Yoko Tawada | © Santiago Engelhardt
Katharina Raabe, Iris Radisch, Zsófia Bán & Miriam Japp (from left to right) | © Santiago Engelhardt
Almuth Carstens, Madeleine Thien & Egon Ammann (from left to right) | © Santiago Engelhardt
Dany Laferrière and Beate Thill | © Santiago Engelhardt
Bernardo Kucinski and Sarita Brandt | © Santiago Engelhardt
Sabine Peschel, Eike Schönfeld, Laurenz Bolliger & Dulcie Smart (from left to right) | © Santiago Engelhardt
Georgi Gospodinov und Alexander Sitzmann (right) | © Santiago Engelhardt
Award Ceremony and Long Night of the Shortlist, July 2014 | © Santiago Engelhardt
The International Literature Award – Haus der Kulturen der Welt 2014 goes to the Haitian-Canadian author Dany Laferrière and Beate Thill, his translator from the French, for the novel “Das Rätsel der Rückkehr”.
“‘Das Rätsel der Rückkehr’ is Dany Laferrière’s most personal and, at the same time, his most literarily successful book: an effortless soliloquy in which the Francophone author journeys to the land of his birth, tracing the footsteps of his deceased father; a poetic monologue like a saxophone solo, beginning in Canada, his country of residence, and ending in his bitterly poor Haitian homeland, a literary search for identity that naturally draws the reader into the text. Dany Laferrière, winner of the Prix Médicis and recent inductee into the Académie française, congenially takes up the challenge of Aimé Césaire’s manifesto ‘Cahier d’un retour au pays natal.’ Beate Thill’s sensitive translation strikingly captures the rhythm of the original, in its shifts between verse, prose, and essayistic reflection”, the jury explains its choice.
In a first step, this years’s jury (Egon Ammann, Hans Christoph Buch, Leila Chammaa, Kersten Knipp, Sabine Peschel, Jörg Plath, and Iris Radisch) had chosen six titles for the shortlist 2014. The 81 participating German-language publishers submitted a total of 154 titles, whose authors hail from 64 countries and write in 27 languages.
On July 3 the titles of the 2014 shortlist were presented at the Long Night of the Shortlist by the nominated authors and translators and the jury members in discussions and readings. The keynote speaker was the translator and word-artist Yoko Tawada.
The INTERNATIONAL LITERATURE AWARD – HAUS DER KULTUREN DER WELT is accompanied by €25,000 for the winning author and €10,000 for the winning translator.