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Edurne Portela

Writer and historian

With a degree in History from the Public University of Navarre, she has worked teaching literature and researching in the United States where, until 2015, she was a lecturer in Literature at the Lehigh University, Pennsylvania. In all her work, in both essays and literary production, she writes about violence, memory, and uprooting. In 2006, she published the essay El eco de los disparos: Cultura y memoria de la violencia (The Echo of Shots: Culture and Memory of Violence, Galaxia Gutenberg) in which she inquires into the representation of violence in culture with regard to conflict in the Basque Country. She made her debut as a novelist in 2017 with Mejor la ausencia (Better the Absence, Galaxia Gutenberg), which was awarded the 2018 Madrid Booksellers’ Guild Prize. This was followed by Formas de estar lejos (Ways to Be Away, Galaxia Gutenberg, 2019), and Los ojos cerrados (Closed Eyes, Galaxia Gutenberg, 2021), which received the 2022 Basque Prize for Literature. She has recently published Maddi y las fronteras (Maddi and the Borders, Galaxia Gutenberg, 2023), with which she continues her practice of giving fictional accounts, through her characters, of the lives of real people. Together with José Ovejero, Portela has also made the documentary Vida y ficción (2017) and she works on a regular basis with such media outlets as the newspaper El País, the digital daily La Marea, and Spanish National Radio.

Update: 11 July 2023


Has participated in

Mathias Énard and Edurne Portela

A Continent Made of Words