Vienna – Slovenian minority poet and writer Maja Haderlap from Carinthia, Austria, has won the Christine Lavant Prize for her work, including a novel about the battle of Slovenians living in Carinthia against National Socialism in Austria, the newspaper Delo reported on Tuesday.
The jury said that the 2021 Christine Lavant Prize was a “tribute to one of the most important Austrian writers”.
Her four poetry collections, a novel, essays and speeches discuss the issues of borders, loss of home, alienation and being a foreigner.
“In the centre is her novel Engel des Vergessens, 2011, (Angel of Oblivion), a story about a Slovenian-Carinthian family. The novel, which has been translated into several languages and received multiple awards, presents the battle of Carinthian Slovenians against National Socialism and the humiliation that Slovenians in Austria were and are partly still exposed to.”
Haderlap (1961) holds a PhD in theatre studies from the University of Vienna and has worked as dramaturge at the Klagenfurt City Theatre. She has also worked at the Alpen-Adria-Universität in Klagenfurt. She was editor for many years of the Carinthian Slovenian minority literary magazine Mladje.
She has been a freelance writer since 2008, living in Klagenfurt.
Haderlap has won a number of awards for her work, including the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, one of the most important awards for literature in the German language, and the Max Frisch Prize of the city of Zurich for the Angel of Oblivion in 2011 and 2018, respectively.
The Christine Lavant Prize has been awarded by the International Christine Lavant Society since 2016 to honour “writers who, like Christine Lavant, combine high aesthetic standards with a humane attitude and a socially critical view in their literary work”. The prize is worth EUR 15,000.
Haderlap accepted the award at a ceremony in Vienna on Sunday.