France: Conflict of interest suspected in Goncourt

Laureate of France’s finest literary prize, the Académie Goncourt occupies a hot seat after a selection of 16 authors, one of whom is the companion of a juror, moreover the latter has publicly crushed a competitor.

Literary awards season has just begun, and Goncourt’s first selection appears to be marred by a matter of conflict of interest. One of the sixteen selected authors is none other than the companion of one of the jury members, novelist Camille Lorenz. The jury learned about it and ignored it,” public radio France Inter reported on Tuesday on its website.

The jury at Goncourt denied any conflict of interest following these discoveries about the links between Camille Lorenz and philosopher and essayist François Nodelman, chosen for Cadillac kidsAn account of the lives of his grandfather and father during the two world wars. “We felt that was no reason to penalize a good book,” Didier Decoin, head of the Academie Goncourt, told France International.

Academy secretary Philippe Claudel told AFP that the rules had been strictly followed.

“There was a majority of us who appreciated this book and I then discovered that there was a connection between François Nudelman and Camille Lorenz, about which we questioned,” he said.

“There was a vote to say yes, we could include the book, and that it was not a moral or ethical problem, as if it came from a spouse, descendant, or ascendant. And gathered a majority that allowed him to be in the selection. For the Academy, conflicts of interest were ruled out. .

France Inter raises another potential conflict of interest: scathing criticism from Camille Lorenz in the newspaper the scientist from Postcard Anne Berest, September 16, eight days after the publication of the first list of Goncourt where this novel appeared.

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The custom is that jurors at Goncourt do not express themselves publicly in the books on the race and remain in solidarity with the choices of the Academy in all circumstances.

“I didn’t like it at all. And we’ll talk about it,” DeQuinn told France International.

“At the next meeting, I will favor writing this, if not in our grammar, at least in our oral grammar: when one of us has a platform in the press, whatever it may be, he refrains from speaking of the book in the selections,” added Philippe Claudel.

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