LONDON BOOK FAIR OPENS WITH OCTAVIO PAZ SEMINAR
The fair, which takes place from 14th to 16th April hosts 1,700 exhibitors of the publishing industry from 67 countries, in which Mexico is represented by a delegation of distinguished Mexican writers and new talents. Although there are Mexican authors translated into English as Octavio Paz, Juan Rulfo and Carlos Fuentes, there are others yet to be promoted among British readers like Martin Luis Guzman, Rosario Castellanos and Fernando del Paso, who lived 14 years in England.
Other authors such as Elena Poniatowska, Juan Villoro, Roger Bartra and Jorge Volpi, are the protagonists of the Programme of Mexico, as the guest at the London Book Fair, where also 20 other Mexican authors under 40 years old were introduced.
During the inauguration of the Pavilion of Mexico, the President of Mexico’s National Council for Culture and Arts (Conaculta), Rafael Tovar y de Teresa, and Ambassador of Mexico Diego Gomez-Pickering, it was reminded that the Mexican publishing market has registered a growth of 13% since 2010, in an industry that represents sales of USD $150 million.
Previously, twenty British and Mexican academics, writers and intellectuals analysed the influence of academic life and literary work of the Mexican writer Octavio Paz in the UK.
In the event where three roundtables took place at the British Library, in the framework of the Dual Year, figures such as journalist and writer Elena Poniatowska; historian and essayist Enrique Krauze and writer and poet Homero Aridjis, recalled bonds, experiences and lessons with the Mexican Nobel Prize in Literature, who taught at the University of Cambridge, during the 70´s.
Furthermore, Lord Thomas of Swynnerton, David Anthony Brading, Richard Burns, Tom Boll, Frank Riess and Michael Schmidt -who was born in Mexico and met Paz during his adolescence- analysed at the symposium how British experience impacted his literary career as well as academic, professional and social ties developed during his stay in the UK.
With the presence of Jose Carreño Carlon, Director General of the Economic Culture Fund , among the group of participants where it also figured Christopher Domínguez Michael, John King, Michael Wood and Jason Wilson, it was recalled how the prolific Mexican author began publishing poetry during his adolescence, influenced by Pablo Neruda.
Paz lived in the U.S. and Europe where he was also motivated by the surrealist movement. In 1950, the publication of The Labyrinth of Solitude positioned him as a literary figure of first class and received the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1990.
Later that night, in the auditorium of the British Library it was held an open dialogue between the intellectual and historian Enrique Krauze, considered one of the most distinguished men of letters of Mexico, and Gaby Wood, literary critic from The Daily Telegraph, in which he shared with hundreds of people several reflections on literature, politics and culture in Mexico.
The participation of the Mexican delegation at the Book Fair, inaugurated by Jack Thomas, director of the London Book Fair, it is part of the literary programme of the Year of Mexico in the UK 2015.