New book connects Mexico with Colombia
Journalist and writer Juan Camilo Rincón publishes 'Colombia and Mexico. Entre la sangre y la palabra', on the relationship between two literary regions.
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So far and yet so close.
In his new book, the result of a decade of research, Colombian journalist Juan Camilo Rincón recreates a series of historical cultural episodes that show the brotherhood between Mexico and Colombia through names such as Gabriel García Márquez, Octavio Paz, Álvaro Mutis, Juan Rulfo, Porfirio Barba Jacob, Carlos Fuentes, Rodrigo Arenas Betancourt, Elena Poniatowska, Fernando Botero, Guillermo Arriaga, Juan Villoro and Leo Matiz, among others.
"The cultural similarities are numerous. A beautiful example is music: in the north of Mexico, Colombian cumbia is danced as their own, and for our parents, rancheras were their way of expressing the pains of the soul. In the following decades, the Mexican label Culebra opened the way for Colombian groups such as La Derecha and Aterciopelados to become known around the world", explained the journalist in an interview with Criterio, a Colombian newspaper.
Rincón explains that the idea of writing this book came from the memories of his father, a lover of Mexican cinema and music, and from his own passion for writers Juan Rulfo and García Márquez.
To write the book, the author interviewed dozens of people and explored unknown and forgotten archives in public and private collections, such as that of Germán Arciniegas, where he discovered a letter from his friend, writer Octavio Paz, telling him that he had just received a new book by Julio Cortázar called Rayuela, and that he was anxious to read it. On the other hand, Paz confessed that, for him, the most important book written in recent years in Mexico was "Los recuerdos del porvenir" by Elena Garro.
One of the most outstanding interviews is the one he had with the journalist and renowned Mexican writer Elena Poniatowska. She told him about her relationship with García Márquez until the last moment and that, "when he spoke very little, he would easily come to eat at my house because his son lived two houses away; (it was) a very large home with two doors".
Today, this close literary relationship between Colombia and Mexico is still very present, according to Rincón. He cites as an example the success in Mexico of the novel El asedio animal by Colombian writer Vanessa Londoño, or the work of Mexican Emiliano Monge, "an essential reference in Colombian academia when talking about migration and borders. Our relationship is based on a dialogue that continues to develop, that gives it meaning and shape, and does not end," he concludes in an interview with Criterio.