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Livraria Lello among the founders of the José Saramago Chair

Livraria Lello entre os fundadores da Cátedra José Saramago
In the month in which the celebrations for the centenary of José Saramago, the only Nobel Prize in Portuguese Language Literature, begin, UTAD, José Saramago Foundation and Livraria Lello signed an Agreement for the constitution of the José Saramago Chair.

The ceremony took place on november 5th, at the Rectory of UTAD and was attended by the Rector of UTAD, Professor Emídio Ferreira dos Santos Gomes, the President of the José Saramago Foundation, Pilar del Rio, and the Administrator of Livraria Lello, Aurora Pedro Pinto.

The José Saramago Chair is the first in the country to have the Nobel Literature writer as its patron. His areas of expertise will be teaching, research and cultural action. The activities will populate various spaces, not only in Portugal, but also abroad, with the aim of developing partnerships with various entities for the benefit of Portugal, the Portuguese language, citizenship in general, books, authors and culture.

Activities such as get-togethers, conferences, seminars, courses, classes, artistic manifestations such as plays, among many others, will be part of this chair. The entire community will be involved, as well as authors related to José Saramago such as those who received the José Saramago Literary Prize, but not limited to them. The connection to cinema, theatre, artistic residencies, master's and doctoral theses and scripts linked with Saramago will also be part of the program.

José Saramago had a strong connection to the region of Trás-os-Montes and Alto Douro, and therefore the launch of this chair at UTAD could not make more sense. The journey of the “traveler”, as Saramago calls himself in the book Viagem a Portugal (1981) begins in Miranda do Douro, extends to the entire Northeast of Trás-os-Montes and extends to the entire northern territory. “Crossing the Serra do Marão, from Vila Real to Amarante, should be another civic imposition like paying taxes or registering children”, wrote the author.

In addition to UTAD and the José Saramago Foundation, this Chair is joined by Livraria Lello, as the founding entity. This project continues the prominence that Livraria Lello has given to the author, dedicating to him, since June this year, a thematic room inside, created also in partnership with the José Saramago Foundation.