Error message

Notice: Undefined index: image_field_caption in include() (line 180 of /hsphere/local/home/bookweek/

Past Events

Past EventsSunday, March 5

Imre Kertesz in conversation with Evi Blaikie

Imre Kertesz
Evi Blaikie

“Nothing has happened since Auschwitz that could reverse or refute Auschwitz. In my writingsthe Holocaust could never be present in the past tense.”

The Hungarian 2002 Nobel Prize winner came to London on a very rare visit to talk about his work, including Fatelessness, the retranslated novel based on his experience as a 14-year-old trying to make sense of the utmost horror and absurdity of life in the death camps and the total lack of understanding that met the survivors. He discussed his life, his writing and antisemitism with Evi Blaikie, a Hungarian hidden child who miraculously escaped the Holocaust, and only belatedly realised that she too was a victim.

Imre Kertesz was born in 1929, deported to Auschwitz in 1944. Most of his novels deal with the Holocaust. In his novel Kaddishfor an Unborn Child, his hero opposes having a child in a world allowing Auschwitz. He has won numerous prizes for his writing. He has also translated Nietzche and Freud into Hungarian.

Evi Blaikie is the author of Magda’s Daughter: A HiddenChild’s Journey Home.


Experience the event as it happened:


The Latest from JBW

Thousands joined us during the festival, for ten days of enlightening discussion and...

Anne Applebaum and Lawrence Freedman are both shortlisted for...

JBW is delighted to announce that Bill Browder will be joining Matthew...

Tickets for a live relay screening of...


J Safran Foer

Jonathan Safran Foer discusses his novel Here I Am with Hephzibah Anderson at an out-of-festival event.