György Dragomán

© Lenke Szilagyi
© Lenke Szilagyi
György Dragomán


A fehér király (The White King)

Kütahya Dumlupınar Üniversitesi
Fen Edebiyat Fakültesi Konferans Salonu
03.12.2009, 10:00

Kütahya Kılıçarslan Anadolu Lisesi
04.12.2009, 10:00

Kütahya Ali Güraöl Lisesi
04.12.2009, 14:00

Kütahya Gülten Dayıoğlu Halk Kütüphanesi
05.12.2009, 14:00


György Dragomán was born in Marosvásárhely, Romania, in 1973 as a member of the Hungarian minority of Transylvania. In 1988 he and his family moved to Hungary. Dragomán was awarded a doctorate for his thesis on Samuel Beckett, and he works today as a film critic and translator for a film magazine. He has translated works by Beckett, James Joyce, Ian McEwan and Irvine Welsh into Hungarian. In 2002 he published his prize-winning first novel, A pusztítás könyve. His novel A fehér király (2005, English: The White King) is currently being translated into 15 languages.

  • A fehér király (English: The White King), 2005
  • A pusztítás könyve, 2002
The White King

The setting is Romania in the year of Chernobyl, 1986. An eleven-year-old boy witnesses his father being taken away by secret service officials. As the months go by, the hope of seeing his father again gradually fades. With touching attentiveness the boy tries to take the place of his father in the eyes of his brave mother, who is ostracized for being Jewish and a “dissident”. Meanwhile, he conceals from her the bullying he is being subjected to at school. He accompanies his mother to see “Comrade Ambassador”, from whom she hopes to receive assistance, and he devises his own schemes for liberating his father from the labor camp on the “Danube Canal”.

Everywhere he looks — at the gym teacher who forces the children to play soccer after the radioactivity alarm has sounded, at the brutalized youths who won’t shrink back from any act of violence, at the construction workers who claim to have seen his father — the boy encounters the cynical game of fear and hope, extortion and betrayal. But he wages his private war, defending himself from the inhumanity around him, and in a superb finale he fights for his father – against the whole world.

  Consistently writing from the perspective of a child, György Dragomán describes the amorality of a society that is being politically terrorized. His suggestive style captures the reader’s attention from the very first sentence. The intuitive certainty, lightness and beauty of his language, which he uses masterfully to tell of human greatness and evil, makes this book unforgettable.
Related links