Venezuelan writer Susana Gabriela Nuevo Silva won the 1st UNAM-Spain Story Prize on Latin American migration in Spain for her work “Papers”. The competition organized by the Center for Mexican Studies of the UNAM in Spain, the University of Mexico Magazine and the Department of Literature UNAM Mexico, aims to show the importance of the growing Latin American migration in the European country through literature.
Venezuelan writer wins the 1st UNAM-Spain Story Prize on Latin American migration in Spain
The call was launched as part of the second edition of the Central America Cuenta Festival in Spain and was aimed at Latin American writers of any age who were living in Spain and who wanted to reflect on the migratory experience in this country, as reported by infobae.com newspaper.
The story of Nuevo Silva was selected for its ability to handle literary language, irony, rhythm and the construction of a character full of nuances that manage to bring the purpose of the story to a successful conclusion.
The jury consisted of the writer Brenda Navarro and the journalist Nicolás Castellano, as well as Luis García Montero, director of the Cervantes Institute, Sergio Ramírez, president of the Central America Cuenta Festival, Rosa Beltrán, coordinator of Cultural Outreach at the UNAM, Jorge Volpi, director of the Center for Mexican Studies UNAM-Spain and Carolina Elías, president of Active Domestic Service (SEDOAC).
The award ceremony took place at the Cervantes Institute and a prize was also awarded to the finalist story “Shut up now, Efrén”, signed by Rocío Saucedo Ceballos. The competition is presented as a unique opportunity for writers from Latin America who reside in Spain to express their migratory experience in a literary context.
UNAM-Spain Story Contest: “Papers” and “Shut up now, Efrén” stand out in terms of migration
The UNAM-Spain short story competition has awarded first place to “Papeles”, a story by Susana Gabriela Nuevo Silva, a writer of Venezuelan origin who lives in Valencia. The judging jury highlighted the author’s ability to construct an impactful narrative that addresses the issue of migration from different perspectives, which captures the reader from start to finish.
The second place went to “Shut up now, Efrén” by Rocío Saucedo Ceballos, a Mexican based in Barcelona. The jury praised the way in which the author describes the emotions of migrants in a society full of demands and highlights the diverse view she offers on the subject of migration.
During his participation in the competition, Luis García Montero, one of the members of the jury, congratulated the UNAM for its initiative and highlighted the quality of the works presented.
In addition, he pointed out that the participating stories not only the winner deserve recognition, due to the very high level of their collaboration. García Montero also stated that migration is a fundamental topic for analyzing contemporary cultural and coexistence debates.
For his part, Sergio Ramírez, another member of the jury, expressed his passion for the topic of migration, which led him to collaborate with Luis García Montero in the creation of a collective story.
Ramírez highlighted the importance of addressing migration from a human perspective and not just as a set of numbers. According to Ramírez, individual stories are the essence of literature and life and that’s why this contest is so important.
Storytelling Award: Celebrating Spanish-language literature across borders
At a recent ceremony, the writer Jorge Volpi thanked all the people and institutions involved in the creation of the Story Prize that bears his name.
Volpi highlighted the joint effort with the Central America Cuenta Festival and different areas of the UNAM, such as the Directorate of Literature and the Magazine of the University of Mexico, as well as ABC Cultural, which also joined this initiative to publish the winning story.
The prize includes an economic reward of 700 euros and the publication of the story in the magazine Carátula, the Journal of the University of Mexico and ABC Cultural, which will allow the story to be read by people from both sides of the Atlantic.
The writer Rosa Beltrán, who participated in the ceremony, spoke about her literary and emotional education, which has to do with exile and migrations.
Beltrán recalled that while studying at UNAM, his first teachers were exiled Spanish writers and then exiled Latin American teachers arrived, such as Chilean, Argentinian and Uruguayan authors. Beltrán was also thrilled that the union of literature and life experience through language has brought together several people and institutions.
The representative of the jury, Carolina Elías, highlighted the quality of the works presented and pointed out that the choice of the winning and finalist work was not easy due to the high level of the participating writers and writers.
The jury consisted of Mexican writer Brenda Navarro and journalist Nicolás Castellano of Radio Cadena Ser. In its first edition, the Story Award received a total of 135 works, presented by writers between 22 and 73 years old, from countries such as Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru and Venezuela.
The participants lived in different parts of Spain, including Castellón, A Coruña, Alicante, Almería, Barcelona, Granada, Jaén, León, Madrid, Salamanca, Seville, San Sebastian, Tenerife, Teruel, Valencia, Valladolid, Vigo, Vitoria, Zaragoza, the Balearic Islands and the Canary Islands, among other locations.
The Jorge Volpi Short Story Prize aims to promote literary creation in the Spanish language and seeks to support new talent in this field. The award ceremony is an example of the commitment of various institutions and individuals to support literature and to provide a space for recognition of the work of writers and writers in the Spanish language.
Central America Cuenta Festival: Celebrating Ibero-American Literature and Critical Thinking
The Central America Cuenta Festival is a literary celebration that seeks to promote critical thinking through literature and the arts, according to its creators.
This initiative was born in Managua in 2013 and is currently presented in two formats: virtual, all year round and face-to-face, in various cities in Central America, the Caribbean and Europe. The main objective of the festival is to spread Ibero-American literature from Central America.
The festival’s program is varied and ranges from talks, workshops and book presentations to dialogues that provide a meeting space for writers, musicians, filmmakers, journalists, booksellers, readers and social actors to discuss and reflect on diverse and inclusive topics, such as the diaspora, identity, writing, memory, diversity, gender, human rights, freedom of expression, democracy, cinema, music, science, narrative and journalism.
The Central America Cuenta Festival is an event of great importance for the literary and cultural fields of the region since it provides a platform for the promotion and dissemination of Ibero-American literature and, in addition, for dialogue and the exchange of ideas on issues relevant to society.