiety in my sentiments, when in the avenue I saw trees (which guard the street) and little follies of man parked beneath them, an open-air of high-pitch chill, ineffable for lack of will. Me, I was just passing through, in a rush tottering like a drunken stag might do wild with wine, in some way free transient witness to the scene, which has left its impression on me about the contentment of the trees. (Christian Weiß)

22 <creative>

Neptune’s Milk
Down in the alley, where the past is vividly painted against grafiti facades, there she treads, “You gotta penny?” among smoky eructations of familiar strangers and abandoned cats. The crying of the beasts at night resembles, she gathers in a fright, the pyrrhic undoing of her doings in life. “Lend a hand, Ms, please show concern!” She chucks her wallet at the bum and turns.

Down the road, nine miles ahead, through and past the yard of lilies, in a thin afternoon dress she stands and shivers, while the ancient ocean with trained expertise gnaws at her feet, and the moon aloft begins to teethe. “What can I do,” she groans,” what can I do for you? My father was a fisherman, my mother was a whore, he sold her bold soliloquies, then boinked her at the shore.”

“Stop this scene,” whines the moon, waxing, whitening, as water swashes round her chest and wraps her in a sea-weed gown. “Dearest friend, immaculate balloon, you met the bride now salute the groom.” (Christian Weiß) <creative> 23

Somewhere over the rainbow…
Between lipstick and uniformed androgyny Between L.A. tomboys and tense masculinity Between motorbikes and stained hotel sheets-

There must be some kind of dollar store Selling pilot glasses and skinny jeans-

So give me a shot or two or three or four Make me forget make me blind make me hit and score Make me shapeless make me blend in make me not to blame Good morning –guess I didn..t catch your name

Maybe cause I..m still too drunk Maybe cause I..m partly deaf Maybe cause you look the same …

(Gudrun Hahn)

24 <creative>

-sponsoren / anzeigen -

Special Report on print24.de

This company knows what customers really need - appropriate prices, good service, fast printing and an easy way to implement own designs to produce your printing material. The first time I heard of this company was from a product-tester at my university, he showed me his v-cards and a flyer about his private office. I was surprised about the good quality and the fresh colors on his business-card. He gave me a voucher and I ordered some for myself…and now this company sponsored the <blankfest> at my university. They have a wide product-range from posters, flyers, business cards to brochures and mousepads. Just click on print24.de , use ”freedesign” to create your personal design and afterwards order it online in just a few minutes. If you have any problems with ordering or designing your material, you have the opportunity to chat with someone from print24 and to receive an answer in just a few seconds. So, to summarize, this company is up to date, fast and has an astonishingly good service…click on print24.de and give it a try!

<sponsors> 25

26 <art>

artwork by a new twist to

natalia bogorad, magic the gathering

<art> 27

Dear artists, musicians, thespians, volunteers, organizers and most of all our guests, Thank you for making <blank>fest a success.

Impressum Magazin der Studierenden der Anglistik / Amerikanistik des Fachbereiches 02 der Universität Kassel, Georg-Forster-Str. 3, 34109 Kassel Telefon: 0561 804 3352 eMail: dlowman@uni-kassel.de V..i.S.d.P.: Don Lowman Redaktion: Don Lowman, Pieter Coetzee Staff/Writers: Sabine Krause, Murat Sezi, Marc Motyka, Dennis Wienert, Karin Kolb, Don Lowman, Alastair Purves, Sabrina Lohmann, Franz Mutschler, Gudrun Hahn, Alan Cordell, Lilia Brestel, Daniel Aschenbrenner, Bastin Heß, Alastair Purves, Alan Cordell, Concetta Mugavero, Olliver Noll, Christian Weiß, Yasemin Cakmak, Natalia Bogorad Layout: Peter Carqueville (Cover-Bild: Flickr-User 19melissa68 under cc) Druck: Nordlicht Bildnachweise „Fl“= Flickr-User under CC: S.22 foxypar4 Fl, S.21 lumei FL, S.16 domk FL, S.14-15 Marius Stein, S.12-13 kevindooley Fl, S.10 the_infatuated Fl, S.8-9 Arne Heigele, S.4-5-6 Marius Stein, S.24 neogabox Fl, S.23 „pixel boogie“ Fl