The Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award (Premio Nacional de Literatura Aurelio Espinosa Pólit), established by the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador (PUCE) in 1975, is a prestigious honor that celebrates the literary achievements of Ecuadorian writers. Named after the renowned writer Aurelio Espinosa Pólit (1894-1961), this award holds great significance within the country’s literary landscape. It recognizes outstanding Ecuadorian writers in the categories of poetry, nonfiction, short story, novel, and theater, making it one of the most significant literary prizes in the country, along with the Eugenio Espejo Prize.
In Ecuador, the Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award stands as a symbol of recognition for outstanding literary works. Established in 1975 by the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador, this prestigious award has celebrated the achievements of Ecuadorian writers across various genres.
Rich Legacy of Literary Recognition
Since its inception, the Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award has emerged as one of Ecuador’s most esteemed literary honors. Named after the revered Ecuadorian writer, Aurelio Espinosa Pólit, the award serves as a testament to his lasting impact on the country’s literary heritage. Through this award, the Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador seeks to honor and promote the remarkable literary contributions of Ecuadorian authors.
Embracing Diverse Literary Genres
The Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award encompasses a wide range of literary genres, ensuring that exceptional works from various creative disciplines receive the recognition they deserve. Each year, the award focuses on a specific genre, including poetry, essay, short story, novel, and theater. By rotating the genre annually, the award not only encourages authors to explore different forms of expression but also showcases the diverse literary talents of Ecuador.
Rigorous Selection Process
To maintain the integrity of the award, the selection process for the Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award adheres to strict guidelines. A panel of three esteemed representatives from the literary and academic domains serves as the jury, responsible for evaluating the submissions and selecting the winner. Their collective expertise ensures that the winning work epitomizes literary excellence and contributes significantly to the literary canon of Ecuador.
Recognition and Rewards
The Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award provides more than just a symbolic accolade; it also offers a substantial financial reward. The current prize money of USD 7,500 serves as a testament to the value placed on the contributions of Ecuadorian writers. This generous recognition not only acknowledges their dedication and talent but also provides them with the means to further their literary endeavors. Furthermore, as an integral part of the award, the winning work is published by PUCE (Pontifical Catholic University of Ecuador). In addition, the author receives 10% of the total copies of the book
Impact and Influence on Ecuadorian Literature
Over the years, the Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award has had a profound impact on Ecuadorian literature. Esteemed writers who have received this accolade have gone on to become influential figures within the literary sphere. Their notable contributions have enriched Ecuadorian literature, inspiring new generations of authors to push boundaries and explore new literary horizons.
Ensuring Anonymity and Impartiality
The Aurelio Espinosa Pólit National Literature Award has always been conducted as a blind contest, and the rules have evolved over time. To provide an example, let’s consider the rules followed in the 2022 edition. The primary goal was to ensure that the judges remained unaware of the authors’ identities during the evaluation process. Only Ecuadorian writers were eligible to participate, while works by deceased authors and previous winners in the same genre were excluded. Stringent guidelines were implemented, including the use of pseudonyms and the submission of personal information in a sealed envelope separate from the work. These sealed envelopes, containing the authors’ identifying details, were entrusted to a notary public, thereby preventing the organizers or the jury from accessing this information. The winner’s envelope would be opened in the presence of the notary, while the remaining envelopes would be securely destroyed. By adhering to these rules, the award aimed to ensure fairness, impartiality, and the preservation of author anonymity throughout the selection process until the final decision was reached.
|2022||Novel||Juan Pablo Castro||Juan Pablo Castro|
|2021||Poetry||Juan José Rodinás||Fantasías animadas de ayer y alrededores|
|2019||Nonfiction||Josué Augusto Durán Hermida||Minutas de bulla (published as El abandono de la experiencia)|
|2018||Short Story||Alexis Zaldumbide||Habitaciones con música de fondo|
|2017||Novel||Roberto Ramírez Paredes||No somos tu clase de gente|
|2016||Poetry||Andrea Crespo||Registro de La Habitada|
|2015||Nonfiction||Santiago Peña Bossano||Estética de la indolencia|
|2014||Novel||Luis Borja Corral||Pequeños palacios en el pecho|
|2013||Short Story||Ana Estrella Santos||La curiosidad mató al alemán|
|2012||Poetry||Marcelo Báez||El mismo mar de todas Las Habanas|
|2010||Nonfiction||María Helena Barrera||Merton y Ecuador-La búsqueda del país secreto|
|2009||Novel||Hans Behr||Acaso si lloviesen.|
|2008||Short Story||Elking Araujo||Al pie de la letra|
|2007||Poetry||Carlos Vallejo||La orilla transparente|
|2005||Novel||Lucrecia Maldonado||Salvo el calvario|
|2004||Short Story||Gabriela Fernández Argüello||La noche de Eva|
|2003||Play||Roberto Sánchez Cazar||Que no haya pena|
|2002||Poetry||Paúl Puma||Felipe Guamán Poma de Ayala|
|2001||Nonfiction||Cristina Burneo||El sueño de Pierre Menard|
|2000||Novel||Marcelo Lalama Basante||Los Nazarenos|
|1999||Short Story||Raúl Vallejo||Huellas de amor eterno|
|1998||The School of Language and Literature did not award the prize in 1998 as it convened to set new award rules.|
|1993||Short Story||Huilo Ruales Hualca||Fetiche y Fantoche|
|1990||Short Story||Juan Manuel Rodríguez López||Fricciones|
|1987||Play||Eliécer Cárdenas||Morir en Vilcabamba|
|1985||Short Story||Rafael Díaz Ycaza||Prometeo el joven y otras marisquetas|
|1980||Short Story||Jorge Dávila Vázquez||Este mundo es el camino|
|1979||Poetry||Julio Pazos Barrera||La ciudad de las visiones|
|1978||Play||Carlos Benavides Vega||La herida de Dios|
|1976||Novel||Jorge Dávila Vázquez||María Joaquina en la vida y en la muerte|
|1975||Novel||Iván Égüez||La Linares|