La Malinche was one of twenty women given to Hernán Cortés on his arrival in the Americas. A Nahua woman, she was fluent in various native languages and became his interpreter, translator and eventually his lover – whether by force or choice is no longer known. La Malinche’s story has been persistently contorted to the grotesque position of blaming her for the Spanish conquest of the Americas. The responsibility for Spanish Imperialism is La Malinche’s. Or so the perverted narrative makers would have you believe – there’s no need to look beyond our own borders to find the scorn, and much worse, of woman, all for the glory of our glorious country. In Mexico, a Malinchista – someone who favours the foreign – is a nationalist slur for those brave enough to look beyond the confines of their borders, and capture a world so much more vibrant and challenging than ‘is dreamt of in your philosophy.’
The La Malinche Readings will see Irish poets Lorna Shaughnessy and Annemarie Ní Churreáin visit Galicia in 2016 for bilingual poetry readings in Vigo, Pontevedra, Compostela and A Coruña while Galician poets Elvira Ribeiro and Silvia Penas/ Cinta Adhesiva will travel to Ireland for readings in Dublin, Cork, Galway and elsewhere. This year’s inaugural reading at Books Upstairs on April 21st includes poems from the Mexican poet Elsa Cross in translation by Anamaría Crowe Serrano from her recent collection of translations Beyond the Sea (Shearsman, 2016). Tickets for the event are €6 and include a glass of wine and can be ordered direct from Books Upstairs (http://www.drb.ie/blog/literary-events/2016/04/05/la-malinche-readings) by phone or in person, or from Eventbrite. (You can save €1.23 by ordering direct from BU)
Elvira Ribeiro will also deliver a lecture on Contemporary Galician Women’s poetry at the Irish Centre for Galician Studies (UCC) on Friday April 22nd and a bilingual poetry reading at the Cork International Book Festival on Saturday 23rd at 15:00.