Alexander Osang was born in 1962 in East Berlin. He studied journalism in Leipzig and worked in the years after the reunification for the »Berliner Zeitung«, where he swiftly became chief reporter. In 1999, he went to New York as a correspondent for »Der Spiegel« for seven years before returning to his home town.
Now one of Germany’s most prominent journalists, he published his first collection of articles in 1992, »Aufsteiger – Absteiger« (tr: Winners – Losers). The regularly-published collections of his reports and columns are mainly concerned with social developments in Eastern Germany since 1989. Osang’s first novel, »Die Nachrichten« (2000; tr: The News), which was adapted for the cinema to great success in 2005, is also guided by this interest. The book is about the television host Jan Landers, born in the former GDR, who works his way into the »Tagesschau« studio in Hamburg, but goes on to learn that he will never entirely fit into the West German (media) system. Landers has to put up with a rumour that he used to work for the Stasi. This teaches him not only how fragile his status as a »westernised« East German is, but also the extent to which the media business is riddled with intrigues. In his subsequent literary work, the collection »Lunkebergs Fest« (2003; tr: Lunkeberg’s Party) and his second novel »Lennon ist tot« (2007; tr: Lennon is Dead), Osang distances himself from the East-West themes. What remains is his preference for characters who are in danger of failing or of losing themselves in unexpected developments. »Im nächsten Leben« (2010; tr: In the Next Life), a collection of his reports, which were first published in »Der Spiegel«, deals with the ruptures in biographies – whether of the German Chancellor or of an unknown American war veteran – which leave such unmistakable traces in someone’s life. Osang has won numerous prizes for his journalistic work, including the Theodor Wolff Prize and the Egon Erwin Kisch Prize for the best German-language report (which he has won three times). In 2009, he was named »Reporter of the Year«. Osang lives in Berlin.