Eva Menasse

Worked Up Is Better Than Mellow

Lieber aufgeregt als abgeklärt

Worked Up Is Better Than Mellow

Eva Menasse’s essays and speeches give us another opportunity to rediscover the author’s spiritedness and irrepressible passion for writing: in lovingly mischievous observations about Germans and Austrians, in committed political interventions, but also in passionate acknowledgements of favorite authors like Richard Yates, Alice Munro and Ulrich Becher. She pays special attention to the public role of the author, a field in which it is common knowledge that one can do nothing right.

Last year’s Heinrich Böll Prize winner attempts to determine what the namesake of the prize would think, write and do today. She quarrels with Günter Grass, but still delivers a birthday speech for him. She praises the literary-musical genius of Georg Kreisler and thanks Imre Kertész for making the effort for himself and his readers with his relentless literary accuracy.

Eva Menasse’s poignant and elegant texts take a refreshing look at today’s world and demonstrate the relevance of literature. They take a stand and deliver a strong case against half-heartedness.

“Literature is an arduous practice. It offers more questions than answers. When it does provide answers, it is to questions other than the ones we asked. It has dark wrinkles and gloomy re-cesses. And that is the very reason why it illuminates and enlightens.”



ISBN: 978-3-462-04729-5
release: 09. February 2015
256 pages, gebunden mit SU


18,99 €
0,00 sFr
19,60 €

About the Author

Eva Menasse was born in 1970 in Vienna and began her career as a journalist. She now lives and works in Berlin as a publicist and writer. Her debut novel Vienna won the Corine Award for Best Debut and its English translation was shortlisted for the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize. Her short story collection Lässliche Todsünden (2009, “Venial Sins”) also achieved great success among critics and readers. She was awarded the Gerty Spies Prize, the Alpha Literature Prize, and the Heinrich Böll Prize of the city of Cologne for her novel Quasikristalle (2013, “Quasicrystals”). In 2015, her essay collection Lieber aufgeregt als abgeklärt was published, she was a fellow of the Villa Massimo in Rome and won the Jonathan Swift Award for satire and humor for her work. Other awards include the Friedrich Hölderlin Prize in 2017 and the Ludwig Börne Award 2019 for her outstanding accomplishments in the field of essays, critique and reportage. Her latest work is the short story collection Tiere für Fortgeschrittene (2017) which was awarded the Austrian Book Prize 2017.