Gilberto Padilla Cárdenas

Gilberto Padilla Cárdenas

Papiroflexólogo, esto es: un filólogo que marca y dobla escrupulosamente algunas páginas de los libros prestados. Lector paranoico de Lo cubano en la pornografía, de Cintio Vitier. Hincha del jazz y el Glenfiddich. Con una atracción casi patológica por las periodistas que calzan el número de Madonna. En 2015, planea el secuestro de Leonardo Padura.

Keep on reading: Raoul Delorme and the impossible literature

In the second half of the twentieth century, an illegally unknown writer, Raoul Delorme, founded the sect or movement of the Barbarians Writers. Until recently I had never heard of him. Now, suddenly, it seems he is everywhere. To begin, someone gave me a copy of the Revista de los Vigilantes Nocturnos de Arras (a magazine published , indeed, by a corporation of night watchmen) which contained a quite illustrative and meticulous barbaric anthology. Texts by Delorme appeared under the subheading Cuando la afición deviene profesión. A minor poet, I thought, without the necrosis of the Belle Lyrics. Then, two or three days later, I read his article-manifesto entitled La afición a escribir, which gives shape to his new literature. According to Delorme we had to merge ourselves with the masterpieces. This was achieved in a most curious way: defecating on the pages of Stendhal, masturbating and spreading the semen on the pages of Gautier or Banville, vomiting onto the pages of Daudet, urinating on the pages of Lamartine, making cuts with razor blades and splashing blood over the pages of Balzac or Maupassant; finally, subjecting books to a process of demystification and closeness that broke all barriers of culture,...

Vigilar y castigar

Keep on reading: Monitoring and punishing

It's 1972: a girl whom we will call Linda Lovelace, goes to a psychologist for a reason, she is unable to reach orgasm. The opinion of the doctor is toxically famous: apparently, the young girl from New York has the clitoris in her throat. That’s the beginning of Deep throat, the highest grossing pornographic film in the history of American cinema. By then Umberto Eco was 40 and had a strange obsession with Linda Lovelace. He has not written yet El Nombre De La Rosa, but he is already terminal addict to pornography and he tries to disengage from it by reading lots of semiotic treaties and Cartesian meditations. Reading is a success, abstinence is a failure: Eco -educated in contemplation of Greco-Roman statues and Renaissance paintings- feels himself so dazzled by Gerard Damiano´s porn cinema as a teenager in 1997 by the Spice Girls. Published by Lumen publishing house, Umberto Eco’s ¨Segundo Diario Minimo¨ shows very little -nothing- of this obsession. Just an article entitled "How to recognize a pornographic movie," only real evidence of his damn pornopatia. However, there are several tantrums in the book that gradually form, by transitivity, an aesthetic: you find, for example, that for...

Keep on reading: The scriptwriter and his fear

It has been said many times that the script is not literature, that when Scott Fitzgerald wanted to make literature he wrote The Great Gatsby, not the script of Three comrades. In fact, there is a story of Fitzgerald, perhaps apocryphal, but it comes in handy to think on this issue. Of all the scripts the celebrated author wrote - Ricardo Piglia gossips, only Three comrades was shot, after the producer Joseph Mankiewicz, probably the greatest writer of bad movies that ever passed through the Metro Goldwyn Mayer, retouched the dialogues and changed whatever he pleased. "I taught a whole generation how to write dialogues," says Fitzgerald in a pathetic letter, "and you, in one night, changed my dialogues in a movie in which I worked for months". The film, in this sense, poses a clear formal complaint: you must submit what is told to violent get-rid-of-all-literature. That is not to say that, as a bastard genre, the film script does not belong into a literary tradition. Indeed, perhaps the most famous and happy praise to made in USA script writers as Paul Schrader, Harmony Korine and Todd Solondz, depend on how they work stories bearing in mind the literary...

Keep on reading: The scriptwriter and his fear

It has been said many times that the script is not literature, that when Scott Fitzgerald wanted to make literature he wrote The Great Gatsby, not the script of Three comrades. In fact, there is a story of Fitzgerald, perhaps apocryphal, but it comes in handy to think on this issue. Of all the scripts the celebrated author wrote -Ricardo Piglia gossips, only Three comrades was shot, after the producer Joseph Mankiewicz, probably the greatest writer of bad movies that ever passed through the Metro Goldwyn Mayer, retouched the dialogues and changed whatever he pleased. "I taught a whole generation how to write dialogues," says Fitzgerald in a pathetic letter, "and you, in one night, changed my dialogues in a movie in which I worked for months". The film, in this sense, poses a clear formal complaint: you must submit what is told to violent get-rid-of-all-literature. That is not to say that, as a bastard genre, the film script does not belong into a literary tradition. Indeed, perhaps the most famous and happy praise to made in USA script writers as Paul Schrader, Harmony Korine and Todd Solondz, depend on how they work stories bearing in mind the literary tradition....

Keep on reading: Pandora box

"This study is, somehow, a fiction," this is the beginning of ¨Los nuevos paradigmas. Prólogo narrativo al siglo XXI¨ (Letras Cubanas, 2006), by Jorge Fornet. And it's likely to be true: while the Cuban publishing scene is almost a horror novel, Fornet´s book is like a Latin American fairy tale. And there, Cuban literature is the sleeping and blue princess. Because one thing is certain: none of those writers who make up the family of geeks that Fornet analyzes -Cesar Aira, Roberto Bolaño, Alan Pauls, Jorge Volpi, Rodrigo Fresán, Santiago Gamboa, Héctor Abad Faciolince, among others, has been published in Cuba; bad omen. But things get really disturbing when a friend tells you as a kind of top-secret plan: "Today, eight years after the publication of Los Nuevos paradigmas ... the Cuban publishing leukemia is exactly the same. Do you realize of that? The cancer persists eight years later. "And you want to start counting platelets of Arte y Literatura Publishing House, and do not know if your friend is a genius or a hallucinated. Then a question as the most precise and unforgiving science comes: "And what do our publishing houses do?" The answer is a Pandora box ....

Keep on reading: Reading visa

Every morning of my life I remember the poem by Stéphane Mallarmé -ridiculed by Roberto Bolaño in ¨El gaucho insufrible¨- where we were roughly told that sex and reading, in the end, are boring, and that travelling is our only way. The journey -and we may also say breath- first than sex and literature. (It would have been interesting to read those verses by Mallarmé to David Foster Wallace, an author whose sole purpose on earth was to stick his penis into the largest possible number of vaginas: 329 in 46 years, and write cult books or something like that.) But what I really remember the most is how ironic is a poem like "Brisa marina" for Cubans, and its illogical reasoning on this parallel world where travelling is almost an ucronia, I mean, a science fiction subgenus, so to speak. It is known: the Cuban writers-and such adjective has the damn custom of becoming everything strained- are the professionals of the "stationary ride". There are the examples of José Lezama Lima, who just left the island twice: a very brief trip to Mexico in 1949, and to Jamaica, a year later. And most recently, Havana’s narrator Abel Fernández Larrea,...

Efectos secundarios

Keep on reading: Side Effects

There is a passage of ¨Estrella distante¨ (Distant Star), the compulsive novel by Roberto Bolaño, where it appears a logic of literary evolution that could be perfectly used by Cuban letters. It is the passage where Raoul Delorme , founder of the sect or movement of the Barbarian Writers recommends the method for shaping a new literature. This was achieved through a very curious way: defecating on the pages by Stendhal, blowing your nose with the pages by Victor Hugo , masturbating and spilling semen on the pages by Gautier and Banville, throwing up on the pages by Daudet, urinating on pages by Lamartine, making cuts yourself with razor blades and splattering blood on the pages by Balzac or Maupassant. In the end, subjecting the books to a degradation process that Delorme called "humanization". The writer as defiler, literally. Raoul Delorme knew that when writing ¨La afición a escribir, ¨a book made up of glimpses, endnotes, a patchwork that seems to be taken from that terrible locked room that reading is; an apocryphal book on the art of literary desecration. But the issue goes beyond that. Let us imagine, for a moment, that we wrote that book in Cuba, with...

Keep on reading: “Sexo de cine”

The ideal reader of “Sexo de cine” (ICAIC Publishing House, 2012), by Alberto Garrandés, is the guy who goes to the movies to jerk off: the "Vagina Destroyer". But this does not mean that this volume is not literally the most lively and sweaty autopsy made by a Cuban to contemporary cinema. Whether to address sadomasochism of an unsettling Conservatory teacher, specialist in Schubert, who makes cuts with razor blades in her pubis (you must see: The Piano Teacher by Michael Haneke); or the understanding of Rocco Siffredi: " To get into the ass of a woman you must first enter her brain" (Anatomy of Hell by Catherine Breillat); or the moral immunodeficiency of Larry Clark's films; or the explicit paraphilias of Antichrist, which, at the pace of Handel, made ​​only Lars von Trier truly happy. Thus, the book is a sort of Contemporary Sexual Mediatheque with a single hero always erect: the viewer. And for him, Garrandés takes the assay to a new level of intimacy: he escorts us beyond the room and gets us into the movies. Because there is no more fertile ground for the planting and harvesting sperm than the Chaplin or Payret cinemas. Alberto Garrandés,...

José Lezama Lima

Keep on reading: Lezama wants to be your friend on facebook

"The first book the first girl I fell in love gave me” 'says Roberto Bolaño in Entre paréntesis "was one of Mircea Eliade. I still do not know what she wanted to tell me with that gift. Other, less silly, had realized immediately that that relationship would not be too durable and have taken steps not to suffer too much. " A woman that gives away Mircea Eliade books? I do not know if that's too bad. I have not read Eliade. I am probably the Cuban number 11,999,999 who has not read Mircea Eliade. But Bolaño was lucky after all. I fared worse. The first girl that I fell in love with (I think thereupon: I should not say that) gave me Paradiso. Until then I had always known Dulce Maria Loynaz girls ("I fit In you , I'm made ​​for you, but if it were me where something is missing I will grow... If it were me where something is too much, I´ll cut it."), Wichy Nogueras girls ("Looking at Chinese erotic engravings / you asked me / how could they do it that way / we tried it/ remember?"), even, Buesa girls, these proliferated as tumors- ("You'll...

Keep on reading: off the record books

In the final chapter of ¨El estante vacio. Literatura y política en Cuba¨, Rafael Rojas lists a series of basic books that have not been published in Cuba. However, unpublished doesn’t mean unread. Rojas needs to be informed –though he is probably aware about it– that books are also sold off the record, laser printed, made in Cuba binds, rather than bookshelves they demand files to collect them. Nevertheless, what’s the meaning of these underground publications? (Let’s keep in mind that the novel Herejes, by Leonardo Padura, was published off the record in Cuba long before than in Tusquets Editores, as if some domestic employee for the National Award had had access to the files in his PC.) What’s the meaning of Richi’s digital library, which comprises more than 65 000 books? (You ask him for a book in the list and he emails it to you. For free. There is no better supplier. He meets his deadlines. He doesn’t spam. And his Cuban catalogue is something else. Where does he get “High Quality Print” PDF versions of El libro perdido de los origenistas (by Antonio José Ponte), El hombre que amaba a los perros (by Leonardo Padura), Chiquita (by...

Daniel Chavarría y Leonardo Padura

Keep on reading: All by Chavarria for one by Padura

It started as an option now it is a terrible plague. I’m talking about Todo x Uno (Everything for a one dollar) in literature, one of the most frequent strategies for purchasing books in Cuba. The first step was taken by a group of sellers in Old Havana: booksellers at the Arms Square. They range from Fourier’s phalanxes to anarchist syndicalism, with intermediate variants like sects, parallel markets or secret societies. They do all kinds of work: they do leather binding; staple; restore; change damaged covers with 250 gr Bristol cards, decorated cedar; etc. The ad reads: “A bargain! All by Chavarria for one Padura” (that “Padura” was, obviously, at that time, any novel of the “four seasons”). The add aimed at encouraging the exchange of books, a fuel capable of bringing people closer to a kind of exchange that is based on consumption, which is in jeopardy in our literary scenario. Which Cuban authors have the highest demand on the shelves of Cuban book gangsters? First: Leonardo Padura, il divo. People would pay anything for El hombre que amaba a los perros: 15, 25, 35 CUC in Revolico. Yet, this numbers are nothing in contrast with other temptations they...

ADVERTISEMENT

Most Read

Most Commented

No Content Available