Vargas Llosa speaks about the role of the writer in Washington DC

Ambassador of Peru, Carlos Pareja (right), offered a reception at the Embassy of Peru honoring the two writers, Mario Vargas Llosa (center), and Claudio Magris (left), among other invitees, before their presentation at the Georgetown University.

Ambassador of Peru, Carlos Pareja (right), offered a reception at the Embassy of Peru honoring the two writers, Mario Vargas Llosa (center), and Claudio Magris (left), among other invitees, before their presentation at the Georgetown University.

Mario Vargas Llosa, 2010 Nobel Laureate in Literature, Claudio Magris, author of Danube, and Charlie Rose, famous journalist and television host, held a dialogue about “The Role of the Writer”, event organized by the Georgetown University Italian Research Institute, in collaboration with the Embassy of Italy, the Italian Cultural Institute, and the Georgetown University Italian Department.

“I fully discovered Latin American literature while I was living in Paris as a young writer, during the sixties”, said Vargas Llosa. “At that time, the Latin American Boom was born”, he remembers. In fact, the literary movement most closely associated with Julio Cortázar of Argentina, Carlos Fuentes of Mexico, Gabriel García Márquez of Colombia and Vargas Llosa, challenged the established conventions of Latin American literature. Their work is experimental and, owing to the political climate of the Latin America of the 1960s, also very political.

Mario Vargas Llosa was born in Arequipa, and spent parts of his youth in Cochabamba (Bolivia), Piura in northern Peru and Lima. He made his debut as a novelist with The Time of the Hero (1962), set in Leoncio Prado military Academy, where he had been a student.  The book received an immediate international recognition.

His many other works include the novels Conversation in The Cathedral, The Green House, The Real Life of Alejandro Mayta, Who Killed Palomino Molero?, The Storyteller, Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, The Feast of the Goat, The Bad Girl, The Dream of the Celt, The Discreet Hero and the theatre plays La Chunga, Kathie and the Hippopotamus,The Young Lady from Tacna, among others.

“A good writer has no nationality,” said Claudio Magris. “Is a citizen of the world, a witness of his time”.

Magris was born in Trieste in 1939. In 1986, he published his first novel, Danube, which was translated in 24 languages. He is the author of numerous novels and essays, translated into many languages as well as a columnist for the Corriere della Sera and other European newspapers.

His numerous publications include: Lontano da dove, Joseph Roth e la tradizione ebraico-orientale, L'anello di Clarisse, Illazioni su una sciabola, Inferences from a Sabre, A different sea, Blindly, Three Plays, La storia non è finita. Etica, politica, laicità, Blameless, Istantanee, and others.

The dialogue between these two great writers, Mario Vargas Llosa, and Claudio Magris, led by PBS-TV anchor Charlie Rose, was attended by more than seven hundred people at the main auditorium of the Georgetown University.

Hours earlier, the Ambassador of Peru, Carlos Pareja, offered a reception at the Embassy of Peru to the two writers, Mario Vargas Llosa, and Claudio Magris, among other invitees.