Nicolae Breban (b. 1934) is one of the most important and prolific contemporary Romanian prose writers. He made his debut in 1957, in Viaţa studenţească (Students’ Life) magazine. Eight years later, he published his first novel, Francisca (also translated into Bulgarian and Russian). His novel In the Masters’ Absence was published in 1966, and Sick Animals in 1968. This last novel was a unanimous success with critics, being declared “Novel of the Year” and awarded the Romanian Writers’ Union Prize. In 1970-71, he was editor-in-chief of România literară (Literary Romania). His novel Plaster Angel was published in 1973, and the Swedish translation of his novel In the Masters’ Absence in 1975. These novels were followed by Annunciation (1977), Don Juan (1981), the plays The Mice Corridor and The Old Woman and the Butterfly (1981-1982, Paris), the French translation of the novel In the Masters’ Absence (En l’absence des maîtres, Flammarion, 1983), The Way to the Wall (1984), the French translation of the novel Annunciation (L’Annonciation, Flammarion, 1985), Ambush and Seduction (1991), the French translation of Don Juan (Flammarion, 1993), Amphytrion : I. The Petty Demons, II. The Prosecutors, III. Alberta (1994), Day and Night (1998), Strictly Literary Memoirs (2001), and The Will to Power (2001). He is a corresponding member of the Romanian Academy, and director of Contemporanul : Ideea europeană (The Contemporary: The European Idea) review. Polirom has published his Risk in Culture (1997), The Meaning of Life (Memoirs I) (2003), The Meaning of Life (Memoirs II) (2004), Sick Animals (2004), The Meaning of Life (Memoirs III) (2006), and The Meaning of Life (Memoirs IV) (2007).