The long shadow of machismo extends over the literary world in Latin America. Many times it is a silhouette blurred, barely noticeable, but at other times it has a clear contour, plenty of contrast, and it is recognized perfectly. In some moments it belittles, in other shelves, and more than once tries to enforce that the topics become more and more trivial they are for the authors. “When I finished Leopard in the sun (Alfaguara, 1993) an editor said to me: ‘it Is well but it seems written by a man,” says the colombian Laura Restrepo (Bogotá, 1950) on a novel that delves into the violence between the clans of his country.
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more than four decades Ago that Margo Glantz (Mexico City, 1930), winner of the FIL Guadalajara 2010, managed to publish one of his works of fiction. Were the 70 and had dodged on more than one occasion, the disdain of his work. “My first books no one wanted to publish. Was a professor of university, and they just wanted trials. They rejected the fiction and in part is due to the fact that she was a woman. My next work which is also I had to pay to account of the author”, he says.
Also it sounded strange that Nona Fernández (Santiago, 1971) had entered the history of chilean politics in their novels, instead of covering the issues that a long tradition has assigned to women. “I came in with one of my books and liked them but they told me that why you not writing about the bulimia. Then I realized that I was entering territory male,” says the writer, award-winning in 2017 with the Prize Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz.
The three have surpassed borders, have broken with the established limits, and they have rebelled against the bias of the book industry, where it is also embedded sexism that has permeated everything since ancient times. “There is a sky [literary] and are we in purgatory or in limbo. It is believed that the intelligentsia, as it is for men,” adds the nicaraguan Gioconda Belli (Managua, 1948). The misogyny is reluctant to leave the world of the letters where however have been practiced since decades ago a good number of agents, literary as the already deceased Carmen Balcells (1930-2015) and editors - Elena Ramirez (Seix Barral), Silvia Sesé (Anagram) or Beatriz Moura (Tusquets)-. And also in this 2018 has looked at more than ever to the writers. All the national prize of literature in Spain have been to them, with the exception of history. Also the Cervantes fell on Ida Vitale who in addition is made with the FIL of romance Languages. A recognition awarded by the International Book Fair of Guadalajara, which in this edition has given more visibility than ever for writers. In the meeting, literary most important in Spanish have been held more than a dozen tables to talk about Me Too, feminism, and literature.
“I would Not want to give me a prize for being a woman, nor that I join a table because they need a quota of female. I don't want to be the figurine that will arrange the party. But I also would like to not appear because they are acting lazy and not look for women because their names are less obvious,” argues the argentina Leila Guerriero (Junín, Argentina, 1967).
He laughs Restrepo of the mechanisms of some authors to maintain their fame. “It is the salvation of the last of the mohicans”, as he smiles. Amuses-game sweep of Bahis Siteleri the prestige in which they enter some writers, and which -ensures - also participating publishers. “Proliferating in the books the covers [and the bands] which says that a authors the new Franz Kafka, Thomas Mann, William Faulkner, and Ernest Hemingway. I've never read that a man inherits the literature of Marguerite Yourcenar, nor that an author write like Goethe”.
In fact, the last book of Belli, The fevers of the memory, which deals with the escape of a noble French that you have to create a new identity in Nicaragua, was going to be summarized on the back cover as “a novel of love, mystery and adventure”. “Is the product of marketing, at the end we were able to change it”, points out the author of The women inhabited. “Performing a market segmentation in which they try to convert our books into a product for women, when in reality I for example I have a good number of readers. This affects the visibility for criticism, almost all made by men, purchase this idea and passes over the literature of the women”.
Rediscover machismo in the past
Guerriero is known an exception, an isolated case, not having suffered the “weight of the genre to find publishers, and to do the work.” “I know this is not what happens in the majority of cases”, he adds. Not the same thing happens to Margo Glantz, when delves into his past encounters with the phrase that unleashes a critical little bit after that translate History of the eye, a work of erotica written by George Bataille. “He wrote that he had made a translation to leg open and I don't think that something like this is what to say to a man”, he concludes. Also tracks in its memory Fernández and gives face to face with those tables on literature rose in which it was included in more than one international trade fair. “It seems that as I am a woman should I talk about it, although my books have nothing to do with those topics,” he says.
More recent in the memory has the mexican Gabriela Jauregui (Mexico City, 1979) to one teacher on a scholarship to the creators of the mexican Government (Fonca) is headed to the women to drop: “Their soap operas for Televisa,” or to that class in which the tutor yelled to a girl: “I Encuérate! (I Desnúdate!)”. Come to your mind several exabruptos charged of misogyny, some of which are recounted in a book, in which 13 notable authors, among which are Margo Glanzt, Brenda Lozano, Cristina Rivera Garza, Veronica Gerber Bicecci or Vivian Abenshushan embody their vision of feminism. Tsunami (Sixth Floor, 2018) brings together women writers of several generations, who have lived different stages of the feminist movement, to conform to the stronger of the surf, a tsunami of devastating force.
“One of the first barriers is a woman in literature is to be able to be listened to, and read without the shadow of gender. Also many of us have had the flirting on the part of writers. Before getting to what you write come to your bodies, to see if you're beautiful. You review the legs. I had a boyfriend who told me: ‘you published in the cultural supplement because you'll in miniskirt”, account Abenshushan (Mexico City, 1972).
A race of long breath for them, in that in many cases the barriers appear disguised but which also erects a wall difficult to overcome. “There are barriers for women in the literature although it does not mean to me a great tragedy”, warns Restrepo and is the fight over raw against sexism is alive in the streets of Latin America, “in those countries, such as Mexico where they are between life and death. Here are murdered seven women a day,” recalls Abenshushan.
The literature is another battle to overcome most of the feminist movement in Argentina, the struggle for legal abortion in Spain flooded the streets, and in Mexico it grows with each femicide. But in the face of the claim and the struggle against machismo, Glantz launches a warning to avoid falling into dogmatism: “it Is fundamental that women take awareness and achieve equality, but we must not fall into another form of fundamentalism. Avoid things so ridiculous as to try to correct the story, change the ending of the opera Carmen, stop show you a few pictures or do not represent some of the works of theater”.