Country

Martinique

General presentation

Writer, translator and lecturer at the University of the French West Indies and Guiana, Raphaël Confiant was born in Lorrain in 1951 and is the author of numerous novels, essays and collections of poems. One of the best-known West Indian writers, he studied Political Science and English at the University of Aix-en-Provence, is deeply attached to his island, and is an activist in the Creole cause. He co-founded the “Créolité” literary movement alongside Jean Bernadé and Patrick Chamoiseau, with whom he published L’Eloge de la créolité in 1989 – an essay in which they develop the concept of créolité. As a member of the GEREC (Groupe d'Etudes et de Recherches en Espace Créolophone), Raphaël helps to develop and set up the Creole writing system as well as enrich Creole vocabulary. He contributed to the first newspaper to be printed entirely in Creole, Grif an tè, as well as the weekly magazines Antilla and Karibèl, among many others. His earliest writings were in Creole. For example, he published a short-story collection Jik dèyè do Bondyé in 1979 and a collection of poems, Jou Baré, the following year. It was not until 1988 that he published his first novel in French: Le nègre et l'amiral, a work that met with considerable success, and won him the Prix Antigone in 1988. A prolific author, he published three novels in 2012, the latest of which to date, Les Saint-Aubert, l’en allée du siècle 1900-1920, recounts the trials and tribulations of a Martiniquais family, the Saint-Auberts.

Select bibliography

Novels

  • Les Saint-Aubert, L'en-allée du siècle 1900-1920. Editions écriture, 2012
  • Du rififi chez les fils de la veuve. Caraibéditions, 2012
  • Rue des Syriens. Mercure de France, 2012
  • L’Hôtel du bon plaisir. Mercure de France, 2009
  • Case à Chine. Mercure de France, 2007
  • Adèle et la pacotilleuse. Mercure de France, 2005
  • La Panse du chacal. Mercure de France, 2004
  • L'Allée des Soupirs. Grasset, 1994
  • Eau de café. Grasset, 1991
  • Le Nègre et l'Amiral. Grasset, 1988
  • Marisosé. Presses universitaires créoles, 1987
  • Kòd Yanm. K.D.P, 1986
  • Bitako-a. GEREC, 1985

 

Poetry

Jou Baré. Grif An Té. 1981

Prizes and distinctions

2010: Prix de l'Agence Française de Développement (France)

2004: Prix des Amériques insulaires et de la Guyane for La Panse du chacal

2000: Prix du Salon du Livre Insulaire d'Ouessant (France)

1997: Prix RFO for Meurtre du Samedi-Gloria

1994: Prix Carbet de la Caraïbe for L'Allée des Soupirs

1993: Casa de Las Américas Prize (Cuba) for Ravines du devant-jour

1991: Prix Novembre (France) for Eau de café

1988: Prix Antigone de la ville de Montpellier (France) for Le Nègre et l'Amiral

International Books for Young People Prize (Spain) for Un voleur dans le village

Shibusawa-Claudel Prize (Japan)

@La Médiathèque Caraïbe

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