The Romanian poet Ana Blandiana wins the Princess of Asturias Award for Literature | Culture | EUROtoday

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When the jury met this Thursday in Oviedo, the Princess of Asturias Award for Literature 2024 was awarded, which went to the Romanian poet Ana Blandiana (Timisoara, 82 years outdated), an writer little identified to most of the people in Spain however famous by critics. as one of many nice voices of European literature and an indispensable determine within the historical past of resistance to the totalitarian regime of Nicolae Ceausescu. “It is difficult for me to express my emotion and gratitude for the great honor that the awarding of the Princess of Asturias Award represents for me. I can't help but remember Plato who recommended the crowning of poets with laurels and their expulsion from the city. But, what if for me poetry is really a path to the polis, a way to stay, a way to accompany the suffering of others?!!!”, the poet wrote upon studying of the jury's ruling. .

Widely translated into Spanish, Blandiana's verses are collected on the Visor seal (The cricket's eye, Variations on a given theme, The dream inside the dream and different poems, first particular person plural), the publishing home Pre-textos (The solar past and The reflux of the senses) and in Gutenberg Galaxy (A soot-stained archangel). The two volumes of his tales have additionally appeared on the Periférica imprint (The 4 Seasons And pinitiatives of the previous). Blandiana's work and determine observe within the footsteps of the legendary Russian Anna Akhmatova or the Czech playwright Vaclev Hável.

Thank you for the echo that your prestigious award will give to my concepts and my poems and that may amplify them within the consciousness of Spanish readers all over the world.

In 1978 the Romanian poet modified her identify. Otilia Valeria Coman turned Ana Blandiana, since that yr her father, an Orthodox priest, was recognized as an enemy of the regime. Her early work was banned by her father's standing as a political prisoner, underneath two completely different dictators. First Gheorghe Gheorghiu-Dej, then Ceausescu. All of this turned Blandiana's writings right into a clandestine treasure that circulated in manuscripts. The fall of the totalitarian regime in 1989 didn’t diminish the civic dedication of this writer; she reorganized the PEN membership in Romania, she chaired the Civic Alliance, a corporation that supported the democratic impulse, and created the Memorial of the Victims of Communism and Resistance in Sighet, underneath the auspices of the Council of Europe. Among many different distinctions, Blandiana acquired the Legion of Honor in France in 2009 and the European Poet of Freedom award in 2016. “From the adventure of being honored / I return home a winner. / How many generations ago have I been gone? / I don't remember and I don't even know where from,” she writes within the first stanza of her poem. Return.

The very first thing that reached Blandiana's Spanish reader in 2008 have been her tales, which Viorica Patea, translator of her prose and verse work Patea, locations underneath the affect of magical realism, “by Cortázar, Borges and also Bulgakov.” Her tales provide a panoramic view of the tales of Romania. “Her work has a message and a meaning, it is not a mere play on words. She is a kind of Joan of Arc. But Blandiana is a metaphysical poet, not an activist. “She writes about the dignity of the human being, she is not a member of any party,” Patea remembers on the telephone. Belonging to the so-called technology of the sixties, from the start Blandiana claimed “aesthetics as a subversive gesture”, to face as much as socialist realism, Proletkult that the communist occasion imposed. “She is an intimate poet with a mystical dimension. She takes up, like other members of her generation, the tradition of the interwar avant-garde that was prohibited by the regime,” explains Patea, and emphasizes that Blandiana was a “forbidden name before it was known.” The translator has labored on Blandiana's completely different books in collaboration with different professors and poets resembling Natalia Carbajosa, Antonio Colina and Fernando Sánchez Miret, and is at the moment finalizing The third sacramentthe gathering of poems that completes the interpretation into Spanish of all the poet's work and whose publication in Visor is scheduled for 2024.

The Romanian writer and poet Ana Blandiana, pseudonym of Otilia Valeria Coman, in 2008 in Madrid.
The Romanian author and poet Ana Blandiana, pseudonym of Otilia Valeria Coman, in 2008 in Madrid. Luis Sevillano

With a prize of fifty,000 euros, the Princess of Asturias Award for Literature is “aimed at the work of cultivating and perfecting literary creation in all its genres,” and is among the oldest awarded by the Foundation. It was awarded for the primary time in 1980 and Carmen Martín-Gaite was the primary writer to obtain it in 1988. Since then, worldwide authors resembling Margaret Atwood, Siri Hustvedt, Anne Carson and Fred Vargas have gained it. This 2024 has on the checklist of winners in different classes the Canadian thinker Michael Ignatieff (Social Sciences), the Iranian cartoonist and filmmaker exiled in France Marjane Satrapi (Communication and Humanities) or the singer-songwriter Joan Manuel Serrat (Arts).

The jury of the Princess of Asturias Award for Letters 2024, chaired by Santiago Muñoz Machado, in the center.
The jury of the Princess of Asturias Award for Letters 2024, chaired by Santiago Muñoz Machado, within the middle. JLCereijido (EFE)

The jury for the 2024 Princess of Asturias Award has been chaired by the director of the Royal Spanish Academy, Santiago Muñoz Machado, and made up, amongst others, of the novelist Juan Villoro, the bookseller Lola Larumbe, the journalist Blanca Berasátegui, the playwright Juan Mayorga, who acquired this identical award, or the poet Aurora Luque. In the ruling they highlighted that “Ana Blandiana is heir to the most brilliant literary traditions, as well as a radically unique creator.” The award acknowledges “the transparency and complexity” of her work, “an untamed poetry.”

All the tradition that goes with you awaits you right here.



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