Drago Jančar

Writer Drago Jančar is one of the most acclaimed and translated Slovenian authors. 

He worked as a journalist and as a film screenwriter and an editor in a publishing house. He was involved in setting up the main newsletter of Slovenian socially critical intellectuals, Nova Revija, and became one of its editors and key collaborators. Between 1987 and 1991 he advocated, in his role as President of the Slovene PEN Centre for the democratisation of Slovenia and Yugoslavia until the final split with and end to the one-party regime. Novels and short stories represent the core of his writing. He has also written a number of plays that have been performed in numerous Slovenian and European theatres. In the 1990s, he wrote internationally resounding essays on European cultural and political issues. Later, he focused exclusively on prose; this year he published his twelfth novel. His artistic attention focuses on the existential dilemmas of man: a man controlled by the uncontrollable and misunderstood wheels of history on one hand, and by personal stigma on the other. He is sometimes described as being a "seismologist of chaotic history"; however, he writes on the radiating nature of life and the entangled nature of human destinies.

His books have been translated into 33 languages, and he has received many prestigious and international awards, including the Prešeren Lifetime Achievement Award, the Herder Prize for Literature, the French Best Foreign Book Prize, and the Jean Améry Prize for Essays. He has received the Kresnik Prize for the Best Novel of the Year four times, and in 2020 he was awarded the Austrian State Prize for European Literature.

In 2003 he was awarded the Herder Prize for literature.

Jean Améry Preis for Essays, Franfurt Book Fair 2007.

Hemingway Prize, Lignano, Italy 2009.

Le Prix Européen de Littérature, Strasbourg 2011

Prix du Meilleur livre étranger (Prize for the best foreign book – I Saw Her That Night), Paris 2014.

Austrian State Prize for European Literature, Salzburg 2020

Foto: Mankica Kranjec

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