Ramirez and Gioconda Belli, exiled in Spain, participated in the closing of the first “Jornadas de Literatura Hispánica,” organized by the International University of La Rioja (UNIR) in the Spanish city of Logrono.
HAVANA TIMES – Nicaraguan writer Sergio Ramirez, a winner of the Cervantes Award, assured on Thursday that “writing is a job worth paying any price for, even if they take away the country where you were born.”
Ramirez and Nicaraguan writer Gioconda Belli, both exiled in Spain, participated in the closing ceremony of the first “Jornadas de Literatura Hispanica” (Hispanic Literature Conference), organized by the International University of La Rioja (UNIR) in the Spanish city of Logrono.
“In any case, literature will always be giving you back, incessantly, that indelible country,” Ramirez added, UNIR said in a statement.
He and Belli are among the 300 people, including opponents and critics of President Daniel Ortega, who were stripped of their nationality by Nicaraguan authorities a few months ago for “treason.”
Both were awarded with the Pedro Henriquez Urena International Prize, from the Ministry of Culture of the Dominican Republic, for their career and literary excellence.
The writer referred to the blurred boundaries between history and fiction: “When it comes to living the events of independence, exaggeration will be added to abnormality, which will not fail to mark history from now on,” and, therefore, “the way to narrate it and take advantage of it from literature.”
He stressed that “today’s chronicle has to do with abnormality, just like the novel.” And he mentioned themes used by both, such as new messianic dictatorships, the social power of gangs in Central America, and corruption, “that purulent skin that dresses up political power in Latin America.”
“When power becomes abnormal and, therefore, gains a disproportionate or unjust weight over individuals, it acts as a baleful deity that violates the course of lives,” he said.
Belli, a Reina Sofia Ibero-American Poetry Prize winner, considered that “the level of sophistication of cruelty, of lying of this government (of Nicaragua) is something that could truly belong in a novel.”
“We are all products of reality and fiction. Life experience is the primary source of fiction,” the writer said.
She discovered that “vindicating the female body was a form of rebellion,” something on which she intentionally persisted as time passed, buying a typewriter with her first salary and starting to write erotic poetry, which caused “a scandal in Nicaragua.”