Colm Tóibín pays tribute to George Orwell in the CCCB

On the 8th of July the Irish writer will present “Barcelona, from George Orwell to democracy”, in honour of Orwell Day

George Orwell arrived in Barcelona on the 26th of December, 1936, having fought against the fascists in the Aragon Front. He abandoned the city hastily on the 23rd of June, 1937, following internal conflicts arising from the May Days, sometimes known as the May Events, and his experiences in the city would lead to Homage to Catalonia, a classic in political literature and a key moment in the literary and personal evolution of the English author.

Many years later, in 1975, at just twenty years old, Irish writer Colm Tóibín landed in Barcelona fascinated by the city described by Orwell. He remained for three years, immersed in the political and cultural turmoil of the final stages of the Franco regime and the initial steps of the transition period, an experience which would lead to the publication of Homage to Barcelona in 1990.

On the 8th of July, in commemoration of Orwell Day 2014, Tóibín will present a conference entitled Barcelona, from George Orwell to democracy, in which he will explore the life and work of the author of such classics as 1984 and Animal Farm and will speak about the evolution of Barcelona from the beginning of the Civil War up to what was his city of residence 40 years later, in the 1970s.

The conference will begin at 7.30 pm in the CCCB and Tóibín will be accompanied by fellow writer and professor of literature, Miquel Berga. Tickets cost 3 euros and seating is limited.

Also on the 8th of July, and free of charge, Nick Lloyd, Manu Valentín and Alan Warren are offering literary tours of Orwell’s Barcelona in Catalan, Spanish and English, respectively. Reservations may be made here.

Publication date: Tuesday, 01 July 2014
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