STA, 19 October 2020 - Slovenian writer Goran Vojnović has received the Angelus Central European Literary Prize, conferred to works by Central European writers translated into the Polish, for his 2013 novel Yugoslavia, My Fatherland (Jugoslavija, moja dežela).
The annual award is conferred by the Polish city of Wroclaw to writers who take up the most important topics for the present day. It comes with a cheque for 150,000 Polish zloty (roughly EUR 33,000). The translator, Joanna Pomorska, received a 20,000 zloty (EUR 4,400) cheque.
According to the portal Polish News, the jury short-listed seven titles out of 105 entries for the final stage of the award.
The chairman of the jury, Mykola Riabczuk, emphasised that the books that made it to the final selection were "very Central European".
He said each of them had a history that continues. The jury ended up deciding between two books that were both about war and voted four to three for Yugoslavia, My Fatherland.
Vojnović, who attended Saturday's ceremony via video call, said Angelus was "undoubtedly the most important recognition I have ever received."
He noted that past laureates and this year's nominees were among authors whose avid reader he is. "Just being in their company has been an exceptional honour."
The novel talks about a young man searching for his father, who turns out to be a war criminal.
It received the Kresnik Prize for best Slovenian novel in 2013.