Jean Portante, winner of the Servais prize 2016

His work 'L'Architecture des temps instables' depicts migration in the 20th and 21th century

Jean Portante, lauréat du Prix Servais 2016On 4 July 2016 at 7.30 p.m., the Servais Foundation for Luxembourg Literature will award the Servais Prize 2016 to Jean Portante for his novel 'L'Architecture des temps instables', which was published in French at the éditions Phi in Differdange. The solemn ceremony will take place at the National Literature Centre in Mersch. Since 1992, the Servais Prize has been awarded to the most significative literary opus published during the preceding year. It is awarded anually on the basis of a proposal of an independent jury. The Servais Prize comes with 6,000 euros prize money.

The saga of a family caught in unstable times

According to the jury of the Servais Prize, Jean Portante's 'L’Architecture des temps instables is a novel in which the narrative is spread over three or four generations of a family of Italian origins dispersed around the world, including Luxembourg. Over multiple narratives, the reader is guided through the maze of the intimate story of this family and through the labyrinths of the European and world geopolitics from the Great War up until after the fall of the Berlin Wall. It exudes a complex fresco of an unstable 20th century that leads to a present time, which is equally unstable. The composition of the novel is characterized by a dense narrative weaving, a controlled build up and a sovereign writing that will captivate the reader. With the 2016 Servais Prize, the jury honors Jean Portante for this novel which opens the history of Luxembourg onto world history and which inscribes its characters in global political upheavals.'

The Servais Foundation awards among others, on the basis of manuscripts, an incentive prize (prix d'encouragement) reserved for authors who have not yet published literary work. The 2016 incentive prize is awarded to Luc Van den Bossche, a young voice of Luxembourg literature, for his poetry collection Sangs the originality and poetic innovation of which was praised by the jury.

The jury of the 2016 Servais Prize was composed of Simone Beck, Jean E. Glesener, Odile Linden, Claude Mangen, stone Marson (chairman), Jean Offermann, Alex Reuter, Aimée Schultz et Sébastian Thiltges.

(Source: press release of the National Literature Centre)

  • Updated 29-06-2016