sábado, 4 de julio de 2015
Argentine Writer Pablo Katchadjian Faces Trial for Rewriting a Borges Text
Katchadjian is accused of violation of intellectual property for having rewritten the "The Aleph" as part of a literary experiment. In 2009 he published a book called "El Aleph engordado" (The Fattened Aleph) in the small and independent publishing IAP.
Although he explained in the postscript that it was merely an experiment and not a case of plagiarism, in 2011 the heir to the copyright of Borges, Maria Kodama, filed a criminal complaint against Katchadjian, which was dismissed at two instances. However, on 18 June 2015 the Court of Cassation accepted the case. Katchadjian suffered a seizure of his properties and now faces a sentence of one to six years in prison.
A group created to support Katchadjian quickly joined thousands of supporters, many of them of the Armenian community in Argentina. On friday July 3 a large amount of writers and activists gathered at the National Library in Buenos Aires to show their support for Katchadjian. "'El Aleph engordado' is not plagiarism because plagiarism does not show its sources," explained the author in his speech.
PEN International, an organization that promotes literature and freedom of expression said that "the criminal prosecution of Argentine novelist, poet and university lecturer Pablo Katchadjian is a disproportionate reaction to a literary experiment."
"Beyond Katchadjian’s artfulness or potential opportunism few would doubt the literary intention behind his attempt to play with Borges. He did not just go after any canonised writer, he went for the writer of Pierre Menard and engaged him in Borgesian terms, adding 5,600 words to the original 4,000. This was not a bank robbery or a plagiarised thesis but a literary experiment by an author renowned for his performative approach to literature," said writer and cultural critic Fernando Sdrigotti in an opinion column on The Guardian.