Radna Fabias Wins 2019 Grand Poetry Prize of the Netherlands

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Congratulations to Curaçaoan writer Radna Fabias, who won the Netherlands’ Grand Poetry Prize for 2019 at the 50th Poetry International Festival in Rotterdam, for her debut collection called Habitus (De Arbeiderspers, 2018). A post by Peter Jordens:

Peter Swanborn reports for De Volkskrant that on the final evening of the 50th Poetry International Festival in Rotterdam, the Netherlands’ Grand Poetry Prize for 2019 was awarded to Curaçao-born Radna Fabias for her debut collection called Habitus (De Arbeiderspers, 2018). The Jury praised the “complete originality of the cadence of her language use, which manages to bridge the gap between the mind and the lonely, carnal body.” With Habitus, Fabias (1983) had already won the C. Buddingh’ Prize (May 2018), the Awater Poetry Prize (January 2019), and the Herman de Coninck Prize (March 2019). Never before had a debut collection received so many awards.

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Thomas de Veen reports for NRC Handelsblad that the Grand Poetry Prize, which is the Netherlands’ biggest award for the best poetry collection of the year, is the fourth prize for Fabias’ Habitus, which makes it the most awarded collection of poems in Dutch poetry history. What is even more special is that it is Fabias’ debut. She wins a sum of money of 25,000 Euros. According to the Jury, Radna Fabias writes “vital, rhythmic, and sound-rich” poetry about Dutch-Antillean lineage and the status of black migrants in the Netherlands. This produces “strong earthly and physical poetry” as well as “political poetry.”

For the full, original articles (in Dutch), go to https://www.volkskrant.nl/cultuur-media/grote-poezieprijs-2019-naar-radna-fabias-debutant-slaat-brug-tussen-geest-en-het-eenzame-vleselijke-lichaam~b448b1c2 and https://www.nrc.nl/nieuws/2019/06/16/poezieprijzen-radna-fabias-wint-grote-poezieprijs-c-buddingh-prijs-voor-roberta-petzoldt-a3963922.

Translations of the excerpts are by Peter Jordens.

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