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Distinguished Visiting Writer: Elena Poniatowska

Thursday, September 18, 2014 / -

| Free

Elena Poniatowska

“We Can All Be Writers”

Elena Poniatowska will give a lecture that will touch on many of the topics close to her heart. She is a French-born Mexican journalist and author, specializing in works on social and political issues focused on the disenfranchised, especially women and the poor. In 2013, she won Spain’s Premio Cervantes Literature Award, the greatest existing Spanish language literature award for an author’s lifetime works. She is only the fourth woman to receive the recognition.

Her major investigative works include La noche de Tlatelolco (Massacre in Mexico, 1971) about the 1968 repression of student protests in Mexico City,Fuerte es el silencio (Strong is Silence, 1975) about the families of disappeared political prisoners, the leaders of workers’ movements, another look at the massacre in Tlatelolco and others who have defied the government, and Nada nadie. Las voces del temblor (Nothing No one: The Voices of the Earthquake, 1988) a compilation of eyewitness accounts not only to the destruction of the earthquake, but also to the incompetence and corruption of the government afterwards.

Her first novel was Lilus Kikusy from 1954. It is a coming-of-age story about Mexican women before feminism. Tinísimais a fictionalized biography of Italian photographer and political activist Tina Modotti. Querido Diego (Dear Diego) is an epistolary recreation of Diego Rivera’s relationship with his first wife, Russian painter. Hasta no verte Jesús mío (Here’s to You, Jesusa) from 1969 tells the story of Jesusa Palancares, a poor woman who fought in the Mexican Revolution and who later became a washerwomen in Mexico City. Las Soldaderas: Women of the Mexican Revolution is about the women who were in combat accompanied by photographs from the era. Las siete cabritas (The Seven Little Goats) is about seven women in Mexican society in the 20th century and La piel del cielo (The Skin of the Sky) provides moving descriptions of various regions of Mexico, as well as the inner workings of politics and government.

*Mexican-style lunchtime snacks provided thanks to the generosity of the Mexican Consulate.*

This event is sponsored at ASU by:

  • The Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing
  • The School of International Letters and Culture
  • The Mexican Consulate in Phoenix
  • School of Letters & Sciences (Faculties of Languages & Cultures and Interdisciplinary Humanities & Communication)
  • Certificate in Latin American Studies
  • David W. Foster
  • Department of English
  • Institute of Humanities Research
  • The Maxine and Jonathan Marshall Chair in Modern and Contemporary Poetry
  • School of Transborder Studies

 **This event is followed by a reception at the Mexican Consulate at 7:00 pm where Elena Poniatowska will present her book “Y dondequiera, la luz” (And Everywhere the Light) on the photography of Raul Rámirez “Kigra,” and the Inauguration of “Kigra’s” photographic exhibition at the Carlos Fuentes Gallery of the Mexican Consulate, 320 E McDowell, 3rd floor, Phoenix Az, 85004.


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September 18
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm


The Memorial Union – Turquoise Ballroom (Room 220)
301 E. Orange Mall, Tempe, 85281
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