Posts Tagged ‘Freiburg’




WELCOME to Creative Writing at the Freiburger Writing Center (Schreibzentrum PH-Freiburg). Satis Shroff is a published writer, and if you’re interested in Creative Writing he will be guiding you in your writings. We can’t offer you credit-points for your writing but if you write for fun and want to take your writing forward then just come along and give it a try. Satis Shroff is an experienced lecturer, poet and writer and the published author of five books. You can read his books on http://www.Lulu.com/spotlight/satisle.


 Satis Shroff describes himself as a mediator between western and eastern cultures and sees his future as a writer and poet. Since literature is one of the most important means of cross-cultural learning, he is dedicated to promoting and creating awareness for Creative Writing and transcultural togetherness in his writings, and in preserving an attitude of Miteinander in this world. He lectures in Basle (Switzerland) and in Germany at the Academy for Medical Professions (University Klinikum Freiburg) and the VHS-Freiburg and VHS-Dreisamtal. He has worked as a Lehrbeauftragter for Creative Writing and Scientific English at the Uni Freiburg, and now at the PH.


Die Termine sind am: Montag, 12. Mai 2014 (von 18 Uhr bis 21 Uhr), Montag, 2. Juni, 2014 (18.00 bis 21 Uhr) und Montag, 7. Juli 7, 2014 (18.00 bis 21 Uhr).  


Creative Writing Workshop (Englisch): Öffnungszeiten: Mo 12-16, Di 14-16, Do 10-14 Uhr , (Telefon: 0761-682-191)  


Verbindliche Anmeldung unter: info@schreibzentrum-freiburg.de Gerd Bräuer PhD, braeuer@ph-freiburg.de Satis Shroff: satisle@myway.com What others have said about the author: Satis Shroff writes with intelligence, wit and grace. (Bruce Dobler, Associate Professor in Creative Writing MFA, University of Iowa). 


 ‘The manner in which Satis Shroff writes takes the reader right along with him. Extremely vivid and just enough and the irony of the music. Beautiful prosaic thought and astounding writing.  ‘Your muscles flex, the nerves flatter, the heart gallops, As you feel how puny you are, Among all those incessant and powerful waves.’

 “Satis Shroff’s writing is refined – pure undistilled.” (Susan Marie,Journalist & Writer, http://www.Gather.com)


  “I was extremely delighted with Satis Shroff’s work. Many people write poetry for years and never obtain the level of artistry that is present in his work. He is an elite poet with an undying passion for poetry.” Nigel Hillary, Publisher, Poetry Division – Noble House U.K.


 Copyright © 2014, Satis Shroff (Freiburg). You may republish this article online provided you keep the byline, the authors’ note, and the active hyperlinks. ———————————————————————————————————– COMMUNICATION 

 Module: Creative Writing: Poems, Short-stories, Microstories Lecturer: Satish Shroff, B.Sc. (Zoology, Botany), Dipl. Social Sciences, Creative Writing Uni Freiburg and Manchester (UK), writer, poet, journalist and artist. Max. students: 


20 ECTS Points: none


 Ziel: The aim of this course is to develop and improve language creativity in English, learn successful writing habits, work on one’s creative impulse, learn basic writing techniques, and develop an idea factory, improve writing skills and try different genres. Whether it’s poetry, short-stories, microstories, fiction or non-fiction, you have to learn the precise use of language and that’s where Creative Writing comes in. If you’ve always wanted to write an anthology or a book, then join us in an atmosphere of mutual respect, tolerance, cooperation and fun in writing. Creative Writing leads to the critical appreciation of literary works and through it you learn to be a critical writer and a demanding reader. It offers a challenge to the mythology of a writer as a ‘genius.’ The idea of a Creative Writing course, seminar or workshop is nothing new, for writers and poets have in the past such as Lord Byron and Mary Shelley and her husband PB Shelley and Goethe and Schiller have always worked together. It was Ezra Pound who advised TS Eliot to rewrite The Waste Land. I like George Bernard Shaw’s advice: ‘If you do not write for publication, there is little point to writing at all.’  


Public Reading: At the end of the course you will get the opportunity to have your submissions (poems, microstories, short-stories printed in an anthology in the internet, if and when, you give your consent. I think it’s fun to share your creative works. There will also be a public reading with Annette Pehnt’s students (German Literature) who will be doing Kreatives Schreiben in a parallel course in German.  


Inhalt: Every student has to write when he or she studies at the university. In this course we do the basics of writing techniques which can be used for poetry, fiction, non-fiction and short-story and microstory writing. 1 . Microstories (flash fiction, prose poems) 2. A Cross-pollination of Forms (Imagery, Inspiration, Poetry) 3. The Interview 2 4. How to gather stories: Notebooks, Journals, Mining Memory 5. Variety in Your Writing 6. Fiction Techniques in Non-fiction Writing 7. Dialogue and Plot 8. Writing the Short Story  


Zu erbringende Leistungen: Active participation throughout the course, writing classwork and homework submissions,writing exercises during the extended weekend courses,The writing workshop at the PH-Schreibzentrum is open for non-PH people as well. A one-time fee of 10 euros has to be paid for the entire series of workshops.  


Bemerkungen: Knowledge of English literature welcome but not a necessity. Students from all PH faculties and non-PH faculties (University students, Fachhochschule,FH) and scribblers from all walks of life are welcome. Curious? Just drop in at the Schreibzentrum. Die Angebote des Schreibzentrums sind für die Studierenden der PH Freiburg kostenfrei. Alle anderen Nutzer/innen der Creative Writing Workshop bezahlen 10. Die Bezahlung erfolgt bar und gegen Quittung im Schreibzentrum.

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What Moves the Schauinsländer Berggeister in Kappel? (Satis Shroff)

<b>Höllenzunft News:</b> The Fifth Season has arrive and it’s time for merry-making in the Vale of Dreisam. The knaves, or Narren as we call them,are everywhere. have overtaken the village and town councils and built new governments, and passed new laws (Narrengesetz). The mayor are obliged to turn over their offices to the masked knaves, witches and all sorts of motley coloured fighures and ghouls that make their way to government seats in a spirit of merriment and joy, a state of emergency has been declared. If you can’t fight this motley crowd, why, then join ’em. That’s your only way out if you want to stay in your village, town or city. Your only other option is to make for the open spaces or the mountains like the Venetians do when it’s carvevaltime in the city of lagoons, when the costumed visitors go looney.I, on my part, am heading for the North Sea Isle of Sylt to enjoy the fresh, salty air and the cold gusts from the sea. I’m on a wellness trip, and say bye-bye to my cyber-friends for a few weeks ( till the fasnet madness is over,eh?).

After all, every knave has his or her rights. Not only have the keys handed over to the masked and motley-clad figures but also the cash-boxes. The freedom of the knaves isn’t allowed to be ill-spent with work. The pedestrian traffic is obliged to take the form of costumed procesions. Everything will be regulated in a case-to-case manner; what remains unchanged is the law concerning youth (Jugendgesetz). Enjoy the fifth season or ‘närrische times’ as we call it, till Ash Wednesday. This order has to be followed without a second thought. Every person who is nabbed for not following these rules, will have to forsake of his or her närrischen honorary rights.

Proclaimed in Kirchzarten on ‘schmutzige ‘ (dirty) Thursday, 27. February anno Domini 2014.

Signed by the clique council of Höllenzunft Kirchzarten.

Fasnet or Fastnacht (the night of fasting) is carnevaltime in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, a time to wear new costumes, throw confetti at passersby and eat sweet ‘leckerlis’ from the many German and Swiss bakeries such as fasnet’s cute, small cakes, Berliners with marmalade fillings and fried sweet-meat, ‘Mutzen’, Nautzen or Mäuschen (little mice, not real ones).

During the procession on Rose Monday you get to see the cheerful side of the Alpine and Teutonic people along the Rhine, the Black Forest, the Baar, the Ortenau and the Wiesen Valley, where the Hansele, witches, demons, vampires, mountain spirits, animals-mask wearers greet you. In Schramberg (Schwarzwald) you even get a Brezel-blessing if you sing the song of the clique he or she belongs to.

In Kappel it’s the tradition among the Schauinsländerberggeister to recite a prosepoem about the local gossip that’s making the rounds in the Stammtisch of the taverns. Each prosepoem has a moral at the end. Here are a few:

A man in Kappel, we hear it everywhere, tries to keep fit by jogging around our fair village. Sometimes he walks like a pedestrian, our villahe mayor. He moves such a lot of things at our place, goes to meetings here and there, and when it comes to saving money, he outdoes Uncle Ebenizer.However, it didn’t work once, on Christmas it was, as every child knows. He used to play music to the tune of Herrn Preis, the men’s choir sings to it, a concert and the hall is full. The village mayor also attends it, that’s very clever but the route was too far. He thinks it’s better to do it by car from Hagematten. Ah, it’s difficult to park your car, for the place is full. ‘I’ll park it in ‘Zwei Linden,’a tavern with two trees. But does it make any sense, it’s just a few metres to the place. People have often noticed he doesn’t walk or run as expected and takes his car, even though his destinations aren’t afar. It would have been good for his figure and belly, the gain in time, instead of jogging.

The moral of this story: a walk doesn’t damage your health. <i>(A Cautious Citizen)

<b>Tree in a House-On-Wheels</b>

Our mater-of-ceremonies has no problem,
His caravan can remain at the Nussi all the while,
For he works there the whole time.
But misfortune is on its way already,
On a windy, stormy day.
The tree made a hole suddenly,
As it fell on the caravan near the foyer.
The door caved in, the kitchen hung,
There was no place to cook a dish.
He can make it clear,
And wrings with words.
Without scorn and without rage,
He told his tale.
The moral at the end of the song?
He had to bring his caravan now to Oberried.

* * *


<b>The First Fire Brigade Excursion</b>

The firebrigade undertakes an excursion, that’s clear,
To Hamburg by train this early year.
In the journey there was a problem:
Two men wanted to smoke very badly.
But in the train there was no smoking compartment,
No wonder they muttered and complained.
Great minds think alike: they had an idea.
And went together to the loo.
The conductor caught them in flagranti,
And wanted to throw ’em out at full speed.

* * *

<b>Kindergarten Reconstruction</b>

I wanted to bring my small child
In January to the Kindergarten.
There were enough places, I was told.
But when I arrived it was a lie.
It wasn’t finished yet.
You can’t get in so fast.
They blame each other,
And the parents have no peace at home.
The crane stands still,
And the workers sit around,
I hope it doesn’t go on for long.

* * *


<b>The Hausmättle is not harvested</b>

Jokes aside,
In Kappel it’s easy,
As a farmer to get rid of your own grass.
Instead of leaving it,
To make hay as the sun shines,
They throw grass into the green container.
It’s loaded into the front-loading tractor.
When the green container’s full,
Don’t worry about it.
You can always get rid of your green cuttings
At the mountain farmer’s meadow.


<b>Baking Spring-Forms</b>

The hard-working Kappeler housewife
Wanted to bake a fine cake,
It can only be the Christmas-tree baron’s daughter,
She thought muffins can be baked speedily.
Ha! It might be fun,
And the dough was made,
Exactly after a recipe.
She used a modern spring-form,
Made of silikon.
With it things ‘ll be better,
And a good result is the reward.
The form was filled fast,
Put into the over at 200 degrees.
After an hour it was brown above
And thoroughly baked.
Oh, the creation has to be tasted,
There’s no doubt about it,
But it crunched between the teeth,
As though it was sand.
She noticed that something was wrong
With the spring-form.
That’s the way it is,
When the daughter uses her sandform.

* * *

<b>Ominous Dimdig Valley</b>

The Kappeler went to ski in Switzerland
Since years its been cool.
A lot of things happened again,
What the Kappeler actually do.

The hunter had cursed,
For he was looking for his green crogs.
He didn’t find it.
They were at home under his bed.

Dela wanted to go to the ski slope,
But her handbag wasn’t there.

The way we know Ella,
She went down in the snow,
Like a wild hen.
They couldn’t find her for a long time.
Riesterer had taken her to Sanemöser.

The old boy wanted to go to bed late,
Went to the cellar,
Drank with his boy a couple of rounds.
Arthur then locked the door,
And the boy stood all night outside.
They thought about it long,
And even woke up Rita Löffler.

The moral of the story?
Don’t hide yourselves from Athur.

* * *

<b>Prowin Pizza</b>

Last night the bathing-mater’s son came home,
Was hungry and shoved a pizza in the oven.
He turned on the oven and wondered,
What a strange foil seemed inside.
Takes it out and puts it in.
In 10 minutes the pizza fro Prowin is ready.

The next morning Mom gets a shock,
Who’s done this silling thing?
The oven cleaner from Prowin
Was still in the oven.
He hadn’t noticed it,
For he’d been high on alcohol,
And eaten the whole pizza.

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And after April,when May follows,

And the whitethroat builds,

And all the swallows!

(Robert Browning)


 Zeitgeistlyrik: The Schwarzwald in May (Satis Shroff)


Ah, the Black Forest,

Whether you’re in Triberg

Or in Feldberg,

The smell of the lush green grass,

After the April showers,

In the gentle glaciated meadows,

Where the calves and cows

Are grazing peacefully with horses.


Now and then you discern a moo,

Like an Alpine horn,

In the tranquil landscape.

Along the gushing brooks,

The toads and frogs greet you,

With their croaks.

The Spring begins blossom for blossom.

May, the merriest month,

When lusty hearts begin to blossom.

Ah, it’s the sunshine,

The fresh air and the hormones released.




Apple-trees in bloom,

And daffodils flourishing

Alongside wild grass.

The leaves flapping like wings,

As the Höllentäler blows.


I sit in my Schwarzwald terrace,

 With its stone walls,

Hares and birds around me.

As I sip my morning coffee,

A brown squirrel dashes past,

For he’s the new inhabitant

In a blackbird’s nest,

And lives on freshly hatched eggs.


A one-legged blackbird comes by,

Hopping on one leg,

Only to fly away clumsily.

 The brown squirrel isn’t

The only nest-plunderer,

The beautiful feathered jay

Is fond of it too.


Hovering above are

A pair of Mäusebuzzards,

Scanning and scrutunizing

The Black Forest and meadows below,

Searching for even

The faintest movements,

Of mice in the fields.


Above the terrace is a palisade

Of dark pine trees,

With a clearing below the slope.

A solitary deer comes by,

Stoops, relishes, chews and swallows

The wild berries and buds.

The deer is used to humans.

An old, fat fox appears occasionally,

His mouth waters when he espies

The rabbits in thick fur,

On a sunny day in May.

There are humans around,

Perhaps another time,

Thinks the fox and vanishes

In the undergrowth.


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Mining in the Kappler Valley (Satis Shroff)

In an old German song there is mention of the flood of silver-ore from the Schauinsland hill, of Kappel’s small church, where the traveller finds rest and peace. The stream, and the green meadow, and the song of the shepard boy. The hill-stream flows, the wooden mill-wheel creaks and moves, and the pine forests echo with the chirps and tweets of the bird songs. The countryman struggles on the steep hill, the hard-working mountain man uses his drill to dig for ores in Schauinsland. The baskets, heavily laden with ores moved down to the valley along the ropeway. In the deep Black Forest the axe was swung and giant trees felled. The son of Kappler Valley sojourns afar and has longing for his home. His eyes become ultimately tired and close. The Kappler Valley should be his last home of rest and he greets it a thousand times.But today, the poisonous depotits from the mining industry is causing a lot of protests from the people who live in the vicinity of the olde mining area in Kappel and Neuhäuser. 


Mining in the Kappler Valley (Satis Shroff)

The Kapplerlied tells us about the hamlet of Kappel, which lies below the crescent of Black Forest peaks.

O lovely Vale of Kappel,
I think of you.
O my Heimat,
I greet you
A thousand times.

There is mention of the flood of silver-ore from the Schauinsland hill, of Kappel’s small church, where the traveller finds rest and peace. The stream, and the green meadow, and the song of the shepard boy. The hill-stream flows, the wooden mill-wheel creaks and moves, and the pine forests echo with the chirps and tweets of the bird songs. The countryman struggles on the steep hill, the hard-working mountain man uses his drill to dig for ores in Schauinsland. The baskets, heavily laden with ores moved down to the valley along the ropeway. In the deep Black Forest the axe was swung and giant trees felled. The son of Kappler Valley sojourns afar and has longing for his home. His eyes become ultimately tired and close. The Kappler Valley should be his last home of rest and he greets it a thousand times. 

The first historical certificate to prove that there was a mining area in the Kappler Valley dates back to April 24, 1452 in which a certain Heinrich Knöringen from Imrenbach is mentioned.

It was Emperor Maximilian I who introduced the Hill Mining Order for Hofsgrund in 1517 and its modification in the years 1520,1523 and 1525. During the Thirty Year War the mining activity in the Schauinsland and Kappel came to a stop.

After 1731 the silver was brought from the hills to the Münzamt in Hall. Melting huts, and other houses were built and a colony of workers was settled, which led to protests from the local farmers because the melting ovens led to more use of wood, and the miners began using the meadows which resulted in court cases.

As early as 1751, the Community Administration Kappel finalised an agreement to avoid the damage to the soil in the concerned area. In 1754 the Kappler farmers sought the solicitor’s assistance in Oberried, and delivered a complaint about the negligence in the handling of protective measures on the part of the mining workers. The Letter of Complaint was addressed to the local Austrian government .Another major argument was about the poisonous substances that damaged the soil and endangered the farm-animals. In a directive addressed to Caspar Berger (Mining Judge) by the directors of the Hill Mining Society in Schwaz stated that in no case should the washed-water containing arsenic and other ‘wild’ elements. 

Nevertheless, there were a lot of differences between the miners and the farmers. On July 18, 1761 the silver mining industry had to pull its brakes because a fire a fire destroyed the houses and a nearby forest. The following year Beroldingen fired the mine-workers. The miners had to look for jobs elsewhere.

In the early days, the mining activity centred on excavating and exploiting lead and silver ores. Lead was used for rifle cartridges and cannon-balls, and the silver in lieu of currency, and as jewellery. Freiherr von Roggenbach, a silver-mining engineer trained in the USA and who fought in Mexico, started mining for zinc-blende in 1876 with success.

The mine-workers lived under the poverty-level in those days, as they didn’t have many rights. Many of them were from Tyrol, Austria and went home when they lost their jobs.

When you cross the bridge where the river Brugga flows in Kappel, and walk towards Maiers’ Hill, you’ll see a sign with the word: Erzwäscherei. After the washing, the ores were transported by train and the railway-station of Kappel was a mere 500 metres.

There used to be an administrative office at the Neuhäuser Strasse, near the railway-station. 120 miners used to live above the Herder-hut and they had to pay 3 Marks per month for bed, towels, electric light and water.

On March 1, 1900 the first ropeway was put to use from the Leopoldstollen to the ore-washing unit below the north spur of the Bannwald.

The first miners who died in an accident on January 21, 1902 were the Italian bachelor Luigi Marzada and Domino Fozza (married). They were the victims of a stratigraphic movement in the hill, which illustrated that the hilldside wasn’t, and still isn’t, stabile.

In recent times, the Storm Lothar is still in our minds, when the pine trees in the Black Forest were destroyed as though they were made of match-sticks. The damage it caused was enormous. 

Another Italian, who lived in Kappel, met with an accident and died while he was about to ignite a dynamite fuse. In the home for Hill Miners, most of the workers were from either Italy or Tyrol.

Whereas Mr. Baumann from Freiburg reported on September 15, 1903 about a flourishing mining industry in Schauinsland, by 1905 the price of the ores sank and hard times began.

It was in 1908 that the Oberrieder Stollen produced 1444 tonnes of Zinc ores, 325 tonnes lead and transported them to Stolberg.

World War I needed raw-stuff and as a result the price of metal shot up in Germany. The extraction of ores in Schauinsland began to bring profit. The wagons on rails were drawn by horses then. A lot of miners had to join the War Service and this was compensated by the use of prisoners-of-war (POW). The metal-price plummeted at the end of the war in 1918.

In 1920 there were 223 miners working in the ore-washing lines. Only silver was worth digging for. The silver-content then was 400g / tonne.

Stolberger Zinc AG Aachen (1934-1956):

It was decided in the days of the German Reich that the enormous joblessness and deficiency of raw materials could be solved by financially supporting the hill-mining industry. The Stolberger Zink AG located in Aachen showed interest in buying the mine at Schauinsland from Bergbau AG (Lothringen) and an agreement was finalised on May 31, 1935. The Stolberger Zink AG was obliged to pay a sum of 100 000 Reich Marks.

Since Stolberger Zink AG had financial resources, it introduced a new ore-washing method using the pneumatic flotation principle. The ore-mixture was brought together with chemicals in the flotation-baths.

The ambitious Third Reich needed the ores and metals for its armaments industry. The railway reduced its rates for the ore transport. At the end of 1938 there were 314 miners and office-staff.

On the side of the Neuhäuser street new Schlamm-ponds were set up. Today, you see only wild grass and flowers in this place. In winter, when the leaves fall and the trees and bushes are deprived of their foliage cover, you see the mess left behind by the ore and mining industry. Even small children play and do ice-skating gleefully on the frozen ponds, underneath which lies a pool with cadmium, lead, arsenic and zinc. How carefree is this world.

The World War II commenced on September 1, 1938, a fateful day. Besides the ore-mining, all work was brought to a standstill. If you weren’t a miner, you had to join the Armed Forces. The mining work was started when the first POWs arrived, and later the so-called East-Workers. The deeper mine shafts reached a depth of 2000 metres in 1941, and the people were numbered at 360-men. 

Among them were many Italians, French, Russian and Polish POWs. The Third Reich lost the war. The work had to be stopped in May 1945. The Allies were victorious and the foreign workers and the POWs returned to their home countries.

In the autumn of 1946 the mine-workers commenced work with 52 miners and 11 office-staff.

In 1950 the price for lead and zinc fell and the workers lost their jobs.

In 1952 the price for the ores of Kappel and Schauinsland reached a new low, probably as a result of the Korean War. Plastic was the new product in the world market which replaced metal to a certain extent. The industry reacted fast and switched over to plastic product manufacture.

On the night of September 15, 1956 a major fire broke out and destroyed an important part of the mining works and caused a damage of 400,000 Deutsche Marks. On November 1958 the last mine-worker and craftsmen lost their jobs.

‘What’s left of this historical mining industry?’ you might ask.

What you find today are old tumbled walls to the northern part of the Bannwald, the Steiger house, the old transformator-tower, and remains of the tracks at Bremsberg. The store-building and the saw-mill building still exist. The barracks and tracks in the Neuhäuser strasse were stripped away. A lot of old buildings were removed and new ones built.

Where the hill-pond was in the Neuhäuser strasse, you see flowers, thick bushes upto the Kappler hillside. The White Farmer’s House was been sold. Most of the outlets of the mine-shafts leading to the mining area have been closed.

The Stolberger Zink AG brought money to the community in Kappel in the former days, between 250,000 to 280,000 German Marks in taxes. Today, the main problem is the poisonous depots of the ore-cleaning ponds in the Neuhäuser strasse and Sternenpeterhof. 

In this context, I’d like to mention Mr. Ernst Ehemann, a Kappler gent who was instrumental in starting a Bergbau Museum at the town-council in Kappel, and one day it is hoped that the visitors can see the exhibits in a real museum, which is of historical and pedagogical value for the people of the Dreisam valley and beyond.


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Upper Rhine Valley (Satis Shroff)


Mehr als 750 Reiseveranstalter und über 600 Journalisten wurden seit 2010 in den sechs Zielmärkten auf Upper Rhine Valley aufmerksam gemacht; außerdem wurden bislang aus jedem Markt jeweils rund ein Dutzend Reiseveranstalter und Journalisten im Rahmen von Famtrips zu unterschiedlichen Highlights der Region geführt. Mit E-Mail-Newslettern werden monatlich detailliertere Informationen zu jeweils einer Stadt bzw. Region versandt.

Die ersten Rückmeldungen auf Marketingkampagnen in den Zielmärkten machen Mut für den kontinuierlichen Ausbau des Angebots. Zwei der großen chinesischen Reiseveranstalter, drei koreanische Reiseveranstalter und einige indische Spezial-Anbieter für Individualreisen nach Europa haben Upper Rhine Valley gelistet und nach den ersten Reisen schon sehr positives Feedback erhalten.


Gerade für kleine und mittlere Hotels ist es eine Chance, durch zielgerichtete Bearbeitung von Marktnischen oder konsequente Ausrichtung der eigenen Dienstleistungen auf neue Zielgruppen am boomenden Tourismusmarkt teilzuhaben. Upper Rhine Val-ley bietet bei regelmäßigen „Info-Stammtischen“ in der gesam-ten Region Erfahrungen und Fachwissen für Hotels, Gastrono-mie und regional ansässige Reiseveranstalter. Ob e-mobility, green labels oder online-Marketing, best practise-Beispiele in Sachen Hotelzimmerrenovierung oder die Vermittlung von In-formationen über Verhaltensweisen und Wünsche chinesischer oder indischer Gäste – die Info-Stammtische bringen das Know-how an die Basis und bieten außerdem Gelegenheit zum Austausch über die Grenzen hinweg.


In Anbetracht des zu erwartenden Fachkräftemangels ist auch die Nachwuchsgewinnung und -sicherung in der Tourismus-branche in der Region ein Thema des Projekts. Mit dem Ziel, die Ausbildungssituation im grenzüberschreitenden Zusam-menhang transparent zu machen und so Doppelungen bzw. Lücken im Bildungsangebot aufzudecken, finanzierte Upper Rhine Valley eine Studie zu touristischen Ausbildungseinrichtungen in der Region. Die Ergebnisse der vom Euro-Institut Kehl angefertigten Studie führten zur bevorstehenden Einrich-tung eines binationalen Masterstudiengangs im Tourismus, der von der Ecole de Management de Strasbourg und der Dualen Hochschule Baden-Württemberg in Lörrach ab dem Winterse-mester 2012/13 angeboten werden soll.

Auf dem Fundament der bisherigen Maßnahmen und Erfahrun-gen soll auch nach 2012 die gemeinsame Vermarktung der tri-nationalen Tourismus-Destination ‚Upper Rhine Valley‘ voran-getrieben werden. Die Partner auf deutscher, französischer und schweizerischer Seite haben vor Kurzem auf ihrer Gesellschaf-terversammlung die Fortführung des Projekts vereinbart. Ent-sprechende Verhandlungen über die Kofinanzierung werden derzeit auch mit den staatlichen Institutionen geführt.


Neben der Fortführung der bisherigen Aktivitäten wurden für die nächsten Jahre folgende Projektschwerpunkte vereinbart:

Nachwuchssicherung / Informationsbasis verbreitern im Touristikbereich, (Nachbarschafts-)Sprachförderung und Etablierung eines online-Schulungs-Tools.

– Entwicklung einer Art Tarifverbund in Form einer „Ober-rhein-Pass“ zur Erleichterung und Vereinfachung der grenzüberschreitenden Mobilität. Dieser Pass – evtl. in Kombination mit Besichtigungsangeboten – soll sowohl für Touristen als auch die Bevölkerung selbst Anreiz bie-ten, grenzüberschreitende Kultur-, Sport- und sonstige Angebote wahrzunehmen.

Durchführung von „Welcome“-Tagen für Studierende an Upper Rhine Valley Universitäten, die aus den Zielmärk-ten stammen mit dem Ziel, diese Studierenden als „Bot-schafter“ heranzuziehen, die langfristig die Funktion von Multiplikatoren in ihren Heimatländern wahrnehmen wer-den.

„Rad-Touristik“ – grenzüberschreitende Vernetzung der Wege und Karten dient als Basis für zielgruppengerecht zu entwickelnde Ein- und Mehrtages-Programme unter Einbindung privater Dienstleister.



-„Zeitgenössische Kunst“ – Aufbau einer trinational ein-heitlichen Werbe- und Kommunikationsstrategie; Ziel ist es, die Reichhaltigkeit des Angebots an zeitgenössischer Kunst im grenzüberschreitenden Zusammenhang darzu-stellen.

– „Technical Visits“ – Insbesondere auf der Basis der gu-ten Reputation z.B. von Freiburg-Green City und Karls-ruhe im Bereich der Mobilität sowie der am gesamten Oberrhein in vorbildlicher Weise vorhandenen Beispiele zukunftsweisender und nachhaltiger Städteplanung, sol-len verstärkt mehrtägige grenzüberschreitend angelegte Besuchsprogramme in den verschiedenen Themenbe-reichen der Nachhaltigkeit entwickelt und beworben werden.



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(The author in Berlin’s War Memorials..)


SVETLANA GEIER: The Woman Who Understood Dostoyevsky (Satis Shroff)


Svetlana Michailowna Iwanowa was born in 1923 in Kiew. She came to Germany in 1943 with her mother and was awarded an Alexander von Humbolt scholarship. She did German studies and Comparative Language Sciences at the University of Freiburg.


Svetlana married a violinist Christmut Geier and gave birth to two children. She did her first literary translation in 1953, a tale written by Leonid Andrejew. She gave lectures at the Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg to acquire a regular income and gained a reputation as the legendary translator of all the great works of Fydor Dostoyevsky.


The Russian writer liked reading all of Walter Scott and even recommended the father of a girl on August 18, 1880 to allow his daughter to read all of Dickens without any exception. Dostoyevsky also recommended that the girl should read Pushkin, Gogol, Turgenev and Goncharov.


Back to Svetlana Geier, the octogenarian lady who lived in Freiburg, and who internalised the great works of Dostoyevsky and who had a special way with the language so that the essence of what was written by the great Russian writer was not lost in translation from Russian into German. She had the ability to delve into Dostoyevsky’s innermost thoughts and question the relationship between the means and end in matters pertaining to the writer’s works and Russia in those days where freedom was a crucial issue.


‘Who am I?’ is the central urge of all the characters in the writings of Dostoyevsky. Much like the great Russian writer’s protagonists, we have to ask ourselves: who was this woman, how was her life and her works? For people who are interested in knowing more about Svetlana Geier, there’s a 94-minute German-Swiss documentary DVD written and directed by Vadim Jendreyko released in 2004. You can read Dostoyevsky (hardback) in German translation by Svetlana Geier published by Amman Verlag (Zürich). The paperback version has been published by S.Fischer Verlag (Frankfurt am Main).


Svetlana was an active mediator between Russian and German literature, and she translated Dostoyevsky’s five big novels big novels which she fondly called ‘the five elephants’, which were the milestones in her literary career.


Among the most famous works of Fyodor Dostoyevsky Crime and Punishment has a stellar position and the author was a contemporary of Charles Dickens. Crime and Punishment was first published in 1866 in a periodical named Russkii Vestnik. Other titles are: Notes from the Underground, The Idiot, The Devils and The Brothers Karamazov. In Crime and Punishment

an ex-student Raskolinikov  lives in poverty and chaos and eventually kills an elderly woman, a pawnbroker, and her sister. He believes that he has devised the perfect crime. A wonderful psychological novel about Raskolnikov’s psyche. Dostoyevsky shows how a person is formed by his mind and his thoughts.


For Svetlana Geier, her world became Dostoyevsky and she started translating his works at the age of 65. She was fascinated by the fast rhythm of Crime and Punishment and the author’s message to the reader. An act of aggression can be swift but life trudges on gradually. According to Svetlana, the correct German translation of Crime and Punishment should have been ‘Verbrechen und Strafe’ and not Schuld und Sühne. The English translation of the title is thus appropriate because the Russian words ‘presluplenije’ and ‘nakasanije’ mean exactly the same as in the English title.


A language has to be spoken and is not confined to a piece of paper, according to Svetlana in a Spiegel-interview carried out by Claudia Voigt. That’s why she always dictated her translations, because all thoughts have their origin in the recesses of the mind. In Creative Writing, we also say: read your poems and texts aloud. When you hear the spoken word you know whether there’s rhythm, style and beauty in the text you’ve brought to paper or recorder.


Dostoyevsky had used the word ‘suddenly’ (Russian: wdrug) very often in his Russian texts. The word suddenly suggests a turn of event, something’s happening and this is an action and device which moves the story forward.


The translation work of Svetlana Geier shows a great sensitive knowledge of language and her respect for the author is immense and she took pains to capture and translate the right spirit of the author’s work and the quintessence of author. She was also conscious of the fact that every translation remains an attempt to reach the absolute, which in turn is slippery as mercury. In this context, I think about Michael Hutt’s translation of Nepalese literature, as well as my experience with two other German translators in Freiburg. When you’re translating you can’t get into the psyche of the writer, what moved him or her at that moment in time and life. We can’t experience the circumstances the writers lived in. We can only imagine it and the question is: is your imagination precise? Dostoyevsky for instance possessed little money and often had no candles for work at night and sat hungry. And yet what he wrote was world literature about his country, politics, economy, characters and their innermost thoughts. Time also influences the choice of words that an author uses and even the language changes with the passage of time.


‘When you translate, you have to keep your nose high,’ was her teacher’s admonition to her when Svetlana was at school. You don’t translate from left to right, like the flow of the language, but the way you’ve read the sentence. It has to reach your heart. When she reads a  Dostoyevsky  text a day comes when she hears the melody of the text. To translate the works of the Russian literary giant, she studied his manuscripts and travelled to the original places described in the novels in order to understand the Geography and learn to see through the eyes of the author. Goethe also held the same view and said if you want to understand a poet’s verse, you have to visit his country. She was a painstaking translator of words, sentences, books, even searching for what lay beyond the written words.


Although she lived in Green City Freiburg and had seven grandchildren and 10 great-grand children, cooked for them and loved them, she had what we call a Russian soul (russische Seele) and the legendary Russian spirit. Her life was overshadowed by Europe’s fickle history and her fate was extraordinary. She worked as a translator during the occupation of Ukraine, and in 1943 she and her mother were interned in a work-camp in Dortmund (Germany). Later she studied, raised a family and began to translate Russian literature into German. She lectured for 40 years in different universities. Svetlana passed away last year.



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Courtesy: Badische Zeitung, Freiburg

Courtesy: Badische Zeitung, Freiburg

Courtesy: Dreisamtaeler, Kirchzarten

Green City Freiburg Honours Satis Shroff

At an official ceremony in Freiburg’s Exhibition Hall Ulrich von Kirchbach, the mayor in charge of Culture and Integration honoured the life work of Satis Shroff. In his laudatio, von Kirchbach presented an Urkunde from the City of Freiburg as a special acknowledgement for Satis Shroff’s commitment and prolonged support and assistance to refugees and foreign students, and as a member of the managing committee of the Männergesangverein (men’s choir) ‘Liederkranz’ Freiburg-Kappel.

Satis Shroff was awarded the DAAD Prize in 1998.

Culture can give you insight into the living world of refugees, it can help remove boundaries and open new horizons, thereby enhancing the development of creativity in humans. Accordingly, Satis Shroff said in his thank-you-message: “I’d advise migrants to join a German association (verein), for that’s the place to meet the Germans and interact positively with them. I’m a member of the MGV Kappel, where we sing old and new German and English songs. After the singing we invariably go to one of the two taverns in Kappel to joke, laugh and talk about what moves us. There’s respect, tolerance, compassion among the singers and a good feeling of togetherness within the community. Whether it’s religious or seasonal events, funerals or initiation-rites, the men’s choir is always there, taking part in all walks of life. In this way, we get to know our strengths and weaknesses and help each other with sound advice and action. As we say in Germany: I really feel ‘Sauwohl in Kappel,’ which means I feel great. I can’t imagine a better integration in the German mainstream.”

In the past, and even now and then, Satis Shroff has cared for refugee children from Bosnia, Madedonia and Kosovo-Albania and did pedagogic work with them. Many children were able to make the necessary grades and others were sent to their home-countries as soon as the krieg ceased in their country of origin. He remembers cases of refugee-families who were woken up from their sleep in the wee hours of the morning by the police and whisked away to Frankfurt, put in a plane and escorted to their countries. This is the other side of the world-wide refugee problem.

“One day, a tall and burly, unshaven Albanian man came to the social office and took us as prisoners. He hand a big plastic bag with a canister of petrol and a gun in his hand and said, “If you don’t do what I say I’ll blow you all up.” We were terrified. He was a father who’s daughter had been taken away by the social department because he’d been maltreating her. Whew! That was a traumatic experience. I thought my life was going to end there,” said Satis Shroff.

As a contact person and counsellor for the DAAD and the Alexander von Humboldt Stipendium he worked in cooperation with the Academic Foreign Office in Freiburg and cared for students and scientists from Nepal, India and the United Kingdom and he still maintains good contacts with these academicians.

Satis Shroff speaks English, German, Nepali, Hindi and Urdu and has also worked as a translator with the Amtsgericht on a honorary basis. He has assisted the migrants where he could and he says: “Migrants are helpless in a foreign country and there are cultural, social and language barriers. They a confronted with a strange administrative system and unusual laws and jurisprudence. All this makes the migrant raise his or her hands in despair.”

He was officially requested by the town of Ilmenau to translate Goethe’s famous poem: ‘Wandrers Nachtlied. He has also translated Nepali literature into Nepali. His German book of poems ‘Im Schatten des Himalaya’ has been printed by http://www.lulu.com/satisle. He has also written two Nepali language books for German development workers of GTZ, Goethe Institute, DAAD and the members of the Carl Duisberg Society.

Before he came to Germany for further studies, he worked as a Features Editor with the Rising Nepal, where he wrote editorials and a science column, and commentaries for Radio Nepal on themes pertaining to the country’s development, wildlife and culture.
Satis Shroff is a lecturer, poet, journalist and a passionate singer. ‘I simply love singing Nepali, Hindi, English and German songs,’ he says. He’s a prolific writer and a contributing writer on http://www.americanchronicle.com/authors/view/1207
and on http://www.blogs.boloji.com/satisshroff and satisshroff.tigblogs.org to name a few.

He likes to describe himself a mediator between western and eastern cultures and sees his future in social engagements in the French sense of the word, and in writing and teaching medical subjects and English and German literature.

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