Amos Oz will be awarded the Franz Kafka Prize
Amos Oz will be awarded the Franz Kafka Prize in Prague, where he will also meet his readers at a literary evening
The world-famous Israeli writer Amos Oz is coming to Prague at the end of October at the invitation of the Franz Kafka Society. On Thursday, 24 October at 5 P.M. in the v Brožík Hall of the Old Town Hall on Old Town Square in Prague, he will be awarded the Franz Kafka Prize – a symbolical bronze statuette by the sculptor Jaroslav Róny. At a literary evening on the eve of the award ceremony, on Wednesday, 23 October from 6 P.M. in the headquarters of the Franz Kafka Society, Amos Oz is going to read excerpts from the monumental memoirs in prose A Tale of Love and Darkness (Sipur al ahava ve-hosheh) and speak about his work. The extraordinary literary evening is open to the public. (Reading from the Czech translation of the book, Příběh o lásce a tmě, and interpretation from Hebrew are provided.)
The international literary Franz Kafka Prize has been awarded by the Franz Kafka Society since 2001. Its laureates so far include Philip Roth, Ivan Klíma, Péter Nádas, Elfriede Jelinek, Harold Pinter, Haruki Murakami, Yves Bonnefoy, Arnošt Lustig, Peter Handke, Václav Havel, John Banville and Daniela Hodrová. Amos Oz became, based on the decision of an international jury, the thirteenth laureate of this prestigious award. The partner of the Franz Kafka Society in organising the Franz Kafka Prize is the Capital City of Prague; the award ceremony regularly takes place under the patronage of the President of the Senate of the Parliament of the Czech Republic and the Lord Mayor of the Capital City of Prague. Its mission is to award artistically exceptional literary production of a contemporary author whose work addresses readers regardless of their origin, nationality and culture, like the work by Franz Kafka, one of the greatest authors of modern world literature. The Prize is presented for the entire work so far of the author, with at least two of the author’s books having to have been translated into Czech.
Amos Oz (born in Jerusalem in 1939) is one of the most widely read Israeli authors of the present, whose works are quite popular also among Czech readers. The extensive fiction and journalistic work of Amos Oz has been translated into more than thirty languages. The author himself is considered as one of the most prominent Israeli writers and intellectuals. He is a professor of literature at Ben-Gurion University in Beersheba. Having graduated from a secondary school, he lived in a kibbutz until the age of forty. He started a family there. In the 1950s, he served in the Israel Defence Forces.After that, he studied philosophy and literature at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. In 1965, his first collection of short stories (Artsot ha-tan, in English Where the Jackals Howl) was published; since then, he has published a new book almost every year. Czech translations of his works include: the novel in letters Černá skříňka (1993; Black Box; in the Hebrew original Kufsa Shehora, 1987), a collection of essays and newspaper columns Mír láska a kompromis (1997; Israel, Palestine and Peace), the novel Fima (1998; Fima; Ha-matsav ha-shlishi, 1991), a story for adolescent readers Panter ve sklepě (1999; Panther in the Basement; Panter ba-martef, 1995), two novellas Až do smrti (2002; Unto Death; Ad Mavet, 1971), the novel Můj Michael (2005; My Michael; Mikhael sheli, 1968), the essays Jak vyléčit fanatika (2006; Help Us to Divorce) and the monumental autobiographical prose Příběh o lásce a tmě (2009; A Tale of Love and Darkness; Sipur al ahava ve-hosheh). The latest book by Amos Oz, Scenes from Village Life (2009; Temunot me-hạye ha-kefar), a disturbing portrait of an Israeli rural community, was issued in Czech as Scény z venkovského života in the Paseka publishing house in September.