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Jose Saramago

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June 21, 2010 | By Thomas McGonigle, Special to the Los Angeles Times
Jose Saramago, the Portuguese novelist who died this past Friday at the age of 87, had a lot going for him and a lot going against him. In 1998, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature and called "the most gifted novelist alive in the world today" by critic Harold Bloom. He was also a long-time member of the Portuguese Communist Party. But more than anything, he should be remembered for those startling novels: "Baltasar and Blimunda," "Manual of Painting and Calligraphy," "The Stone Raft," "The Gospel According to Jesus Christ," "The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis."
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ENTERTAINMENT
April 24, 2011 | By Susan Salter Reynolds
Small Memories A Memoir José Saramago, translated from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: 159 pp., $22 "Sometimes I wonder if certain memories are really mine or if they're just someone else's memories of episodes in which I was merely an unwitting actor and which I found out about later when they were told to me by others. " Who hasn't felt this way? Wondered whether a memory came from a photograph or a story or an actual event? José Saramago, driven by longing for the village in which he was born but also for a self he fears he has lost, goes painstakingly back over his early memories.
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NEWS
October 9, 1998 | RICHARD BOUDREAUX, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Portuguese fabulist Jose Saramago, whose entrancing tales and playful skepticism about history and reality make him one of Europe's most original contemporary writers, was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature Thursday. The 75-year-old author rose from obscurity late in life to become the grand old man of Portuguese letters. Saramago is the first author writing in Portuguese, the language of 140 million people in countries around the world once under Lisbon's dominion, to win the prize.
ENTERTAINMENT
September 5, 2010 | By Jane Ciabattari, Special to the Los Angeles Times
The Elephant's Journey A Novel José Saramago Translated from the Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa Houghton Mifflin Harcourt: 208 pp., $24 Once upon a time — a time of civil war and spectacle, when Protestant fervor swept Europe and the Inquisition intimidated the faithful — an Indian elephant traveled on foot from Lisbon to Vienna. Four and a half centuries later, this arduous and unlikely trek inspired Portuguese Nobel laureate José Saramago to write his most optimistic, playful, humorous and magical book, a grace note written near the end of his life.
BOOKS
November 10, 2002 | Benjamin Kunkel, Benjamin Kunkel is an occasional contributor to Book Review.
It's often been suggested how alike God and the novelist are, especially by people who believe in the novel and don't believe in God. The Portuguese novelist Jose Saramago particularly invites the comparison. It's not only that Saramago exhibits as a creator such a miraculous combination of power and ease, that his air of enormous wisdom coexists with a marked tetchiness or that he follows the activities of his people with such pained concern.
BOOKS
December 13, 1987 | Richard Eder
Jose Saramago is one of Portugal's most eminent writers, and his elaborate novel "Baltasar and Blimunda" has an authentically national theme. It is about the melancholy of magnificence. A national stereotype can be rejected but it can't be ignored, particularly when it is as odd as Portugal's. Sadness is a quality that others have claimed for the Portuguese, but mostly the Portuguese claim it for themselves. More than Spain, their country was the exemplar of an empire impoverished by wealth.
BOOKS
December 12, 1999 | PETER GREEN, Peter Green is the former fiction critic of the London Daily Telegraph
Before he won the Nobel Prize last year, few outside Portugal had heard of Jose Saramago. This wasn't the fault of Harcourt Brace in the United States or of Harvill and Carcanet in England, which have published translations of half a dozen of his major novels (all now available in paperback). To read these is to instantly apprehend two cardinal facts about their author.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 3, 2008
BEFORE "Blindness" (the film) and before Jose Saramago's book, there was John Wyndham and his "Day of the Triffids." Originally published in 1951, it is well known to readers of science fiction, and anticipates Saramago's idea by decades. Having only read Reed Johnson's article and the plot synopsis of the novel, I can't really compare, but it sure sounds similar. The London Times said of ["...Triffids"] in 1951: " . . . a brain-chilling tale of tomorrow. . . . all the reality of a vividly realized nightmare."
ENTERTAINMENT
November 9, 2008 | Reynolds is a Times staff writer.
Art is the best weapon against death. Bach knew it, Michelangelo knew it, James Frey knows it (which is not to say that he isn't a cheater, or that he actually belongs in such illustrious company -- he's been included for his obvious joe-schmoe-ness), and Jose Saramago knows it. "Death With Interruptions" is his duomo, his Sistine Chapel, his allegoryparableliteraryphilosophysciencefictionnovelpaintingmusical composition. In other words, one writer's petition against mortality.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 19, 2010 | Bloomberg News
Jose Saramago, winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in literature for early novels that explored historical themes from unconventional angles and later works in which inexplicable events threaten society's underpinnings, has died. He was 87. The writer died Friday at his home in Lanzarote, one of Spain's Canary Islands, of multiple organ failure after a long illness, the Jose Saramago Foundation said. Saramago, the only Portuguese winner of the literary prize, was 60 before he wrote most of the novels for which he was honored, having worked as a car mechanic, civil servant, production manager in a publishing company and newspaper editor before becoming a full-time writer.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 19, 2010 | Bloomberg News
Jose Saramago, winner of the 1998 Nobel Prize in literature for early novels that explored historical themes from unconventional angles and later works in which inexplicable events threaten society's underpinnings, has died. He was 87. The writer died Friday at his home in Lanzarote, one of Spain's Canary Islands, of multiple organ failure after a long illness, the Jose Saramago Foundation said. Saramago, the only Portuguese winner of the literary prize, was 60 before he wrote most of the novels for which he was honored, having worked as a car mechanic, civil servant, production manager in a publishing company and newspaper editor before becoming a full-time writer.
ENTERTAINMENT
November 9, 2008 | Reynolds is a Times staff writer.
Art is the best weapon against death. Bach knew it, Michelangelo knew it, James Frey knows it (which is not to say that he isn't a cheater, or that he actually belongs in such illustrious company -- he's been included for his obvious joe-schmoe-ness), and Jose Saramago knows it. "Death With Interruptions" is his duomo, his Sistine Chapel, his allegoryparableliteraryphilosophysciencefictionnovelpaintingmusical composition. In other words, one writer's petition against mortality.
ENTERTAINMENT
February 3, 2008
BEFORE "Blindness" (the film) and before Jose Saramago's book, there was John Wyndham and his "Day of the Triffids." Originally published in 1951, it is well known to readers of science fiction, and anticipates Saramago's idea by decades. Having only read Reed Johnson's article and the plot synopsis of the novel, I can't really compare, but it sure sounds similar. The London Times said of ["...Triffids"] in 1951: " . . . a brain-chilling tale of tomorrow. . . . all the reality of a vividly realized nightmare."
BOOKS
April 9, 2006 | Art Winslow, Art Winslow, a former executive editor and literary editor of the Nation, writes frequently about books and culture.
IN J.M. Coetzee's political allegory "Waiting for the Barbarians," an unnamed empire, curiously agitated over its frontier, assumes emergency powers, taking steps that lead to torture, a military campaign and accusations of treason against one of its own magistrates. Questioned about his brutal methods, an officer dispatched by the capital explains to the magistrate, "I am probing for the truth, in which I have to exert pressure to find it ...
ENTERTAINMENT
October 4, 2004 | Merle Rubin, Special to The Times
The Double A Novel Jose Saramago Translated from Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa Harcourt: 326 pp., $25 * The double -- no, not someone who stands in for the film star but a duplicate, a second self, a shadowy twin -- was a specter that haunted many 19th century writers.
BOOKS
November 10, 2002 | Benjamin Kunkel, Benjamin Kunkel is an occasional contributor to Book Review.
It's often been suggested how alike God and the novelist are, especially by people who believe in the novel and don't believe in God. The Portuguese novelist Jose Saramago particularly invites the comparison. It's not only that Saramago exhibits as a creator such a miraculous combination of power and ease, that his air of enormous wisdom coexists with a marked tetchiness or that he follows the activities of his people with such pained concern.
ENTERTAINMENT
October 4, 2004 | Merle Rubin, Special to The Times
The Double A Novel Jose Saramago Translated from Portuguese by Margaret Jull Costa Harcourt: 326 pp., $25 * The double -- no, not someone who stands in for the film star but a duplicate, a second self, a shadowy twin -- was a specter that haunted many 19th century writers.
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