Guido Snel (1972) is a writer and a senior lecturer teaching in the department of European Studies. He specializes in contemporary European literatures, with a specific focus on Central and Eastern Europe and the Balkans.
I am currently working on spatial metaphor and imaginary European geographies, under the umbrella title Bridge, Window, Wall: Persistence of East-West and Balkan imaginaries in post-1989 Europe.
Beside my work on spatial metaphor, an ongoing interest is with art and literature that was made or written during the Bosnian war, or that reflects on it. Other fields of research interest: multilingualism, literature as cultural memory, and debates on the (non)sense of a European literature. Thirdly, I take an interest in European traditions of cultural diversity, notably in Central Europe and the Balkans in the aftermath of World War I.
I coordinate the research group (Cosmopolitan) Confluences in the ARTES research school
I frequently host and/or initiate programs with writers from Europe and beyond, such as The European Literature Night (De Brakke grond, 2015 - present) and in collaboration with academic debate center SPUI25. Memorable public sessions with authors such as Aifric Campbell, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Jens-Christian Grondahl, Dasa Drndic, Amin Maalouf, Jachym Topol, Gyorgy Dragoman, and others.
My latest novel, due in the fall of 2018, De Mirreberg (The Mountain of Myrrh, De Arbeiderspers publishers), is a novel in the form of a triptych about a triptych, connecting looted Nazi art with religious madness in the 15th century, and with the question of how to paint, and by extension, how to live, in our own times, that is, after the end of art and religion.
Huis voor het Hiernamaals (House for the Hereafter, Arbeiderspers, 2016) is a collection of stories and novellas obsessed with real lives and the limits of fiction. It contains biofiction about Victor Tausk, a section called The Yugoslav Apocalyps, centering amongst others on Danilo Kiš, and a collection of intimate family stories. (Translated into Croatian/Serbian as Posmrtna Prebivališta, Arius, Belgrade 2018)
Naar Istanbul (To Istanbul, De Arbeiderspers 2014) is travelogue, essay, and fiction, mirroring a one year stay in the city of cities, one of the true new global nodes connecting everything and nothing.
Alter Ego. Twenty Confrontations on the European Experience contains 5 portaits and 15 self-portraits of European artists and thinkers. The book addreses questions like Where is Europe? Who is Europe? What is a European? Whom do we actually address when we speak of our 'fellow Europeans'? The book was published by Amsterdam University Press in 2004, with the support of the European Cultural Foundation.
Translations into Dutch of authors as various as Miloš Crnjanski, Miroslav Krleža, Aleksandar Tišma, Semezdin Mehmedinović, Daša Drndić. I am currently preparing a selection of Danilo Kiš’ travelogues, essays and ego documents for De Arbeiderspers.