Renowned writer Ngugi wa Thiong’o (pictured) has won this year’s Premi Prize, the highest literary recognition by the Government of Catalonia.
The award comes hot on the heels of yet another major prize, the Erich Maria Remarque Peace Prize, that was offered by the Germans last month.
The recognition in Latin America and Europe honours Ngugi’s life-long commitment to his ideals of a “decolonised” Africa where its people and languages are given their rightful place in the world.
The Prime Prize, which has been running for 30 years, honours “persons who have made a definitive contribution through their creative work to developing cultural, scientific and human values around the world.” Prof Ngugi beat 73 other candidates from 35 countries and was hailed “for his distinguished and courageous literary work and his defence of African languages.”
The citation went on: “As complex as he is accessible, Ngugi is one of the most prolific and renowned African writers. In all the genres he cultivates –novels, essays, memoirs, theatre – he combines the most profound African traditions with a sensitive yet unsentimental description of the social and political situation in his native Kenya.”
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