Kovács András Ferenc: Biography

András Ferenc Kovács (17 July 1959, Satu Mare – 30 December 2023, Târgu Mureș)

Kossuth Prize-winning poet, essayist, and literary translator. Member of the Digital Literature Academy since 2008.


Born in Satu Mare on 17 July 1959; graduated from the Kölcsey Ferenc Lyceum in 1978 and from the Hungarian–French Faculty of the University of Cluj-Napoca in 1984. Between 1984 and 1991 he worked as a high school teacher in Transylvania. Since 1990 he has been the editor of the poetry section of Látó literary magazine. From 1991–2002, he taught dramaturgy at the University of Drama in Târgu Mureș. From 1997, he spent one year as director of the Tompa Miklós National Theatre in Târgu Mureș.

He has been the editor-in-chief of Látó since 2008.

He started publishing poetry in 1977 and children’s poems in 1981. He translated from Romanian and French, and also wrote essays.

His poetry has been translated into English, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Estonian, French, German, Italian, Polish, Romanian, Russian, Slovenian, Swedish, and Croatian.

He is one of the most influential contemporary Hungarian poets. The key concepts of his interpretive tradition – loss of identity, cultural memory, intertextuality, „role-poetics” – question the disambiguation and the dismantling of the traditional authorial position and, ultimately, deal with the inherent linguistic, intertextual mode of being and literality of the text. The richness of form of his poetry, almost unprecedented in contemporary Hungarian literature, is also aided by the poetic masks and characters (Jack Cole, René Sándor Lázáry, etc.) constructed with consistent detail.


The biography was written by Márton Mészáros, translated by Benedek Totth and Austin Wagner.