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Peixoto, José Luis

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Télérama - France | 01/06/2006

The universe of Portuguese writer Jose Luis Peixoto

Gilles Heuré interviewed the young Portuguese writer Jose Luis Peixoto in Lisbon. Together they evoke one of Peixoto's works, 'Blank Gaze', winner of the Jose Saramago prize for best novel in the Portuguese language. "'Blank Gaze' is not a plot-driven novel," warns the journalist. "It is a book that conveys the breath wafting through the land of Alentejo, the silhouette of the olive trees and sun-kissed cork oaks, the horizons where crisp mornings are outlined like dark tragedies." Peixoto explains himself: "Alentejo is one of the regions with the highest suicide rate. I grew up with a lot of these characters and the questions gnawing at them. ... In all small villages, people who do not know how to read or write occasionally possess great wisdom on life's fundamental questions. This is something that is perhaps a bit lost in the big cities. A shepherd has lots of time for reflection."

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