Dominique Fortier may not have won the Prince Pierre of Monaco Foundation Literary Prize last year. But the Quebec writer joined the literary council as “representative of Canadian letters of French expression”, succeeding in this position to the great Marie-Claire Blais.
It was “with heart swollen with pride” that his publisher Alto made the announcement on Monday.
We can indeed say that Dominique Fortier will be in prestigious company within this council which is composed of ten members of the French Academy, including Dany Laferrière, Hélène Carrère d’Encausse, Amin Maalouf and Jean-Christophe Rufin, four members from the Goncourt Academy, including Tahar Ben Jelloun and Philippe Claudel, as well as representatives of Congolese, Belgian and Swiss letters, under the chairmanship of H.R.H. the Princess of Hanover.
Endowed with a grant of 25,000 euros ($37,000), the Prince Pierre of Monaco Foundation Literary Prize has been awarded since 1951 to a writer for all of his work. Big names in world literature have already won it, such as Jean Giono, Eugène Ionesco, Françoise Sagan and Marguerite Yourcenar. The only three Quebecers to appear on this list are Anne Hébert in 1976, Marie-Claire Blais in 2002 and Michel Tremblay in 2017.
Board members are also called upon to award the Discovery Grant, which is awarded to the best first French-language novel.
Dominique Fortier’s work has already won numerous prizes, including the Renaudot in 2020 for Les ville de papier. In 2022, she was one of five finalists for the Prince Pierre of Monaco Foundation Literary Prize, won in October by the Lebanese-born writer Vénus Khoury-Ghata.