por Manny López
(para el blog Gaspar, El Lugareño)
November is a month I always long for in Miami. It is the month of the Miami Book Fair; one of my favorite events. The whole city comes alive with all the authors who come from out of town, and those who live here. Last year I had my Semana de Literatura to much success and this year I am embarking on a new adventure with Jornada Alternativa de Literatura sponsored by El Dorado Furniture. Since, literature is this month’s topic, I have interviewed a few of those writers I wanted to know more of.
This week I am starting with Carlos Eire. Carlos is one of the thousands of children who came without their parents via Operation Peter Pan in the early 60’s to this country. He is currently a T. Lawrason Riggs Professor of History and Religious Studies at Yale University. His memoir Waiting for Snow in Havana (Free Press, 2003) won the prestigious National Book Award in 2003 for nonfiction, and has been translated into many languages. He will be participating in this years event with the just published, Learning to Die in Miami: Confessions of a Refugee Boy (Free Press). Carlos is definitely a role model, someone to look up to...
I present Carlos Eire....
What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?
Thinking that there is no God, no love, no life after death, no eternal justice.
What is your idea of happiness?
Experiencing the love of God and love of neighbor as one and the same thing.
Who are your favorite characters in history?
In chronological order: Jesus of Nazareth, Saint Paul of Tarsus, Augustine of Hippo, Bernard of Clairvaux, Francis of Assisi, Catherine of Siena, Lorenzo Valla, Bartolome de Las Casas, Ignatius Loyola, Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross, Martin de Porres, Blaise Pascal, Thomas Jefferson, Maximillian Kolbe.
The quality you most admire in a man?
The quality you most admire in a woman?
Your most marked characteristic?
What do you most value in your friends?
How would you like to die?
Forgiven for all my sins and failures.
What is your present state of mind?
Happy, but annoyed by the fact that there is too much to do, and too little time to do it all.
What is your motto?
“Now I know” (in response to every mistake).
Carlos M. N. Eire was born in Havana, in 1950. In 1962 he fled to the United States as one of the 14,000 unaccompanied children airlifted out of communist Cuba by Operation Peter Pan. After living in several foster homes, he was reunited with his mother in 1965, but his father was never able to leave the island. He is now the T. Lawrason Riggs Professor of History and Religious Studies at Yale University, where he earned his Ph.D. in 1979.. Before joining the Yale faculty in 1996, he taught at St. John’s University in Minnesota and the University of Virginia, and spent two years at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. He is the author of War Against the Idols (Cambridge, 1986), From Madrid to Purgatory (Cambridge, 1995), A Very Brief History of Eternity ( Princeton, 2009), and Reformations: Early Modern Europe 1450-1700 (forthcoming, Yale, 2011). He is also co-author of Jews, Christians, Muslims: An Introduction to Monotheistic Religions (Prentice Hall, 1997). His memoir of the Cuban Revolution, Waiting for Snow in Havana (Free Press, 2003), which won the National Book Award in nonfiction for 2003, has been translated into thirteen languages, but is banned in Cuba, where he is considered an enemy of the state. The sequel to this memoir, Learning to Die in Miami, is being published in November 2010 (Free Press).