Swiss Literature Awards

presented by the Federal Office of Culture FOC

Every year, the Federal Office of Culture awards the Swiss Grand Award for Literature as well as five to seven Swiss Literature Awards. The latter are awarded for literary works that have been published in the previous year, in one of the national languages or in a Swiss dialect. The Swiss Grand Prix for Literature honours a personality who stands out through their exceptional dedication to Swiss literature.

In addition, every other year a special prize is awarded, in recognition of exceptional commitment to Swiss literature and to its public promotion.

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Sample translations of the 2020 laureates’ texts can be provided upon request.

Flurina Badel
Tinnitus tropicFlurina Badel

Author Flurina Badel
Genre Poetry
Publisher editionmevinapuorger, Zurich
ISBN 978-3-9524584-7-1
Translation rights Mevina Puorger

Doris Femminis
Fuori per sempre

Author Doris Femminis
Genre Novel
Publisher Marcos y Marcos, Milano
ISBN 978-88-7168-853-4
Translation rights Claudia Tarolo

Pascal Janovjak
Le zoo de Rome

Author Pascal Janovjak
Genre Novel
Publisher Éditions Actes Sud, Arles
ISBN 978-2-330-12082-5
Translation rights Nathalie Alliel

Demian Lienhard
Ich bin die, vor der mich meine Mutter gewarnt hat

Author Demian Lienhard
Genre Novel
Publisher Frankfurter Verlagsanstalt, Frankfurt am Main
ISBN 978-3-627-00260-2
Translation rights Nadya Hartmann

François Debluë
La Seconde mort de Lazare

Author François Debluë
Genre Novel
Publisher Éditions l’Âge d’homme, Lausanne
ISBN 978-2-8251-4771-9
Translation rights Andonia Dimitrijevic

Christoph Geiser
Verfehlte Orte. Erzählungen

Author Christoph Geiser
Genre Volume of stories
Publisher Secession Verlag für Literatur, Zurich
ISBN 978-3-906910-51-2
Translation rights Christian Ruzicska

Noëmi Lerch
Willkommen im Tal der Tränen

Author Noëmi Lerch
Genre Novel
Publisher verlag die brotsuppe, Biel/Bienne
ISBN 978-3-03867-015-5
Translation rights Ursi Aeschacher

Special Award for Translation

Marion Graf

For French-speaking readers, Marion Graf’s name is closely associated with the writer Robert Walser, and vice-versa. In the Francophone world, one cannot speak of Robert Walser without being reminded of this translator, whose work was honoured with the 2020 Special Award for Translation. Marion Graf is always linked with Robert Walser because this aspect of her work is so important. However, the association can be misleading, as Marion Graf’s oeuvre extends far beyond this one great writer. She is impressive in her versatility, constantly taking on new challenges and discovering new facets of writing. Her versatility encompasses a variety of genres (novels, novellas, youth fiction, poetry, prose poetry, essays and more), different languages (Russian and German), and, of course, the many authors whose works Marion Graf has made available to a French-speaking readership.

Swiss Grand Award for Literature

Sibylle Berg

Sibylle Berg’s work is not seismographic: her language is an earthquake in itself. The aftermath is scorched earth. A world lies in ash and ruins, fit only for an apocalyptic end. Ordinary natural disasters no longer arouse any curiosity.

With over 20 plays, 14 novels and other writings of the most varied nature, Berg’s oeuvre towers monolith-like over Switzerland’s literary landscape. She is an intellectual powerhouse who has spent decades scrutinising the way we live.