David Albahari

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David Albahari
David Albahari auf dem Blauen Sofa 2.jpg
Born (1948-03-15) 15 March 1948 (age 70)
Peć, PR Serbia, FPR Yugoslavia
Occupation Writer, novelist
Nationality Serbian, Canadian

David Albahari (pronounced [dǎv̞id albaxǎri], Serbian Cyrillic: Давид Албахари, born on 15 March 1948[2]) is a Serbian writer of Sephardic Jewish origin, residing in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. Albahari writes mainly novels and short stories. He is also an established translator from English into Serbian. He is a member of the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts[2] and the University of Belgrade graduate.


Born in Peć,[2] SFR Yugoslavia, Albahari published the first collection of short stories "Porodično vreme" (Family Time) in 1973. He became better known to wider audience in 1982 with a volume "Opis smrti" (Description of Death) for which he got Ivo Andrić award. In 1991 he became the chair of the Federation of Jewish Communes of Yugoslavia, and worked on evacuation of the Jewish population from besieged Sarajevo. In 1994, he moved with his family to Calgary in the Canadian province of Alberta, where he still lives. He continues to write and publish in the Serbian language.

In the late 1980s, Albahari initiated the first formal petition to legalize marijuana in Yugoslavia.


In 2012 he was awarded the Vilenica Prize. He also received the following awards: Ivo Andrić Award (1982), Stanislav Vinaver Award (1993), NIN Prize (1996), National Library of Serbia Award for bestseller (1996), International Balkanika Award (1996), Bridge Berlin Award (1998), City of Belgrade Award (2005) and Isidora Sekulić Award (2014).[2]

On 29 July 2016, Albahari won the first award at the "Друга приказна" ("Another Story") literary festival in Skopje, Macedonia.[3]

Albahari has been contributing to Geist magazine.

Personal life[edit]

His ancestor is Nisim Albahari who was awarded the Order of the People's Hero by Josip Broz Tito on November 27, 1953.


His books have been translated into several languages and eight of them are available in English:

  • Words Are Something Else (1996)
  • Tsing (1997)
  • Bait (2001)
  • Gotz and Meyer (2003, United Kingdom) (2005, United States)
  • Snow Man (2005)
  • Leeches (2011)
  • Globetrotter (2014)
  • Learning Cyrillic (2014).




  1. ^ a b c "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2013-01-01. Retrieved 2013-04-10. 
  2. ^ a b c d Biography at SANU official website, retrieved 1-12-2014 (in Serbian)
  3. ^ Давид Албахари - добитник на првата награда „Друга приказна“

External links[edit]