Ananda Devi

is a Mauritian and French author born in 1957 in Mauritius. Displaying a prodigious writing talent, Devi won her first literary prize at the age of fifteen for a short story in a Radio France Internationale competition. She has published eleven novels as well as short stories and poetry, and was featured at the PEN World Voices Festival in New York in 2015. Her literary awards include the Prix des Cinq Continents de la Francophonie (2006) and Prix Télévision Suisse Romande (2007) for Ève de ses décombres, the Prix Louis-Guilloux (2010), the Prix Mokanda (2012). In 2010 Devi was made a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French government and in 2014 she was awarded the Prix du Rayonnement de la langue et de la littérature françaises by the Académie Française. After a few years spent in Congo-Brazzaville, Devi moved to Ferney-Voltaire in Switzerland in 1989. 

‘IDENTITY IS, TO ME, AN EXPLORATION OF ALL THE POSSIBILITIES OF BEING. IT IS THE OPPOSITE OF MONOLITHIC . . . AS PEOPLE TEND TO ENTRENCH THEMSELVES BEHIND THE BARRIERS OF A FIXED, IMMUTABLE IDENTITY, I BELIEVE OUR CHANCE OF SURVIVAL IS IN THE EXACT OPPOSITE: IN EMBRACING OUR HYBRIDITY, IN ACCEPTING THAT IDENTITIES ARE SOLUBLE IN ONE ANOTHER, IN RECOGNISING THAT THE OTHER IS OURSELVES.’ – ANANDA DEVI

Photograph © C. Hélie