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Aleksandar Hemon (Sarajevo, 1964) is a writer of Bosnian origin who currently lives in the United States and writes in English.
Hemon was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, then Yugoslavia. His father was of Ukrainian descent and his mother was Serbian. Hemon’s great-grandfather, Teodor Hemon, came to Bosnia from the Ukraine before the First World War, when the two countries were part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Hemon graduated in literature at the University of Sarajevo in 1990. After moving to Chicago in 1992, not knowing much English, and finding himself unable to write in Bosnian, he decided to learn English in a period of five years.
In 1995 he began writing in English, and his stories soon appeared in The New Yorker, Esquire, The Paris Review and other prestigious publications. In 2000 his first book of stories appeared, The Question of Bruno. He followed in 2002 his first novel, Man of Nowhere, which deals with Jozef Pronek, the character that is part of the title of the short novel appeared in The Question of Bruno. The Lázaro project, his second novel, published in 2008, has been a finalist in the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award.
Hemon received a “genius grant” from the MacArthur Foundation in 2004.
Hemon writes a biweekly column entitled Hemonwood in BH Dani (Days of Bosnia and Herzegovina), a weekly magazine based in Sarajevo.
In 2011 he won the Gregor von Rezzori Prize-City of Florence.
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