LiberPress Literature Award 2012

Manuel Costa-Pau

Manuel Costa-Pau Garriga is from Garriguella in L’Empordà and was born in 1936, a year full of ominous signs, hard work and mistrust.  Perhaps this is the source of his sometimes fierce desire to live, and his innate love of discovery. He teaches language and literature, and is a publisher and writer. In the world of publishing, he has overseen the production of works in Catalan by Alfaguara and has been Literary Director of Edicions Dima, Edicions Ulisses and Llibres de l’Índex. He co-founded and has directed the “Mot d’Obra” collection. He has chaired the group promoting the Third Congress of Catalan Culture and created and directed the publishing house Llibres del Secle and the magazine Lletres a plom.

He lives in the rectory at Gaüses, where he has his office and the publishing workshop, a meeting point for friends and acquaintances with inquisitive minds. He is an unconditional participant in the inseparable struggle for human justice and the freedom of the peoples of the world.

He became known with the publication of Mont Perdut (1955), a first fervent step in poetry.

His work appears in Antologia poètica universitària (1959) and in Antologia de la poesia social catalana, edited by Àngel Carmona (1970). In 1968 he published the narrative Sempre sentíem parlar de la guerra. As an essayist, he is the author of Turistes, sirenes i gent del país (1967). He directed the collective work Els Països Catalans (1984). His latest publications are: Suite de Biar, poetry, in press, and Janna (2010), the first part of a narrative cycle to be published in due course.

“I met some great people in Figueres. One of them, extremely intelligent, is Manuel Costa-Pau. All those who have met him are overwhelmed by his strong personality and then enchanted by his intelligence and lively observation. I’ve spent many hours chatting with him (well, he chatted and I listened), and I learned so many things that I feel very fortunate.” Fragment from Els racons de la memòria, by Isabel-Clara Simó.

A man, a thought and a literature, essential today and always.

LiberPress Literature Award 2012

Manuel Costa-Pau received the 2012 LiberPress Literature Award for his sharp and delicate literary work, his extensive work in publishing, his commitment to our language and our freedom, which flow from all his writing, for his lessons in literature and life, for his scholarly wisdom, his non-conformity and a persistent rebelliousness that make him unique in our country.

“I am stateless not from choice but because I have been a foreigner in my own land.”