Eduardo Halfon wins the 2024 Berman Prize

Eduardo Halfon wins the 2024 Berman Prize
Eduardo Halfon wins the 2024 Berman Prize

The Guatemalan writer Edward Halfon wins the 2024 Berman Prize for his novel Songtranslated into French as David Fauquemberg published by La Table Ronde (2021). He will receive his distinction, with a check for 750,000 crowns (around 64,000 euros), during a presentation ceremony planned in Stockholm on October 22. His next title, Tarantula, will appear on September 12, after a first edition in Spain at the beginning of June.

Song by Eduardo Halfon is a rich depiction of how lives are shaped by different layers of identity, how chance and violence affect people, regardless of their language or culture,” said Daniel Pedersen, president of the prize jury. All the jurors also wanted to salute a novel which “with an inimitable sense of style and a self-fictional, impressionistic narration, dissolves all boundaries between identity and mask, homeland and diaspora, past and present”. In his story, the writer recounts, during a writers’ conference in Tokyo, how, one morning in January 1967, his grandfather was kidnapped by Canción, a guerrilla.

Intended for writing

Born in 1971 in Guatemala, Eduardo Halfon moved to the United States with his family when he was only 10 years old. After studying industrial engineering, he turned to literature and ended up as a literature professor in Guatemala. In 2003, he published his first novel, Saturn (trans. by Françoise Garnier, Saint-Nazaire), but it is with The Pirouette (translated by Albert BensoussanQuai Voltaire) that the author gains visibility, and obtains the José Maria de Pereda prize for the short novel.

In France, he received the Roger-Callois prize for Latin American literature in 2015, followed, three years later, by the best foreign book for Mournings (Quai Voltaire, trans. by David Fauquemberg). The same year, he won the Miguel Angel Asturia National Literature Prize, the highest literary distinction in Guatemala. Today, the multi-awarded writer, whose works are translated into around fifteen languages, lives in Paris.

Awarded since 2020, the Berman Prize rewards works “in the spirit of Jewish tradition”. Previous winners are David Grossman (2021), Péter Nadas (2022) and Maria Stepano.

The members of the jury are Daniel Pedersen, Ingrid Elam, Hanna Nordenhök, Na’ama Rokem, Kaj Schueler And Thomas Steinfeld.

-

-

PREV Here is everything that will be open and closed Monday for National Patriots Day in Montreal
NEXT Reading in college: so that reading is never a chore again