Sneha Girap (Editor)

José Eduardo Agualusa

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Name  Jose Agualusa

Role  Journalist
Jose Eduardo Agualusa
Books  The Book of Chameleons, My Father\'s Wives, Creole, Rainy Season, A General Theory of Oblivion
Similar People  Mia Couto, Pepetela, Ondjaki, Jose Eduardo dos Santos, Lula Buarque de Hollan

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José Eduardo Agualusa Alves da Cunha (born 1960 in Huambo, Angola—then called Nova Lisboa, Overseas Province of Angola) is an Angolan journalist and writer. He studied agronomy and silviculture in Lisbon, Portugal. He currently spends most of his time in Portugal, Angola and Brazil, working as a writer and journalist. His books have been translated into twenty-five languages. He writes monthly for the Portuguese magazine LER and weekly for the Brazilian newspaper O Globo and the Angolan portal Rede Angola. He hosts the radio program A Hora das Cigarras, about African music and poetry, on the channel RDP África. In 2006, he launched, with Conceição Lopes and Fatima Otero, the Brazilian publisher Língua Geral, dedicated exclusively to Portuguese-language authors.


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Translated Works

These novels were all translated into English by Daniel Hahn:

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Creole (Nação Crioula—novel, 2002): Tells the story of a secret love between the fictional Portuguese adventurer Carlos Fradique Mendes (a creation of the 19th century Portuguese novelist Eça de Queiroz) and Ana Olímpia de Caminha, a former slave who became one of the wealthiest persons in Angola.

José Eduardo Agualusa Jos Eduardo Agualusa Wikipedia

The Book of Chameleons (O Vendedor de Passados—novel, 2004): An excerpt of The Book of Chameleons appeared in Gods and Soldiers: The Penguin Anthology of Contemporary African Writing in 2009.

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My Father's Wives (As Mulheres de Meu Pai—novel, 2008)

José Eduardo Agualusa Jos Eduardo Agualusa And Other Stories Publishing

Rainy Season (Estação das Chuvas—novel, 2009): A biographical novel about Lidia do Carmo Ferreira, the Angolan poet and historian who disappeared mysteriously in Luanda in 1992.

José Eduardo Agualusa Biografia agualusa

A General Theory of Oblivion (Teoria Geral do Esquecimento—novel, 2015): Tells the history of Angola from the perspective of a woman named Ludo who barricades herself in her Luandan apartment for three decades—beginning the day before the country's independence.


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Agualusa benefited from three literary grants: the first awarded by the Portuguese Centro Nacional de Cultura in 1997 to write Nação Crioula (Creole); the second given in the year 2000 by the Portuguese Fundação Oriente allowing him to visit Goa, India, for three months which resulted in Um estranho em Goa; the third, in 2001, was prestiged by the German Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst. Thanks to that grant, he lived one year in Berlin, where he wrote O Ano em que Zumbi Tomou o Rio. In 2009, he was invited by the Dutch Residency for Writers in Amsterdam, where he wrote Barroco Tropical.

Nação Crioula (1997) was awarded the RTP Great Literary Prize. The Book of Chameleons (2006) won the Independent Foreign Fiction Prize in 2007. He is the first African writer to win the award since its inception in 1990.

Criticism and Interpretation

Agualusa's work was described by Ana Mafalda Leite as sometimes providing "a link between history and fiction, between the account of past events and the description of what might have been possible." The critic continues, "The author capture the moment in which history becomes literature, to illustrate how literary imagination takes precedence over the historical by means of the fantastic and an oneiric vision of life." Her assessment of the author's skills is as follows: "Agualusa gives evidence not just of solid historical research but also of the literary talent which brings these characters to life."


José Eduardo Agualusa Wikipedia

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