An extract from Standing Heavy by GauZ', translated by Frank Wynne
GauZ’s novel Standing Heavy, which is shortlisted for the International Booker Prize 2023, is a deconstruction of colonial legacies and capitalist consumption
GauZ' is an Ivorian author and journalist, the editor-in-chief of a satirical economic newspaper, and has also written screenplays and documentary films.
After studying biochemistry, GauZ’ moved to Paris as an undocumented student, working as a security guard before returning to the Côte d’Ivoire. GauZ’’s first novel, Standing Heavy, came out in 2014 and won Le Prix des libraires Gibert Joseph. It was followed by Comrade Papa, which won the 2019 Prix Éthiophile, and Black Manoo.
Standing Heavy carries us through the decades – from the youthful optimism of the decolonisation of the 1960s to the banal realities of daily shift work on the margins of contemporary consumer society – to deliver a fresh perspective on France that is critical, funny and human.— The International Booker Prize 2023 panel of judges on 'Standing Heavy'