Danae Sioziou

Greece

Danae Sioziou was born in 1987 and raised in Germany and Greece. She studied English Literature, Cultural Management and European History in Athens, Berlin and London. She was co-editor of the literary journal Teflon. The poetry collection Useful Children Games is her first and was published by Antipodes Editions. She was awarded the National Prize for Young Writers and the Hellenic Writer’s Association Jiannis Varveris’ Prize for Young Writers. Her poems have been translated in thirteen languages and published in acclaimed journals and newspapers nationally and internationally (including Teflon, Harlequin Creature, The Ilanot Review, NYRB and Brooklyn Rail among others). She has published translations of German poetry, post-colonial and aboriginal poetry and African-American poetry as well as reviews and articles about history and literature. She works as a Cultural Manager facilitating cultural and educational projects and festivals in Greece and abroad. She has facilitated and participated in many literary festivals and events including Kalk Literary Festival in Cologne, AC Biblio in Athens, Druskininkai Poetic Fall in Lithuania, Struga Poetry Festival in Northern Macedonia, Hafenlesung reading series in Hamburg, Leipzig Book Fair, Syn_Energy Athen 2.4., Goethe Inst. in Athens and Goranovo Proljeće in Croatia and Athens Festival with Adonis Volanakis for the performance “Penelopiad”. In summer 2020 she will be a resident in Villa Ruffieux, Switzerland.

 

Books:

  1. Details from the end and the beginning (to be launched by Antipodes, 2020)
  2. Useful Children Games (Antipodes, 2016)
  3. Nützliche Kinderspiele (Parasittenpresse 2019)

 

Anthologies:

  1. Struga Poetry Festival 2018 
  2. Druskininkai Poetic Fall 2018 
  3. Kleine Tiere zum Schlachten, Neue Gedichte aus Griechenland, Parassitenpresse, Köln (2017)
  4. Women tell stories. Experiences in the Countries of Central and Eastern Europe(CEREFREA Villa Noël, l’Université de Bucarest, 2017, Romania)
  5. Austerity Measures: The New Greek Poetry, Penguin (2016), New York Review of Books (2017)
  6. La búsqueda del Sur, Animal Sospechoso, Barcelona, (2016)

 

Publications-Links of interest:

  1. Ilanot Review, “The Spider”
  2. Harlequin Creature “The most handsome man on earth”
  3. A Bacana, Three Poems
  4. Interview for Druskininkai Poetic Fall
  5. Brooklyn Rail, NY, Three poems as response to the crisis
  6. Deutsche Welle: An interview with Danae Sioziou
  7. Wiener Zeitung: Useful Children Games by Danae Sioziou, Review
  8. Around the House, NYRB
  9. New Yorker
  10. The Guardian
  11. Brooklyn Rail

Useful Children Games is Danae Sioziou’s first poetry collection published in 2016 by Antipodes. The book borrows the methods of children games and Walter Benjamin to explore the limits of childhood and poetic transformation through the themes of games. The collection consists of forty-three poems grouped in four chapters, the titles of which correspond with the work and ideas of Walter Benjamin on childhood: the “Zoo”, a chapter of family portraits and portraits of children, “Hiding Place”, a chapter of more abstract and theoretical poems, “Crime Museum”, a chapter of poems about punishment and trauma, “At the park”, a final chapter about survival and the making of the poet and poetry. The poet explores childhood and issues concerning gender, origin, and identity and gradually turns her themes into games and games into poetry.

 

Details from the end and the beginning will be launched in February 2020 by Antipodes publishing house. It will be Danae Sioziou’s second poetry collection. The poet has published poems from the collection which aims to explore the past and present of a country in crisis using examples from mythology, modern history, personal stories, strong images and questions about the notion of identity and the future in a changing world. 

 

Letters and signs is an ongoing project of Danae Sioziou which is part of her research for her third poetry collection in which a main character, who lives isolated from the world receives letters from animals, plans, objects and ideas and replies to them. The letters are poems and the book will construct a personal yet mythological universe on the edge of sanity. A series of parallel projects and performances are planned.

 

 

 

 

Praise about Danae Sioziou’s poetry

 

“The poetry of Danae Sioziou typifies an important trend within the Teflon group that is also noticeable in the work of Glykeria Basdeki and other women poets living and working outside Athens: the intersection of the fatalistic and the feminist. Like Marvin and Kishida in this section – and, beyond Greece, like Sophie Collins and tender, the online ‘quarterly journal made by women’ she edits with fellow UK poet Rachael Allen –Sioziou presents us with poems that speak for and about women without feeling the need to explain themselves, or to apologize for repeating the complaints of an earlier generation.” -Austerity Measures, Karen Van Dyke, Penguin

 

“In the distinctive poetic voice of the new but already widely published and known poet Danae Sioziou, the thread of her book runs across issues concerning origins, identity, gender, and adulthood. From various aspects Danae Sioziou is maybe the one poet of the youngest generation that echoes the women poets of the seventies from the point of view of “suppressed, distorted or even marginalized messages that equip us suitably to intervene against injustice and suppression in the world” (Barbara Johnson, “Disfiguring Poetic Language”, 1983).” ­–“About Useful Children Games Socrates Kabouropoulos, Frear

 

“It’s hard to make generalizations about style in Austerity Measures—its hallmark is a huge diversity of its voices—but it’s notable that short forms predominate, as poets find themselves seizing on peculiar instants and crystallizing them, from stealing a neighbor’s Wi-Fi to cutting yourself while distracted in the kitchen: “let me at least / finish the dishes today,” Danae Sioziou’s poem “Around the House” concludes, coiled with quiet intensity.” David Wallace, “Greek Poetry in the Shadow of Austerity”The New Yorker

 

“By characterizing games as “useful” the poet meets the essence of the notion of game, inside its weight and sanctity, something that indicates that the game itself creates order in chaos, so maybe it also offers a means of soul benefit, a form of self-knowledge. Facing an imperfect world, the chaos and the fluidity of life, the poet promotes the game, thismomental and temporary form of perfection and stills life, meeting in a way Homo Ludens by Huizinga Johan and casting away our destruction.” New Poets with Perspective, Petros Golitsis, Efimerida ton Syntakton

 

“Danae Sioziou constructs a poetic universe with surprising images and humour, a personal language which aims to question and explore how we perceive the world and reality today but also how memories and personalities are constructed” Wiener Zeitung, 2019.

 

“Darkness is the main theme, a filter through which the poet explores childhood, history and poetry in four chapters which offer alternative narrations interested in the intersection of the personal and the familiar with the common and the uncanny” Mairi Glikatsi, Vakhikon 2018.