Čaks (1901–1950, real name Aleksandrs Čadarainis) is a renowned Latvian author and poet. From 1911–14, Čaks studied at the Aleksandrs Gymnasium in Riga which was evacuated to Russia during WWI. He graduated from the gymnasium in 1918, and went on to study medicine at the Moscow University, then worked on an ambulance train, and later in a hospital. In 1922, he returned to Latvia and submitted his first 6 poems which the magazine refused to publish. In 1920's, he started working as a teacher, and more seriously turned to poetry. One of his poems was first published in 1925. Čaks studied poetry theory and Latvian literature autodidactically, read works of philosophers like Kant, Nietzsche and Hegel, et al. During the German occupation, Čaks was one of the forbidden authors whose works were not to be printed. As the Soviet rule was re-established, he worked for the Cīņa newspaper and composed commissioned poems, published in 3 volumes, translated fiction from Russian. However, Čaks failed to please the Soviet power and was accused of bourgeois and nationalist tendencies, and was criticized for anti-soviet undertones in his writing. This political persecution and slander of his character caused Čaks' premature death at the age of 48. Aleksandrs Čaks is considered a pioneer when it comes to urban themes in Latvian poetry and till this day is regarded as an irreplaceable figure in Latvian literature. He worked as technical editor in Association of Latvian Riflemen where he helped to publish collection of documents and memories. Inspired by riflemen memories he wrote a collection of epic poems Mūžības Skartie/Touched by Eternity for which he received A. Brigadere prize in 1939. Čaks Prize was established to commemorate the poet's contribution to Latvian literature, and a monument was placed for Aleksandrs Čaks in the Ziedoņdārzs park.
Sirds uz trotuāra [Hert on the Pavement] (1928)
Eņģelis aiz letes [Angel Behind the Counter] (1935)
Debesīs [Up in the Sky] (1938)
Aizslēgtas durvis [The Locked Door] (1938)
Books for Children
Nagla, Tomāts, Plūmīte [Nail, Tomato, Little Plum] (with Eriks Ādamsons) (1932)
Raksti [Writings]. 1. — 5. vol. comp. Arnolds Būmanis. Rīga: Liesma 1971 — 1976.
Kopoti raksti [Collected writings]. 1. — 6. vol. comp. Valdis Rūmnieks. Rīga: Zinātne, 1991 — 2007.
About Aleksandrs Čaks Award and translation of his poems into English // LA.lv, 2019 [LV]
About Čaks' Strēlnieku gaitas, published by Jumava // Online magazine Satori.lv, 2015 [LV]
About the new collection of poems by Aleksandrs Čaks // Latvijas Sabiedriskie Mediji, 2014 [EN]
About Aleksandrs Čaks // Čaks Muzeum website [EN]
Aleksands Čaks Muzeum // LiveRiga [EN]Reviews
Līga Horgana, review of The Enchantment of Love // Latvia Weekly blog, 2019 [EN]
Aleksandrs Čaks, Touched by Eternity // Jumava [EN]
1939, Anna Brigadere prize for Touched by Eternity
Touched by Eternity
Touched by Eternity (Mūžības skartie)
Title: Touched by Eternity
Title*: Mūžības skartie
This book is dedicated to the heroic battles of Latvian Rifleman of World War I and Civil war.
Selected Poems (Dzeja)
Title: Selected Poems
Shearsman Books Ltd., United Kingdom
This volume is the most comprehensive translation of Čaks' work yet to appear in English, and the first to be published in the UK.
Det er høje tid
Die Ostsee Berichte und Geschichten aus 2000 Jahren
Die Ostsee Berichte und Geschichten aus 2000 Jahren (The Baltic Sea Stories and Reports from 2000 years)
Title: Die Ostsee Berichte und Geschichten aus 2000 Jahren
Title*: The Baltic Sea Stories and Reports from 2000 years
Galiani Berlin, Germany
Verlag Kiepenheuer & Witsch
Иностранная литература 3 (2019)
Иностранная литература 3 (2019) (Ārzemju literatūra)
Title: Иностранная литература 3 (2019)
Title*: Ārzemju literatūra
Иностранная литература, Russia
Literary magazine on foreign literature