The European Union Prize for Literature aims to put the spotlight on the creativity and diverse wealth of Europe’s contemporary literature.
The European Union Prize for Literature (EUPL) recognises emerging fiction writers from the European Union and beyond. Engaging the 41 countries participating in the Creative Europe programme of the European Union, the Prize celebrates 41 outstanding new literary talents across a cycle of three years. Spotlighting the creativity and the immense and diverse wealth of Europe’s contemporary literature in the field of fiction, EUPL aims to promote the circulation of literature within Europe and encourage greater interest in non-national literary works. Fourteen authors from fourteen countries participate in the 2022 edition. There is a change in the organisation of the Prize: instead of awarding one laureate in each of the participating countries, a seven member European jury will for the first-time award one overall winner for this edition, together with recognising five special mentions.
This year’s nominating body for Slovakia is the Centre for Information on Literature. Along with other literary experts it has nominated Richard Pupala and his latest book Ženy aj muži, zvieratá / Women and men, animals (2020, Lindeni) for this prestigious award. Pupala has become the most emerging Slovak storyteller. He has reached widespread popularity and acclamation among his readers as well as the critics, each one of his three books was nominated for Slovakia’s most prestigious literary prize. Pupala´s book Women and men, animals manages to subtly link seemingly unconnected short stories into a greater, carefully composed whole in a way that is hard to define. At the same time, it provides fresh proof of the author’s ability to evoke a powerful drama in a realistic and yet very modern way within a very short space. His focus is mostly on people on the margins of society, outsiders, or children from broken families, and the subjective way they come to terms with objectively difficult circumstances.
On their official website the organisers claim: "The EUPL remains committed to celebrating diverse literature and cultures, which is especially important in these uncertain times. The EUPL consortium is honoured to be able to include a nomination from Ukraine on the 2022 list. We stand in solidarity with Ukraine and, in particular, with Ukrainian writers, translators, publishers, booksellers and librarians. Four years ago, the EUPL had a first Ukrainian laureate, Haska Shyyan, and in 2022, the Ukrainian Book Institute has nominated Eugenia Kuznetsova as the best emerging fiction voice in the country. Together with the book community across the world, the EUPL consortium condemns the Russian attacks and calls for the restoration of peace in Ukraine."
On 28 February following nominees were announced:
The EUPL 2022 winner will be announced on 21 April, during the opening ceremony at the Paris Book Fair. All nominated authors will be continuously promoted on a European stage, aiming to reach a wider and international audience, as well as connect with readers beyond their national and linguistic borders.
The EUPL is organised by a Consortium of associations comprising the Federation of European Publishers (FEP) and the European and International Booksellers Federation (EIBF), with the support of the European Commission.