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Peter Handke

From Academic Kids

Peter Handke (born December 6, 1942) is an avant-garde Austrian novelist and playwright.

Handke was born in Griffen, Austria. His father was a German bank clerk and his mother was from Slovenia. He spent his youth in the Eastern sector of Berlin and Griffen. His earliest writings appeared in Fackel, the school magazine at Tanzenberg, a Catholic boys' boarding school he attended. He studied law at the University of Graz (1961-65). During this time, he joined the writers' group Forum Stadtpark, and his work was published in the magazine Manuskripte. He left school upon publication of his first novel, which began his career as an author.

His first play, Publikumsbeschimpfung ("Offending the Audience", 1966) was labeled as antitheater. In the play, the actors insult the audience and then praise them for their "performance." In that same year, he made a great impression at a meeting of Group 47 at Princeton University.

In 1969, Handke was a founding member of the Verlag der Autoren--The Authors' Publisher--in Frankfurt am Main. From 1973-1977 he was a member of the Graz Authors' Assembly. Since then, he's lived in Graz, Düsseldorf, Berlin, Kronberg in the Taunus, and since 1979 has spent a great deal of time in Salzburg, Austria. At the moment he resides in Chaville, France.

During the NATO attack on Yugoslavia in 1999, Handke furiuosly attacked the Western alliance, both in newspaper essays, books and theatrical plays.

Handke collaborated with director Wim Wenders on a film version of his novel Die Angst des Tormanns beim Elfmeter (The Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick) and co-wrote the screenplay for Wenders' Wings of Desire.

See also


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