Novelist Nino Kharatishvili recognised with Germany’s Schiller Memorial Award

German-based author Nino Kharatishvili has been honoured with prestigious literary prizes in the country over the last five years. Screenshot from video by, 16 Aug 2019 - 15:29, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian novelist and playwright Nino Kharatishvili has joined the likes of celebrated Swiss author Max Frisch and literary critic Christa Wolf after being unveiled as this year’s recipient of the Schiller Memorial Award for her contributions to German literature.


The Germany-based author has been selected for the honour — awarded by Germany’s Baden-Wuerttemberg Federal State — for “outstanding literary work”, highlighting her prolific writing over the last five years in the country.



Nino Haratischwili's literary work is multifaceted and of a high aesthetic and linguistic quality. Her plays follow an open dramaturgy, are narrative and ask questions without being moralising.”


Her figures reflect the endangered subjectivity in our crisis-ridden globalised world, addressing migration and the psychological damage from a female perspective,” the jury for the award said.


Juries for the Schiller award have noted Kharatishvili’s award-winning novel ‘The Eighth Life (for Brilka)’ in their praise for the author. Originally released in German, the novel has recently been published in English and Georgian:



The judges also referred to her major novel The Eighth Life (for Brilka), awarded the Bertolt Brecht Prize last year, in their praise of Kharatishvili as “a great linguistic stylist”.


State Secretary Petra Olschowski chaired the panel that selected the Georgian for the prize — set to be formally accepted by the author at the Literaturhaus Stuttgart venue in November.


Awarded every three years since 1955, the prize comes with a €25.000 money prize and marks the birthday of poet, playwright and philosopher Friedrich Schiller in November.



We are honouring an author who opens up new perspectives for German-language literature and thus places herself in Schiller's Enlightenment tradition,” the state’s Art Minister Theresia Bauer said in reference to Kharatishvili.


Two honorary prizes, bestowed along with the principal award, will be received by emerging dramatists Svealena Kutschke and Maryam Zaree at the same ceremony.


Born in Georgia, Kharatishvili has lived in Germany since 2003. She gained initial recognition through works including Radio Universe and The Barbarians, however her major breakthrough came with The Eighth Life, released in 2014.


The novelist has also received the Anna Seghers Prize — one of Germany’s most prestigious awards in literature — for her "versatile and great work”.


The Cat and the General, the latest novel by Kharatishvili, had its stage premiere at Hamburg’s Thalia Theatre earlier this year and was nominated for last year’s German Book Prize. The novel has also been translated into Polish.