Antonio Tabucchi (born on
September 23 1943) is an Italian writer and academic who teaches Portuguese language and literature at the University of Siena, Italy.
Deeply in love with
Portugal, he is an expert, critic and translator of the works of the writer Fernando Pessoafrom whom he drew the conceptions of "saudade", of "fiction" and of the "heteronomouses". Tabucchi was first introduced to Pessoa's works in the 1960s when attending the Sorbonne. He was so charmed that, back in Italy, he attended a course of Portuguese languagefor a better comprehension of the poet.
His books and essays have been translated in 18 countries, including
Japan. Together with his wife, María José de Lancastre, he translated many works by Pessoa into Italian and has written a book of essays and a comedy about the writer.
Tabucchi has been awarded the French prize "Médicis étranger" for "Nocturne indien" ("
Notturno indiano") and the premio Campiello, and the Aristeion Prizefor "Sostiene Pereira".
Antonio Tabucchi was born in
Pisabut grew up at his maternal grandparents' home in Vecchiano, a nearby village. During his years at university, he travelled widely around Europeon the trail of the authors he had encounted in his uncle's library. During one of these journeys, he found the poem "Tabacaria" (tobacco shop) in a bookstall near the Gare de Lyonin Paris, signed by Alvaro de Campos, one of the heteronyms (a kind of poetical personality) of the Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa. It was in the French translation by Pierre Hourcade. From the pages of this libel he extracted the intuition of his interest in his future life for at least twenty years.
A visit to
Lisbonsparked his love of the city of the fadoand of that country as a whole. As a result, he graduated in 1969with a thesis on "Surrealism in Portugal". He specialized at the Scuola Normale Superiore di Pisain the seventies and in 1973 he was appointed as teacher of Portuguese Language and Literature in Bologna.
That year he wrote his first novel, "Piazza d'Italia" (Bompiani 1975), in which he tried to describe history from the losers' point of view, in this case the Tuscan anarchists, in the tradition of great Italian writers of a more or less recent past, such as
Giovanni Verga, Federico De Roberto, Giuseppe Tomasi Di Lampedusa, Beppe Fenoglio, and contemporary authors, like Vincenzo Consolo.
In 1978, he was appointed to the university of
Genova, and published "Il piccolo naviglio" (Mondadori), followed by "Il gioco del rovescio e altri racconti" (Il Saggiatore) in 1981, and "Donna di porto Pim" (Sellerio 1983). His first important novel, "Notturno indiano", was published in 1984, and became the basis of a 1989a film directed by Alain Corneau. The protagonist tries to trace a friend who has disappeared in Indiabut is actually searching for his own identity.
He published "Piccoli equivoci senza importanza" (Feltrinelli) in 1985 and, the next year, "Il filo dell'orizzonte". This novel features another protagonist (Spino) on a quest to discover something (here, the identity of a corpse) but who is also looking for his own identity -- which was to become a common mission for Tabucchi protagonists. Whether these characters succeed in the attempt is uncertain, but they are compelled to face their image as mirrored by others. A film was drawn from this book, too, in 1993 directed by the Portuguese
In 1987, when "I volatili del Beato Angelico" (Sellerio) and "Pessoana Minima" (Imprensa Nacional, Lisboa) came out, he received France's Prix Médicis for best foreign novel (Notturno indiano). The next year he wrote the comedy "I dialoghi mancati" (Feltrinelli). The President of
Portugalappointed him the title "Do Infante Dom Herique" in 1989, and that same year the French government named him a "Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres."
Tabucchi published "Un baule pieno di gente. Scritti su Fernando Pessoa" (Feltrinelli) in 1990, and the next year, "L'angelo nero" (Feltrinelli 1991). In 1992 he wrote in Portuguese "Requiem", a novel later translated into Italian (Feltrinelli, winner of Premio P.E.N. Club italiano) and he published "Sogni di sogni" (Sellerio).
1994 was a very important year for the author. It was the year of "Gli ultimi tre giorni di Fernando Pessoa" (Sellerio), but more important of the novel that brought him the most recognition: "Sostiene Pereira" (Feltrinelli), winner of the Prizes Super Campiello, Scanno and
Jean Monnetfor European Literature. The protagonist of this novel becomes the symbol of the defence of freedom for information for the political opponents of all anti-democratic regimes. In Italy, during the election campaign, the opposition against the controversial communication magnate Silvio Berlusconiaggregated around this book. The director Roberto Faenza drew from it the eponymous film (1995) in which he cast Marcello Mastroiannias Pereira and Daniel Auteuilas Dr. Cardoso.
In 1997 Tabucchi wrote the novel "
La testa perduta di Damasceno Monteiro", ("The Missing Head of Damasceno Monteiro") based on the true story of a man whose headless corpse was found in a park. It was discovered that the man had been murdered in a police station of the Republican National Guard (GNR). The news story struck the writer's sensitiveness and imagination. The event's setting in Portoalso gave the author the opportunity to show his love for the city. In order to finish this novel, Tabucchi worked on the documents gathered by the investigators at the European Councilin Strasburgwho enforce civil rights and the conditions of detention in Europe, including the relationship between citizens and police. The novel proved prophetic when police Sergeant José dos Santos later confessed the murder, was convicted and sentenced to 17 years' imprisonment.
Also in 1997, Tabucchi wrote "Marconi, se ben mi ricordo" (Eri), followed the next year by "L'Automobile, la Nostalgie et l'Infini" (Seuil, Parigi 1998). That year the
Leibniz Academyawarded him the Prize Nossack.
He wrote "Gli Zingari e il Rinascimento" (Sipiel) and "Ena poukamiso gemato likedes" ("Una camicia piena di macchie. Conversazioni di A.T. con Anteos Chrysostomidis", Agra, Atene 1999) in 1999. "Doubts are like stains on a freshly laundered white shirt. The task of every writer and of every man of letters is to instil doubts for the perfection, because perfection generates ideologies, dictators and totalitarian ideas.
Democracyis not a state of perfection."
In 2001 Tabucchi published the epistolary novel, "Si sta facendo sempre più tardi". In it, 17 letters which celebrate the triumph of the word, which like "messages in the bottle", have no addressee, they are missives the author addressed to an "unknown poste restante". The book received the 2002 Prize
France Culture(the French cultural radio) for foreign literature.
He spends six months of the year in
Lisbon, with his wife, a native of the city, and their two children. The rest of the year he spends in Tuscanywhere he and teaches Portuguese lterature at the University of Siena. In fact Tabucchi considers himself a writer only in an ontological sense, because from the existential point of view he is glad of being able to define himself a "university professor". Literaturefor Tabucchi is not a profession, "but something that involves desires, dreams and imagination". ["Antonio Tabucchi, un dubitatore impegnato". Interview by Asbel Lopez.]
Tabucchi regularly contributes articles to the cultural pages of the newspapers "
Corriere della Sera" and "El País". In 2004, he was awarded the " Francisco de Cerecedo" journalism prize, granted by the "Association of European Journalists" and handed by Spain's Crown heir, Prince Felipe de Borbón, in recognition for the quality of his journalistic work and his outspoken defence of freedom of expression.
In 2007, he received an honorary doctorate from the
University of Liège.
*"Piazza d'Italia" (1975), ISBN 88-07-01458-0
*"Il piccolo naviglio "(1978)
*"Il gioco del rovescio e altri racconti" (1981, short story collection), ISBN 88-07-01354-1
*"Donna di Porto Pim" (1983)
*"Notturno indiano" (1984)
*"Piccoli equivoci senza importanza" (1985, short story collection), ISBN 88-07-01306-1
*"Il filo dell'orizzonte" (1986, short story collection), ISBN 88-07-01322-3
*"I volatili del Beato Angelico" (1987)
*"Pessoana mínima" (1987)
*"I dialoghi mancati" (1988), ISBN 88-07-05058-7
*"Un baule pieno di gente. Scritti su Fernando Pessoa" (1990, essays), ISBN 88-07-05080-3
*"L'angelo nero "(1991, short story collection), ISBN 88-07-01414-9
*"Sogni di sogni" (1992)
*"Requiem" (1992), ISBN 88-07-01433-5
*"Gli ultimi tre giorni di Fernando Pessoa "(1994), ISBN 88-389-1056-1
*"Sostiene Pereira. Una testimonianza" (1994), ISBN 88-07-01461-0
*"Dove va il romanzo" (1995, essay), ISBN 88-86680-00-7
*"Carlos Gumpert, Conversaciones con Antonio Tabucchi" (1995)
*"La testa perduta di Damasceno Monteiro" (1997), ISBN 88-07-01518-8
*"Marconi, se ben mi ricordo" (1997), ISBN 88-397-0978-9
*"L'Automobile, la Nostalgie et l'Infini "(1998)
*"La gastrite di Platone" (1998), ISBN 88-389-1421-4
*"Gli Zingari e il Rinascimento" (1999), ISBN 88-380-8010-0
*"Ena poukamiso gemato likedes" ("Una camicia piena di macchie. Conversazioni di A.T. con Anteos Chrysostomidis", 1999)
*"Si sta facendo sempre più tardi. Romanzo in forma di lettere" (2001), ISBN 88-07-01590-0
*"Autobiografie altrui. Poetiche a posteriori" (2003), ISBN 88-07-42098-8
*"Tristano muore. Una vita" (2004), ISBN 88-07-01646-X
* [http://www.unesco.org/courier/1999_11/uk/dires/txt1.htm Interview with Tabucchi in 1999]
* [http://www.apeuropeos.org/xxi_cerecedo.html 2004 Francisco de Cerecedo Journalism Prize] wikiquote
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Antonio Tabucchi — (* 23. September 1943 in Vecchiano bei Pisa) ist ein italienischer Schriftsteller, Literaturwissenschaftler und Übersetzer. Tabucchi studierte Geisteswissenschaften in Paris und Pisa. An der Universität Genua wurde … Deutsch Wikipedia
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