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tv   Book TV  CSPAN  August 8, 2009 7:00pm-8:15pm EDT

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>> it has been more and more difficult to talk about. i started this book to work with more or less a lecturer and i did not like a lecture or the results so i gradually
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have become more improvisational as i a go across the country now that i am on the west coast i feel it is time to relax. so i make it up as i go along. this is an extraordinary man. more than any other contemporary writer some i did not mean to but i have been studying him 18 years long before that but in terms of this biography. and to some that up and 20 minutes or half an hour is a difficult task. so i have learned to do is start talking and see what comes out and a the audience completes a lecture by asking questions at the end which i hope you will do. i thought obviously a lot about this man.
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more about him than myself to be honest for many, many years i did not mean for it to be this way. i think she probably is the most famous writer on the planet. salman rushdie is maybe famous or more but for having the books he has written and i have proof of this. four or five weeks ago i was in india for the first time. very excited. very early in the morning about to visit the taj mahal and picked up the paper as i was going into breakfast and there was a picture of gabriel marquez whoever ran the newspaper new it was a face that readers would recognize. he was very well known in
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india and the story rather marquez would ride together. to be put on the front page in terms whether he would write again and the same would happen if you ask in india or turkey, they might or might not know but they do know those people who read. which is why i have asserted high maybe wrong, but he is perhaps the world's first global novelists. 100 years of solitude which he published in 1967 was the world's first global novel that would make sense because it makes the transition from what we call traditional society mainly preliterate society from technology society that most countries
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are. one of the things i discovered >> it appears in the headlines and latin american newspapers and they know what is peacock. >> one of the things that struck me is to all kinds of people in those societies if i think of hemingway i do not know many women that enjoy reading hemingway. i have almost never known a woman who have enjoyed reading there may be some but nightingale some people are not reading in any longer but there was an article about him most people in a little sections at the bottom. they are all young people he
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is an extraordinary icahn for latin america. he came to providence in 1960's which is when that america literature first came to international prominence and it became possibly the most popular and and most no literature in the world. it appeared in 1966 and not appear until the mid-1960s and not doing terribly well did not become later what it was to become an 1967 which was
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gabriel garcia marquez. his 100 years of solitude it was almost as if it was predestined it would finally cap latin-american and not all it was famous before he published it the most famous at this point* was ulysses his novel became famous oliver north america perhaps after he hadn't written the first that was it. it would be a best seller and a great latin-american novel. he just knew it. him and his friends started to write articles when even
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marquez was only halfway through it. it did not happen very often but it did then. most latin american novels published 500 or 1,000 would be a very good printer run in the 1960's but all of a sudden one-man publishes 8,000 was the first run and repeated a couple of weeks later and repeated again and by the end of the year through 70 or 80,000 just in argentina and now it is 25 million worldwide which is a lot and all of these other books have sold even more and it is an extraordinary world seller my publisher asked me to write about a very i rode in four
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months, 440 pages it is a piece of literary history i rode in four months my publisher thought the this is mad he will maybe give me a best seller in a couple of years and i promised that i would in a couple of years. four years as a matter of fact. this book that came out last year october 1998 i promised in fall of 1994 my publisher has become a very old man its. [laughter] and i have become an old man as well. and as i keep saying it happen that way so the man who took four months through one book took 18 years to ride the next. that is life. i did actually tell my
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publisher getting to know gabriel garcia marquez would take little longer maybe five or six because obviously there is more material and the material would be more interesting and so on and i did get to meet him quickly. i don't know why he agreed but i went to havana after signing the contract and then that he always went to the havana film festival. i have never been so i thought i do not get to meet marquez at least i will have the film festival which everybody knows there is a good time. that is why i went there. nobody knew weary he lived it was a state secret and those are generally not divulged.
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i decided to drink. i drank a lot of rum and hung out with a lot of people and i was there about five-- when i met a medical student he said he knew where the house was and he knew where the house was but nobody believed him i can still see him saying i know where it is. i have been there. i have seen fit a castro and gabriel garcia marquez. he claimed castro got out and december and said where you going? he said i am going home i just finished my last grounds and i am going back to the student residents and fidel castro said no you are not you're going with me. and he got into castro's car and went to marquez house and
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he saw gabriel garcia marquez with him and what is absolutely true is this guy, kevin, a strange name from somebody from zimbabwe. [laughter] he described not only where the house was absolutely correct but also the interior of the house. in complete detail. marquez said it was made up a piece of magical realism might eventually thought castro said i did not hear of fam i would not have done it but the truth is he did know where it was and it wasn't liable information because it meant i englishman could use the techniques of the british tabloid journalist to put my foot in the door the fight could not get there by any other means. and indeed i would. but i also have another way of
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getting there. people who knew and had told me the way to get to him was through with an. [laughter] -- women so i tried to meet appropriate women and through a chain of three or four, eventually i have to extend my stay by one week, a christmas was almost there, the 21st of december, 1990 i received a message i will give you 10 minutes. they will turn up at 6:00 at your hotel. i went i got a little speech ready for my 10 minutes. i did not need to get ready because we talked for three hours and he gave me a lot of whiskey and we had a great time and i was absolutely thrilled i would be gabriel
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garcia marquez best friend. , a soul mate. and indeed he invited me back the next day. i went back the next evening which was my last day in havana before i flew home for christmas in the u.k.. when i got back the next evening i told the story a number of times, there was no whiskey, only t. gabriel garcia marquez was no longer my best friend but almost as wished he had not invited me and i discovered this is what he said, last night i have been wandering through the labyrinth of what in american literature overnight and i knew immediately this was a reference to my book journeys to the labyrinth so obviously this man had his methods and in that book there are some very, very very unpleasant
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pages about his famous novel which i did not like. [laughter] and he said to me biographer you want to be my biographer? the night before he said i do not want at eight biography but this is worse it was the death of my biography. he said you cannot be my biographer you do not understand the book was no intuition about my literature, this is my autobiography. you do not understand i am the dictator you don't understand what the book is about how on earth do think you can write a book about me? which is where i came up with the most profit decline in the history to persuade people of things which was yes i know i do not like your book but my wife absolutely loves the. [laughter]
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suggests and when i get back across the romantic will find out what it is. [laughter] and i will try to like your book. after that we still had more t but no more risky we went on for another hour and half he did not say yes or no and in the end i could not do anymore he took me to the door and as we left he gave me his hand and said okay. just do not make me work. a so i understood i was not to make him work and then i went to columbia a couple of months later and went to his hometown and started to meet members of his family he always knew what i was doing because he has this incredible intelligence network but people are always phoning him to say the english guy is coming is the okay? can i talk to him and gabriel
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garcia marquez would say yes you can. i really tried to write the book in four years but would you finish daybook in four or five years and you knew him? i only ever spent 10 days in the columbia it was a new country i was middle-aged, a fantastic opportunity to start travelling again what i like through latin america and on the buses and meeting the people the research what is more interesting as has always been the case in my life. i started traveling around columbia. cuba, france, spain, all those places following his life and of course, he did a very inconvenient thing he went on living up. he not only went on a living
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but rating four years and years. after he won the nobel prize you are really supposed to stop trading. [laughter] you are supposed to be so busy like a beauty queen to go around and see people and doing all of those things but it was a great surprise that gabriel garcia marquez carried on writing and such extraordinary books into the '90s and 2000. i was having a good time of following him so longer went on the more i worry the somebody else would come in and ride to the first complete biography and two or three people wanted to i could see this english i would never finish so they may be encouraged to do so but i was afraid he might die of course, and he was quite sick twice. i was afraid i might die because i was also very sick and indeed we were sick with the same thing which was
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interesting. and everybody was fed up with me, the family, the lady over here, my children, everyone i knew, nobody believed would never finish. my publisher was sicker than sick, he was really, really fed up. but i went on more and more stuff came out 15 or 20 or 25 articles on this man somewhere in the world every day or every year. it has been increasing exponentially as i have carried on working so i was falling further and further behind like "the great gatsby" every day i was further back. it has been an extraordinary thing i could have handled it differently and should have but i carried nine. high tech the same view as i did in pittsburgh do not look at it every day do not worry
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will have been i have colleagues that looked up their pension everyday but i learned quickly do not do that and the same with the biography carry on working and see when it ends. a good idea but by 2005, which was 15 years the biography was 2,500 pages long, 6,000 footnotes. [laughter] and i was surrounded by people who did not like me. [laughter] i am not boasting it is a complete self indulgence but at any rate a lack of self control. then around 2005 when i ready started working seriously come i heard gabriel garcia marquez would have a very special 80th birthday and this would be in a the city of cartagena at the old colonial slave port
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a beautiful city he worked there when he was a young man and the spanish royal academy which he had never been a great supporter of but nevertheless would give him in the 80th birthday homage and they would produce three years before they produced a special 400th anniversary edition of the -- and now they would do a 1 million copies special edition of "100 years of solitude" four gabriel garcia marquez comparing him with the spanish creator of the spanish identity and gabriel garcia marquez they were in line was the creator of latin america's identity through the mirror that he belts which was 100 years of solitude. i thought, that is it. biographies usually have been
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happy endings and you know, what that is a biography is sort of like a obituary. i always hoped even though i was going on that is not the way this book would end so it was my happy ending. gabriel garcia marquez has written almost the only book of love in this 20th-century with a happy ending they do not have happy endings except for love and the time of cholera but he had done that. i started to go back to colombia with a vengeance to check up on my facts and get myself ready and in 2007 i went to cartagena where it was happening and i was not the most important person to arrive at the time.
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he had numbers of people come down one was the king of spain that went to cartagena to pay tribute to gabriel garcia marquez and another was bill clinton who flew down from new york to pay homage there were 5x presidents of colombia, a lot of famous writers including his girlfriend and many others. and in that it gabriel garcia marquez gave a speech remembering when he wrote to "100 years of solitude" and what a story it was and what is stroke the book took him out of 30 years of policy and turned him into a kind of international superstar and at the same time a very famous man. i had already begun to
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rearrange the book and after that i had to cut the book i did go to my publisher and say it is 2,500 pages long every single page is a jewel and you will love it about publishing the long version? [laughter] his response was indescribable as you can imagine and he said cut that book at 450 pages like you promised me 18 years ago. so i cut anybody here who was written anything a long paper or a small pieces knows cutting is incredibly painful there is nothing worse you are your books who high felt that i was tearing grace drips off myself i cut it 1800 pages fined 1100 both old versions could have been published than 700 that was how on earth and finally my publisher had to
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come and help me because i lost it and he wanted 450 but all we could do was 555 or 580 which we managed what which remanded by 2008 which made it possible to publish a october 2008 so the book that is here is the short version but most people here read it think it is longer than it should be but it is the short version i will carry on with so long version which as i have learned to say i will publish before the day that i die i do intend to go on without book. after i had been doing the book six years, gabriel garcia marquez sent me his latest book which i think it was news of a kidnapping. he said the following, to
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gerald martin the madman that is pursuing me, it was true. a little did he know the madman would carry on pursuing him for another 10 years after that until 2008 and the truth is i am still pursuing him now. when the book was finally published, i the thing of course, i liked to see gabriel garcia marquez again. and i met him again in at guadalajara and mexico and again after that. and on both occasions as they enter the room had the book in his hand. a very terrifying thing. [laughter] he did not agree with everything in it and did not like everything in it but he did say one thing, i am so glad you have finally written this book because i have always wanted to be famous.
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[laughter] there is a lot more than i could say but i think i will and there and answer any questions you might have. thank you very much [applause] >> marquez said he would not write fiction and again until the dictatorship happened and what happened to that? mydb switch -- why did he switched i thought the language was more rich and the other translations was that the translator or the writing? >> the first one he did say that he has done a lot of things like that but later you
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think he would have learned his lesson. when the spaniard said latin america would need a visa to go to spain marquez it declared he would never go back but of course, in a back six months later and he was much better, it was saved at soleil and crew zero marquez had just published the patriarch now that i come to think about it but this was ambiguous but he said he would not to write another book until 10 a check foul and it did not fall for many years and gabriel garcia marquez did dedicate himself to politics and political rating he meant it literally and he did found an organization called habeas and he also did work on the russell tribunal which was important on those days he gave himself to politics but
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gradually he realized it would not fall soon he came up with the berlin statement he was more useful as a creative writer than a politician so perhaps he really ought to get back to reading. with a book in his pocket was the chronicle of death and he put that out and many people thought that was a book that not got him the nobel prize as such but approved he was still a great writer and he had had enough in his knapsack to deserve the nobel prize. but the that is what happened he grew tired of waiting as people do and life waiting for dictators to fall. and the translation. i will not be diplomatic. i think gregory, two things
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happen and to be fair gregory, the translation of "100 years of solitude" is probably one of the best translations of any spanish work in history it is extraordinary but it is also true that wants gregory began to become so famous thanks to that his translations were not so great after is sometimes he was doing three or four at the same time and if you look at the later ones, it is not that he became a less of a good translator but you cannot 28 translation quickly over literary work can-do should not do it and i think he started to do it. on the other hand, there was a marquez terrifying age and in the barcelona who calls a lot of the shots. it is almost certain it would not be a marquez decision. it might happen because one of
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the extraordinary things that have been due to looks at the early works of gabriel garcia marquez you will see there translated by men but if you look at the translations a last 20 years you will see nearly all translations are by women all over the world at could be in with him but i think it was his age and i suspect gregory and i really mean this i suspect that he was doing so many that he could not get out the marquez was quick enough and the literary agent was very concerned with getting books out at the appropriate time in the opprobrium market with the appropriate exchange rate and all of those things. so edith grossman has been deficient to get books out on time and not take on too many at the same time and that may be an explanation. >> .
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>> i was living in madrid in 1982 when they won the prize and at that time there was an article in the newspaper about translations and they talked about the translation of "100 years of solitude" and it being such a wonderful translator and they cited a statement that marquez have made saying he liked the translation into english more than he liked the original spanish. [laughter] he said that is not only a tribute to the translator but also to the english-language which she felt was a richer laing bridge the and spanish. the second question, you mentioned you interviewed gonzalez. was he a friend of the
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marquez? >> the first one, really to be absolutely brutally honest marquez english is not good enough for him to come to that kind of judgment. [laughter] it is almost his greatest sadness he never learn english. he went to france in the fifties knowing no french but learned it pretty rowdy even learned italian pretty well so it is not as if he is a terrible wing quist but there is something in his consciousness or mentality that made english something he could not learn maybe because his father told him to go learned english she had a psychological problem. [laughter] he was not in a position i think he got that from other people. it is certainly true if it does have some for example, as we all know the combination of
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anglo-saxon words and latin words arthur very brief and short and punchy words give english the flexibility almost no other language or major languages have that gives the translation a lot of flexibility. marquez in the end tied so many adversities tries to avoid any word that ends with -mente. soul of there are a lot of his books that do not have those he finds a way around them if you find a with your way around spanish have verbs for coke there is something in it in the sense "100 years of solitude" is translated in such a way that it is so
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depending on so many different events on every page sometimes 20 or 30 things happen on a page that's maybe a wing bridge which -- a language which there may be something in the story but i do not think he could really know. >> [inaudible] it. >> trying to please his american and british audience. i don't know. [laughter] the second part of a question? gonzalez. he is particularly interesting because he and marquez were good friends so much so marquez went around to campaign for him occasionally as marquez had a lot to do with politics but lowly paid
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on solace although he was the leader of the spanish party and in the underground militant before the transition to democracy gonzalez was actually a a traditional democrat and the main political project over the period when he knew gonzalez was cuba and saving cuba because by then it was then difficult circumstances gabriel garcia marquez did not want the regime to go down or if the dow castro to end but gonzalez was skeptical but they crashed hence over all different issues over the
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summit's which in different parts of spain or latin america but gonzalez and phaedo castro would often disagree sunday certainly did not become not friends but they carry a gun to the late nineties or early 2000's there were a lot of things they could agree about but they had to choose there is no question he would use fidel and not fully paper, -- gonzalez is. >> you mentioned earlier "100 years of solitude" and the way, where there parts of "100 years of solitude" that were published in magazine format as was the way of ulysses?
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what was that the nature of the fable or something else? >> there were. there were at least three or four but that kind of number of chapters were published several months before the book finally came out in newspapers all over latin america but curiously he carried on to do this almost all chapters are published before they came out but he hates that kind of thing like a book launch and does not do this. [laughter] he let those chapters go out but i think it is true to see what the public would sing. he read one of the chapters as well when he was only halfway through the book and it is what he considered the
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riskiest chapter of when she rises up to heaven in a flattening she's which is the great help magical realist chapter that in a way blinks the others together to see if it would work which of course, it did. some of i buy myself them more inclined to think that the book's chapters it it was so obvious are remember mexico city 1960s annaly been studying latin american literature for a few years in a serious way the book had come out in nine months before i read it and i knew on the first page and i was not alone, there were hundreds of thousands of people who knew this is it. this is the latin american novel for i have read all of these other books which i like, but they are not the latin america that you know, and this is the latin america
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that i knew the first sentence is completely unforgettable as it is since the only thing i could think of was first sentenced don't fix it you never forget it and people quote did everywhere. it was that. i don't think the publication of the chapters help with the multiplier effect but really i think the chapters were published because the directors of magazines thought this is something different. >> many of your countrymen are not linguistic leave gifted. i would say how long did you study spanish? are you still? weir did you begin? >> yes. my countrymen are not to give did but only because they do
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not want to. an interesting thing happened spaniards used to be the least gifted linguistically on the planet but i thought they were genetically incapable of studying foreign languages. [laughter] they just could not do it. you just thought what is it about spaniards or the mentality that i went to latin america they find easy to learn english and they are brilliant at it. 30 years later the spaniards can speak english and french but they did not used to be able to so that is the interesting cultural question of evolution. people in my country certainly do, it happens in this country the idea that we speak the language everybody else has to speak our language so why should we bother of course, that is incredibly stupid because they can speak
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hours and yours is so they have a sophistication that you don't have and you live in the george bush world. [laughter] or the world and therefore you don't in any way have a idea of the other people are also calls for you think they should steadier language. the only think a sealer thing it was good at was 27 languages so it was all it wanted to do i was a london boy after the war was a very gray city and a great time i am making this up because you have to explain how what happens if you don't know. it was always foggy in those days and i used to read a lot of adventure books and always wanted to travel. do not ask me why. when i was eight might and
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rose gave me gave me stamps that had a volcanoes, and there was something about them about being an exotic and one of the reasons i suppose is because it had nothing to do with britain or that a gray london or the british empire because they did not have much to do with any other parts of the world so i became interested and when i went to the movies is john wayne crossed the border i always enjoyed the film more. always. and little by little i was incredibly lucky because i was born a catholic although not practicing i did not go to catholic school but yet to my schools taught spanish.
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so it was destiny and it was meant to be then became interested in politics in 1959 the cuban revolution came along and i thought it was incredible in the '60s westamerica seemed like one of the places to be so well happen to like at and i was good at languages. not to buy was brilliant and no good a chemistry or physics or math perhaps i could happen but languages and literature is what i loved and i wanted to travel and those are great companions so that is how happened. >> . >> you talk about the friendship with fidel castro can you talk about his literary taste? i guess it is more magical realism than socialist realism? >> it is perfectly true fidel
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come i don't know really iffy per first socialist realism but he advocated it. but to be fair, but he did come out with a speech in 1961 called where is the intellectuals? when he said one would be that he would not like inside the revolution everything two as you like. outside the revolution nothing. if you do not do this you have nothing to say in this country but he also said literature can have whatever form the writer or the artist chooses. literature and the arts are completely free. whereas in the soviet union
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where realism was invented if you're not only have the wrong content or the wrong form you just go to the firing squad and indeed many people did. fidel is a very linguistic gifted men one of the most articulate people on the planet which is i think the reason above all others why he is where he is today. he is a brilliant politician but an extremely articulate man who for a very long time was able to persuade the cuban people of what they wanted. but marquez claims the relationship is that they are friends and he also claims that he introduced a bill to other debtor works which not were not a socialist for example, the took him with dracula to read you may think this is not an appropriate
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book but fidel loved it anyway and gabriel garcia marquez would take him other books of that kind. it is also said in return fidel is one of the first gabriel garcia marquez would send his books one would be his novelist friend in mexico city the colombian writer and another is fidel. he tends to correct mistakes that how far or how fast said gunboats moved by it he was found very useful and i am sure it is an interesting literary relationship. >> two of my mother's favorite writers are marquez and toni morrison produce said he did not speak english to well but
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did they ever meet? >> they have certainly mad because and what does he think of his literature? >> i know that he likes the books and i know they have mitt because in a 1997 gabriel garcia marquez 70th birthday and at that time he was not getting on well with the president of columbia so he did not have his 70th birthday where everybody expected him to have it in colombia he had in washington. and in washington one of the guest of honor the best known writers of all those toni morrison they met on several occasions and they seem to think they have a lot of common -- allotting common not only in terms of background and culture but the ways they went about things and in particular the way both of them were concerned with
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relationships and love that was languished and difficult and so on especially relationships between men and women. yes. they know each other quite well they do not need to that often and she was the guest of honor at his 70th birthday party. >> i am wondering about gabriel garcia marquez is he a fan of joseph conrad? >> he is. it took him a long time and i just mentioned one who is perhaps the keenness man on the conrad in latin america and literature he himself has written all kinds of sea stories someone like conrad and to introduce marquez. but he wanted to talk about
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him so marquez often said if the just watches and wants to escape from the world and enjoy himself in the form and subject matter he goes to conrad. they disagreed about one other huge writer ridges faulkner but marquez believes is a great novelist of all time in the 20th century who the other cannot bear but they o agree is conrad. >> i am from colombia and so happy with your work. my question is what you think of the relationship between the fantasy and magic? and other real life in our country? >> i do not know how to give a
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fair response. the best-known magical realist has "100 years of solitude" is the book with which that is associated. gabriel garcia marquez always said he personally he has never used the phrase of magical realism it was put on him by others. he has always said as you probably know he is poor with no imagination he does not make anything up and everything in his book is something that have been in the town or it happened to his mother, his house or sometimes to him. that is what he says. it is absolutely true. there is a site for virtually everything fed is in his work has happened to him, his mother, his brother, his father by transpose and modified by the literary
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imagination but other works, straightforward the same kind the italian filmmakers are making that gabriel garcia marquez could aspire if you look at news of a kidnapping i don't think anybody would call that magical realism or anything else and if you look at the general in his labyrinth again that you would a. i think magical realism is when gabriel garcia marquez is writing about colombians, preliterate or half litter people who still live in the world and of their bellies come with their human police separate from the western rational believe of people around the country toward gabriel garcia marquez
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himself who has been trained in western civilization. it is for a very, very complicated question. he himself is a kind of mix one of the most practical straightforward and rational men i know he has the enormous ability to go to the heart of the matter but is very superstitious prefer you really have to be careful what to say to him and not say the wrong thing because something they you would know about from venezuela and other places people who are also and if you say the wrong thing and give the impression your bad luck, then this could be a very bad for you so i spent a lot of time pretending i was not bad luck but it would take a long time to finish fact answer. >> you talk about carlos fuentes and the french ship with marquez.
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>> carlos fuentes in some ways is the most remarkable in the sense he is the one with the widest pulled possible culture his father was an ambassador so he traveled all over the road before he became himself a writer incredibly sophisticated and had all kinds of relationships with very famous people as well as is well known relationships with women he had a well known of fair which he has written about so extraordinary men of the world and marquez was from a town of less than 10,000 most to did not have issues, the street was not paved they could not have been more different but gabriel garcia marquez i am not saying he would not become a great writer, he was and already was but it was very useful to me
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and in mexico when it was just beginning and when tests was very interested in promoting that putting directors together he was the only one who met all of them he met others in paris or mexico so the two men worked on film scripps together and they used to rely looking at the high mexicans guy talking about literature one day they would be infinitely more famous and rich than they were and it came true and always one of his most loyal friends when marquez went to cartagena added to receive vonage with a special edition of his book when texas was there giving
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the main it speech about gabriel garcia marquez which is a tough thing to do of people consider you a great writer. nevertheless salute somebody who you consider to be in a different dimension than yourself with all of your achievements that is a generous act. find this has his followers and his detractors but i personally have been very impressed. >> [inaudible] >> for one thing mexico is finally of the latin american 20th century it looks like it would be buenos aires but mexico city which became so important then grew to be the
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first absolute megacity is for latin american and spanish speakers. it is the one in the 1920's developed of the ideas about latin american identity how it was not just the european continent but also based on the indigenous people that lived there. a lot of people did not like it of the one-party system during the 60 years it gave extraordinary stability and development it was a kind of dictatorship but not the kind that killed 30,000 people it just killed the ones that needed it which was a significant number but not all that many. and it gabriel garcia marquez it mired that day's admire that with its own civilization
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and above all columbia it is not that gabriel garcia marquez disliked columbia he loved it but it is a different called -- difficult country to levin. many have not been able to live in their own country it is very, very rare a top-level american writer has been able to live 40 or 50 years rate teeing controversial works in their own country. the only writers really who have not been exiled the mexican writers you virtually have never been exiled because the country was a relatively stable and the government was sophisticated and for that whatever reason brazilian writers although how dictatorships they do not reflect for very long. but for the rest of them it is very common. columbia it is a curious country because then one way the most democratic country
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and only has a few years of actual dictatorship here it always has democratic elections it just appears it has been run using the political system. gabriel garcia marquez and 80s he went with eight bodyguards because of his controversial take on columbia politics and mexico, latin america, he is close and he can go whenever he wants to any country and in mexico he is more popular in mexico than any mexican writer and i did indeed experience just last year come on a turned out to carlos fuentes at 80th birthday celebration one year after marquez and he came into the room with his
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celebration and the mexicans rose and applauded with genuine warmth and then it gabriel garcia marquez came in and the whole place erupted. [laughter] it was it literally f1 world heavyweight boxing championship had just walked into the room unless you have seen it is extraordinary. the continent loves him and away people used to love charlie chaplin in the twenties and thirties. it is that kind of direct connection. if you were there you do not have to speak it just makes the people happy which is, if it was folklore or pop star you could understand it. it is extraordinary a writer can have such a connection to people and he does. he does. . .
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though he hated both politics because dorkus was essentially right wing and garcia marquez was essentially left-wing but he was very influenced by his way of thinking, his way of writing and so on. i think all latin americans have been influenced by the solitude concept but he was not the first
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to come up with that. this theme of solitude is really important and let america, going back into the 19th century, not just the 20 of. it is a curious thing, he is somebody who never respected garcia marquez. he said he was the second great writer, diggins taking a serious. either as a man or a writer. fuentes was third rate. he actually told me that so i know this to be the case. a great thinker of course, not the greatest i still think-- and perhaps not the most generous man, but he did nevertheless, develop this theme of solitude and most black american writers have the theme of the labyrinth as something running to their work and solitude of course is also really crucial. barras dozens. somebody else made this the other day and i was talking,
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what could i say? one of them was, there are thousands. one for example was garcia marquez, his children were brought up without much money, like he was, until they were aider nina suppose when the eldest son was very small. garcia marquez at one point ran out of money so totally that his wife could not leave him to buy milk. yepsen went without milk. he had to go to bed with no milk. garcia marquez to get him to go to bed without milk explain to him that this would never happen again, that he would never let him go without anything again, and indeed the next day he did go off and get a job and public relations, in advertising which i think nearly killed him. it was certainly well-- by the promise the boys because he had
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a younger son by then who was three or four and didn't understand of course that he promised them that one day he knew, he just had a feeling that a man was going to turn up, with a huge suitcase full of banknotes. [laughter] after 100 years of solitude was published, when the first world cheese came men, he did in fact i a man to come to the house. [laughter] with a sick days and say to the boys, he will have forgotten this but the man opened the suitcase and it is full of thousands and thousands of notes. they were probably just 1 dollar, but a lot of them. [inaudible] >> no, i was just talking about that a bit.
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garcia marquez like and respected him but pass did not like and respect garcia marquez. part of it was literary. he just didn't think garcia marquez was a first writer. and secondly, he of course moved gradually further and further in the conservative direction, rightly or wrongly. garcia marquez was in the leftward direction, rightly or wrongly and he organized numbers of different conferences in mexico in the 1980's and 90's, particularly against cuba. he hated castro, as a lot of people do in garcia marquez was a supporter and friend of castro so this just drove them for their part. to be fair, actually, very late in life he began to revise his ideas about garcia marquez and to recognize this man had actually created books about black americans concept of love
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and of solitude and of death, said there was a sort of, almost i'm not sure the term-- the two of them ever shook hands before the end of his life. [applause] >> geral smartness the author several books including "journeys through the labyrinth," let american fiction in the 20th century. he is professor emeritus of modern languages at the university of pittsburgh and senior research professor in caribbean studies at london metropolitan university. the mechanics institute in san francisco closed this event. for more information visit mi library.org. >> the phenomenon of facebook, a bestselling author ben madrick
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on the success of this social networking site and how it for two best friends apart. after words, part of c-span2's booktv weekend. >> "uncle sam wants you" world war i and the making of the modern american citizen. christopher capozzola who was james montgomery flagg? >> james montgomery flagg is the man behind probably one of the most important images in politics. he was a graphic artist working in new york in 1910 and right in that period after the war had started up before the u.s. was involved in the war, clegg wanted america to be more involved than the one to come up with the perfect image that would give americans into the military and he is the one who gave us this image of a uncle
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sam wants you, that finger-pointing out. >> plessy and a contract to present that image? >> at that time he was working for a magazine, leslie's illustrated weekly which was the popular magazine of the day and he was under a tight deadline to finish and in fact he didn't have a lot of ideas, so the story as we know it particularly from his memoirs that he got an idea of coming up with a picture of himself, looking from the mirror, looking into the mayor and adding a few years to the image, putting on a funny hat in the suit and that gave him a magazine cover. it was a year or so later that the u.s. army picked up the image and made it into a recruiting poster. >> at the time he treated it was not a government effort to recruit soldiers? >> no, it was a popular image that ran under a headline called what you doing for preparedness, meaning getting ready in case the u.s. was drawn into the european war.
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>> so, was there a national effort in 1916 to get into world war i? >> there was. some people actually wanted the u.s. to winter, especially people like theodore roosevelt for example the felt that this was an international crisis and even a humanitarian crisis of civilization and the u.s. had an obligation to be involved. others is one of the u.s. to be more prepared to have a larger army, to have more capabilities in case the world events dragged americans to war. then there were those that felt that this was a european problem, that the u.s. should stay away from. >> not a centralized government effort? >> no, there is not a centralized government effort and in fact woodrow wilson tried to avoid this as president because he worried that it was, he would end up alienating voters on both sides of the funds. >> how did the u.s. into world war i?
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high-speed despite woodrow wilson's efforts to keep america out of work, he made a series of decisions that slowly back this into war, particularly by givings lathe preference to britain by not trading with germany and then as the germans in the spring of 1917, they launched sort of desperate, last-minute gambit to win the war knowing they are going to drag the americans into a brick of the germans thought that the americans didn't have a big army, didn't have a strong federal government and would never get into the war in time to make a difference and that was one place where they were wrong. >> prior to woodrow wilson's decisions with a grassroots separate efforts that got us into world war i? >> among the people who wanted the u.s. to be more prepared, because preparedness was-- most of them republicans, many of them disciples of theodore roosevelt who said that sort of volunteer military training camps. a big one was an plattsburg your, called the plattsburg movement and often the least
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college students of the day would spend their summers training to be military officers and many of them did become military officers and in fact after the war, the rotc as manila today traces its roots back to this platts berkman. >> so, was there grassroots movement to get into the war? was the war popular before the americans got into it? >> the war was popular with some people but i think one of the things most people forget about world war i is that it was very divisive both entering the war and how to fight the war after it starts and a lot of that division and contest has been forgotten over the years since then. >> where did your book, world war i and the making of the modern american citizen, come from? >> the book actually started from a puzzling group of people, so in a footnote of another book that fund reference to what were called slacker raids. lacquer was the slang term in world war i for draft dodgers, slacker raids were carried out
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by a group of volunteers, mostly middle-aged men, overdraft deutche who would gore brenton cities and small towns and try to track down the draft dodgers in their communities. i thought this is just an usual. people volunteering to enforce the draft, literally perhaps to wonder thousand people were part of this group of the american league. so i started by research in them and then it became a bigger story about the american its federal government in its first big world war. >> what was the effect on the federal government of world war i? >> it was enormously transformative and i think historians have not paid enough attention to that because a lot of the organizations that got very large during the war got smaller after word so the army got much bigger and attract-- but it never went back to the small size that it was before and that is an important turning point. then the mindsets of a federal presence in everyday life for
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there for generations to come. so, when the crisis came whether it was the great depression or world war ii, the first world war was the previous image that other people looked at when they looked back at what should the federal government to. >> what was the previous image? >> it was an image that was tapping into voluntary associations, civil society. the turn of the century this is a time when people are acting clubs and lodges and trying to use that voluntary sensibility to mobilize the population, to mobilize the nation at a time when the state itself may not actually be the big. >> so, is that why do you include the suffragist and this book? >> i do and the war is a crucial moment for women's organizations, whether they were suffrage organizations are not. first of all trying to find a place for themselves at a time when men's responsibilities are clearly stated but women have to find their own place and in fact
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again hundreds of thousands of volunteered in various organizations on the home front, particularly in areas that were marked as women's spheres of activity, food, conservation and things in the home. >> why is it that there was, i don't know if it was the rise and anarchy but a rise in domestic terrorism and instances of anarchists during this period? >> well, there had been violence particularly around questions of labor actually for quite awhile before the war, but world war i marks this turning point in for me it is captured in the word pro-german which is the word that appears almost everywhere in the press during the first world war, but it may not have anything to do with actual germans. pretty much any subversive activity or violence or strife could be labeled the spro german solove of the labor radicals would have been around for a the period of industrialization and found themselves really under the gun.
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>> the term pro-german, was the use against a lot of people and was it an effective tool? >> it was used against, it was used against pretty much anyone it was challenging the status quo. it was used against striking workers. eight was used against african-americans and started to migrate from the brill south to the north and it was effective in marginalizing and silencing them. >> christopher capozzola, world war i and the making of the modern american citizen-- "uncle sam wants you" world war i and the making of the modern american citizen. >> thank you. >> look at the life and career of an arkansas circuit court judge who once opposed the ruling of brown the mac board of education and then champion civil-rights. judge richard arnold has been called the best judge to never set on the supreme court. the bill clinton presidential library in lula, arkansas is the hosted this event. it is about an

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