Bulgarian writer Georgi Bardarov‘s novel Absolvo Te, which means “forgiveness of all sins”, is among the winners of the European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL). The novel was published in 2020. It intertwines the threads of several conflicts that still smoulder today. The main character, a Holocaust survivor, is also among the victims of the Arab-Israeli conflict, which is especially topical today due to the increased tensions in the Gaza Strip.
“The novel Absolvo Te, which I created together with my friends from the publishing and production house Musagena, is officially the winner of the European Union Prize for Literature!
I receive this award as a recognition of the fact that I never give up, and that I believe very strongly in the causes I write and speak about. I am strongly convinced that the forgiveness, which the characters in my novel give to each other, is the only way out of the reckless Arab-Israeli conflict, which is still taking innocent victims.
All of them and all of us need to say: ABSOLVO TE!
I thank the jury for the great recognition. I thank the readers for their favourable comments and opinions!” wrote Georgi Bardarov.
Bardarov’s novel is one of the 13 winning books and authors of the EUPL, which were revealed during a video broadcast on 18 May. Their names were individually announced by a representative of each national jury. The price recognises emerging fiction writers from the European Union and beyond. Engaging the 41 countries participating in the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union, the Prize celebrates 41 outstanding new literary talents across a cycle of three years.
Among this year’s 13 laureates are Lucie Faulerová, Czech Republic (Deathmaiden); Laura Vinogradova, Latvia (The River); Gerda Blees, Netherlands (We are light); Frederico Pedreira, Portugal (The Sleepwalker Lesson); Maxim Grigoriev, Sweden (Europe); Anja Mugerli, Slovenia (Bee Family), etc.
The 2021 laureate for each country was selected by a national jury of experts in the fields of literature, publishing and bookselling.
The EUPL is organised by a Consortium of associations comprising the European Writers’ Council (EWC), the Federation of European Publishers (FEP), and the European and International Booksellers Federation (EIBF), with the support of the European Commission. Spotlighting the creativity and the immense and diverse wealth of Europe’s contemporary literature in the field of fiction, EUPL aims to promote the circulation of literature within Europe and encourage greater interest in non-national literary works. The 2021 edition awards 13 laureates from the countries participating in this cycle.
The aim of the EUPL is to put the spotlight on the creativity and diverse wealth of Europe’s contemporary literature in the field of fiction, to promote the circulation of literature within Europe and to encourage greater interest in non-national literary works. The works of the selected winners (one per country participating in the Prize on a rotation basis) will reach a wider and international audience, and touch readers beyond national and linguistic borders.