Noted Tibetan writer to be awarded Ostana Prize 

DHARAMSALA 23 June: A well-known Tibetan poet and writer will be honoured with the Ostana Prize youth award for his literary production and translations.

 Bhuchung D Sonam, a Dharamsala-based Tibetan poet and writer is set to receive the Ostana prize in the category of ‘Writings in Mother Tongue’  at the 14th Ostana Prize – on Sunday.

The organisers have stated that the Tibetan poet, essayist, publisher and translator’s “work of enhancing the Tibetan language is among the most important on the world scene” and that “his strength in trying to make the censored voice of the writers of his country of origin audible is a courageous gesture of care for the community of exiled Tibetans and those left in Tibetan soil.”

“Poetry can be a weapon or shield, in the case of Bhuchung Sonam, his poetry is a stimulus and source of reflection for us Westerners and for all Tibetans in the world,” it added.

Thanking the organisers for the award, Bhuchung D Sonam has said “I am overjoyed to receive the award.”

“It is not just a recognition of my work, but a recognition of the Tibet and the Tibetans literature, the human rights of Tibetans and the peaceful movement of Tibet.” 

“To promote the works of artists in the margins, in Europe, Africa, Asia, the Americas and in Oceania,” the organisers have decided to award the celebrated Tibetan writer along with the forty-three authors from five continents.

The 50-year-old Tibetan writer’s works are published in the Journal of Indian Literature, HIMAL Southasia, Hindustan Times, Tibetan Review, Truthdig and Seminar Journal among others. 

He has authored several books including Yak Horns: Notes on Contemporary Tibetan Writing, Music, Film and Politics among others and edited and translated several other books.

He co-founded Tibet Writes, a small independent publisher with his two friends. 

It was initially started with a noble mission in 2003 as a website for Tibetan writers, to display their creative writings.

By 2006-2007, as the submissions started to pour in, Tibet Writes declared that a website simply isn’t enough and started publishing.

So far,  Tibet Writes has published over 20 books authored by nine different Tibetan authors with more books in the pipeline to be published soon.

Dedicated to languages and to literary authors who use their “mother tongue,” Ostana Prize is an annual prize and cultural initiative organized by the Municipality of Ostana and by the Cultural Association Chambra d’Oc.

The Chambra d’Òc is a cultural association that works in the field of promotion and enhancement of the lesser-used languages in the world.

The event began in 2008 and is held in Ostana, a municipality in the Valle Po (Italy), every year at the beginning of June. It is open to the public with free admission. The 13th edition of the award will be held over 24-26th June.

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