The battle is well fought and ended and guess what? no victor, no vanquished! All finalists were worthy winners, but the prize had to be taken home, somewhere, somehow.
At last all powerful master! Bushra al-Fadil win the 2017 Caine Prize for African Writing, for his short story “The Story of the Girl Whose Birds Flew Away”, translated by Max Shmookkler, published in The Book of Khartoum – A City in Short Fiction (Comma Press, UK. 2016).
Read our review on The story of the girl whose birds flew away- Bushra al-Fadil
The Judges, Chaired by Nii Ayikwei Parkes, announced Bushra al-Fadil as the winner of the £10,000 prize at an award dinner this evening (Monday, 3 July) held for the first time in Senate House, London, in partnership with SOAS as part of their centenary celebrations. As a translated story, the prize money will be split –with £7,000 going to Bushra and £3,000 to the translator, Max Shmookler. The story comes ahead of the four other stories in the short list to emerge winner. The storeadtime team has over the past days reviewed some of these stories for your delight.
Bushra al-Fadil’s piece deserves the place it has taken, albeit the strong challenge posed by the other nominated pieces.
Bushra’s is the work where you see such tropes as “they walked infront of, a music of excessive beauty, and I walked behind confused and offbeat”, “I pulled out my eyes and began to look” and “The people around me are a pile of human watermelons. I approach one pile and pulled out my queuing tools-elbow and palm of my hand-and then my leg daily depleted and yearly defeated body” that makes it overwhelmingly appreciable.
Bushra al-Fadil is a Sudanese writer living in Saudi Arabia. His most recent collection Above a City’s Sky was published in 2012, the same year Bushra won the al-Tayeb Salih Short Story Award. Bushra holds a PhD in Russian language and literature. Danke!