Dany Laferrière

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Dany Laferrière
Dany Laferrière - Livre sur la Place 2014 (cropped).jpg
Dany Laferrière in 2014
Born Windsor Kléber Laferrière
(1953-04-13) 13 April 1953 (age 62)
Port-au-Prince, Haiti
Occupation Novelist, journalist
Language French
Citizenship Haitian, Canadian

Dany Laferrière (born Windsor Kléber Laferrière, 13 April 1953) is a Haitian Canadian novelist and journalist who writes in French.[1] He was elected to the Académie française on 12 December 2013, and inducted in May 2015.[2]


Born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and raised in Petit Goâve, Laferrière worked as a journalist in Haiti before moving to Canada in 1976. He also worked as a journalist in Canada, and hosted television programming for the TQS network.

Laferrière published his first novel, Comment faire l'amour avec un nègre sans se fatiguer (How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired) in 1985. The novel was later adapted into a screenplay by Laferrière and Richard Sadler, earning a Genie Award nomination for best adapted screenplay at the 11th Genie Awards in 1990. The film adaptation of the novel starred Isaach De Bankolé and was directed by Jacques W. Benoit.

Laferrière writes exclusively in French, although some of his works have been published in English translated by David Homel.

The 2005 film Heading South (Vers Le Sud) was adapted from three of his short stories.

In 2009, Laferrière won the prestigious Prix Médicis for his 11th novel, L'énigme du retour. Upon receiving the prize, he commented on its ability to open up a new readership in France, giving him visibility there. In the past Laferrière had always refused to be published in the fall, a season associated with the great literary prizes, but had been recommended to do so with L'énigme du retour by his editors. The novel follows Laferrière as he returns to his birthplace in Haiti, 33 years after he left it, upon learning of his father's death in New York. The narrative blurs the line between prose and poetry, resembling haiku structures in some sections.

On 12 December 2013, Laferrière was elected on the first round of balloting to Seat no. 2 of the Académie française, becoming the first Haitian, the first Canadian and the first Quebecer to receive the honour.[3][4] He is the second black person to have been inducted, the first being Senegalese writer and statesman Léopold Sédar Senghor in 1983.[2]

On 3 June 2014, he was awarded the International Literature Award by the House of World Cultures for his novel The Return (L'enigme du retour).[5]

Laferrière lives in Montreal, Quebec.


English translation How to Make Love to a Negro Without Getting Tired, 1987 (Coach House Press)
  • Éroshima, 1987 (Éditions VLB)
English translation Eroshima, 1991 (Coach House Press)
  • L'odeur du café, 1991 (Éditions VLB)
English translation An Aroma of Coffee, 1993 (Coach House Press)
  • Le goût des jeunes filles, 1992 (Éditions VLB)
English translation Dining with the Dictator, 1994 (Coach House Press)
  • Cette grenade dans la main du jeune nègre est-elle une arme ou un fruit?, 1993 (Éditions VLB)
English translation Why Must a Black Writer Write About Sex?, 1994 (Coach House Press)
  • Chronique de la dérive douce 1994 (Éditions VLB, poetry)
English translation A Drifting Year, 1997 (Douglas & McIntyre)
English translation Down Among the Dead Men, 1997 (Douglas & McIntyre)
  • La chair du maître, 1997 (Éditions Lanctôt)
  • Le charme des après-midi sans fin, 1997 (Éditions Lanctôt)
  • Le cri des oiseaux fous, 2000 (Serpent à plumes)
  • J'écris comme je vis ; Entretien avec Bernard Magnier, 2000 (Éditions La passe du vent)
  • Je suis fatigué, 2000 (Les librairies initiales)
  • Je suis fou de Vava, 2005 (Éditions de la Bagnole)
  • Je suis un écrivain japonais
English translation I Am a Japanese Writer, 2010 (Douglas & McIntyre)
  • La fête des morts, 2009 (Éditions de la Bagnole)
  • L'énigme du retour, 2009 (Québec: Boréal, France: Grasset)
English translation The Return, 2011 (Douglas & McIntyre)
English translation "The World is Moving Around Me", 2013 (Arsenal Pulp Press)
  • L'Art presque perdu de ne rien faire, 2011 (Boréal)
  • Journal d'un écrivain en pyjama, 2013 (Montréal: Mémoire d'encrier).

Further reading

  • Beniamin Vasile, Dany Laferrière: l'autodidacte et le processus de création, Paris: l'Harmattan, collection "Critiques Littéraires", 2008


External links[edit]