vanishement. Chilean writer and diplomat Jorge Edwards has died
Chilean writer Jorge Edwards, winner of the 1999 Cervantes Prize and bestselling author of Persona Non Grata in which he recounts his disillusionment with the Cuban Revolution, died Friday in Madrid at the age of 91, his son announced.France Press agency.
He leaves us an exceptional novelist, a fearless essayist, and a journalist aware of all the layers of news. “His vitality and moral stature will be missed,” the Cervantes Institute wrote on Twitter.
Writer and diplomat
Born in Santiago in 1931, George Edwards studied at the Faculty of Law of the University of Chile and did postgraduate studies at Princeton University in the United States.
He served Chilean diplomacy from 1957 to 1973 until the military coup of Augusto Pinochet (1973-1990), serving in Paris, Lima and on a mission that particularly distinguishes him: Havana.
Mr. Edwards spent three months in the Cuban capital in 1971 to open the Chilean embassy on behalf of the socialist government of Salvador Allende (1970-73), one of the first to restore diplomatic relations with the Fidel Castro regime.
The dual role of diplomat and writer allows him to communicate with writers on the island who tell him a different view from the official account.
Jorge Edwards was never officially expelled, but he left Cuba earlier than planned in Paris, where he met his friend Pablo Neruda, who was then ambassador to France.
Since this time in Cuba, he has learned to “distinguish between outward appearances and gestures, formal speeches, and facts,” he admitted in 2018.
Cervantes Prize Winner
In 1973 he moved to Barcelona where he came into contact with other Latin American writers who lived there, such as the Colombian Gabriel García Márquez and the Peruvian Mario Vargas Llosa.
Appointed ambassador to UNESCO in Paris in 1994, five years later he was awarded the Cervantes Prize. He will hold his last post as a diplomat at the Chilean Embassy in France from 2010 to 2014 in Paris, during the first term of conservative Chilean President Sebastian Piñera.
Jorge Edwards has written numerous novels, short stories, essays and biographical works. He has also collaborated with European and Latin American media such as the daily newspaper Le Monde in France, El Pais in Spain, Il Corriere della Sera in Italy, the Argentine newspapers La Nacion and Clarin, as well as the Mexican magazine Letras Libres.