Carmen Martín Gaite (1925-2000)

Language: Spanish

Jane Eyre translation: 1999

A well-known Spanish writer who also translated from the French, English, Italian and Portuguese languages. As a child in Salamanca she did not attend school, but was educated privately, with great influence from her father, a liberal notary who did not want her to be formed by a religious institution.

After the Civil War, she studied at the Women’s Institute of Salamanca, and Letters and Philology at the University of Salamanca. After travelling through several European countries and giving up her academic career, she devoted herself to writing narratives (novels and short stories). In 1978 she was the first woman to obtain the National Prize of Literature for her work  The Back Room. She wrote literary criticism and scripts for Spanish television series (Santa Teresa de Jesús; Celia).

Among her translations, besides Jane Eyre, for which she received the best annual translation award, one finds Mme. Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert; Tales of Perrault, by Charles Perrault; To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Wolf; Victorian Fairy Tales, from John Ruskin; Senescence, by Italo Svevo; The Sailor, by Fernando Pessoa; A Grief Observed, de C. S. Lewis; The Periodic System, by Primo Levi, and French Letters to Merline, by Rainer Maria Rilke.

Text by Andrés Claro