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Gelèns, Hélène

Gelèns, Hélène

Writer-in-residence

Op de golven (On the Waves)

On the Waves aims to be a portrait of a group of colourful figures, who made their mark on the interwar period. Taking the form of a 6-way conversation, the story will unfold in 9 movements. Speaking are physicist/chemist Marie Curie, philosopher Henri Bergson, anarchist Emma Goldman, cultural critic Menno ter Braak, the nonconformist character Jinny from Virginia Woolf’s The Waves, and wounded war veteran Andreas Pum from Joseph Roth’s Die Rebellion. These 6 figures, with very different backgrounds and from different countries, are engaged in an ongoing discussion concerning the times in which they live, tackling topics ranging from war, revolution and peace; to ideals and morality; to being at home and being displaced, all the way to love and respect. The discussion is accompanied by a narrational undercurrent concerning a rebellion of the waves against humanity, which is based on contemporaneous writings on the damming of the Zuiderzee, once a wild sea, situated in the heart of the Netherlands. After the flood of 1916 the Dutch government decided to take action. Initiated in 1927 the Afsluitdijk was completed in 1932, rendering the wild inland sea into a tame and rippling lake.

Selected Publications

Golfbrekers (Radio play; NPO Radio1/NPS 2017). In the slipstream of the book project On the Waves, Gelèns wrote this radio play for national radio, on 4 kick-ass women during WOI.

Applaus vanuit het donker (Poems; Cossee, Amsterdam 2014)

Zet af en zweef (Poems; Cossee, Amsterdam 2010)

 

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