Upcoming Event in Leipzig: A conversation with Rita Bullwinkel on sports & memory

Join us on June 18 for an inspiring and thought-provoking evening with acclaimed US-American author Rita Bullwinkel and her debut novel Headshot. This electrifying book unfolds the compelling stories of eight teenage girl boxers in Reno, Nevada, each battling for the national title while navigating personal quests for control, perfection, and the thrill of combat.

In this exclusive conversation, hosted by Svenja Gräfen, Rita Bullwinkel will delve into the deeper meanings behind her book and explore the significance of sports, childhood, and memory. Together, Svenja and Rita will discuss how games create possibilities for collective memory and examine the interplay between self- and external perception. They will also investigate the cultural significance of sports for young women, the unique comradery fostered through games played by girls, and the lasting impact of childhood games.

Prepare to dive into your own memories and those that inspired Rita’s novel and be captivated by one of the most intriguing voices in contemporary American literature. Don’t miss this unique opportunity and secure your spot now!


Find out more about the venue on Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst Leipzig — (gfzk.de)

This event is presented by the Picador Guest Professorship for Literature. Cooperation partner for this event is GfZK Leipzig!

German Book Release in Berlin: Join us to celebrate “Schlaglicht”

“With language that floats like a butterfly and revelations that sting like a bee, Bullwinkel takes the gloves off teenage girlhood, leaving it splayed out in all its wonder, humor, violence, and glory.” – Oprah Daily

Join us for the German Book Release of Rita Bullwinkel’s acclaimed debut novel Headshot, translated in the German Version to Schlaglicht, published by Aufbau Verlag on the 15th of July!

We are thrilled to announce that Rita Bullwinkel will be present to discuss her journey in creating this novel. She will be joined by Christiane Neudecker, who translated the novel into German and brings her own rich experiences from the world of boxing onto the stage! The conversation will be moderated by Teresa Bücker, ensuring an evening rich of thoughtful questions, insights into the themes of boxing, femininity and the challenges young female athletes face.

This event is presented by the Picador Guest Professorship for Literature. Cooperation partner for this event is the English Theatre Berlin and Aufbau Verlag!

US Cover

GER Cover

UK Cover

© Photo: Beowulf Sheehan

Find out more about the current Picador Professor Rita Bullwinkel!

Rita Bullwinkel is the author of Headshot, a novel, and Belly Up, a story collection that won the Believer Book Award. We are thrilled that she will be teaching at the University of Leipzig in the summer semester of 2024!

I was a Picador Guest Professor in Literature in Leipzig (2010/2011). The position was very fulfilling and my creative writing students were dynamic, imaginative, and full of heart. Leipzig is wondrous.

Nathalie Handal in an interview with thebartleby.com

Nathalie Handal is an award-winning poet, playwright, and writer. She has lived in Europe, the United States, the Caribbean, Latin America and the Arab world. In the winter semester 2010/11, Handal held the Picador Professorship at the University of Leipzig. Her latest book Life in a Country Album was published by the University of Pittsburgh Press.

© Rachel Eliza Griffiths

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… for great authors, joint learning, avantgarde literature, creative writing, inspiring diversity, public reading.


In 2006, Leipzig University, in co-operation with the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) and the Veranstaltungsforum of the Holtzbrinck Publishing Group, initiated the Picador Guest Professorship for Literature at the University of Leipzig aiming at conveying and critically reflecting on Anglo-American Literature. Public events are also offered in addition to the authors’ teaching activities as Picador Guest Professors. This takes place in collaboration with the creative arts and culture community of Leipzig.

Many of the questions we discussed were ones we had never thought about before for example the question of what our own “fundamental truth” is.

Thea, Student


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The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) is the largest funding organisation in the world...
Picador is one of the leading British publishers for fiction and non-fiction books...
... it grew to encompass a wide selection of disciplines comprising almost all areas of knowledge...
Holtzbrinck Berlin - Inspire Together stands for content-rich creative conception...