Cartarescu’s ‘Blinding’ wins Leipzig Book Award

Romanian writer Mircea Cărtărescu has won the Leipzig Book Award for his trilogy Blinding. The novel originally came out in three separate parts in 1996, 2002 and 2007 respectively, while its outstanding English translation by Sean Cotter was published as a single book by Archipelago Books in 2013.

The award’s full name is the “Leipzig Book Award for European Understanding”, the idea being that it goes to writers (though they officially refer to them as “personalities”) who “have rendered outstanding services towards the advancement of reconciliation throughout Europe, particularly with the countries of Central and Eastern Europe.”

Rarely does an official explanation of an international jury contain phrases such as “culminates in a blaze of phantasmagorical and apocalyptic splendour,” and “a place of compulsion and delusion under an absurd and megalomaniac dictatorship” but if there’s a novel where they’re going to say them then this is the one. Besides, if you want to really reconcile with Central and Eastern Europe then you need to deal with the phantasmagorical, the absurd and your fair share of megalomania.

Previous winners include Yuri Andrukhovych, Slavenka Drakulić, Pankaj Mishra, Timothy Snyder, György Dalos, Claudio Magris and many more.

Blindingforweb1

 

Read an excerpt from Blinding at the LARB here

Read an essay on Blinding at the LARB by Romanian writer Bogdan Suceavă here

For more on Cărtărescu’s receiving the award read a report in Deutsche Welle.

Photo – Mircea Cărtărescu, Göteborg Book Fair 2013 by Albin Olsson

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Categories: Literary Prizes

Subscribe

Subscribe to our RSS feed and social profiles to receive updates.

2 Comments on “Cartarescu’s ‘Blinding’ wins Leipzig Book Award”

  1. 12/03/2015 at 11:43 am #

    This must be the best quote ever: ‘if you want to really reconcile with Central and Eastern Europe then you need to deal with the phantasmagorical, the absurd and your fair share of megalomania’. Touché, Monsieur, very much touché!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: