Read our sample translation of Shifts
About the book
If there is one line that’s been reverberating in Stefan Hertmans’ mind for years, it’s Victor Klemperer’s famous quote, written with a steady hand in his famous journals during the Nazi period, amid terror and uncertainty: ‘The contemporary witness knows nothing.’ There is one thing that we do know: this is a time of transition to something we’re only just beginning to understand. We are all eyewitnesses, though we’re only partially aware of exactly what it is we’re a witness to—to our current reality and the shifts we feel every day without knowing exactly what they will amount to.
In these ruminations, as erudite as they are sensitive, Stefan Hertmans undertakes the challenge of trying to capture something of this zeitgeist, of pinning down the things that tend to elude our grasp in the chaos of day-to-day life.