Djaïli Amadou Amal’s Les Impatientes was announced the winner of the Prix Goncourt Des Lycee 2020 on December 2, 2020.
The Prix Goncourt des Lycéens is a French literary award that was created as a sort of younger sibling of the Prix Goncourt, a prestigious prize for French-language literature in 1987. The award gives the opportunity to nearly 2,000 students to read and study twelve literary works selected by members of the Académie Goncourt. Some previous winners of the prize have been David Diop, Gaël Faye, and Léonora Miano.
The jury this year was drawn from around fifty high school classes in general and professional streams. They selected the Prix Goncourt shortlisted novel Les Impatientes which recounts the terrible living conditions of women in the Sahel: forced marriages, polygamy, and marital rape as the winner.
“The jury was sensitive to its important subject”, clarified Clémence Nominé, the president of the jury of the high school students, who welcomes writing “simple and touching”, which “rings true, without superfluous lyricism” and a “subtle book which allows observing the issue of forced marriage “.
The winner who was excited about reaching high school students said: “It means hope for the future, it means that young people are sensitive.” She hopes this will bring about change for the world and change the status of women and the education of young people.