On July 9th, 2010, Gioconda became the only woman to have won the prestigious Latinamerican Prize: La Otra Orilla (The other side), which carries a 100,000 dollars award. Her winning novel: A Women’s Country (El País de las Mujeres) is the story of five women who decide to create a party to make fun of power as exercised by men. Using terms like sweeping, washing, associated with domestic chores, they promise to do a “spring cleaning” of their country and to change it by applying a new kind of feminism that they call: happyism
They send men to “rest” for six months and take over the government. After a volcanic eruption which lays a cloud of toxic smoke over the entire country, men´s testosterone levels have plummeted, and so the women are able to do what they wish with little opposition. They set out to change the way everyday life is carried about. Child care centers are built everywhere, maternity is taught as an obligatory course for men and women in universities and high schools, motherhood becomes a social issue and women cease to be “penalized” for being mothers and having to choose between work and home. Nursing facilities and child care rooms re built into office buildings, and domestic violence is approached in a completely different manner.
Because of the revolutionary changes they bring about, the President, Viviana Sansón, becomes the victim of an assasination attempt that leaves her in a coma. While she is in a coma, she finds herself in a warehouse filled with every object she forgot in her life: umbrellas, dark glasses and what have you. Every time she picks up one of these objects she flashes back to a moment in her life, and that is how we find out the history of the Erotic Party and how it came to be. Meanwhile other characters deal with her absence and try to find the culprits of her assasination attempt.
Humorous, imaginative and truly original, these novel sets forth new ways of thinking about often overlooked social changes that can truly revolutionize the way we live.
Gioconda will be part of the Fiction: Exiles & Outsiders panel discussion on Sunday at the Young Hall CS 50 at 12:00pm. Visit the festival’s website for more information.
Saturday, April 25 | 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Sunday, April 26 | 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Tickets are free!
Tickets will be available on April 19 through ticketmaster.com.
They are needed for indoor panels and speaker sessions.
Parking on the UCLA campus is $9.
Free shuttle bus services will connect the outlying UCLA parking lots with the main festival entrances.
‘Infinity in the Palm of Her Hand’
Alan Cheuse, Special to The Chronicle
Sunday, March 22, 2009
A novel by a former Sandinista about life with Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden might suggest the possibility of a revolutionary new view of an old story.
In fact, Nicaragua-born fiction writer Gioconda Belli, in her new novel “Infinity in the Palm of Her Hand,” treats the subject of our first parents like biblical science fiction.
Her narrative goes from one great first-time event in human life to another: first awareness of us having minds, first time we cry, first orgasm, the first onset of menses; and the invention of sushi (Adam and Eve discover raw fish), the first fishing net (the first couple are cleverly inspired from the shape of a mushroom), the first clothing and the first work of art (Eve makes a cave painting to celebrate Adam’s first hunting expedition). And the first human experience of winter. And childbirth. (more…)
Fiction review: ‘Infinity in the Palm of Her Hand: A Novel of Adam and Eve” by Gioconda Belli
By Chauncey Mabe
March 15, 2009
Fiction drawn from the Bible has always been the province of hacks or, at best, the middle-brow.
For every Joseph and His Brothers, Thomas Mann’s magisterial novel, there are dozens — nay, hundreds! — of titles such as The Red Tent, Ben-Hur, The Robe, or the fundamentalist propaganda of Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.
Maybe it’s a matter of fools rushing in where angels fear to tread — which makes Gioconda Belli’s reinvention of the creation story, Infinity in the Palm of Her Hand, the more astonishing. (more…)
De la crisis financiera mundial se habla igual que de los huracanes: unos, los expertos, actúan de meteorólogos intentando predecir la velocidad de los vientos, el origen del fenómeno, la ruta que lleva y otros detalles técnicos; la gente común y corriente escucha las noticias y de toda esa información lo que saca en claro es que se trata de un huracán de una categoría nunca antes vista y que deben prepararse y esperar el vendaval con el credo en la boca.
Esta crisis es, en definitiva, un huracán: sacudirá los cimientos de la economía financiera mundial, pero hará mucho más que eso: nos obligará a reevaluar la forma en que a nivel global hemos funcionado, pues ya no será posible continuar como hasta ahora. Para muestra, algunas cifras: Desde que empezó la recesión, en Estados Unidos, 4.4 millones de personas han perdido su trabajo. De éstas, 2.6 millones han sido despedidas en sólo los últimos cuatro meses. En el mes de Febrero, se produjeron 651,000 despidos. El desempleo pasó del 7.6% en Enero, al 8.1% en Febrero. Los despidos en industrias claves: manufacturas, finanzas y comercio, son tan masivos que, según un artículo del New York Times, “hace pensar que compañías enteras están abandonando esas áreas de manera permanente”