Radio Books: Contemporary Dutch and Flemish short stories – Lieve Joris

Lieve Joris: “Bollieke”

Lieve Joris is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning travel writer from Belgium. Her writing focuses chiefly on Africa, the Middle East and eastern Europe, and several of her works have been translated into English. Born in 1953, Joris is best known internationally as the author of books such as Back to Congo (NY Atheneum 1992), The Gates of Damascus (Lonely Planet, 1996), and The Rebels’ Hour (Grove-Atlantic, US; 2008; Atlantic, UK, 2008). The former Belgian colony of Congo, where her uncle lived as a missionary, is a recurring theme in her work.

Lieve Joris says that she ‘is not a writer of fiction’. Her Radio Book is an autobiographical work and deals with her father who, after the death of his wife, is unable to look after himself and, much against his will, has to move to a home for the elderly. This is a moving and often tragicomic story about the loneliness of old age and children’s feelings of powerlessness.

Presented by David Swatling and read by Jackie Spears. Translation by Liz Waters.

Radio Books was produced from 2008 to 2010 in association with the Dutch-Flemish Huis de Buren in Brussels and the Flemish broadcaster Klara.

You can download or listen to the entire series of over 100 stories by going to: