Fernando del Paso—author of several novels, including Palinuro of Mexico, Jose Trigo, and Noticias del Imperio—will receive this year’s FIL Literature Prize.
The $100,000 FIL Literature Prize is presented as recognition for lifetime achievement in any literary genre. Past winners include: Nicanor Parra (1991), Juan José Arreola (1992), Eliseo Diego (1993), Julio Ramón Ribeyro (1994), Nélida Piñón (1995), Augusto Monterroso (1996), Juan Marsé (1997), Olga Orozco (1998), Sergio Pitol (1999), Juan Gelman (2000), Juan García Ponce (2001), Cintio Vitier (2002), Rubem Fonseca (2003), Juan Goytisolo (2004), Tomás Segovia (2005) and Carlos Monsiváis (2006). Fernando del Paso has been selected for the 2007 Prize and will receive it during the inauguration ceremony of the 2007 Guadalajara International Book Fair on November 24th.
The Guadalajara Book Fair is one of the world’s most amazing fairs, and this event is overwhelming. As an American, it’s not often that I have a chance to attend events where authors are treated like rock stars . . .
In terms of del Paso, the only book of his in English is Palinuro of Mexico, a hilarious, Rabelaisian romp. Jose Trigo is often cited by the “Crack” writers as a major influence, and sounds quite fascinating and complex.
An interview between Ilan Stavans and Fernando del Paso can be found here.
Prose translators will likely disagree, but I believe translating poetry requires a significant level of talent, a commitment to the text, and near mania, all of which suggests that the undertaking is the greatest possible challenge. The task is to. . .
The biggest issues with books like The Subsidiary often have to do with their underpinnings—when we learn that Georges Perec wrote La Disparition without once using the letter E, we are impressed. Imagine such a task! It takes a high. . .
Following The Infatuations, Javier Marías’s latest novel seems, like those that have preceded it, an experiment to test fiction’s capacity to mesmerize with sombre-sexy atmospheres and ruminative elongated sentences stretched across windowless walls of paragraphs. Thus Bad Begins offers his. . .
Death by Water, Kenzaburo Oe’s latest novel to be translated into English, practically begs you to read it as autobiography. Like The Changeling, as well as many other works not yet released in English, Death by Water is narrated in. . .
Jocelyne Saucier’s Twenty-One Cardinals is about the type of unique, indestructible, and often tragic loyalty only found in families. For a brief but stunningly mesmerizing 169 pages, Twenty-One Cardinals invited me in to the haunting and intimate world of the. . .
We know so very little; so little that what we think to be knowledge is hardly worth reckoning with at all; instead we ought to settle for being pleasantly surprised if, on the edge of things, against all expectations, our. . .
Many of Virginie Despentes’s books revolve around the same central idea: “To be born a woman [is] the worst fate in practically every society.” But this message is nearly always packaged in easy-to-read books that fill you with the pleasure. . .
Ilja Leonard Pfeijffer’s La Superba is appropriately titled after the Italian city of Genoa, where, after escaping the pressures of fame in his own country, the semi-autobiographical narrator finds himself cataloguing the experiences of its mesmerizing inhabitants with the intention. . .
It took reading 44 pages of Intervenir/Intervene before I began to get a sense of what Dolores Dorantes and Rodrigo Flores Sánchez were up to. Recurring throughout these 44 pages—throughout the entire book—are shovels, shovel smacks to the face, lobelias—aha!. . .
As presaged by its title, contradiction is the theme of Peter Stamm’s novel, All Days Are Night. Gillian, a well-known television personality, remains unknowable to herself. And Hubert, a frustrated artist and Gillian’s lover, creates art through the process of. . .