Author Hugo Hamilton honoured by Germany

Ambassador says ‘his writings bring the Germans closer to the Irish and the Irish closer to the Germans’

Germay’s ambassador to Ireland Matthias Höpfner with author Hugo Hamilton at yesterday’s ceremony in Dulbin

Germay’s ambassador to Ireland Matthias Höpfner with author Hugo Hamilton at yesterday’s ceremony in Dulbin

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Irish author Hugo Hamilton was awarded the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany by Germay’s ambassador to Ireland Matthias Höpfner in Dublin yesterday in recognition of his contribution to German-Irish relations.

Hamilton, the son of a German mother and an Irish father, often contrasts cultural pecularities of the two nations in his works. “His writings bring the Germans closer to the Irish and the Irish closer to the Germans,” the ambassador said in his address at the ceremony to award the Bundesverdienstkreuz.

In his literary and journalistic works, Hamilton has often dealt with the individual’s relationship to his/her nation and heritage and its effect on identity. He has written on how Germans come to terms with their difficult historical heritage, and has explored German perceptions of Ireland, following up on German author Heinrich Böll’s Irish Diary from 1957, which for a long time dominated German literature on Ireland.

The Order of Merit is the highest German honour. It is awarded for outstanding political, economic, social, cultural or scientific achievements and for outstanding contributions to enhancing Germany’s standing abroad and its relations with its European neighbours.

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