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José de Sousa Saramago(1922-2010) is a Nobel-laureate Portuguese writer, playwright and journalist. His works commonly present subversive perspectives on historic events, emphasizing the human factor rather than the official story. Some of his works can also be seen as allegories – among them are the novels “Blindness” and “The Elephant’s Journey”, which are published in Bulgaria. Saramago was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1998. More than two million copies of his books have been sold in Portugal and his work has been translated into 25 languages. He was a founding member of the National Front for the Defence of Culture in Lisbon in 1992. A proponent of libertarian communism, Saramago came into conflict with groups such as the Catholic Church. In 1992, the Portuguese government ordered the removal of “The Gospel According to Jesus Christ” from the European Literary Prizes shortlist, claiming the work was religiously offensive. Disheartened by this political censorship of his novel, Saramago went into exile on a Spanish island where he resided until his death in 2010.
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