La Monnaie / De Munt LA MONNAIE / DE MUNT
© Mark Pringle
Meet the author

Abdulrazak Gurnah
Nobel Prize in Literature 2021


After Annie Ernaux in March 2023, La Monnaie and international house of literature Passa Porta are delighted to welcome another Nobel Prize Winner in Literature, Abdulrazak Gurnah.

Abdulrazak Gurnah was born in 1948 in Zanzibar, Tanzania. In 1967 he fled to the UK, where he taught English and postcolonial literature at the University of Kent. In his impressive and widely acclaimed oeuvre of essays, short stories and novels, he managed to give a voice to those who have been neglected by history. When awarding him the highest literary distinction, the Nobel Prize Committee called him ‘one of the world’s most prominent postcolonial writers. He has explored, in a penetrating manner and with great compassion, the consequences of colonialism in East Africa and its effects on the lives of uprooted and migrating people’. As such, the themes of his work fit seamlessly with the new opera creation Ali, the true story of a twelve-year old boy who has to risk the deadly dangerous migration route to Europe.

Notable works by Abdulrazak Gurnah include Paradise (1994), By the Sea (2001) and Desertion (2005). His latest novel, Afterlives (2020), is a work of historical fiction.

The full programme of this evening, with a dash of Brussels, will be announced later. Part of the proceeds will go to ICORN, a network of more than seventy cities around the world, including Brussels, that offer shelter to writers at risk.

Dates & tickets



La Monnaie


Pay what you can
€15 | 10 | 8 | 2


In English

Running time


Organized by La Monnaie, KVS and international house of literature Passa Porta, in collaboration with Meulenhoff.



Dates & tickets