8 August 2011 Joseph Conrad Literary Prize

Until the 31st of October, Ukrainian and foreign cultural institutions, research centres, publishing houses, creative associations and individuals may enter candidates for the Joseph Conrad Literary Prize. The prize has been awarded biennially since 2007 by the Polish Institute in Kiev to young Ukrainian writers for their literary consistency, formal innovation, breaking of stereotypes and the universality of their message. Winners are selected by a Polish and Ukrainian jury. In previous editions, the prize was given to Taras Prohashko (2007) and Sergey Zhadanov (2009).

Besides recognising talented writers, the competition aims to commemorate the eminent person of Joseph Conrad as a symbol of pan-European Polish, Ukrainian and British cultural heritage and to raise awareness among Ukrainian creatives of the Ukrainian roots of Poles who have gained international acclaim, and to promote Poland as a country which appreciates the creative achievements of Ukrainian writers in the context of the Polish and Ukrainian dialogue. According to the Director of the Institute, the awards are yet another way to further this dialogue.

This year’s winner will be selected by a Ukrainian and Polish jury chaired by Jarosław Godun, Director of the Polish Institute in Kiev, and composed of: Bogumiła Berdychowska (PL) – columnist and head of the scholarship department of the National Cultural Centre in Warsaw; Oleksandr Bohutski (UA) – President of ICTV; Yuri Makarov (UA) – columnist and editor; Monika Sznajderman (PL) – Director of the Czarne Publishing House; Oksana Zabuzhko (UA) – writer, poet and essayist; and Serhiy Zhadan (UA) – writer, poet, translator, winner of the Joseph Conrad Prize 2009.

The procedure of selecting a winner will be divided into three stages. The first stage consists in reviewing submitted applications against their compliance with the requirements of the Prize, the second in selecting three finalists from among shortlisted candidates (finalists’ names will be announced on the 1st of December), while in the third stage the jury selects a winner by a secret vote held on the 17th of December, the day of the prize presentation.

More information about the Prize.