NORTHAMPTON, Mass.–Smith College will present a bilingual reading by the distinguished Brazilian poet Adelia Prado and her long-time English-language translator Ellen Dore Watson at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 12, in Stoddard Hall Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public.
The Brazilian National Library’s “Jornal de Poesia” ranked Adelia Prado on its “List of Twenty foremost Living Poets.” Newspaper columnist Carlos Drummond de Andrade once wrote “Adelia is lyrical, biblical, existential; she makes poetry as naturally as nature makes weather.”
Prado’s work has been the subject of dozens of theses and dissertations, as well as documentary films, and her work has been translated into Spanish, Italian, and English. According to Prado, poetry is ” the most human form of communication” and her work is written “neither from the head nor the heart, but from the gut.”
Her debut collection, “Bagagem” (Baggage), was followed by seven subsequent volumes of poetry, and seven of prose. Initial translations to English were greeted enthusiastically, published in “The Paris Review,” “Antaeus” and the “American Poetry Review.” In 1984, Ellen Dore Watson was awarded a National Education Association (NEA) fellowship to translate Prado’s work, producing “The Alphabet in the Park,” poems drawn from her first three volumes. Tupelo Press recently published “Ex-Voto,” Watson’s second full-length book of Prado translations, drawn from her three subsequent collections. One reviewer noted that the most recent book “is nothing like any poetry I know in our present moment.”
Prado was born and has lived all her life in the provincial, industrial city of Divinópolis, in Minas Gerais. She was the first in her family of laborers to graduate from college. After earning degrees in philosophy and religious education, she taught school and served as cultural liaison for the City of Divinópolis.
The reading is Prado’s first appearance in the United States since 1988, and the beginning of a book tour for “Ex-Voto,” supported by the Ministry of Culture and the National Library Foundation of Brazil.
The reading will be followed by a book sale and signing. For further information, contact Jennifer Blackburn in the Poetry Center office at (413) 585-4891 or Ellen Dore Watson, Poetry Center director, at (413) 585-3368. For disability access information or to request accommodations, call (413) 585-2407. To request a sign language interpreter specifically, call (413) 585-2071 (voice or TTY) or e-mail ODS@smith.edu. All requests must be made at least 10 days prior to the event.
Northampton, Massachusetts 01063
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