Aris Fioretos

Aris Fioretos is a writer, essayist, poet and translator, and professor of aesthetics at Stockholm University. Born in Sweden, to a Greek father and Austrian mother, he studied with Jacques Derrida in Paris, and at Stockholm and Yale Universities, earning a PhD in comparative literature with The Critical Moment, a deconstructivist study of Friedrich Hölderlin, Walter Benjamin and Paul Celan. He has translated into Swedish works by Hölderlin, Celan and Nabokov into Swedish. His books in English translation include the novel, The Truth About Sascha Knisch; the collection of essays, The Solid Letter: Readings of Friedrich Hölderlin (Cultural Memory in the Present) and the almost unclassifiable The Gray Book.

Europe’’s secret name

Photo: Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images Give Europe a soul was the motto under which one of the Fathers of the European Union, Jacques Delors, launched a campaign for the cultural consolidation of Europe a few years ago. He was convinced that a common identity needed to be developed which went deeper than the Schengen Agreement and the common currency, otherwise individual interests could break the Union. While his intent was surely as serious as it was honest, the attendant expectations were somewhat naive. For, might one ask whether a soul could be prescribed, like cost saving measures or penicillin? […]