tv [untitled] CSPAN June 21, 2009 9:30pm-10:00pm EDT
exploitation immigration and conquests and done this and a number of books and that wasn't enough just to talk about latin america. he's now taken on the history of the world with his new book, "mirrors." i wanted, as we broke we were talking about your way of putting these stories together. one of the people i guess it was an interview that i read in which you were talking about your way of writing and you use the word [inaudible] rich is feeling thinking. >> guest: it's a language, a feeling, thinking of the language. a language able to express the mind and the heart. >> host: how do you collect
your stories so that you actually have those vignettes of 30 or 40 lines? >> trying to unite the mind and the heart and the horrors and marvels of life because if i would be just a writer writing about repression and death and the terrible life of so many people who are living in this planet living it and held. and i would be portraying reality because it includes an hour side fortunately enough we have evidence is to the dark side we would look at.
>> host: what are your sources? >> reality for instance i recently arrived here in the state's when i was coming the day before i was walking as usual, i am a walker and i was sad because my companion,,, friend and my dog was supposed to be a doll dog died of reality. that day with five days before arriving here i was feeling like everything was terrible, and i
crossed a little girl jumping her, coming perhaps 2-years-old and she was alone walking and jumping and celebrating life, while i was walking with all of my sadness mourning and then i realized she was stopping and looking again and she stopped me each time she was hearing the birds and singing in the trees and then i looked at her with more attention. she would stop to hear the birds
and encourage. and so when she applauded the birds mauney inner part still alive, still able to celebrate life woke up and the same happened with the sources of "mirrors" and all the other books i have written, a long list of books. i would, if you allow me, i will read just one text to tell you clearly know when lefties and 600 stories came to life the origin of duty.
first i read the story and later taught you how it was born. there they are, on the walls and ceilings of caves, bison, elk, horses, seagulls, women, men, they were born thousands upon thousands of years ago but they are born in new every time someone who looks at them. how could our ancestors of long ago. so intently? how could a man who fought with his bear hands create images so filled with grace? how did he manage to draw those fleeing lines that take to the stone and earth?
how could he -- or was it she? well, this question and came from a conversation i had in santa fe at a marvelous museum of popular art, the three visiting the museum and then we were talking about the so-called prehistoric gods. perhaps the artists were women and that's why ii felt this is a good story that deserves to be
written and later on i went on fighting and writing for me implies ten, 12, 15 times the same story and cutting and cutting until the moment which i think i feel, think that the words that are there deserve to exist or they try to be. >> host: that story affected me a lot because i've always been fascinated by the cave paintings, and to me what struck me the most that made me think was of course the beauty, but i was thinking of the intellectual capacity because often we think of primitive man as primitive as if his brain were not as good as our brain, he wasn't as smart as we are and i was thinking approximately 40,000 years ago that these people were doing these works of art with the
brilliant powers of creativity. they are probably no different than any powers of creativity that we have today and perhaps they were women. >> guest: and this isn't a possibility in any of the book of prehistoric art and i have that in other books. they are always half thinking of these artists, they were artists and deed, as men, but perhaps they were women. >> host: wanted to note that your book, "mirrors," is probably i will use the word feminist books i have ever read. the overwhelming number of portraits of women are favorable at miring, adoring. man come in for much more criticism in your book.
>> guest: but we are half of humanity. we are not all of humanity. so it is time to look over so many important -- >> host: maybe 40,000 years ago before it was written down before the men rode down the history women had dropping the cave drawings. >> guest: it is perfectly possible the book tried to recall or discover the memory of less this bayh -- the spies. the united states now has been black or a half black president. and in the book there are a lot of stories about blacks not only
in the united states, even one of the first stories here began asking adam and eve were blacks because of the experts coinciding the fact that we all came from africa. we are all african immigrants because human beings began existing in africa so perhaps adam and eve were black and i tell in the book some stories for me especially because they happened 15 minutes ago. obama is now the president and these are very recent for instance 1942, the pentagon prohibited, forbade the transfusions of black blood. when the united states was
entering the second world war and at that time the director of the red cross -- who had not invented it was possible to save millions of lives in the second world war so he was the director of this part of the red cross and he said i will not obey the order because black blood doesn't exist. there is not such a thing like blood black. and he was of course resigned.
he was expelled. he was black himself so he knew perfectly well what he was speaking about. and this is a story that is not very well known here in the united states but is important. >> host: in the punch line in your story there is no such thing as black blood, all blood is red which is total common sense and of course led to his being dismissed. one of the things that is remarkable about the way you tell the stories in how they have the structure very often of a joke and there is a lot of humor room, so i picked out one particular couple examples where i thought you'd developed the one it is echo.
>> guest: the greek god. >> host: maybe you could read that. >> guest: she was not exactly a novice, but a nymph probably of olympus. in earlier times the nymph knew how to speak. and she spoke with such grace that her words seemed always to new, never before spoken by any. but the goddess cursed her during one of her frequent fits of jealousy. and suffered the worst punishment, she was deprived of her own voice.
ever since on able to speak, she can only repeat. nowadays that curse is looked at as a virtue. >> host: so that is one of the examples. i wanted to read just a quote that you pulled out from i don't know where about st. joseph and contraception. and it just let me read -- >> guest: it's from spanish. it is an old -- >> host: i had never heard, here's how it goes. st. joseph -- this is about contraception. st. joseph, you who had without doing naked so that i do without having. >> guest: in the spanish this is [speaking in spanish]
that's it, that's it. >> host: the irony, the joke, it's great. >> guest: in english, how was it in english -- >> host: st. joseph, you who had without doing, make it so that i do without having. translator is wonderful. mark freeman is the translator. absolutely cannot tell that this is a translation. and i did not have a spanish copy of the books like couldn't make any of these comparisons, but i am really impressed translation. >> guest: and the other translator i had before -- >> host: he translated this, right?
>> guest: open veins, yes. we had a very special relationship. very, very special. he had such a close connection with me that when he blows translating i think there are three volumes, yes, and he died during the book of embraces, and when he arrived to check one of the 1,000 stories, which he would not write. i wouldn't say that. i wouldn't say that. i disagree with this bomb, it was his right of course. he sent me terrible letters insulting me. how could you say something so
false, stupid, such a lie, for instance about chaplin, he was working in hollywood 40 years and in these words to prove the evidence that we were becoming the same person because otherwise he allowed me to have my own thoughts, ideas, feelings, but no, we were the same person so when he died a part of me died also. >> host: well, mark fried has done a lot about you. >> guest: poor remarked, but we are becoming some of the same person and we worked together on this. >> host: i wanted to talk about a couple things you
developed. revolution and ideology and then i want to talk about religion. but let's start with the ideology. you said in an interview that i read i am strongly influenced by marxism and i love tennis. perhaps i belonged to the superstitious wing of the marxist movement to the magic winning. i've always had problems with the dogmatic spirits who repeat ideas instead of creating them. aside from marks himself, i don't want to get into a discussion of the works of marx, but who are the marxists that actually have had influence that you see as your guiding light? >> guest: i read marx himself in a strange real people. when i was very young and i read
about him also, to long books. it was impossible to imagine such a thing. i was 18, 19-years-old and we were the capitol of doing that and this marked me forever like the bible, these are my to fingerprints and perhaps i am both and the leader all kinds of experiences i had in different places unconvinced me that i am a pagen. im religious but i am religious because i believed in the sun
and rain and millen and process of nature and in history because most of the histories of history they don't have a happy end. they have quite an unhappy end. they are destroyed or betrayed. but history herself doesn't change. when history says goodbye, history is saying see you inflator, see you soon. >> host: so about 100 pages is devoted to the 20th century. the bloody revolutionary 20th century that of course is the century mainly. you talk a lot about the latin-american, a good deal about the latin american
revolutionaries. you speak very highly and i read the list. linen, not stalin, emiliano, the great mexican revolutionary, and another great mexican rebel particularly against the united states, fidel castro -- >> guest: since five english -- he didn't know weeks ackley what he was doing. that is why the secretary of the war is of defense. >> host: and the others, salvador, a person that also marked my hand career a great deal. these are -- i don't know if i
had left anybody out but these are the revolutionaries that you write about in several places in mirrors one. >> guest: there was a woman called rosa. instead of speaking at out -- >> host: you quoted her. it's 277. >> guest: this is a book without quotations but this was an exceptional because i owed rosa the certitude that another world as possible. and she mainly she was of the great tragedy of the 20th century because the great tragedy of 20th century wallace
the war between justice and freedom. half of the world sacrificed justice in the name of three of them and the other half the world sacrificed freedom in the name of justice. and rosa wanted them integrating both. >> host: and so it's called space socialism. >> guest: yes. but not in the way that some people speak about space socialism as making up capitalism -- [inaudible] >> host: with makeup, right. when i asked the question of which marxist you admired, i had in mind rosa luxembourg because that is the person that you quote and i had my place marker
here. my question was to the latin americans looking now back at that era of revolution in latin america which is pretty much over at least in our generation but do you think we came out of it with? >> guest: the server to idle about before, that history doesn't end. when history says goodbye it's saying see you tomorrow. so and latin america now are growing forces, energies that changing reality and in venezuela and ecuador the plain common sense for instance korea, the president when he says we are not going to pay for the
debt unless it is proved that the foreign debt is real. because most of the foreign debt that is in a in present, the faults that never existed are the result of the generosity of the international financial institutions like international monetary fund, world bank and the deep bunkers so generous with the military dictatorships to finance. the question coming from common sense is why should people pay for the snake that bit him or her and why should people finance the corruption of the politicians savings this banks
and he was attacked say in this is a scandal, he is mad. they are always trembling. a catastrophe is going to happen [inaudible] >> host: which of the current leaders of latin america do you admire the most, do you think -- is moving in the right direction? >> guest: i don't like speaking about leaders and. it is a were idled like at all. and even the word leadership, i
like most of obama speeches but he talks so much about leadership, we must look at the leadership. please, stop speaking about leadership. let's speak about friendship. that is the way of giving birth to the new relationship between the two americas, north america and latin america. friendship instead of leadership because the leadership was the plan described in the book spreading dictatorships all over in the name of democracy and in the name of i don't know what in the name of leadership, the countries of the world have to take examinations of the southern countries and say