Ismail Kadare, born in 1936 in the South-Albanian city Gjirokastra, studied literature in Tirana and Moscow. He lived in Tirana until 1990, today he alternates between Tirana and Paris. He achieved his literary breakthrough with the novel Gjenerali i ushtrisë së vdekur [The General of the Dead Army], which was filmed in France with Marcello Mastroianni and Michel Piccoli. He is a member of many academies, and has been considered a candidate for the Nobel Prize for years. He received numerous awards for his work, most recently the “Man Booker International Prize” (2005) and the “Prince of Asturias Award” (2009). His novels have been translated into more than thirty languages.