China's Yan Lianke receives Franz Kafka prize

AP News
Posted: Oct 22, 2014 2:58 PM

PRAGUE (AP) — Yan Lianke, a Chinese author who has seen some of his novels banned in his homeland, has received the prestigious Franz Kafka Prize in the Czech Republic.

Yan said he was grateful as he accepted the annual $10,000 prize Wednesday at Prague's City Hall.

Each spring, it's awarded to authors whose works "appeal to readers regardless of their origin, nationality and culture."

Past winners have included American novelist Philip Roth, Nobel laureates Elfriede Jelinek of Austria and Harold Pinter of Britain, and Israeli author Amos Oz.

Based in Beijing, Yan fell afoul of authorities there with "Dream of Ding Village," about the AIDS crisis caused by HIV-contaminated blood, and "To Serve the People," with a character who can be aroused only when his lover smashes images of Chairman Mao.