José Napoleón Oropeza wins 2011 Critics Prize

The 2011 Premio de la Crítica de la Novela, a prize for Venezuelan novelists, judged by Venezuelan literary critics, was awarded to José Napoleón Oropeza for Las Puertas Ocultas (The Hidden Doors), following a unanimous decision by the jury – Alma Clara Áñez, Ángel Gustavo Infante and Carlos Pacheco.

Los miembros del jurado llegaron al veredicto por unanimidad luego de considerar el conjunto de obras novelísticas concurrentes, publicadas durante el año 2011; y seleccionaron la obra de Oropeza “en razón de su sostenida coherencia narrativa, del talante épico del que se reviste la pesquisa literaria que centra su desarrollo, del profundo conocimiento que respalda el tratamiento de temas como la santería, la literatura y la cultura cubana, así como de su convincente performance metaficcional, a través del cual la pasión literaria se imbrica con la intriga política”.

As El Universal reports, the jury also highlighted the consistently high quality of the other works in the competition, particularly the three runners-up: Todas las lunas (All the moons) by Gisela Kozak Rovero, which ties together diverse periods, characters and genres; the highly innovative Valle Zamuro by Camilo Pino; and Rating by Alberto Barrera Tyzska, which focuses on telenovelas, “such a Venezuelan phenomenon” with “grace and intrigue”.

In an interesting recent blog post (in Spanish), author Juan Carlos Chirinos notes that this prize is particularly important as it is one of the rare occasions when Venezuelans acknowledge the worth of their still highly marginalised literary production.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s