Bernardo Atxaga

Bernardo Atxaga
Atxaga1

Bernardo Atxaga (1951), the pseudonym of José Irazu Garmendia, is a poet and novelist who writes both in Basque and in Spanish. Born in Asteasu (Guipuzcoa), he published his first collection of poems Ziutateak (The Towns) in 1976. This was followed two years later by Etopía for which he was awarded the Critics' Prize. Over the last twenty years he has published over twenty books for children and young people and has written radio plays and pieces for theatre. Atxaga's work is bound up with Basque music and he has penned a number of songs in Basque. He owes his literary renown primarily to his novels which have had great success nationally and been translated into several languages. The first of them Bi anai (Two Brothers) was awarded the Critics' Prize in 1985 as was Obabakoak (People of Obaba) in 1988 which, as well as winning the prize for Basque literature, was declared the best book in Spain that year. A figurehead of Basque writing today, Atxaga has recently published two novels in Spanish, El hombre solo (The Lone Man) and Esos Cielos (These Skies). His work occupies a place between the avant-garde and fantastic realism, and the characters and environment he writes of - the Basque people, their world and struggles - are to the forefront in his writings.






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