Gazmend Kapllani is an Albanian polyglot author, journalist, and scholar. He received his PhD in political science and history from Panteion University in Athens and taught Albanian and Balkan history to undergraduate and graduate students at Panteion. Kapllani has written his first three novels in Greek, his fourth novel in Albanian, and his new book, a collection of short stories, in English. His work centers on themes of migration and minorities, borders, totalitarianism, and how Albanian and Balkan history has shaped public and private narratives and memories. Kapllani’s first novel A Short Border Handbook has been translated and published into ten languages. It has been adapted for the stage by Bornholm Theater in Denmark and The National Theater of the Deaf in Greece. In 2017 it won the prestigious International Literary Prize of the City of Cassino in Italy. His three other novels, My Name is Europe, The Last Page and Wrongland have been translated into French; The Last Page was short-listed for The Cezam Prix Litteraire Inter CE 2016; Wrongland has just been short-listed for the Prix Méditerranée étranger 2020. Since 2012 Kapllani has been living in the US, where he was a fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, also writer-in-residence at Brown University and Wellesley College. He has also taught at Emerson College. He recently relocated to Chicago as the visiting Chair of the newly created Hidai Bregu Endowed Program of Albanian Studies at DePaul University. This is the first program of its kind in the history of the American academia. Through his writing Kapllani has been an advocate for human rights, fairness, and diversity.
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