10, Nov 2012

Noted expat Goan surrealist artist, poet and philanthropist Dom Martin has announced an annual Verodiano Prize for Literature. This announcement came at recently held function at Goa Chitra- ‘the Vincent Xavier Verodiano 2012 Award ceremony’ which was conferred on Aternative Publishers Goa, 1556; inclusive of a cash prize of Rs 50,000.

The Verodiano Prize for Literature, is initiated to commemorate Dom Martin’s father’s birth centennial celebration. At the function which witnessed a packed audience, Frederick Noronha founder of Goa 1556 spoke on publishing in India

WRITTEN WORD Publisher Frederick Norohna (centre)

Across India, unlike in the West, book publishing is booming today. There are 90,000 books published each year, and about 19,000 publishers. India has the sixth-largest publishing industry in the world.

Noronha argued while this was true of “metropolitan India” and the big cities, those areas which were on the ‘periphery’ — either in a geographical sense, or because their culture, history and issues are not adequately understood by the so-called ‘mainstream’ — there is a famine for regional and relevant books being produced.

In a critical presentation, chief guest and sociology professor Alito Siqueira argued that publishing can deprive people of a voice too.

Knowledge “artefacts” allow us to imagine our past through it, and want the world to see it as such too. Siqueira was critical of local intellectual institutions for not reflecting the wider diversity of Goa, excluding many, and not even accepting plurality of language.

He called for reflection of the “voices of the other Goa” and said there is ferment going on “out there”. “We are drawing our stories from a very small group of like-minded and like-nurtured stories. Therefore the stories are painfully similar too. The artifacts we produce talk to ourselves about ourselves,” he said, calling all to take things forward.

“Engaging with other communities is always thereupatic,” he says. “If you give the chance to those deprived, new ideas would come from their mind.” Siqueira offered a number of examples of his students, who might not have the best of language skills but had their own amazing stories to tell. “We need walking, talking stories of our villages and towns, as if it is alive today,” said Siqueira.

The guest of honour, author-psychiatrist Dr Belinda Viegas shared her own experiences with Goa 1556 and thanked Pamela and Frederick Noronha for giving novice authors like her a chance to be read.

Aldina Gomes, director of Goa Chitra compered the function.

– See more at: http://www.targetgoa.com/goodstuffdt.php?gfid=4433&&id=6#sthash.dnTx9M6r.dpuf

Leave a Reply