The ILC also joins the commemoration of the tercentenary 1714-2014. The tercentenary will be celebrated, mostly, at two different times of the year: Sant Jordi and, after the summer, in the Setmana del Llibre en Català (Week of the Book in Catalan). The critics and professors Sam D. Abrams and Lluís Busquets are preparing an anthology of the 300 years of Catalan literature that are being commemorated.
For further information visit the Tricentenari website
Sant Jordi’s day: books and roses!
Sant Jordi’s Day in Catalonia is a special festival of universal values that is part of the emotional cartography of our identity. The death of the saint, patron of Catalonia, on April 23rd 303 is commemorated. The myth of the unequal battle between the man and the beast (the dragon) has nourished several legends that, with changes and adaptations, appears in the imagination of different European populations through history.
However, William Shakespeare, one of the most prestigious figure of universal literature, died on April 23rd, as well as Josep Pla, a reference in Catalan literature. Coinciding with this event, the UNESCO inaugurated the celebration of the World Book Day in 1996 with the objective of promoting reading. Sant Jordi is the day of literature, authors and readers on the streets. With the streets full of stalls selling books and roses, floods of people buying books, asking their favourite authors to sign them and talking with writers.
Sant Jordi, in Catalonia, is also the Lovers Day, a festival where love joins books and roses. From the antique times, the rose has been present in many poems of all the times and is the universal symbol of love and beauty. Since the 15th century, it is a Catalan tradition to give a red rose “like the blood” to your beloved during Sant Jordi’s Day. Initially was a festivity related to the nobility, but the popularization of giving red roses to the beloved took place on 1914. On 2014 the centenary of the institutionalization of this tradition will be celebrated, although nowadays a rose is also given to children, mothers, grandmothers… It is a citizen festivity par excellence. Its visibility and communicative impact has caught the attention of the international community, and the festivity is now celebrated in places such as Tokyo, New York or London.
The ILC created a special space in www.lletrescatalanes.cat dedicated to Sant Jordi’s Day 2014. This space offered the possibility to share texts and virtual roses to project the festivity to the world, as well as a Doodle dedicated to the festivity of literature and lovers, books and roses. (http://catalanday.cat)
On 2014, Sant Jordi’s Day is framed in the commemoration of the Tricentenari as an opportunity to show Catalan culture to the world, in a participative and festive atmosphere, to look for the complicity of the citizens as well as ambassadors and culture prescriptors.