The winner of Australia's richest literary prize did not attend the ceremony.
His absence was not an option.
Behrouz Boochani, whose debut book won a $ 25,000 fiction award for the Victorian premiere literary award, and $ 100,000 in the Victorian cost of literature on Thursday night, is not allowed in Australia.
A Kurdish Iranian writer is an asylum seeker who has been held in Purgatory on the island of Manus in Papua New Guinea for almost six years, first behind the wire of the Australian Coastal Prison and then in an alternative accommodation on the island.
Now his book, "No Friend," but "Mountain" – composed one text message at a time from within the Capture Center – was recognized by a government from the same country that denied access and locked it.
That is, he said, "a paradoxical feeling".
"I really do not know what to say," he said in an interview with Guardian Australia before announcing a major awards when he only knew about the fiction. "I definitely did not write this book just to get the price.
"My primary objective was always to make people in Australia and around the world understand deeply how this system tortured innocent people to Manus and Nauru in a systematic manner for almost six years. I hope this award will bring more attention to our situation and create change and end this barbaric politics. "
Boochani speaks through text messages because his Internet connection still excludes.
For asylum seekers who are detained in offshore custody to obtain such a major award, "brings the Australian government tremendous shame," he said.
The recognition of Boochani was by his translator, Omid Tofighian, who worked with the interpreter Moones Mansoubi, who translated Bosan's Persian text into English.
"You can not underestimate the impact [this win] will have Australian policy and Australian refugee policy – not just in Australia [but for] displaced and displaced people around the world, "said Tofighian.
"This is one of the worst forms of neocolonial oppression that is currently taking over the world – and solving this book in this way and recognizing it and drawing attention to the narrative it presents will result in many generations coming."
Prices are divided into seven categories rated by the panel. In 2017 and 2018, women won each category and won the winning list this year, with Elise Valmorbida winning a fictional prize with The Madonna of the Mountains; Kendall Feaver won a dramatic prize for her Almighty game sometimes; Kate Lilley was awarded the Poetry Award for Tilt; Victoria Hannan won a $ 15,000 unpublished manuscript for Kokomo; and Bri Lee won the award for his memoir Eggshell Skull.
After last year's Nib Prize, the second person's debut, a memoir that tracks Lee's journey of being a judge's court, seeks justice through child sexual assault courts.
Now he receives "hundreds" of emails and messages from others who have survived sexual abuse.
"I'll answer everyone," she said. "Overall, I have enough news of such hope and optimism, and people, after reading this book, really make decisions about changing lives, so even though I have a lot of upbeat news, everything is good. people. "
Lee said the unexpected commercial success of the book gave her the "most amazing gift of freedom to write what I wanted to go on."
He is currently working on a number of essays.
The Young Adult Prize was awarded to Amelin and Ezekiel Kwaymullin, who won the Catching Teller Crow Award.
Westminster Kim Scott, the double winner of Miles Franklin, won the award for his novel Taboo, which deals with a modern population that coincides with the historical and cultural heritage of the massacre in the Noongar country in the southwest WA.
It is based on experience in its own country in Ravensthorpe, halfway between Albany and Esperance.
"My native country is considered taboo by many indigenous people because of the killings that took place in the late 19th century," he said. "I did not even know until I was an adult, the unfortunate edge of our history … the emotional infrastructure of the times did not allow or perhaps not allow it."
Scott said that the novel is "for many of us who have been damaged by colonization, and I imagine that they are just human beings … heals and strengthens our relationship to the pre-colonial heritage.
"It's all about setting up and setting up … and finding a way for emotional and spiritual infrastructure." Stories are really important to them, but they are also things like Uluru's statements. "They help us figure out how to deal with these things."
2019 Victorian Prime Minister's Literary Award: Winners List
Winner: Madonna Mountain Elise Valmorbida
My List: Flames by Robbie Arnott; Ironbark by Jay Carmichael; Autumnal autodestructures and other stories of San Ginze by Moreno Giovannoni; The Death of Noah Glass by Gail Jones; Too many lips Melissa Lucashenko
Winner: No friend but mountains: Writing from Manus Prison Behrouz Boochani
Shortlist: Stay: Memoir by Jessie Cole; Arsonist: The Chloe Hooper Fire Mind; Eggs Skull by Bri Lee; Miss Ex-Yugoslavia Sofija Stefanovic; Axiomatic Maria Tumarkin
Winner: Ever since Kendall Feaver
Shortlist: Michele Lee descends; Barbara and camp dogs Ursula Yovich and Alana Valentine
Winner: Tilt by Kate Lilley
Shortlist: Flood damage Eunice Andrada; Milky teeth Rae White
Writing for young adults
Winner: Catching Teller Killer Ambelin Kwaymullin and Ezekiel Kwaymullin
My List: Amelia Westlake by Erin Gough; Among us Clare Atkins
Winner: Taboo by Kim Scott
My List: Joint People by Tony Birch; Too many lips from Melissa Lucashenko; Blacwork by Alison Whittaker
Winner: Kokomo by Victoria Hannan
My List: Wedding cake Island John Byron; Frontier Sport by Wayne Marshall