Jáchym Topol receives State Award for Literature

Topol received the the Czech Republic’s highest literary honour for his latest novel, A Sensitive Person, and his body of work.


Jáchym Topol. Photo: David Konečný

Jáchym Topol. Photo: David Konečný

Jáchym Topol (b. 1962) is arguably the most important representative of the postmodern trend in post-1989 Czech prose. He is a poet, prose writer and journalist, lyricist and musician. He has won numerous other literary prizes, including the Tom Stoppard Prize and the Vilenica Prize for contributions to Central European literature. His books have been published in more than ten languages, including English, German, Spanish and Norwegian.

A Sensitive Person, Topol’s most recent novel, reflects on love and death, religion, family, friendship, survival, modern politics, the Russian threat, Europe and populism. It was described in the Times Literary Supplement as “a picaresque romp of black humour and fantasy, the novel teems with extraordinary characters, but it is also urgently contemporary.”

Established in 1995, the State Award for Literature is given for an original Czech literary work or for an author’s body of work. The winner is decided by a jury selected by the Czech Ministry of Culture.