Portuguese & Lusophone-World Lecture Series
A Conversation with Portuguese-American Writer Frank X. Gaspar
From One World to Another: The Trace of a Portuguese-American Writer
THURSDAY, JUNE 30
In-Person and on Zoom
Advanced registration required.
6:30 - 7:00pm - Book Signing & Greeting with Frank X. Gaspar
7:00 - 8:00pm - Lecture
Acclaimed Poet and Novelist, Frank X. Gaspar, will speak about the challenges and satisfactions of writing about the Portuguese-American experience. Gaspar, whose ancestors came from the Islands of Pico and Sao Miguel, was born and raised in the West End of Provincetown, Massachusetts. Without the resources and guidance to get a college education, Gaspar, a lover of books, knew he wanted to be a writer from his early years.
So, after graduating from Provincetown High School, he moved to New York City. “I was so benighted,” said Gaspar, “that I thought that was how one did it. Just go to New York and write.” There was much in store for him, but in the long and winding run he did find his way to a university education. Following the dictum of many writers before him, he wrote from what he knew - and what he knew intimately was life deeply ingrained by the Portuguese experience, living as the descendant of whalers and fishermen, and coming of age in a section of New England once called the Tenth Island, a deeply ethnic Portuguese and Azorean area of Provincetown that still celebrates its heritage to this day.
Gaspar’s novels and collections of poetry have been praised for their depiction of a vital and passing part of Americana, but one of th author's focuses is the literary heritage of Portuguese communities and the readership of Portuguese-American literature.
In this hour-long talk, the author will speak to these issues from his personal experience and share pieces of his work. Through this he will touch upon his path through the literary world, and the importance of his growing up in the ever-changing social environment of Provincetown, once a Yankee fishing town, then a haven and thriving center of the fishing industry, a haven for tourists, and importantly, one of the longest- lived art colonies in the country. “It was a perfect situation as the cultures rubbed against one another, but it was also a perfect storm that one had to navigate to find a foothold in a changing world.”
ABOUT THE SPEAKER
Frank X. Gaspar is the author of five collections of poetry and three novels. Among his many awards are multiple inclusions in Best American Poetry, four Pushcart Prizes, a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Literature, and a California Arts Council Fellowship in poetry. His debut novel, Leaving Pico, was a Barnes and Noble Discovery Prize winner, a recipient of the California Book Award for First Fiction, and a New York Times Noteworthy Book (paperback version). His second novel, Stealing Fatima, was a MassBook of the Year in Fiction (Massachusetts Foundation for the Book). His work has appeared widely in serial publications, including The Nation, The New Yorker, The Harvard Review, The American Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, The Kenyon Review, and others. His latest book, a fusion of genres, is The Poems of Renata Ferreira.
Learn more about Frank Gaspar - http://frankgaspar.com/