(Image via eventbrite.com)
Volunteer Writer: Emma Bowser
On October 13th and 14th, 2023, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth hosted an international colloquium to honor the 100th birthday of the famous Portuguese writer Natália Correia.
The event was organized by Maria Jose Carvalho of the University of Coimbra as well as Anna Klobucka, Viktor Mendes, Mario Perreira, and Paula C. G. Noversa of UMass Dartmouth.
Faculty, students, and alums from UMass Dartmouth, Rhode Island College, University of Puerto Rico, UMass Lowell, Universidade dos Açores (ENG: University of the Azores), UMass Amherst, and more essential institutions of the academic lusosphere (Portuguese-speaking world) attended.
Natália Correia was born in the Azores but later moved to Portugal and participated in the literary and political movements of the time. She lived through the Estado Novo (the corporatist Portuguese state installed in 1933, ENG: New State) and the Carnation Revolution. Correia was a significant historical figure, and her work continues to impact today’s world.
On the 13th, the colloquium took place within the Marketplace, and on the 14th, it took place in the Charles College of Business and the Claire T. Carney Library’s Grand Reading Room due to technical difficulties.
Paula Noversa was the hostess of the event, beginning the colloquium with a welcome to everyone who attended and ending the second day with some closing remarks on the topics that had been discussed.
Filipa Martins, who wrote O Dever de Deslumbrar: Biografia de Natália Correia (ENG: The Duty to Dazzle: Natíalia Correia’s Biography) was the first speaker and discussed her book and the process of researching and writing it.
The first panel was “Ibericidade: Açorianidade and Self-Identity” (ENG: Iberian-ness: Açorian-ness and Self Identity).
Silvia A. Oliveira of Rhode Island College was the chair and discussant. The panel members were Irene de Amaral of UMass Dartmouth, Miguel Mochila of U of Puerto Rico, and Iva Matos Congumbreiro of BPARPD.
De Amaral’s talk was titled “Welcome to the USA” and focused on immigration.
At the same time, Mochilo spoke about Correia and Iberism, a pan-nationalist ideology that supports the unification of all the Iberian Peninsula territories, including Portugal and Spain. Matos discussed Correia’s contributions to the Azorean identity.
The second panel was about feminism, gender, and sexuality.
The chair and discussant was Anna Klobucka of UMass Dartmouth, and the panel members were Ana Cabete of Escola Básica Sebastião da Gama (ENG: Sebastião da Gam Basic School), Oliveira, and Vivian Leme Furlan of IFSP-Salto.
“As Personagens Femininas em an Ilha de Circe – Subversão/Submissão” (ENG: The Female Characters in The Island of Circe – Subversion/Submission) was Cabete’s talk, which had a strong focus on Greek mythology in regards to Correia’s writings, especially on the topic of subversion and submission.
Oliveira spoke about the limits of the neo-realistic program(s) in Portugal, and Furlan talked about Correia’s political/literary projects created to promote human rights and liberties in Portugal.
At the end of the first day of the colloquium, Projeto Natália (ENG: Project Natália) was shown in the CVPA Auditorium, featuring music performed by Correia.
On the second day, the panel on politics and performance was hosted by the chair and discussant, Diana Gomes Simões of UMass Lowell. The panel members were Armando Nascimento Rosa of ESTC/PIL-CIAC, Pedro Cordeiro Ponte of Universidade dos Açores (ENG: University of the Azores), and Jessica Beasley of the University of Massachusetts.
Simões talked about Correia’s promotion of the theater and science fiction; afterward, Ponte spoke on Correia’s ideologies. Beasley ended the panel by presenting in English, the only person to do so, and discussed Correia’s relationship with her poetry and politics.
After the final panel, Martins moderated a roundtable, and the two speakers were Helena Roseta and Alamo Oliveira. The roundtable was on a specific piece by Correia entitled O Botequim (ENG: The Bar).
The final part of the event was a book signing for Martin’s book, O Dever de Deslumbrar: Biografia de Natália Correia (ENG: The Duty to Dazzle: Natíalia Correia’s Biography).
This was a significant event because not only was it one of the few events that the Center for Portuguese Studies & Culture was able to host with the College of Arts & Sciences Portuguese department, but it was also an opportunity for Portuguese students to interact with their peers and practice networking in international academia.
Furthermore, it allowed the Center for Portuguese Studies & Culture and the College of Arts & Sciences to promote the Portuguese Department’s robust degree programs and opportunities for students interested in majoring or minoring in Portuguese at the undergraduate or graduate level.
The Center for Portuguese Studies & Cultures hopes to continue hosting events like the colloquium and increase student awareness of the degree programs and the university’s resources.