Sat. Feb 16th, 2019

The Book Fair of Casablanca pays homage to Goytisolo today

The Book Fair of Casablanca pays homage to Goytisolo today


"And, possibly, with this one day I discovered what I was doing in that happy taxi." But a server does not travel by taxi - but in the local VTC - and does not know the reasons for occupying the vehicle: heading to the International Book and Book Fair (SIEL), very close to the great mosque of the economic capital of Morocco: "The second largest", presumes the driver before the minaret.

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Then, upon arriving at the Spanish pavilion of the meeting -uploaded with the efforts of the Ministry of Culture, Spanish Cultural Action and Instituto Cervantes-, one meets those same words from the beginning, which Antonio Lozano left recorded in "A long dream in Tangier »(Almuzara, 2015). Lines that yesterday, a day after his death, continued to rumble 340 kilometers to the southwest, in Casablanca. Because for that he was a bridge writer between Africa and Spain - taking the canary way, where he died. Next to Lozano's text, other compatriots build the walls of the country house "guest of honor" of the fair: Andrés Ibáñez, Sara Mesa, Lope, Borja Ortiz de Gondra, Julián Casanova, Agustín Fernández Mallo, Cervantes, Calderón, Conejero ... Between all they give packing to the walls of a place in which it is tried to obviate the distance that causes to be to one or another side of the Strait or, at least, to build bridges as those that forged the author of "The Sankara case" (2006) .

In the same pavilion, located right in the center of the SIEL, the walls that are not dressed with books are papered with images from the 60s. Those that the Kodak took from Vicente Aranda during his trip with Juan Goytisolo through Almería, through the "Campos of Níjar ». «Photos that could also belong to any landscape that is 300 kilometers further south», presented Olvido García Valdés -Director General of the Book-, in Casablanca. It is the similarity that the Spanish installation uses to bring both countries closer: "Common Towns", continued before giving way to the first speakers of the afternoon, Margarida Castells and María Luz Comendador: «Ambassadors of the soul and translators as a way of love and maximum interest for a culture that is not ours ».

Two names that were born between languages. The first, in Catalonia; the second, in Extremadura: "But it marked me a lot the day that, as a child, my family took me to Portugal. I thought they were not going to understand us, laughs Commander of what ended up being his "vocation". A profession that "is done for personal satisfaction, because what is paid for the translation does not compensate at all". Together they discussed "the journey" to which the languages ​​have taken them. In this case, Arabic, which becomes a "big problem because it is a language and, at the same time, many dialects. Each writer does it in the one of his region ».

However, the two interpreters agree on "the importance of translating to your mother tongue". "As much as knowing the other language, the original one, to reach the bottom," says Comendador: "Because to translate is to make a very particular and profound reading ». Make decisions, be "responsible for shaping what the reader receives. That's why it has something of a literary vocation », explains Castells of a concrete and personal vision that does not understand dictionaries. «One of dialects contributes very little. You have to be informed with everything you can, and if necessary, resort to speakers of the language. Maybe no documentation is worth », for Commander:« Even, sometimes, it is a matter of luck that someone helps you. The answer can be anywhere. "

Help that, sometimes, is not even found in the author himself. «This is a solitary and independent work. It is good to go to them if required, but it is not necessary, "explain those who, like their colleagues, forget in the daily work of a contradictory world, Commander says:" If we want to achieve our goal we have to be invisible and inaudible ».

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