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Nov. 12: Generations of Immigrant Experiences: Poetry Reading and Historic Walking Tour


A chance to gain a new appreciation for the German presence in Indiana from two of the German community's most important persons

When: Saturday, November 12 1:30 PM - 4:00 PM

Where: The Athenaeum, 401 East Michigan St. Indianapolis

In the restored Athenaeum, built by German immigrants, poet Norbert Krapf will read from his work about his family’s multi-generational immigrant experience, a true story of moving and staying. Selections include poems that tell the story of his Franconian ancestors’ journey to the Southern Indiana wilderness, growing up in the rural German community, a move to the East Coast and his children’s arrival from Colombia, and the family’s final return to Indiana. (For those of you who are as poorly informed about Germany and the German language: Franconia is part of Bavaria; Franconian German is a very broad cluster of dialects including Dutch German and Afrikaans ... if Giles Hoyt reads IndyBuzz, I am sure to get an e-mail correncting me, thanks in advance Giles.)

According to an e-mail today from Norbert:

I am back from a stimulating and productive trip to Germany, where I spent time with my poet and playwright friend Helmut Haberkamm, whose new dialect play premiered during my visit and whose new book of Franconian translations and adaptations of American and English songs, including a number by Bob Dylan, is just out. While I was there in Erlangen, where we lived 1988-89, Helmut also did two performances with singer-songwriter Johann Muller based on these Franconian adaptations, which inspired me to write “The Franconian Tambourine Men," and I also read my poems to several classes at Helmut's Gymnasium.I came back with new ideas and lots of new poems.

After the reading, Giles Hoyt, Director of the Max Kade German-American Center, will lead a walking tour of the Athenaeum and several German-American sites in the vicinity. In case of inclement weather, the walking tour will be replaced by a slide presentation.

Questions? Call 274-2330 or e-mail Giles at ghoyt@iupui.edu.

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