French writer Emmanuel Carrere wins first prize for Spanish literature

French author Emmanuel Carrere, popular for his non-fiction books in a high literary vein, this year received the Spanish Princess of Asturias Prize for Literature.

The award is one of eight prestigious prizes awarded by the foundation named after the heiress to the throne of Spain, Princess Leonor.

Its jury said on Wednesday that Carrere, 63, was chosen from 33 nominees from 20 countries because of his works’ ability to straddle reality and fiction.

Starting with his The adversary in 2000, about the murderer Jean-Claude Romand, Carrere abandons a previous career in fiction and begins to write stories telling his own experience or the lives of others.

“His books help unmask the human condition and relentlessly dissect reality,” the award jury said in a statement. He adds that in doing so, “Carrère paints an incisive portrait of today’s society.”

The author has also worked as a screenwriter and director of films and documentaries, notably in collaboration with the German filmmaker Werner Herzog. Carrere was also a member of the jury at the Cannes and Venice festivals.

The 50,000 euro prize is awarded each year in a sumptuous ceremony, normally in October, by the Princess of Asturias Foundation, chaired by Princess Leonor’s father, King Felipe VI.

The eight awards cover different disciplines, from the arts to social sciences or sport.

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