23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Hari Kunzru
© Hartwig Klappert

Hari Kunzru

Hari Kunzru was born in London in 1969 to a Kashmiri Pandit father and British mother. He grew up in Essex and earned an MA in philosophy and literature from Warwick University.

In his first novel »The Impressionist« (2002), the son of an Indian mother and British father is forced to assume many roles in search of his identity between cultures. Kunzru’s second novel »Transmission« (2005) is about an Indian IT expert in pursuit of the »American Dream«. Having migrated to the US, he loses his job and takes revenge by releasing a virus that causes global data networks to collapse. Kunzru’s book touches upon different aspects of our time, such as the problems of modern information society, globalization and neocolonialism. Separated from his family, the novel’s protagonist essentially ends up a corporate slave of a Western company. Kunzru’s third novel »My Revolutions« (2007) tells of a former terrorist who has built a comfortable life for himself, but is blackmailed for past transgressions thirty years later. The title of his fourth novel »Gods without Men« (2011) alludes to an epigraph by Honoré de Balzac. Characterized by elements of magical realism, the story is set in 2008 in the Mojave Desert, where a 4-year-old autistic boy vanishes. In this life-threatening and yet magical desert landscape, the boy’s fate is linked to that of other figures on the margins of society: a British rock star gone to seed, who is trying to escape the excesses in his life and a failed relationship; a former follower of an extraterrestrial cult, who is haunted by transcendent invocations; an Iraqi refugee, hired to play an »Iraqi villager« during a military simulation, who befriends an African-American marine during the event. Published in 2017, »White Tears« tells of two young men from different backgrounds, who live in New York and want to be music producers. Their enthusiasm for a song, which they remix and pass off as a lost blues classic, sets off a chain of events that ends fatally. »White Tears« reflects on the history of the USA, which is characterized by racism, and the current controversy surrounding cultural appropriation.

Kunzru’s books have been translated into twenty languages and received numerous awards, including the Somerset Maugham Award, Betty Trask Prize, Pushcart Prize and British Book Award. In 2003, he was named one of twenty »Best Young British Novelists« by »Granta« magazine. As a freelance journalist, he has written for various national and international publications, including »The New York Times«, »The Guardian«, »Daily Telegraph«, »Financial Times«, »Times of India« and »Wired«. Kunzru lives in New York City.


Die Wandlungen des Pran Nath


München, 2002

[Ü.: Benjamin Schwarz]



München, 2005

[Ü.: Benjamin Schwarz]



München, 2008

[Ü.: Wolfgang Müller]

Gods without Men

Hamish Hamilton

London, 2011

White Tears


New York, 2017