Archive | October 22, 2002: Canadian Yann Martel wins the prestigious Booker Prize

A surprise from London

Surprise, very nice surprise in the literary world. In London, the Booker Prize, the English equivalent of the Goncourt Prize, was awarded to a francophone from Montreal. »

A quote from Stéphan Bureau, host of Téléjournal/Le Point

This francophone from Montreal, who nevertheless writes in English, is Yann Martel.

with his novel The Life of Pi, the author becomes the third Canadian – Michael Ondaatje and Margaret Atwood preceded him in 1992 and 2000 – to win the prestigious British literary prize.

Report by journalist Azeb Wolde-Ghiorgis on the awarding of the Booker Prize to Canadian writer Yann Martel

The president of the jury of the 34e edition of the Booker Prize describes Yann Martel’s novel, in the report by journalist Azeb Wolde-Giorgis presented at the Telejournal/Le Point of October 22, 2002, as being light, but also serious and spiritual.

The Booker Prize comes with a $120,000 purse and Yann Martel is sure to see sales of his book soar around the world.

Despite the glory that reflects on him, the Canadian remains modest.

Life is not thathe said, looking at the spotlights and microphones trained on him.

Yann Martel will return to everyday life to take care of patients in palliative care and to writing.

A novel and a translation that reveal many things

Yann Martel was born in 1963 in Spain. As a child, he lived in Alaska, Costa Rica, France and Mexico.

Trips to Turkey, Iran and India, as well as studies in philosophy, also shaped his thinking.

This atypical career has shaped the imagination of the author of the novel The Life of Pi.

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Journalist Paul Toutant interviews Yann Martel and his parents during the publication of the French version of the author’s novel in Montreal.

The novel, recalls the journalist Paul Toutant, in a report presented to the Montreal tonight of August 19, 2003, is a philosophical tale.

It tells the story of a shipwrecked boy who finds himself stuck for seven months in a lifeboat with a companion in misfortune… a tiger.

Yann Martel confirms to the journalist that he sees his book as an initiatory journey as well as a reflection on organized religions.

Paul Toutant met Yann Martel in Montreal as part of the release of his novel in French translation.

This translation, Pi’s story, is special because it was performed by Nicole and Émile Martel, the author’s mother and father.

Both parents are very proud of their son’s success.

They confided to Paul Toutant that the translation process allowed them to learn a lot about their own child.

Dialogues with the Public and a Prime Minister

What struck me in this novel was the idea of ​​a religious young man, in a shipwrecked boat, with a wild animal, which seemed to me like a perfect metaphor for the human condition. »

A quote from Yann Martel
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Host Stéphan Bureau interviews Yann Martel on his thinking and his process of literary creation.

A few weeks after receiving the Booker Prize, Yann Martel gave an interview to Stéphan Bureau from the show Le Téléjournal/Le Point, which aired on December 13, 2002.

Josée Thibeault hosts The Telejournal/Le Point That day.

Yann Martel describes in this interview what motivated him to write Pi’s story.

He also discusses the difficulties of writing dialogue for a novel in which one of the two most important protagonists is a wild animal.

Yann Martel firmly believes that literature enriches everyone’s life… including that of a Canadian Prime Minister.

In 2007, he challenged Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

The author sends him a book of literature every week for him to read.

It will be a total of 100 books that Yann Martel will send to the Canadian Prime Minister.

In an interview he grants to host Marcia Pilote of the show That’s life and broadcast on February 28, 2011, Yann Martel explains the purpose of his approach.

The author wanted to engage in a dialogue with Stephen Harper – but also with the general public – on issues that Yann Martel considers important.

Is literature purely mere entertainment?

Is it also a very important tool for reflection on life?

Yann Martel maintains during the interview that literature and reading broaden horizons.

Literature opens onto human experience, is at least a source of knowledge and can give a dose of wisdom, he confides to Marcia Pilote.

The author also asserts that what literature brings is essential both for the population in general and for a prime minister.

Yann Martel says he sent Stephen Harper short books to prevent him from saying he didn’t have time to read them.

Only one exception: his 101e and final sending.

Yann Martel then sent the Canadian Prime Minister the complete novel In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust.

He promised the Prime Minister that if he read it, he would do the same.

It’s quite a commitment considering that the work comprises seven volumes and several thousand pages!

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Archive | October 22, 2002: Canadian Yann Martel wins the prestigious Booker Prize