A conference on the writing of Bolivian author Edmundo Paz-Soldán, professor of Spanish literature in the Department of Romance Studies, was held at the University of Seville, Spain, on May 25. The conference explored Paz-Soldán’s “narrative path,” and featured speakers from Spain, France, Bolivia and Belgium.
This is not the first time the influence of Paz-Soldán and his work have been recognized. In 2014, Paz-Soldán was named to a list of the 50 Most Influential Intellectuals in Iberoamerica by esglobal, a digital magazine on international relations; another conference on his work was held in Angers, France, in 2009; and in 1997, he was awarded the Juan Rulfo Prize for his short story "Dochera." The prize is the most prestigious short-story award for literature written in Spanish.
Born in Bolivia and educated in Buenos Aires and the United States, Paz-Soldán is the author of nine novels including “Norte” and “The Matter of Desire,” and two short story collections. His novels have been translated into ten languages; an English translation of “Norte” is forthcoming from the University of Chicago Press. His fiction is part of the McOndo movement in Latin American literature, exploring political and social issues and the pervasive influence of popular culture.
Paz-Soldán delivered the final address of the May 25 conference, on “The Craft of Writing.” He comments that “you read and write and try to give something back of what books and writers have given you. And then it is truly humbling when somebody who loves books as much as you do finds something of value in what you have been doing. The goal next time is to do it better. Read better, write better, look deeper into things. Risk even more, risk everything.”