A few days ago, the Institute Cervantes together with the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and the Embassy of Guatemala organized an evening commemorating the 50 year anniversary (1967-2017) of the Nobel Prize for Literature being awarded to Miguel Ángel Asturias. The Ambassador of Guatemala H.E. Sara Solis Castañeda opened the festivities by listing the huge and cultural importance of Asturias’s writing in Latin America. This was followed by an exposition held by Prof. Klein, a Latin American studies scholar from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

 

 

Miguel Angel Asturias spent several years in Europe holding diplomatic positions. He also visited Israel and reached the Western Wall. Although he died in Spain, his remains rest in the Le Père-Lachaise cemetery in Paris.

A prolific and accomplished writer, his works have been translated to several languages. His most outstanding works include: Legends of Guatemala (1930), The President (1946), Men of Corn (1949), Mulata de Tal (1963), and Friday of Pain (1972). His work also includes poetry, story, theater and essays.


Asturias received numerous commendations for his works: the Gálvez Prize (1923) on his thesis on indigenous issues, the Falla Prize for best student of his faculty, the Sylla Monsegur Award for French translation of Legends of Guatemala and Mulata de Tal for the best published Latin American novels in France, the Lenin Prize for Peace, and of course the aforementioned Nobel Prize for Literature (1967).

 

After hearing about Asturias’s achievements, the guests were then shown a short film highlighting the Nobel Prize ceremony, before enjoying hot chocolate and several Guatemalan delicacies.

 
 
 Photo Stella Szpira