Inside Fernando Pessoa’s labyrinth
Presenting Fernando Pessoa’s multi-faceted work is not easy. Literary critics and academics still discover new aspects of the complex work he created, and his mind is still an enigma… This writer could be considered a real challenge, but our Portuguese Language School has Dora Guedes, our teacher of Portuguese Culture and History, so we’re fine!
Yesterday evening, at our event about Pessoa, she owned the audience. She made it easy for everyone to understand his elaborate and intricate writing. She captured the people, she made them interested in Pessoa’s complex personality. Her words were magnetic, people were mesmerised. She turned a university lecture into a colourful, intriguing speech. People were thirsty for knowledge, and they enriched the debate with questions, and Dora was pleased to respond to each one.
Our teacher of Portuguese Language and Culture, Lucília, interspersed short readings from Pessoa’s poems throughout the lecture. With dramatic emphasis, she read one passage per each “heterónimos” (the word for Pessoas’s personas): RicardoReis, Álvaro de Campos and Alberto Caeiro. She ended with Livro do Desassossego by Bernardo Soares, who is not a “heterónimo” but a “semi-heterónimo”.
This was the introduction for the video which was screened in the second part of the event. This emotional video taught us more about Pessoa’s life, his creative process and especially the creative process behind the Livro do Desassossego by Bernardo Soares.
After this involving and moving evening one thought came to our minds…. Maybe Pessoa is still here, among us, walking Lisbon streets as he used to do when he was alive. But, as when he was alive, we cannot see him, and he walks unnoticed.
The Portuguese writer who has today become a global icon
Fernando Pessoa was not just a Portuguese modern poet but also a philosopher, writer, literary critic, translator and publisher.
He is considered by the literary world as unique. Why?
He created new poetic complete personalities, who became the authors of the poems. These identities are called “heterónimos”. Pessoa created these fictional characters giving them biographies, way of being, philosophies, appearances, writing styles and even signatures. Creation and imagination was for Pessoa more important than real life.
Through the “heterónimos”, Pessoa started to develop a deep analysis of the relationship between truth, existence and identity.
This fragmentate personality gives the birth to plural people. Antonio Tabucchi called his book “A trunk full of people. Written on Fernando Pessoa”. The main three “heterónimos” are Ricardo Reis, Álvaro de Campos and Alberto Caeiro. The fourth is considered as a “semi-heterónimo” and he has the name of Bernardo Soares, the author of “Livro do Desassossego”. Pessoa writes about him:
“uma simples mutilação da minha personalidade. Sou eu menos o raciocínio e afetividade.”
On the 7th of March 2018, our language school in Lisbon is pleased to invite you to an event on this great author. Our teacher of Portuguese Culture and History, Dora, will host a great evening dedicated to this Portuguese icon.
The program for the evening will be:
- Presentation of Fernando Pessoa and readings of some poems
- Video projection
The video will be about the figure of Fernando Pessoa in the modern age. It will show us other aspects of this impressive personality. We will discover how Pessoa became the subject of a merchandising phenomenon, how he managed his personal life, how important writing was for him and so much more.
Spend a special evening with us and you will not regret it. We will wait for you on Wednesday 7th of March 2018 at 7pm at the Português et cetera Language School, on the 4th floor.