Cuba Pays Homage to Harold Pinter
- Submitted by: admin
- Arts and Culture
- United States
- 01 / 01 / 2009
Considered one of the world’s most influential playwrights of modern times and a writer of his high ethical principles, Pinter also defended the cause of the Cuban people. During a meeting in London in 1997, he publicly and strongly criticized the United States for ignoring consecutive UN resolutions against the blockade on Cuba. “Their [U.S.] actions constitute an act of barbarism and their disregard for the expressed will of the vast majority of the international community is outrageous and its arrogance, despicable. We must demand that the British government condemn the U.S. blockade against Cuba without reservation. I urge you to applaud the strength of spirit, determination, dignity and courage demonstrated by the Cuban people.”
His political stance regarding Cuba led him to sign a declaration entitled ‘Cuban Sovereignty Must be Respected’ and he also strongly demanded the release of René González, Fernando Gonzáles, Antonio Guerrero, Gerardo Hernández and Ramón Labañino -- the Five Cuban political prisoners unjustly incarcerated in the United States for fighting terrorism.
The son of a Jewish tailor, Pinter was born in Hackney, London, on 10 October 1930. He studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and Central School of Speech and Drama. He was also very active in support of the dispossessed and against the war in Iraq and the policies of U.S. President George W. Bush. During a massive protest demonstration in Britain against the war, he said: “It is a fragrant act of state terrorism, a gross violation of International Law, a military action based only on lies and a blatant manipulation of the media and public opinion.”
Considered an expert in the theatre of the absurd, his vast work includes plays such as: The Room (1957), The Birthday Party (1958), The Dumb Waiter (1959), The Caretaker (1960), The Lover (1962), The Dwarfs (1963), The Collection (1963), The Homecoming (1965), Old Times (1971), Silence (1969), Landscape (1969), Betrayal (1978), Moonlight (1993), Ashes to Ashes (1996) and Celebration (2000).
He also wrote the screenplays for a number of films including The Servant (1963), Accident (1967), The Quiller Memorandum (1965), The Go-Between (1970), The Last Tycoon (1974), Betrayal (1982), The Comfort of Strangers (1989), adapted from the novel by Ian McEwan and The Trial (1993), adapted from Franz Kafka’s novel.
Harold Pinter was awarded a CBE in 1966, the German Shakespeare Prize in 1970 and the Austrian State Prize for European Literature in 1973, the Pirandello Prize in 1980, the David Cohen British Literature Prize in 1995 and The Laurence Olivier Special Award in 1996. In 2001, he was awarded the PEN/S.T. Dupont Golden Pen Award (Lifetime´s Distinguished Service to Literature´ award) granted by the English Centre of International PEN, the Premio Fiesole ai Maestri del Cinema (Italy), the South Bank Show Outstanding Achievement in the Arts Award and the World Leaders Award (Canada), and the Companion of Honour in 2002.
Cuba honors Harold Pinter and is also profoundly grateful for the legacy he left behind