Hemingway's works to be available in digital form

Wednesday, 31 December 2008, 09:22 Hrs
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Havana: Some 3,000 documents belonging to Nobel laureate U.S. author Ernest Hemingway, one of the 20th century's most influential writers, will be available in digital form, starting Jan 5 - thanks to a project by Cuba's Hemingway Museum here.

The collection under the project contains, apart from his literary works, unedited texts and even insurance policies taken out by the author, EFE news agency reported Wednesday.

After Hemingway's death, some 2,000 documents and manuscripts, approximately 900 maps, 3,000 photographs, and 9,000 books, magazines and booklets, were kept at La Vigia Farm, on the outskirts of Havana, where he lived for several years.

This is the place where he wrote his most famous work "The Old Man and the Sea" in 1951, which won him the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1954.

The entire legacy is being preserved, restored, and digitised by specialists from the Hemingway Museum, the National Center for Preservation and Restoration, and the Cuban National Council for Cultural Heritage.

Some 3,200 pages of documents are so far reproduced in digital format, like telegrams, letters, and clippings of manuscripts of some of his works, like the epilogue to "For Whom the Bells Tolls" and the film script of "The Old Man and the Sea", the museum's digital specialist Inaurys Portuondo said.

"This is an exquisite selection, it's not an arbitrary selection," Portuondo said, adding that the digitisation was a "gradual process" that Cuba's National Cultural Heritage Council completed with the cooperation of the US Social Science Research Council.

The property, which reopened in December 2006, will now house the Hemingway digital archive and welcome specialists and researchers from Cuba and abroad.

The digital archive will be later available at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library in Boston, and specialists are already working on the conservation of another 1,000 Hemingway documents.

Hemingway's widow, Mary Welsh, donated Finca Vigia Farm to the Cuban government to fulfil the writer's last wish after he committed suicide July 2, 1961, in Idaho.
Source: IANS
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