Snippet: Gonçalo M. Tavares’ “The Neighborhood”

Gonzalo M. Tavares (Luanda [Angola], 1970), a writer and professor of Theory of Science at Lisbon University, began the construction of his interesting neighborhood (O Bairro series) in 2002. In 2015 it has finally made its way to neighboring Spain in a one-volume edition entitled El barrio [The Neighborhood].

The publisher’s summary for the Spanish edition:

Imagine that you could create your own neighborhood of writers, a community made out of those authors whom you admire and who have influenced you. This is what Gonçalo M. Tavares does in El barrio: in its streets you will encounter Italo Calvino, Paul Valéry, Robert Walser, Henri Michaux or Roberto Juarroz, among others. In this utopia for readers, Tavares shows the fictional dialogues, dreams and thoughts these writers might have, now converted into characters of fiction in one of the most ambitious and comprehensive projects of contemporary literature.

In Portuguese, each chapter has been an individual book: O Senhor Valéry [Mr. Valéry] (2002), O Senhor Henri (2003), O Senhor Brecht (2004), O Senhor Juarroz (2004), O Senhor Kraus (2005), O Senhor Calvino (2005), O Senhor Walser (2006), O Senhor Breton (2008), O Senhor Swedenborg (2009), O Senhor Eliot (2010). An exclusively male community…

The author recommends a slow reading, one chapter at a time.

Only after nearly finishing this post and consulting, your blogger found out that the book has been available in English since 2012, from Texas Tech UP (website).

Other titles by G.M. Tavares available in English are Jerusalem, Learning to Pray in the Age of Technique, Joseph Walser’s Machine, and most recently A Man: Klaus Klump (2014).

In Spanish, there are also available Biblioteca [Library] and Un viaje a la India [A trip to India].

SOURCE: Planeta; Wikipédia;; review by Robert Saladrigas, “Cultura/s”, La Vanguardia, June 6, 2015, p. 6 (printed edition)


One thought on “Snippet: Gonçalo M. Tavares’ “The Neighborhood”

  1. Pingback: Snippet: a selection of Portuguese writers | literary rambles

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