Jean D'Amérique

Jean D’Amérique’s Soleil à coudre was declared the winner of both the Prix Apollinaire Découverte poésie 2021 and the Prix Dubreuil du Premier Roman 2021 in November.

It has been an amazing November for Côte-de-fer, Haiti-born slammer, poet, playwright and novelist Jean D’Amérique who has so far won two major literary awards in France; one for his prose and one for his poetry. The awards are;

Prix Apollinaire Découverte Poésie 2021, November 16

Le Prix Apollinaire Découverte Poésie 2021, named for late French writer Guillaume Apollinaire, crowns “apart from any school or technical dogmatism” the work of an author of poetry for its originality and modernity. The prize handed out annually since 1941 includes two distinctions: that of the grand Prix Apollinaire (it was awarded this year to André Velter) and the Discovery prize dedicated to a remarkable young author. The winner of the Discovery prize is Jean D’Amérique for his collection Atelier du silence. (Silence workshop)

His reaction on social media was to post on Twitter,

Very happy for my collection “Atelier du silence” which has just received the 2021 Apollinaire Découverte Prize! Opportunity to thank my loving home #Cheyne, who have believed in my work from the start.”

Prix Dubreuil du Premier Roman, November 20

The Société Des Gens de Lettres de France is a writers’ association founded by French authors Honoré de Balzac, Victor Hugo, Alexandre Dumas, and George Sand in 1838. There are eight prizes that this organisation confers to writers in different categories. One of these is Prix Dubreuil du Premier Roman (Dubreuil Award for the first novel) endowed with € 2,000 by the André Dubreuil bequest. It is awarded to a French or French-speaking author of a first novel to encourage young literary talents. Some of its winners have been Gaëlle Belem, Dalie Farah, Alain Jaspard, Chadia Chaibi Louesslati and Elitza Gueorguieva.

The winner of the prize for 2021 was declared to be Soleil à coudre by Jean D’Amérique published by Actes Sud. The Haitian reacted by posting on his Facebook;

Snatched letters at the long night of my country. Heartbeats of the broken neighborhoods of my beloved city, Port-au-Prince. Words straight from my gut. A cry sewn in my flesh, in my blood. In short, a text that means a lot to me.

Thank you to the jury for awarding me with this award. It is such a joy for me to see this book make such a beautiful journey!

I dedicate this headband to my editor Marie Desmeures.