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Sat, 27 May 2000 15:15



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Luanda, 05/27 - Angolan writer José Mena Abrantes said friday in Luanda he would welcome the emergence of new publishing houses as they would boost publication of more literary works. During an interview to Angop, Mena Abrantes said many writers complain that they have submitted their copies to the Angolan WritersUnion (UEA) which delays their publication over poor capacity to respond to the demands.#

"With the creation of several publishers, there could be a more expanded production and, at the same time, the competition would lead to authors choosing their publishers, which would make the publishinghouses to have criteria of choice for writers and this wouldcontribute to the improvement of the quality of the literature", he advocated.

According to him, the main incentive to the new writers shouldstart right from school, with reforms of the portuguese teachingprogrammes and various literatures.

He explained that there are many writers willing to publish, butvery often they do not have enough literary basis to impart quality to their works.

Commenting on the current state of the angolan literature, Mena Abrantes said after a period of a great proliferation of poetry, anew generation of prose writers with some qualification has beenemerging.

To Mena Abrantes, this means that angolan literature has notlost strength and tends to improve, with the creation of such incentives like the newly adopted "National Culture and Arts Award".

He said his recently launched book ("O gravador de Ilusões") is a set of light essays written over 30 years, with the first text written in 1969 and the last in 1995.

They are texts written in different occasions and on varioustopics that, in a way or another, address the reality of the same point of view, which has led it into being printed in one book only,mena abrantes said.

The author said his book should be seen as the time itself as,he added, the texts correspond to records of very concreteexperiences that took place over 30 years.

He explained that his book reflects the compilation of texts marked by the time, the reason why he chose a ruined house for the cover of the "O gravador de Ilusões" whose effect is reflected on thevery texts.

On the other hand, he announced the launch, within a month, of anew work with 12 peaces of drama, edited last year by "CenaLusófona".

José Mena Abrantes was born on 11 january 1945 in Malange, wherehe attended school till his 15 years of age. he completed high schoolin Luanda and later graduated in germanic philology in lisbon in1969.

He lived in exile in the Federal Republic of Germany from 1970 to1974, before returning home where he became a journalist. In 1975 hemade a contribution to the establishment of the Angolan News Agency (Angop) and took part in its management.

Before he was appointed press officer of the angolan head ofstate in 1993, he was in charge of the information department ofthe ex-Angola`s film managing "Cinemateca Nacional".

He is a man of theatre for more than 30 years and is currentlyin charge of the "Elinga-Teatro" group, that has been participatingon regular basis in festivals in Africa, Europe and America.

He is author of 12 theatre plays, two poetical works, two fictions in prose form and two surveys on theatre and angolan cinema.

He won the "Sonangol" literature prize in 1986, 1990 and 1994.