Andrzej Tichy was born in Prague to a Polish mother and a Czech father. He has lived in Sweden since 1981. The author of five novels, a short story collection and a wide range of nonfiction and criticism, Tichy is widely recognized as one of the most important novelists of his generation. His latest novel Eländet (Wretchedness) is a postpolitical foray into modern day Swedish society. It was shortlisted for the August Prize 2016, Sweden’s most prestigious literary prize.
August Prize Judges
‘What can a survivor do with their history? Can you be loyal to the friends you left behind? Andrzej Tichý turns this wretched reality into something poignant. His polyphonic novel has a rough, rhythmic melody and a ferocious rage.’
‘In virtuousically rendered language; full of the poetry of spoken word, the innovation of contemporary slang, and the philosophical verve of great literature, Tichý gives a voice to the lost ‘brothers’ of his youth. To follow this frantic, mournful, bamboozling, pleading, smart, childish, would-be hard, bragging, desperate and despairing collective memory is to ‘hear’ a whole forsaken generation. Despite the embracing of darkness, despite the absence of hope and faith, it is a magnificent elegy, teeming with life.’
‘In terms of ambition, few contemporary Swedish authors can compete with Tichý. The same goes for linguistic intensity. His prose rushes forward, roaring with, if you will, dark poetry, hurling its rage at an indifferent present. Wretchedness is a furious novel.’
‘Authors like Tichý are needed to keep our literature alive. He is drilling frenetically, refusing to neglect the suffering and succeeds to light a spark on a linguistic tinder.’