Group 2
Andrei Codrescu, photo: Cato Lein. Binyavanga Wainaina, photo: Msingi Sasis. Ljudmila Ulitskaja, photo: Cato Lein. Olga Tokarczuk, photo: K. Dubiel for Polish Book Institute. Hassan Blasim, photo: Harri Hinkka. Katja Petrowskaja, photo: Heike Steinweg. Marie NDiaye, photo: Catherine Hélie. Alina Serban, photo: Andrej Kertesz. Lev Rubinstein, photo: Cato Lein. Duong Thu Huong, photo: Jacques Leenhardt. Colm Tóibín, photo: Murdo Macleod. Adrián Villar Rojas, photo: Doris Kessler. Jesús Carrasco, photo: Elena Blanco.

Andrei Codrescu, photo: Cato Lein. Binyavanga Wainaina, photo: Msingi Sasis. Ljudmila Ulitskaja, photo: Cato Lein. Olga Tokarczuk, photo: K. Dubiel for Polish Book Institute. Hassan Blasim, photo: Harri Hinkka. Katja Petrowskaja, photo: Heike Steinweg. Marie NDiaye, photo: Catherine Hélie. Alina Serban, photo: Andrej Kertesz. Lev Rubinstein, photo: Cato Lein. Duong Thu Huong, photo: Jacques Leenhardt. Colm Tóibín, photo: Murdo Macleod. Adrián Villar Rojas, photo: Doris Kessler. Jesús Carrasco, photo: Elena Blanco.

Authors and other Participants

International literature meets art and drama, with two days and one night of talks, readings, walks and performances , at Moderna Museet in Stockholm. 

In 2015, guests will include several prominent international writers, including: Marie NDiaye (France), Lev Rubinstein (Russia), Jesús Carrasco (Spain), Colm Tóibín (Ireland), Duong Thu Huong (Vietnam/France), Andrei Codrescu (USA/Romania), Hassan Blasim (Iraq/Finland), Olga Tokarczuk (Poland), Lyudmila Ulitskaya (Russia), Katja Petrowskaja (Germany), and Binyavanga Wainaina (Kenya).

They will talk to the artist Adrián Villar Rojas (Argentina) and the writers Rosa Liksom (Finland), Philip Teir (Finland), Jonas Hassen Khemiri, Ebba Witt-Brattström, Martina Lowden, Gabriella Håkansson, Daniel Sjölin, Aris Fioretos, and Kristoffer Leandoer (Sweden).

The Festival has also invited actor and playwright Alina Serban (Romania/UK), and the actors Hannes Meidal, Rebecka Hemse, Maia Hansson Bergqvist, Lindy Larsson, Magnus Ehrner, Gunnel Fred, Julia Dufvenius, and Sofia Pekkari, from the Royal Dramatic Theatre in Stockholm, in a collaboration with Dramaten&.

See below for more details on all the events. Welcome to the third edition of Stockholm Literature | Moderna Museet!

Alina Serban
Marie NDiaye + Jonas Hassen Khemiri
Lev Rubinstein + Rosa Liksom
Jesús Carrasco + Colm Tóibín
Duong Thu Huong + Ebba Witt-Brattström
Andrei Codrescu + Martina Lowden
Hassan Blasim + Philip Teir
Olga Tokarczuk
Lyudmila Ulitskaja + Gabriella Håkansson
Adrián Villar Rojas + Daniel Sjölin
Katja Petrowskaja + Aris Fioretos
Colm Tóibín + Kristoffer Leandoer
Binyavanga Wainaina

Participating translators 2015
Translation of the Year 2015
Poetry Walks, Zon and the Solen podcast

Alina Serban

Alina Serban’s performance will take place twice during the Festival. The second occasion will be in the exhibition A Good Home for Everyone, in the Pontus Hultén Study Gallery, and will be followed by a discussion on the effects of social marginalisation on our self-esteem and mental survival.

Alina Serban, photo: Andrei Kertesz.Alina Serban, photo: Andrei Kertesz.

Alina Serban is a Romanian actor and playwright. She began her artistic career by writing autobiographical texts based on her identity as a Roma woman. After four years in the UK, however, her understanding of exclusion has become even more encompassing and she now also writes about other marginalised groups.

With her charismatic performances she sheds light on the darkest places, while delivering a critical analysis of current social developments. Being truthful and allowing herself to be vulnerable in front of her audience are among Alina Serban’s strengths. To connect with the audience and make us care about urgent issues, she crafts stories around questions that engage her deeply. The Roma people’s history of slavery is a serious topic that she recently began to explore. She is currently working on three projects, which will be performed in London, Berlin and Bucharest.

Organised jointly with the Romanian Cultural Institute.

The Auditorium: FRI 7 pm

The Pontus Hultén Study Gallery: SAT 3.00–3.45 pm

Marie NDiaye + Jonas Hassen Khemiri

Chiselling out a human being with words

How does an author portray the experiences that form a human being? In a literary work, the unspoken conditions that define our place in society are described. But is it possible to create art out of pain and exclusion, without exploiting and violating others?

Marie NDiaye + Jonas Hassen KhemiriMarie NDiaye, photo: Catherine Hélie. Jonas Hassen Khemiri, photo: Martin Stenmark.

Marie NDiaye is regarded as one of the most prominent French contemporary writers. Her books deliver psychologically pertinent observations on class, heritage and violence. Born in 1967 in France, where she grew up, she now lives in Berlin. Together with the director Claire Denis, she wrote the script for the widely-acclaimed film White Material (2009). She has written novels, short stories, plays and children’s books. Three of her novels have been published in Swedish: Trois femmes puissantes (Three Strong Women), Mon coeur à l’êtroit, and, most recently, Ladivine (2014). Her Swedish translator is Ragna Essén.

Jonas Hassen Khemiri One of Sweden’s most popular and celebrated novelists and playwrights. His novels Ett öga rött (One Eye Red), Montecore: en unik tiger (Montecore – The Silence of the Tiger), and Jag ringer mina bröder (I Call My Brothers) have been translated into some fifteen languages, and a widely-acknowledged production of his first play, Invasion! was staged in the USA. His literary oeuvre raises much-needed and uncomfortable questions about how Swedish society deals with the many aspects of multicultural and multilingual identity today. This autumn, he will publish a love story, Allt jag inte minns (Everything I Don’t Remember).

In association with Institut Français de Suède, and Natur & Kultur.

The Auditorium: SAT 10.30–11.15 am (Eng)  

Book signing: SAT 11.25–11.35 am

Readings: SAT 12.50–1.20 pm NDiaye. 1.30–2.00 pm Khemiri (Sw)

Lev Rubinstein + Rosa Liksom

How to find a language for Russia today

How do you write a portrait of contemporary Russia, based on fragments of events, observations and memories? Two authors with their own memories of the Soviet Union talk about Russia today, against a historical background.

Lev Rubinstein + Rosa LiksomRosa Liksom, photo: Pekka Mustonen. Lev Rubinstein, photo: Cato Lein.

Lev Rubinstein. In A Collection of Essays, which was published in Swedish earlier this year, Lev Rubinstein (b. 1947) mixes current everyday micro events with memories from the Soviet era. His style is affectionate, witty and humorous – but with a large portion of courageous outspokenness. He began writing in the late 1960s and took an active part in the 1970s development of Soviet conceptualism. Today, he is regarded as one of Russia’s greatest living poetic voices. A Collection of Essays was translated into Swedish by Johan Öberg (Ryska Dagsedlar). Rubinstein’s poems have been translated by Lars Kleberg.

Rosa Liksom. The Finnish writer and artist Rosa Liksom (pseudonym for Anni Ylävaara) was born in Övertorneå in 1958. She has lived in the Soviet Union and writes with insight, humour and warmth about the mighty eastern neighbour. Her critically acclaimed novel Hytti nro 6 (Compartment Number 6), for which she was awarded the Finlandia Prize, is a poetic chronicle of a train journey through Russia far beyond the beaten track. In conjunction with the Festival, a collection of her short stories will be published in Swedish as Sånt är livet, translated by Janina Orlov. Rosa Liksom talks to Janina Orlov on Friday, the opening day of the Festival, and reads with Gunnel Fred on Saturday.

In association with Ersatz and Wahlström & Widstrand.

The Auditorium: FRI 7.00 pm Liksom SAT 11.45 am – 12.30 pm (Ru/Sw)  

Book signing: SAT 12.40–12.50 pm

Readings: SAT 10.50–11.50 am Liksom (Fi/Sw) SUN 4.10–4.40 pm Rubinstein (Ru/Sw)

Zon: SAT 1.00–1.15 pm Rubinstein (Ru)

Jesús Carrasco + Colm Tóibín

Running from a world of violence

How are people shaped by an austere, patriarchal, conservative society that prevents them from challenging the authorities, and where violence is omnipresent? What opportunities do young people have to change their lives when the cards are stacked against them?

Jesús Carrasco + Colm TóibínColm Tóibín, photo: Murdo Macleod. Jesús Carrasco, photo: Elena Blanco.

Jesús Carrasco. Working as a copywriter in his native Spain, Carrasco for many years bore within him a story about life on the ultimate edge. About a young boy at the bottom of society, who is let down and humiliated, but turns against fate instead of accepting it. When Carrasco eventually published his evocative, moody novel Intemperie (Out in the Open), it was an overnight sensation in Spain and was awarded the Spanish booksellers’ major prize. The author’s terse literary style and the ruthlessly brutal, male world described in Intemperie have inspired critics to compare him to Cormac McCarthy. Intemperie has been translated into Swedish (Flykten) by Hanna Axén.

Colm Tóibín. An Irish novelist, essayist and critic, whose major international breakthrough came with The Master, a multifaceted novel about the life of the American-British writer Henry James. Tóibín is a master at portraying emotions and moods, and everything between the lines of human life: the unspeakable and the unspoken. He talks about his latest novel Nora Webster with Kristoffer Leandoer on Sunday. Nora Webster has been translated into Swedish by Erik Andersson.

In association with FILI, Natur & Kultur and Norstedts.

The Auditorium: FRI 7.00 pm Tóibín (En) SAT 1.00–1.45 pm (En) SUN 3.30–4.15 pm Tóibín (En)

Book signing: SUN 11.30 am–12.00 pm Carrasco (Sp/Sw) SAT 4.10–4.40 pm Tóibín (En)

Readings: SAT 4.50–5.20 pm Carrasco (Sp/Sw)SUM 11.30 am–12.00 pm Tóibín (En)

Duong Thu Huong + Ebba Witt-Brattström

Love in the shadow of war

The war against the US was to liberate the Vietnamese. But what really happened? Forty years after the war ended, Duong Thu Huong writes that Vietnam did not become the free society many had been fighting for.

Duong Thu Huong + Ebba Witt-BrattströmEbba Witt-Brattström, photo: Sara Mac Key. Duong Thu Huong, photo: Jacques Leenhardt.

Duong Thu Huong. In 1967, aged twenty, the Vietnamese student Duong Thu Huong joined the war against the Americans. For seven years, she lived in the jungle and the tunnel system in Bình Tri Thin, a region that was especially targeted by attacks. After the unification of Vietnam in 1975, she became a sharp critic of the communist regime, for which she has been harrassed.  Despite being one of Vietnam’s most popular writers, her books are not allowed to be printed there. Duong Thu Huong was imprisoned for her writing and her passport was confiscated. In 2006, she moved to Paris. Her most important works in French and English translation include Terre des oublis, Au zénith, Paradise of the Blind and the war story Novel Without a Name.

Ebba Witt-Brattström. An influential Swedish literature historian, feminist and professor at the University of Helsinki. In her latest book, Stå i bredd (Stand Side By Side), she delivers a personal perspective on Swedish literature in the 1970s, and seeks to vindicate and redress the attitude to that decade and the feminism that has been looked down upon. She recently figured prominently in the Nordic press with her articles and analyses in the debate about the male-dominated arts scene.

The Auditorium: SAT 2.15–3.00 pm (Fr/Sw)

Book signing: SAT 3.10–3.20 pm

Readings: SUN 12.50–1.20 pm Witt-Brattström (Sw)

Andrei Codrescu + Martina Lowden

The book will never die – just transform

The imminent death of the book is often mentioned today, but what if it is going through a metamorphosis that will lead to a reincarnation, a transformation, where the book rises anew, with its essence intact?

Andrei Codrescu + Martina LowdenAndrei Codrescu, photo: Cato Lein. Martina Lowden, photo: Terese Andrén.

Andrei Codrescu. Romanian-American poet and essayist. His book of essays Tzara and Lenin Play chess was published in Swedish (2012), followed recently by his latest title, Bibliodeath, which combines contemplations on the alleged impending demise of the book with history of literature and memories of growing up in a family of book printers in communist Transylvania and the course of events that find him with the Beat poets in 1960s USA. Bibliodeath was translated into Swedish by Ulrika Junker Miranda. At Stockholm Literature, Andrei Codrescu will also guide visitors on poetry walks through Romanian literary history.

Martina Lowden (Stockholm) was widely acknowledged for her award-winning first novel Allt (“Everything”, 2006) and has since then become an established and influential literary critic in Sweden, contributing regularly to the major daily newspaper Dagens Nyheter.

Organised jointly with the Romanian Cultural Institute and 2244.

The Auditorium: SAT 3.30–4.15pm (En)  

Book signing: 6.25–6.35 pm

Readings: SAT 6.50–5.20 pm Codrescu (En)

Exhibition/Rooms: SAT 1.00–1.45 pm Romanian poetry walk (En) SUN 1.00–1.45 pm Romanian poetry walk (En)

Hassan Blasim + Philip Teir

With the long shadow of war in a new country

War perverts and destroys. The victims of war carry their horrendous experiences with them to new countries, new lives. A conversation between two Finnish authors who do not write in Finnish.

Hassan Blasim + Philip TeirPhilip Teir, photo: Viktor Gårdsäter. Hassan Blasim, photo: Harri Hinkka.

Hassan Blasim. Iraqi filmmaker and author, living in Helsinki. Blasim (born 1973) has written two acclaimed volumes of short stories centring on his experiences of war and flight. His latest, Iraqi Christ, brought him international recognition. Blasim’s style has been compared to Latin American magical realism: his stories bring together the djinns from Arabian Nights and modern wartime realities. His subject matter and provocative use of language have made him a controversial figure on the Arabic literary scene. Iraqi Christ was translated into Swedish by Jonathan Morén.

Philip Teir. A Swedish-language author and arts journalist from Österbotten, Finland, Teir (born 1980) was previously the arts editor of the daily newspaper Hufvudstadsbladet and founded the international literary festival Helsinki Lit. His first novel, Vinterkriget (2013), about a middle-aged couple whose relationship has gone stale, was acclaimed in both Sweden and Finland and has been translated into five languages.

Organised jointly with Albert Bonnier publishers, FILI and Natur & Kultur.

The Auditorium: SAT 4.45–5.30pm (En)  

Book signing: SAT 5.40–5.50 pm

Readings: SUN 12.50–1.20 pm Teir (Sw) SUN 1.30–2.00 pm Blasim (Ar/Sw)

Olga Tokarczuk

The world as seen through a historical footnote

Is a writer a free human being? Sunday starts off with a specially-written speech by Olga Tokarczuk.

Olga TokarczukOlga Tokarczuk, photo: K. Dubiel for Polish Book Institute.

Olga Tokarczuk. Jakob Frank was an 18th-century Jewish sect leader who believed he was the new Messiah, who would bring all known religions closer to the truth. It is perplexing why this remarkable person has not been portrayed until now. Olga Tokarczuk (born 1962) is one of the great names in contemporary Polish literature, and her epic novel Księgi Jakubowe (”Jacob’s Scriptures”) is a central European narrative about faith, hope and identity beyond the beaten track of history. This form of hybridity and sidetracking are characteristic of her award-winning literary oeuvre, which has won acclaim and a wide readership all over the world. Księgi Jakubowe has been translated into Swedish by Jan Henrik Swahn.

Organised jointly with Ariel and Polska Institutet.

The Auditorium: SUN 10.30–11.15 am (En)  

Book signing: SUN 11.25–11.35 am

Readings: SAT 2.10–2.40 pm (Po/Sw)  

Zon: SAT 3.00–3.15 pm (Po)

Lyudmila Ulitskaya + Gabriella Håkansson

Do not console yourself by saying the times are contrary

Can an era and an entire society be portrayed by combining the big and small narratives? How does the individual story relate to history, and personal morality to a totalitarian epoque?

Lyudmila Ulitskaya + Gabriella HåkanssonLjudmila Ulitskaja, photo: Cato Lein. Gabriella Håkansson, photo: Anders Meisner.

Lyudmila Ulitskaya. Russia’s most prominent and acclaimed contemporary writer, whose works have been translated and read all over the world. Born in 1943 in Bashkortostan at the foot of the Ural Mountains. Imago portrays Soviet society from the mid/1950s to the early 1990s, through the lives and fates of three friends: the musician Sanya, the photographer Ilya, and the scholar of literature Misha. Two previous novels, Sonechka  and The Funeral Party, have been published in Swedish. Imago was translated into Swedish by Hans Björkegren.

Gabriella Håkansson. A Swedish author, essayist and critic (born 1968), known for her peculiar, quirky novels, Håkansson is currently working on a historical trilogy about the Greco-Roman craze in a secret, esoteric society in early 19th-century London. The first part, Aldermanns arvinge (“The Heir of Aldermann”), is followed by Kättarnas tempel “”The Temple of Heretics”).

In association with Ersatz.

The Auditorium: SUN 11.45am–12.30 pm (Ru/Sw)  

Book signing: SUN 12.40–12.50 pm

Readings: SAT 3.30–4.00 pm Ulitskaya (Ru/Sw) SUN 2.10–2.40 pm Håkansson (Sw)

Zon: SAT 1.00–1.15 pm Ulitskaya (Ru)

Adrián Villar Rojas + Daniel Sjölin

An Argentine artist talks to a Swedish writer about the exhibition Fantasma.

Adrian Villar Rojas + Daniel SjölinDaniel Sjölin, photo: Magnus Liam Karlsson. Adrián Villar Rojas, photo: Doris Kessler.

Adrián Villar Rojas is an artist from Rosario, Argentina, who creates art on his constant travels with his team of assistants. Villar Rojas’ nomadic studio resembles a theatrical stage or movie set, and he describes his role as that of an artistic director or leader of an ensemble. He is best known for his site-specific, often monumental, works in unfired clay, and his use of organic materials such as moss or fruit, which he combines with various objects, including sneakers, cutlery and electronic tablets.

Daniel Sjölin made his debut in 2002 with a novel, Oron bror (“The Worry Brother”), followed by Personliga pronomen (“Personal Pronouns”) two years later. In 2007, he wrote Världens sista roman (“The World’s Last Novel”), and subsequently refrained for a long period from further publications while hosting a literary programme, Babel, on Swedish Television. Since then, he has co-authored two adventure stories under the pseudonym of Michael Mortimer, and published the acclaimed short story Alla vill bara gå hem (“Everybody Just Wantsto Go Home”) under his own name.

The Auditorium: SUN 1.00–1.45 pm (En)

Readings: SUN 12.10–12.40 pm Sjölin (Sw)

The exhibition Adrian Villa Rojas – Fantasma will be on at Moderna Museet until 25 October.

Katja Petrowskaja + Aris Fioretos

Writing yourself back to your roots

How can we reconstruct our past, our roots? By writing to fill in the blanks with our own guesses, or by allowing our questions and the missing links to be part of the story.

Katja Petrowskaja + Aris FioretosKatja Petrowskaja, photo: Heike Steinweg. Aris Fioretos, photo: David Brandt.

Katja Petrowskaja was born in 1970 in Kiev, in what is now the Ukraine, studied in Estonia, and graduated with a PhD in Moscow via research scholarships at Columbia and Stanford in the USA. She lives in Berlin since 1999 and writes in German. Vielleicht Esther (“Maybe Esther”) is her award-winning debut, which has already been translated into several languages. What was the name of her Jewish great-grandmother who was left behind in the flat in Kiev when the Nazis invaded in 1941? Maybe her name was Esther? Vielleicht Esther has been translated into Swedish by Aimée Delblanc.

Aris Fioretos. A novelist, translator and scholar of literature, Fioretos grew up with several languages and cultures. In his literary pursuits he challenges boundaries intellectually, and humorously oscillates between science, art, literature and philosophy. His latest novel, Mary, is a powerful story of love, political violence and the longing for freedom.

In association with Norstedts.

The Auditorium: SUN 2.15–3.00 pm (En)  

Book signing: SUN 3.10–3.20 pm

Readings: SAT 2.50–3.20 pm Petrowskaja (Ge/Sw) SUN 12.10–12.40 pm Fioretos (Sw)

Zon: SAT 12.00–12.15 pm Petrowskaja (Ge)

Colm Tóibín + Kristoffer Leandoer

What do you really know about mother?

We think we know our family better than others, but do we really? What happens when we learn as adults to see a contrary, remote mother in a different light? Can we forgive a mother who was incapable of caring for her offspring?

Colm Tóibín + Kristoffer LeandoerKristoffer Leandoer, photo: Stefan Tell. Colm Tóibín, photo: Murdo Macleod.

Colm Tóibín. An Irish novelist, essayist and critic, whose major international breakthrough came with The Master, a multifaceted novel about the life of the American-British writer Henry James, Tóibín is a master of portraying emotions and moods, and everything between the lines of human life: the unspeakable and the unspoken. His recent novel, Nora Webster, is his most personal work to date. It delivers an exceedingly strong portrait of a woman whose paralysing grief after the death of her husband left her unable to care for her children. Nora Webster has been translated into Swedish by Erik Andersson. Colm Tóibín also talks to the Spanish novelist Jesús Carrasco on Saturday.

Kristoffer Leandoer. A novelist, translator and essayist, Leandoer has made a significant contribution to introducing Anglo-Saxon fantasy and francophone literature in Sweden. His critically acclaimed tender and empathetic novel September, about his mother’s life, was followed recently by Slut – symbolisterna vid tidens ände (“Finale – the Symbolist Era at the End of Time”) an erudite and entertaining exposé on one of the most interesting literary tendencies of the late 19th century.

Organised jointly with Norstedts and the Embassy of Ireland.

The Auditorium: SAT 1.00–1.45 pm Tóibín (En) SUN 3.30–4.15 pm (En)

Book signing: SAT 1.55–2.05 pm Tóibín SUN 4.25–4.35 pm

Readings: SAT 4.10–4.40 pm Tóibín (En/Sw) SUN 2.10–2.40 pm Leandoer (Sw)

Binyavanga Wainaina

With literature as his guiding star

An exclusive lecture that concludes this year’s edition of Stockholm Literature!

Binyavanga WainainaBinyavanga Wainaina, foto: Msingi Sasis.

Binyavanga Wainaina. Born in Kenya and currently one of Eastern Africa’s most widely acknowledged authors, Wainaina contributes to the Guardian, New York Times and Granta, and recently made an acclaimed TED talk. Known for his courage in living openly as a homosexual in a country with anti-gay laws, he was recently celebrated in Swedish media for his critically acclaimed autobiographical novel One Day I Will Write About This Place. It addresses his childhood and youth, and how he found the language and literature that would influence him profoundly, and not only in a positive sense. One Day I Will Write About This Place has been translated from English into Swedish by Boel Unnerstad.

In association with Tranan.

The Auditorium: SUN 4.45–5.30 pm (En)  

Book signing: SUN 5.40–5.50 pm

Readings: SUN 10.50–11.20 am (En)

Participating translators in 2015

Erik Andersson. Author, critic, and one of Sweden’s best-known translators from English. Since 1984, he has translated some 50 titles by such writers as Colm Tóibín, James Joyce, Zadie Smith, Flann O’Brien, Oscar Wilde, Nick Hornby, J. R. R. Tolkien and Kate Atkinson. He is also an award-winning author in his own right. His latest novel is Indialänderna (“The India Lands”). He recently returned to live in Västra Bodarne, where he was born in 1962. Erik Andersson presents his translation of Colm Tóibín’s Nora Webster.

Readings: SAT 12.10–12.40 pm (Sw)

Zon: SUN 2.00–2.45 pm


Lars Kleberg. Writer and translator from Russian and Polish. A prominent Slavicist and former professor of Russian studies at Södertörn University, he recently published his book Vid avantgardets korsvägar, about Ivan Aksionov and Russian Modernism. He founded the translators’ database Svenskt översättarlexikon ( Lars Kleberg translated poems from Lev Rubinstein’s The big note card library, published in 2001 – the only selection of Rubinstein’s poetry published in Swedish. Lars Kleberg presents his translation of Lev Rubinstein’s poetry on the readings stage.

Reading: SAT 12.10–12.40 (Sw) SUN 4.10–4.40 pm (Sw)


Aimée Delblanc. A prominent translator, who has introduced German literature to Swedish readers, Delblanc began by translating Günter Wallraff and has since translated numerous German-language writers, including Petra Hammesfahr, Elfride Jelinek, Bernhard Schlink, Hans Fallada, Christa Wolf, and, most recently, Katja Petrowskaja. Aimée Delblanc presents her translation of Katja Petrowskaja’s Vielleicht Esther before the reading.

Reading: SUN 3.30–4.00 pm (Sw)


Hanna Axén. A translator from Spanish and English and an influential promoter of Latin American literature in Sweden, mainly through the publishing company Boca, which she runs together with the translator Örjan Sjögren, Axén (born 1970) has lived and studied in Mexico. She is a trained musician and has translated a total of 26 books by authors such as Isabel Allende, Hernán Rivera Letelier, Sahar Delijani, Selva Almada and Rodrigo Rey Rosa. She now lives on Majorca. Hanna Axén presents her translation of Jesús Carrasco’s Intemperie on the readings stage.

Reading: SUN 3.30–4.00 pm (Sw)


Janina Orlov. A Finnish-Swedish translator from Russian and Finnish, Janina Orlov (born 1955) teaches at the Department of Literature and History of Ideas at Stockholm University. She has a PhD in Russian, with a thesis on The Tale of Tsar Saltan. Her acclaimed translations include Sofi Oksanen’s novels, and works by Rosa Liksom, Katja Kettu and Nina Sadur. She talks to Rosa Liksom at the opening of Stockholm Literature.

The Auditorium: FRI 7.00 pm


Translation of the Year 2015: Örjan Sjögren

Örjan Sjögren

This year’s winner of The Translation of the
Year Prize Örjan Sjögren

Photo: Moderna Museet / Åsa Lundén

The Translation of the Year Prize was founded in 2010 and is awarded by the translators’ section of the Swedish Writers’ Union. The purpose of the Prize is to acknowledge the art of translating and to reward translations that commendably combine boldness with precision, brilliance with accuracy. For the second consecutive year, the Prize is awarded at the opening of Stockholm Literature.

This year’s winner Örjan Sjögren has been translating from Portuguese and English into Swedish for more than two decades. Following extensive travels in Brazil, he has developed a profound interest in the country’s literature. Together with the translator Hanna Axén, he has operated the publishing company Boca. His translations, published by his own company and other publishers, and his articles in magazines such as Karavan, have been vital to promoting new Latin American books and authors. He is awarded the Translation of the Year Prize for his translation of Barba ensopada de sangue by Daniel Galera.

The Auditorium: FRI 7.00 pm (En/Sw)

Reading: SAT 11.30 am–12.00 pm (Sw)

Honorary mentions

Johanne Lykke Holm for her translation from Danish of Josefine Klougart’s Én af os sover (“One of Us is Sleeping”).

Daniel Gustafsson Pech for his translation from Hungarian of László Krasznahorkai’s The Melancholy of Resistance.

Poetry walks, Zon, and the Solen podcast

Lindy Larsson, Maia Hansson Bergqvist and Hannes Meidal.Lindy Larsson, Maia Hansson Bergqvist and Hannes Meidal. Photo: Åsa Lundén / Moderna Museet

Poetry walks in collaboration with Dramaten&

International poetry meets contemporary art, in poetry walks accompanied by the actors Hannes Meidal, Rebecka Hemse, Maia Hansson Bergqvist and Lindy Larsson. What does the lighting in Olafur Eliasson’s works mean, when reflected in modern poetry? Like a soundtrack, where what you see is coloured by what you hear. Or vice versa. What does Lev Rubenstein’s poetry say when it is coloured red? Join us on a walk where words meet art, both poetically and literally.

Royal Dramatic Theatre lunchtime poetry.

A collaboration with Dramaten&.

Meeting place: SAT 12.00 and 2.00 pm by the sign saying “Visning”

Meeting place: SUN 12.00 and 2.00 pm by the sign saying “Visning”

Romanian poetry walk

Man’s boundlessness is one of the oldest and best beloved themes of world literature. Join us for a walk with the Romanian-American poet Andrei Codrescu and actors from the Royal Dramatic Theatre through Romanian poetry, from the Dadaist Tristan Tzara to strong contemporary feminists. Poetry readings with introductions in a personal tone, together with presentations of works from the Moderna Museet collection that illustrate the period.

Organised jointly with the Romanian Cultural Institute.

Meeting place: SAT 1.00 pm by the sign saying “Visning”

Meeting place: SUN 1.00 pm by the sign saying “Visning”

Zon and pop-up library

During the Festival weekend, Zon is transformed into a multilingual reading room and a pop-up library where you can borrow books by the participating authors in their original language.

Organised jointly with the International Library and the City of Stockholm Libraries.

Zon: SAT 12.00 pm Petrowskaja (Ge)

Zon: SAT 1.00 pm Olga Tokarzcuk (Po)

Zon: SAT 2.00 pm Lev Rubinstein + Lyudmila Ulitskaya (Ru)

Solen podcast

Solen is a podcast about literature and libraries, with the librarians Alice Thorburn, Elias Hillström and Patrik Schylström from the City of Stockholm Libraries. During Stockholm Literature, Solen will feature an interview with the author and translator Erik Andersson on translating and his impressions from the Festival.

In association with the City of Stockholm Libraries.

Zon: SUN 2.00–2.45 pm

More about this program