Elena Poniatowska Wins the Cervantes Prize 2013!

Elena Poniatowska, one of Mexico’s greatest living authors, has been awarded the Cervantes Prize, often called “the Spanish language Nobel Prize.” Poniatowska is the fifth Mexican author (joining our very own Sergio Pitol, among others) and the fourth woman to win the Cervantes.

This is great news for Deep Vellum as well, because Poniatowska’s short story collection The Heart of the Artichoke was translated by George Henson, who is working on the translation of Sergio Pitol’s The Art of Flight, which will come out from Deep Vellum in Fall 2014. George can now claim the rarified honor of being the translator of two Cervantes Prize winners, and we are proud to be working with him. Look out Nobel Prize, George is coming for you!

The succinct English text announcing her prize from the Washington Post is below. Congratulations, Elena, and congratulations, George!

Mexican journalist and author Elena Poniatowska has won the 2013 Cervantes Prize, the Spanish-speaking world’s highest literary honor.Education Minister Jose Ignacio Wert announced the prize Tuesday, praising Poniatowska’s brilliant and diverse literary and journalistic career.

Poniatowska, 81, was born in Paris and has lived most of her life in Mexico.Her books, among them “Massacre in Mexico” and “The Skin of the Sky,” deal with social and political issues, highlighting the problems of the poor and underprivileged.

The €125,000 prize generally alternates between Spanish and Latin American writers. Previous winners include Carlos Fuentes of Mexico, and Nobel prize winners Mario Vargas Llosa of Peru and Spain’s late Camilo Jose Cela.

They are presented each April 23, the anniversary of the death of Miguel de Cervantes, author of “Don Quijote.”


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