Photo: Miguel Delibes
A writer who was skeptical, reticent, disillusioned and, above all, aware of his scant influence within the Royal Spanish Academy, or RAE, the late Miguel Delibes always sought in his novels depicting provincial life to enrich his native tongue.
Friday will mark 40 years since the native of the Spanish region of Castile and Leon and winner of the prestigious Cervantes Prize in 1999 was elected to chair “e” of the Madrid-based RAE, the official royal institution responsible for regulating the Spanish language.
Delibes, who was chosen for a seat by Damaso Alonso and Alonso Zamora Vicente, experienced a “complete change in his life” beginning Feb. 1, 1973, his daughter, Elisa, told Efe Thursday.
“It was perhaps the most exciting moment of his literary career and that’s how we experienced it,” because from that point forward a series of events unfolded including the illness and death of his wife, Angeles de Castro, and the start of film and theater adaptations of “a ton of his works,” she said.
Delibes, who died in 2010 at the age of 89 and is best remembered for books about Castile and hunting and mankind’s mistreatment of nature, “was unable to control his literary and family life as he had done until then.”
“Everything brimmed over, multiplied and he became very famous,” the writer’s daughter, a literature professor and president of the Miguel Delibes Foundation since its creation in 2011, said.