Literary Prizes and Festivals

Building on my previous work on canon formation and the reception of literature in the press in the form of reviews, I began to explore the politics of literary prizes.

‘Politics and Literary Prizes: A Case Study of Spanish America and the Premio Cervantes’

The following is the abstract from an article published in Hispanic Review (2012) examining the politics behind the Premio Cervantes.

“The Premio Cervantes, one of the most prestigious prizes awarded for literature in the Spanish language, was established in 1976 as Spain negotiated the Transition to democracy in the post-Franco era. This article examines the context in which the prize was created and subsequently used to negotiate inter-continental relations between Spain and Latin America. The article highlights the exchanges of economic, political and symbolic capital which took place between the Spanish State, its representative, the King of Spain, and winning Latin American authors. Significantly, the involvement of the Spanish State is shown to bring political capital into play in a way that commercial prizes do not. In so doing, the Premio Cervantes gives those formerly at the colonial periphery the opportunity to speak out and negotiate the terms of a new kind of relationship with the former colonial center”.

‘Politics and Literary Prizes: A Case Study of Spanish America and the Premio Cervantes’, Hispanic Review, 80.2 (2012), pp.289-311

More recently I have been looking at the role played by literary prizes which are awarded only to women authors such as the Premio Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz and at the representation of literary prizes in fiction as well as the Hay Festivals which have been taking place in cities across Latin America.