Interesting achievement: Writing one of the first novels in history, Tale of Genji
When: Between 1002 and 1022 AD
Excerpt from The Tale of Genji
a woman writer replies to Prince Genji's comments about novels and the women who write them
"I have a theory of my own about what this art of the novel is and how it came into being. To begin with, it does not simply consist of the author's telling a story about the adventures of some other person. On the contrary, it happens because one's own experience of people and things has moved one to an emotion so passionate that it can no longer be shut up in one's own heart. Again and again something in one's own life or in the lives of those around one will seem so important that the thought of letting it pass into oblivion is unbearable. There must never come a time, one feels, when people do not know about it. That is my view of how this art arose."
Sorry for blackberries, iphones, itouch... and all sorts of devices for XXI century time management but nothing compares to the Pascualina diary.
The diaries are beatifully illustrated by Paulina Mönckeberg. The design of their website is delightful as well, but I think it is just in Spanish : www.pascualina.com
You know, I love art not just because artists create work for everyone else to enjoy, whatever the message conveyed, but because while artists are creating they are focusing on communicating, giving shape to their spirit and building something instead of destroying the environment that surrounds them. I've often read the affirmation that all good art is political. I'd like to quote the Spanish writer Almudena Grandes when she mentioned a few days ago in El País newspaper a thought expressed by Antonio Gramsci: Against the pessimism of reason, the optimism of will. So here it is, in this first post of the year, my humble act of resistance.