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Friday, July 19, 2024

Albania’s world-renowned novelist Ismail Kadare dies at 88

Ismail Kadare, the acclaimed Albanian novelist and playwright who defied his nation’s Communist rulers by way of his writing, has died in a Tirana hospital after having a coronary heart assault. He was 88.

Prime minister Edi Rama paid tribute to the author as a “monument of Albanian tradition”.

Kadare grew to become internationally acknowledged after his novel The Normal of the Useless Military was revealed in 1963 underneath the regime of dictator Enver Hoxha.

He acquired quite a few world awards, together with the Man Booker Worldwide Prize in 2005, the Prince of Asturias Prize for the Arts in 2009, the Jerusalem Prize in 2015 and the America Award in Literature for a lifetime contribution to worldwide writing in 2023.

Ismail Kadare in the Playfair Library in Edinburgh in 2005

Ismail Kadare within the Playfair Library in Edinburgh in 2005 (REUTERS)

He additionally produced poems, essays and screenplays, and was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature 15 occasions, as soon as saying that media stories tipping him as a possible winner meant “many individuals suppose that I’ve already gained it”.

In 1975, after publishing a satirical poem known as The Purple Pasha, which took intention at Albania’s Communist paperwork, Kadare was despatched to do guide labour in a distant village in central Albania.

Three of his books fell foul of Albanian censors, and in 1990 he sought political asylum in France after receiving threats following his criticism of the federal government and requires democracy. Final yr, French President Emmanuel Macron awarded him the Grand Officer of the Legion of Honor title throughout a go to to Tirana.

“Albania and Albanians misplaced their genius of letters, their non secular emancipator, the Balkans (misplaced) the poet of its myths, Europe and the world (misplaced) probably the most famend representatives of contemporary literature,” Albanian president Bajram Begaj mentioned in an announcement.

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