"Europe is a Woman" is an initiative of QUARKpoetry that seeks to establish a series of meetings between European women poets and its objective is two-fold: make work by European poets known to Catalan and Spanish public and promote the existence and quality of Catalan and Spanish poets. In keeping with the philosophy of QUARKpoetry group, «Europe is a Woman» is focused on a collective of women poets, as we think that this is the best way to include many little-known and less-translated poets.
The present and historical tendency to include a very small percentage of women poets in festivals and anthologies, compared to the sample of male poets, does not reflect the latest European poetical trends and their voices, many of them female.
Nature of the meetings
There will be a number of meetings through the year that will promote readings, round tables or conferences. The nature of these meetings will focus on different authors as well as different languages.
Question of genre
The program of meetings presented in this document shows that, in this exchange of voices, there is no intention to exclude male voices but to emphasize the names and work of female and male authors whom we consider to be of merit. even though they are relegated to oblivion by selective inertia (the reading public thereby ultimately becoming relegated to an endless repetition of names and deprived of new and possibly enriching new poetry). We wanted to include some male representatives in each session as not to impose an exclusive standard on the meetings and the audience. This first project is dedicated to women but there is the intention of aiming to other collectives and themes in subsequent meetings.
Selection of poets
As for the selection of the poets, our purpose is to bring together Catalan female poets of different regions with poets from other European countries, Spain included.
To dedicate a program of meetings to the less-known authors of less translated languages favours a branch of art that encounters many difficulties in reaching the public, and it therefore achieves the main purpose of art: to open pathways to knowledge and transformation in society. Although it may not sell many books, poetry is a genre that does sell a lot of performances. Smaller sales do not mean smaller audiencies. We know that women are the biggest group among readers. We should demonstrate that, if they are not the biggest collective of writers, it is because someone or something is preventing them from being so.
If new windows of poetry are not open to society, the air we breathe grows stale. In the words of a Swiss poet, Gerhard Meier:
Ich muss ein Herz / aus Eisen haben / ich spür es / oxydiert
(I must have an iron heart, I fell it is rusting)