Daniel Kehlmann (born 13 January 1975) is a German-language author of both Austrian and German nationality. His work Die Vermessung der Welt (translated into English by Carol Brown Janeway as Measuring the World, 2006) is the best selling novel in the German language since Patrick Süskind's Perfume was released in 1985. Kehlmann's works, and in particular Die Vermessung der Welt, are heavily influenced by magical realism and represent a dramatic shift from the goals of the influential Group 47. He was awarded the Heimito von Doderer Prize for the novel.
Life and career
Kehlmann was born in Munich, the son of the television director Michael Kehlmann. He moved to his father's hometown of Vienna at the age of six. At university he read philosophy and literature before doing research for a doctoral thesis on the sublime in the works of Immanuel Kant which he did not finish partly because of his success as a writer.
In 1997 Kehlmann completed his first novel, Beerholms Vorstellung, while still a student. He also wrote numerous reviews and essays while at university, contributing to such organs as: Süddeutsche Zeitung, Frankfurter Rundschau, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, and Literaturen.
In 2001, Kehlmann held the guest lectureship of poetics at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz. In the winter term of 2005/6 Kehlmann held the lectureship of poetics at the FH Wiesbaden, and in 2006/7 he held the lectureship for poetics at the university of Göttingen. Daniel Kehlmann is a member of the Mainzer Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Literatur.
Awards and honors
- 2006 Kleist Prize for Ich und Kaminski & Die Vermessung der Welt
- 2007 Welt-Literaturpreis