by Efraín Bartolomé, translated from the Spanish by Kevin Brown
Praise for Ocosingo War Diary: Voices from Chiapas
“A poet from Chiapas, Efraín Bartolomé, lived through the [Zapatista] uprising in an intense and painful way. His poetry took on a deep historical dimension without ceasing to be poetry.”
—Alberto Ruy Sánchez
“In Ocosingo War Diary: Voices from Chiapas vibrantly immediate idioms and rhythms come alive. Kevin Brown’s translation bridges the fluid border between prose-poem and prose narrative.”
—Thalia Pandiri, Ph.D., Professor of Classics & Comparative Literature, Smith College
“Telegraphic prose, each word composed with true mastery. I sincerely doubt that, among the innumerable works which have been and will be published about the events that so moved Mexico and much of the world, there is no other that compares to Ocosingo in authenticity and literary value. Destiny saw to it that the right narrator was in the right place at the right time.”
—Enoch Cancino Casahonda
“A great project.”
—Peter Thompson, Ph.D.,
Associate Professor of Foreign Language, Roger Williams University
About the book
Efraín Bartolomé, a poet from Chiapas, lived through the entire beginning of the Zapatista uprising in 1994. His family, like many in the village of Ocosingo, received death threats from the Zapatista guerrillas who demanded they join them at risk of being declared enemies of the Revolution.
This book, equal parts poetry and diary, is his account of that conflict.
About the author
Efraín Bartolomé, born in 1950 in Ocosingo, State of Chiapas, Mexico, is an internationally recognized poet and prize-winning environmental activist. His verses have been collected in the following volumes: Agua lustral (Holy Water: Poems, 1982-1987); Oficio: arder (Poet Afire: Poems, 1982-1997); and El ser que somos (Being Who We Are). Bartolomé is the recipient of the Mexico City Prize; Aguascalientes National Poetry Award (1984); Carlos Pellicer Prize for published work (1992); Gilberto Owen National Literary Prize (1993); and the Jaime Sabines International Poetry Prize (1996). The Mexican government awarded him the National Forest and Wildlife Merit Prize. In 1998 he received the Chiapas Arts Prize. In 2001 he received the International Latino Arts Award in the United States. He is a member of the National Council of Creative Artists. His poems have been translated into English, French, Portuguese, Italian, German, Arabic, Galician, Nahuatl, Peninsular Mayan, and Esperanto. He works as a psychotherapist in Mexico City. Ocosingo was his first published book-length work in prose.
About the Translator
Kevin Brown, born in 1960 in Kansas City, Missouri, is a biographer, essayist and translator. He is author of the biographies Romare Bearden: Artist (1994) and Malcolm X: His Life and Legacy (1995). He was a contributing editor to The New York Public Library African-American Desk Reference (2000). Brown’s articles, essays, interviews, reviews and translations from Spanish into English have appeared in Afterimage, Apuntes, Asymptote, The Brooklyn Rail, eXchanges, Hayden’s Ferry Review, K1N, The Kansas City Star, Kirkus, the London Times Literary Supplement, Mayday, Metamorphoses, The Nation, Ozone Park, Review of Latin American Studies, Threepenny Review, Two Lines, and the Washington Post Bookworld.
He is working on his first collection of essays.
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