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Claudio Magris: War is not necessary

19th October 2009

The winner of the Peace Prize of the German Book Trade has said that the world does not have to be blighted by war.

Italian author Claudio Magris was awarded the honour yesterday (October 18th) on the last day of the Frankfurt Book Fair and called on the world to rid itself of conflict.

Speaking to Deutsche Welle, the 70-year-old, who examined human suffering in his 1997 work Microcosms, said people should not think that conflict between nations is a necessary part of life.

'Of course there are different kinds of war, not just war where bombs are dropped. There are wars in everyday life - latent wars,' he explained.

The writer claims that the danger of this is people start to regard larger conflicts as 'unavoidable' and expect to encounter them throughout their whole lives.

Magris also cautioned against the false optimism that the world can be easily rid of conflicts and called on people to constantly strive to prevent them from happening.

Last week, Kathrin Schmidt was awarded the German Book Prize 2009 for her novel Du Stirbst Nicht (You Are Not Going to Die).

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