Weil es sagbar ist (Because we can speak)

Published in Japanese

How can we talk about war and violence? Why does violence often silence its victims? What does that mean for those who are spared?

For years, Carolin Emcke has travelled to countries destroyed by war and violence. Time and again she is asked to put people’s awful experiences down on paper. Are there limits to our ability to comprehend? Barriers to what we can speak about? What conditions must a society create so that the victims of violence can talk about what they have suffered? Carolin Emcke addresses these questions in her essays, believing that it is not only possible, but necessary, to relate the suffering of others – for the victims of violence as well as for the community, in which we want to live. She argues against the “indescribable”, and for the ethos of empathy and narration.