Josep Vallverdú was born in Lleida a hundred years ago this year. Best known as a writer of fiction for children and young adults, with titles that have been frequently reprinted and translated into several languages, perhaps we haven't paid enough
attention to all the genres he's worked in, which is why is that all his work, which has been deployed in a unitary way, but branched out into various areas, we have not analyzed it from a global perspective.
Of all his works for children and youth, as the genre that had the most force for the reestablishment of Catalan culture, it is the one that receives the most recognition for its literary, social and cultural characteristics, and alongside Josep M. Folch
y Torres will be considered one of the most prolific writers. His popularity in this genre has had a great significance and has decisively influenced generations and generations of readers. But if it is true that it has been through this literature that
he has consolidated his vocation as a writer, it is no less true that this classification may have been an impediment for the rest of his work to receive more critical attention.
Josep Vallverdú also wanted to be a cultural activist, and while he was explaining himself through his personal books, he was building a public figure, with an uninterrupted presence even today, in the press and in publications series in articles of
cultural and political opinion. And today this site is also dedicated to poetry, with new titles, such as Atresorat silenci , and another collection of poems, still unpublished, but ready. Throughout this year, we will read a fourth volume of memoirs
from the tireless writer that is Vallverdú and, still, a fifth that deals exclusively with his relationship with language, a black novel and complete poetry.
"I am a writer by vocation. Many people are not sure that they have a defined vocation, that of the writer, however, he is one of those who can affirm it, because despite many difficulties, personal mistakes and obstacles or silences that jump in his way,
the writer does not give up and he knows that at least some of his work will survive. Having said this, which could pass as a statement of principles, it is appropriate that we distinguish between two types of writers: on the one hand, those who deal
only with their creative work, with no other objective; and, on the other hand, those who, parallel to creation, are attentive to the requests of society as the days go by and, if appropriate, if they are called to bear witness to their humanity, to the
their civility beyond literature, they give it. I would like to enter this second category".
The Year of Josep Vallverdú must allow all the work, children's and youth, personal books and poetry, based on realities and descriptive of experiences, to grow in readers, to receive the attention of critics, to be object of academic studies in each of
his creative fields and that it be translated, so that, as the poet says, he can find himself "at the beat of time, close to everyone, in the distance of centuries".
Vallverdú was born in Lleida in 1923. Graduating with a degree in Classical Philosophy from the University of Barcelona, he began working as a translator for various publishers. His first books written in Catalan began appearing during the 60’s. He
shares his literary labours with teaching in schools and institutes, and collaboration with written media. In1983, the Town Council of Lleida created an award in his name: The Joseph Vallverdú essay award. In addition to children’s literature,
Vallverdú has written in other genres such as theatre, essays, travel books and textbooks. He has received, among other awards, the National Children’s and Young People’s Literature Award in 1983 for his book “Saberut i Cua-Verd”, and the
Catalan Literary Arts Honor in 2000.
"Josep Vallverdú i Aixalà (Catalan pronunciation: [dʒuˈzɛb ˈbaʎβeɾˈðu]) (born 1923, Lleida) is a Catalan poet, novelist, playwright, linguist and essayist. His narrative Rovelló served as basis for a TV-series in TV3 (Catalonia). His works,
rich in vocabulary, have been widely used in the Catalan classrooms. Vallverdú won in 1982 the National Spanish Prize in Children's Literature."
At least one book of his is available in English - "Aladdin and the Magic Lamp."
"He also translated works by Chesterton, T. Elliot, Graham Greene, Jean Piaget, Jack London, Martin Luther King, Stevenson and Oscar Wilde, among others. Some of his work has been translated into Spanish, Basque, French, Italian and Russian. He was
honored with the Creu de Sant Jordi de la Generalitat de Catalunya (1990) and with the Premi d'Honor de les Lletres Catalanes (2000)."