Cover of “Fraternidad de las Espuelas” by Lasana M. Sekou.
PHILIPSBURG–Lasana Sekou’s first Spanish-language book of St. Maarten short stories Fraternidad de las Espuelas has been published in Cuba by Editorial Arte y Literatura. The book was launched at the 28th International Book Fair of Havana, Cuba, February 7-19.
Sekou’s stories allow readers to explore a Caribbean universe that is filled with “tension and intensity,” said Gertrudis “Tula” Ortiz during her review of the title at the book launch in Sala Jose Portuondo on Thursday, February 14.
The stories, from the original English Brotherhood of the Spurs published by House of Nehesi Publisher (HNP) in 1997 and 2007 were translated by independent scholar and Caribbean literary historian Emilio Jorge Rodriguez.
Rodriguez worked closely with Arte Y Literatura’s book editor Adriana Marcelo Costa to realize “a faithful translation of the spirit of the book” from “Brotherhood to Fraternidad,” said Ortiz.
Ortiz, a professor of Caribbean cultural studies at University of the Arts in Havana, critiqued Fraternidad within a wide Caribbean context.
“The four stories … are written with a singular voice, with its own registries,” Ortiz said. “There are significant intertextual occurrences of Western culture, and quotes of classics of Greek and other cultures.”
Ortiz, who is also a researcher in Latin American studies, said, “He [Sekou – Ed.] like George Lamming, Derek Walcott, Aida Cartagena and even our own writer, Virgilio Piñera, and others, appropriates these codes using the registries, the language of the coloniser, to construct a universe, a route that leads to a new aesthetic experience, which must be read with a differentiating look and to convince us that, as Benítez Rojo said in his seminal essay The Repeating Island, the Caribbean is an engine of flow and interruption at the same time, a technological-poetic engine or a meta-engine of diversity.”
Literary critic Fabian Badejo broke the news here last Sunday in his PJD-2 Radio magazine Culture Time.
“The translation of Brotherhood of the Spurs extends St. Maarten’s literature and culture and books by Lasana into the Spanish-speaking Caribbean and Latin America,” said Badejo. “This exciting news also comes within the 40th anniversary year of Lasana Sekou as a St. Maarten author of over 20 books.”
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/85445-st-maarten-book-of-short-stories-published-in-cuba