Panama, Aug 13 (EFE). The XV edition of the Panama International Book Fair (FIL) 2019 kicked off on Tuesday with an enriching debate about the future of national identity, culture and literature, 500 years after the founding of Panama City on the 15th of August 1519 in the Spanish colonization.
With the motto "Read our past Imagine your future", the fair will be held in the capital Atlapa Convention Center until August 18 with writers from Spain, France, Portugal, Colombia, Mexico, USA, Cuba, Guatemala , Peru, Argentina and Panama.
On August 15, 1519, Pedro Arias Dávila founded the first Spanish city on the shores of the South Sea or Pacific Ocean and the oldest on the mainland that exists to this day.
Renowned Panamanian intellectuals, historians and writers addressed the issue in the colloquium "Panama, history and literature in your 500 years", on the first day of FIL activities.
In the talk there were found positions about the historical validity of two figures of the Spanish colonization, such as Pedrarias Dávila, governor of Castilla del Oro and founder of Panama City, and Vasco Núñez de Balboa, discoverer of Mar del Mar South and to whom the first ordered to execute (slaughter) for treason and insubordinate.
In the talk, the Panamanian historian and teacher Rommel Escarriola asked himself: "What did Vasco Núñez de Balboa discover if the Pacific Ocean was there before him? And he didn't do it alone, it was with the help of the natives" I knew about the existence of that sea.
The colloquium also questioned that Balboa, a "second gentleman" and not part of the nobility, is still considered a hero in Panama and that the national currency bears his name, as well as that of a popular beer and the highest award granted by the Panamanian State.
Panamanian historian and teacher Rommel Escarriola acknowledged, however, that everything related to the historical memory about the founding of Panama "has a validity, based on creating a sense of national identity."
In that same context, the lawyer, writer and philanthropist Juan David Morgan indicated that with his foundation in Panama the first artistic and literary manifestations began to occur "from an early age."
"That means a lot if we measure it historically with which our identity began to emerge before the identity of all the other countries that constitute Hispanic America, including North America and Canada, emerged," said Morgan, author of the novel "The Rebellion of the poets "(2017, Alfaguara) and" Between Honor and the Sword. The unpublished story of the legendary Henry Morgan "(Planet, 2013).
Andrés Villa, author of more than a dozen books, mostly narrating facts related to the history of Panama, said that he has taken care not to include Balboa in his books, whom, despite everything, he considered as a "historical thief".
Villa said that after 500 years of its founding Panama "has grown in an important way" and "remain an important city."
"We have a great challenge to make it better, make it more friendly with its inhabitants, and make its rulers more statesmen, we need better rulers for a big city," he added.
"The geographical position of our city (since its foundation) is magical, no one has been able to ruin it, neither the pirates, nor the diseases, nor the invasion of the Americans (on December 20, 1989), nor the military dictatorship (1968 -1989), the city continues to grow and turns 500, "said Villa.
The historian Mario Molina also highlighted the work of the chroniclers of the Indians who realized the Spanish colonization and how, from that, they influenced the Hispanic novelism.
"You can't talk about history if you don't mention the chroniclers, the chroniclers left an inheritance in their writings as a legacy, which is what historians and novelists from all over Latin America have used to make their history and to make their novels "said Molina.
The writer Rafael Ruiloba recalled that the first cultural experiences that occur in Panama in the colonization "contribute to the formation of the cultural and national identity of this country as something different," and to which, he said, "Balboa belongs as part of the national mythology although it does not correspond to the real Balboa. "
. (tagsToTranslate) Fair (t) Centennial book (t) (t) City (t) Panama