Twenty-seven years after the death of the writer Hermann Burger (1942–1989), a hitherto unpublished manuscript was discovered among his papers in the Swiss Literary Archives in Berne: It was Burger's first novel, Lokalbericht. The protagonist of the novel, Günter Frischknecht, is a doctoral candidate and adjunct teacher at the Alte Kantonsschule Aarau. In Ticino for the summer he is unhappily writing his dissertation as well as his first novel – a local report from his hometown Aarau.
Nearly fifty years after being written, Hermann Burger's portrait of a Swiss town around 1970 has now been published at the same time as a book and as an annotated version on the Internet with references to its genesis and earlier versions of passages.
Forum Schlossplatz and the Stadtmuseum Aarau took the publication as an occasion for putting on the double exhibition Lokalbericht: Hermann Burgers Romanerstling. In the exhibition, which opened in October 2016 and continues until January 2017, the historical context of the novel as well as its poetics are highlighted. With a variety of original documents from Burger's papers, exhibits of local history and substantial additional material, the life and the literary craftsmanship of the writer are imparted to the visitor and the diverse references to his hometown Aarau are visualized. Numerous fringe events – such as talks, guided city walks, writing competitions and stage versions of the novel – accompany the exhibition.
With a project grant of CHF 20,000 the Foundation Board supports the exhibition on Hermann Burger, who is one of the most important Swiss writers in German of the twentieth century.