DER BÖSE MENSCH/ EVIL PEOPLE
Ca. 150 pages, Autumn 2017
English sample available
“Evil People is ambitious in its wide array of subjects and approaches to storytelling. The fact that several of the stories overlap with one another has the effect of enveloping the reader in a fractured but convincingly cohesive world. This is a thought-provoking read which is destined to become a talking point.“ new books in german spring 2018
“A great work of literature” SWR
“Without judging Lorenz Just shows in his masterly stories the cruel ambivalence of the evil in our times.” Theresa Hübner, WDR 5
“(…) a diagnosis that mirrors the dormant evil in our existence. Language plays a crucial part here and with language Lorenz Just knows perfectly well to deal with.” Guy Helmiger, Luxemburger Tageblatt
A bold game using fiction, authentic material and literary role models
Stories that delicately communicate amongst each other and prevail unpredictably
A Warlord in the Bath
What is evil? Does it even exist? Is the term out-dated, dissolved by subtle differentiation, or is it regaining relevance given our speechlessness toward so many things nowadays? Lorenz Just sets out to find answers in his stories. He gets close to people, their biographies, their surroundings – stories, spaces, people who are all somehow contaminated with what we call ‘evil’. Who have burdened themselves with guilt or who make themselves guilty by doing what they do, thinking what they think, saying what they say. The figures range from a man who ruminates about his life in the bath and who turns out to be a former warlord, to the nice elderly library visitors who suddenly reveal unexpected abysses.
Just makes visible, without judging – and evokes evil as a mighty as well as ambivalent category. ‘Evil People’ is also a book about the presence of memory, the afterlife of past atrocities in all of us – and about different strategies for living with something that can receive no absolution.
Lorenz Just is an impressively strong, unique new voice.
Lorenz Just, born in 1983, studied Islamic Studies in Halle an der Salle. During his university studies he spent lengthy periods of time in Egypt as well as in Lebanon at the Orient Institute in Beirut. He also travelled in Yemen, Syria and Iran. He was a student at the German Literary Institute in Leipzig from 2011 to 2015, and finalist in the 2014 MDR Literary Competition. In 2015, he published his YA book ‘Mohammed. The Unknown Life of the Prophet.’ (Gabriel Verlag). ‘The Evil Human’ is his literary debut.