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Jean Portante

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Jean Portante’s Pre-Festival Interview


Jean Portante was born in Differdange (Luxembourg) in 1950. He is Italian origin. He lives in Paris. He has written more than forty books, novels, stories, plays, essays, translations and poetry, and has been widely translated in more than twenty countries. In 2003 his book L’Etrange langue was given the prestigious Mallarmé poetry award in France, and the same year Portante received, in France, the Grand Prix d’Automne de la Société des Gens de Lettres, for his entire work. Many other literary prizes have been awarded to him, including the Prix international de la francophonie Benjamin Fondane, the European Petrarca prize, the Rutebeuf prize, the Alain Bosquet prize, etc. In Luxembourg he was given twice the Servais Award for the best book of the year for two of his novels. In 2011 he was given in Luxembourg the National Literature Award for his entire work. His books written in French are published mainly by PHI (Luxembourg) and Castor Astral (France), but also in Belgium, Switzerland, Quebec and, in translation, in Germany, United-Kingdom, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Ireland, Poland, Rumania, Slovakia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Armenia, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Peru, Chile, Bolivia, etc. He has been working as a literary translator for more than thirty years. He has published some forty books in translation. He translates from German, English, Spanish and Italian into French. Since 2006, Jean Portante is member of the Académie Mallarmé, based in Paris and member of the Institut Grand-Ducal in Luxembourg.


Interview with Jean Portante 

EU-China-litfest 14: Literary Nomads: Language, Experience and Inspiration