Concordia creative writing Professor Josip Novakovich woke up on January 24 to the jaw-dropping news that he was one of 10 nominees nominated for the prestigious Man Booker International Prize.
The day after, he met with Concordia communications advisor Cléa Desjardins to talk about everything from the war in former Yugoslavia to the devastation of the disco era, while opening up about what the nomination means and the career path that led him there.
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For Novakovich, this recognition comes after decades of scholarship and publishing. The short-story writer, novelist and essayist was born in what is now Croatia, where he grew up under the authoritarian regime of Marshal Tito. He studied medicine in Serbia before moving to the U.S. where he continued his schooling, first in psychology at Vassar College and later in creative writing at Yale. He joined Concordia’s Department of English as a professor of creative writing in 2009.
Known for his writing about the atrocities of the war in the former Yugoslavia, Novakovich has published critically acclaimed short story collections, includingYolk, Salvation and Other Disasters and Infidelities: Stories of War and Lust, which are characterized by a darkly comic tone.
Worth £60,000 (nearly C$95,000), the Man Booker International Prize recognizes the world’s finest modern literature. It highlights a writer’s continued creativity, development and overall contribution to fiction. The winner will be announced May 22, 2013.
• Professor Novakovich's profile page
• Concordia University's Department of English
• The Man Booker International Prize Finalists Announced