‘The Wounded Age and Eastern Tales’ Named as EBRD Literature Prize Finalist

‘The Wounded Age and Eastern Tales’ Named as EBRD Literature Prize Finalist

Three finalists have been announced for the 2024 EBRD (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development) Literature Prize, and the list includes the recent NYRB Classic The Wounded Age and Eastern Tales by Ferit Edgü, translated from the Turkish by Aron Aji.

Writer and critic Maya Jaggi, one of the judges on this year’s panel, said this of the finalists:

“From a formidable shortlist of books – all 10 of which we commend highly to readers – three finalists emerged as our unanimous frontrunners for this year’s prize. Attila Bartis’s The End, translated by Judith Sollosy, is a devastatingly frank portrait of an artist under pressure in post-communist Hungary and the ravages of a soul in a police state. The Wounded Age and Eastern Tales, Ferit Edgü’s novella and short stories translated by Aron Aji, bear witness with poetry and horror to a nightmarish history of state violence in eastern Türkiye and an often forgotten people. Barcodes ingeniously structured tales by Krisztina Tóth, translated by Peter Sherwood, explore myriad forms of boundary crossing – between childhood and maturity, ‘goulash communism’ and capitalism, life and death.
 My fellow judges and I admired the power and originality of all three authors in pushing fictional form – whether Bartis’s novel-in-snapshots, Edgü’s prose-poems, or Tóth’s interlinked short stories – along with the engaging truth of their narratives, and the suppleness and consistency of the translations. While the fiction of Bartis and Edgü throws up comparisons with photography – an art form both writers practise – Edgü and Tóth marry poetry with prose. All astonish and will be startling discoveries for many readers around the world.”

The €20,000 prize will be split equally between the author and translator. The authors and translators of the two runner-up books will also receive €2,000 each.

The winners and runners-up will be announced on June 13 at an awards ceremony at the EBRD’s headquarters in London. If you’re in London, you can register to attend here.

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