And two paragraphs farther on, he repeats the same idea when he says that he determined "to set down and transcribe here all their histories, according to the way they have them written.". Stavans is the author of "Popol Vuh: A Retelling," a prose rendition of the heroic epic poem about the creation of the world as told by the K'iche' Maya people of Guatemala. The Author of the Popol Vuh THE manuscript of Chichicastenango is an anonymous document. Although scholars acknowledge its significance and other versions of the book have been published, it's not commonly known. The same is true of Larios’s splendid illustrations, which would be worth the purchase price on their own…. Approaching the Popol Vuh with a fresh eye and the necessary erudition, Ilan Stavans, the distinguished scholar of Hispanic culture, nimbly conveys the content and the sense of the original, retaining its magic and fascination, while rendering it more accessible to a wider readership. And similarly, Xibalba is a place of death and fear that is connected to the living world through caves and cenotes. Popol Vuh: A Retelling is a one-of-a-kind prose rendition of this sacred text that is as seminal as the Bible and the Qur’an, the Ramayana and the Odyssey. He has been president of PEN International and Mexico's ambassador to UNESCO. The well-known philologist Rudolf Schuller believes that there is basis for attributing the authorship of the Popol Vuh to Diego Reynoso; but he interprets the citations of Ximénez and of the Título de los Señores de Totonicapán differently, and, in my judgment, inaccurately. Only my Guatemalan abuelita could cast such storytelling spells over me. "Sunset has fallen on the K'iche' people. Speaking of the accounts composed by the Indians after the Conquest, the Dominican chronicler who wrote the Isagoge Histórica Apologética says: "The Preaching Father Francisco Ximénez; translated from the Quiché language into Spanish a very old manuscript, without giving the name of the author, and without [giving] the year in which it was written, and it is only known by the manuscript itself that it was written in the village of Santa Cruz of the Quiché, shortly after the conquest of this Kingdom.". Stavans is the author of " Popol Vuh: A Retelling," a prose rendition of the heroic epic poem about the creation of the world as told by the K'iche' Maya people of Guatemala. in January, prepared his 327 notebooks for publication in a trilogy…. Stavans’s work, translated into twenty languages, has been adapted to the stage and screen. In short, Stavans is an old-fashioned intellectual, a brilliant interpreter of his triple heritage—Jewish, Mexican, and American.”, “…in the void created by the death of his compatriot Octavio Paz, Ilan Stavans has emerged as Latin America’s liveliest and boldest critic and most innovative cultural enthusiast.”, “Ilan Stavans has done as much as anyone alive to bridge the hemisphere’s linguistic gaps.”, “Ilan Stavans is a maverick intellectual whose canonical work has already produced a whole array of marvels... His incisive essays are redefining Jewish literature.”, “Ilan Stavans is the rarest of North American writers—he sees the Americas whole. Many Latinos can trace their cultural roots to an epic poem that was passed down in Central America for over a millennium — but this rich, important history has been largely buried, Mexican scholar Ilan Stavans says. Classic literature fans might compare the Mayan underworld (known as Xibalba) with Dante's 14th century Italian epic "The Divine Comedy," which also gives readers an underground tour of hell. Paperback • ISBN: 9781632060754Publication date: October 6, 2015, And We Came Outside and Saw the Stars Again: Writers from Around the World on the COVID-19 Pandemic, How Yiddish Changed America and How America Changed Yiddish, The Diaries of Emilio Renzi: Formative Years, Don Quixote of La Mancha: 400th Anniversary Edition. Stavans' retelling of the Popol Vuh is divided into four parts. In the TV show, the Upside Down world is an alternate dimension full of death and monsters that is connected to the human world through a series of portals. Together, Stavans and Larios invite us all to dance as the children we once were and will become. Ximénez first recorded the work. Although educated by the Spanish priests, Reynoso never renounced his name and status as that of a noble Quiché Indian and the fact that he never joined any of the Spanish religious orders gives greater validity to his accounts of the ancient times of his nation. It is well to clarify here these points about the person of Diego. He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, Chile’s Presidential Medal, the International Latino Book Award, and the Jewish Book Award. Splendidly crafted and interspliced with essays and stories, this beguiling work is to a diary as Piglia is to “Emilio Renzi”: a lifelong alter ego, a highly self-conscious shadow volume that brings to bear all of Piglia’s prowess as it illuminates his process of critical reading and the inevitable tensions between art and life.”, —The New York Times Book Review, Editors' Choice, Paperback • ISBN: 9781632061621Publication date: Nov 14, 2017. Larios’s dexterous admixture of cool washes and vibrant color palettes along with a K’iche’-inspired line-work aesthetic, further unzip our minds to a shared ancestral imaginary. In this rich, eye-opening, and uplifting anthology, dozens of esteemed writers, poets, artists, and translators from more than thirty countries send literary dispatches from life during the pandemic. “Salvadoran illustrator Larios provides lush images to accompany stories of the Earth and the underworld, Xibalba, and the animals and gods that inhabit them…. In the foreword to his principal work, the Dominican chronicler says that he translated the histories of the Indians into the Spanish language from the Quiché tongue in which he found them written "from the time of the Conquest, when (as they say there) they changed their way of writing their histories into our way of writing." He has championed an appreciation of indigenous cultures as well as environmental awareness worldwide. Each Restless Classic is beautifully designed with original artwork, a new introduction for the trade audience, and an online video teaching series led by passionate experts. Award-winning scholar of Latin American literature Ilan Stavans brings a fresh creative energy to the Popol Vuh, giving a new generation of readers the opportunity to connect with this timeless story and with the plight of the indigenous people of the Americas. Hardcover: $22ISBN: 9781632062406eBook ISBN: 9781632062413Publication date: Nov 10, 20206” x 6” • 208 pagesFiction: Myth / Classics / Latin American / RetellingTerritory: World. Every culture has an origin story. Writing about the sometimes reluctant reconquista of North America by Spanish-speaking cultures or the development of his own identity, he deals with both the life of the mind and the life of the streets.”, “Lively and intelligent, eclectic, sharp-tongued.”, “I think Stavans has one of the best grips around on what makes Spanish America tick.”, “Ilan Stavans is a disciple of Kafka and Borges. "The preservation of the Popol Vuh is a story about indigenous oppression, survival and endurance. Free of the formal constraints of the K’iche’ original, Stavans’s delivers a masterful retelling that invites us into chimeric dreams: from the mischievous first peoples and the quests of those grown from seeds, to hybrid creatures and demi-god twins with battles lost and won. "My mother told them to me, she got them from her own mother, and so on," the book says. Her work has been exhibited in London, Europe and abroad and has appeared in various international books and magazines. Follow NBC Latino on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. His books include On Borrowed Words, Spanglish, Dictionary Days, The Disappearance, and A Critic’s Journey. Arturo Conde is an editor and a bilingual freelance journalist. ", —Ariel Dorfman, author of Death and the Maiden, "Popol Vuh is one of the seminal foundational 'texts' of the Americas before it became 'America'—and one so few of us really know much about. In a mesmerizing, illuminating new translation, Ilan Stavans brings to contemporary readers this lyrical epic, with its messages from a lost civilization obsessed, as ours should be, with the inevitable cycles of catastrophe and change.