Anais Nin was an extraordinary figure. Her exciting transatlantic life and bold approach—despite the conservative norms of her time—made the American writer one of the key figures of 20th century literature. In 2015, the writers Capucine Motte and Nelly Alard decided to pay tribute to her legacy by creating the Anais-Nin Prize. This literary prize recognizes work that stands out for its “singular voice, unprecedented exploration of the French language and absolute freedom from moral order.” Awarded to Virginie Despentes in 2015 and Nina Léger in 2017, this year Lionel Duroy was honored at the Odéon-Théâtre de l’Europe: his novel “Eugenia” was inspired by the diary of writer Mihail Sebastian, penned in the context of antisemitic Romania during the 1930s. The jury included the two founders of the Prize plus 2018 winner Catherine Cusset, writer Karine Tuil, writer David Foenkinos and the president of Coriolis Télécom, Pierre Bontemps, amongst others. With backing from the Anais Nin Foundation, it is the only French literary prize oriented towards the Anglo-Saxon world, aiming to promote French authors with English and American publishers. The chosen work is translated into English to encourage its publication outside France.

Photos: Valentin Le Cron
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