Asso-prize 2018: An Interview with Françoise Huppertz, founder of El Calidoscopio

El Calidoscopio, the winning association of the Asso-prize 2018 is based in Mexico. Last year, they made us discover the book “HispanoAmérica: Vision contemporanea”, by Cameroonian co-authors Ebenezer Billé and Georges Moukouti Ongédou. The book was awarded in the Research category of the 2017 edition of the Grand Prix of Literary Associations.

It is also thanks to El Calidoscopio’s fieldwork that the GPLA is now quite well known in literary circles in Mexico. Its president and founder, the Belgian-Canadian Françoise Huppertz, has greatly contributed to introduce Spanish language in the GPLA, in particular by raising awareness among Mexican authors and associations on the interest of taking part in competition.

Today this great contribution continues to bear fruit and we can say to a certain extent that the eligibility of Spanish language to the GPLA is also Françoise Huppertz’ legacy. However, this acknowledgement for El Calidoscopio is not just a simple mark of gratitude, but also the recognition of its involvement in various literary and educational activities which alone could have justified the awarding of the Asso-Prize 2018.

Françoise Huppertz founder of El Calidoscopio


How do you feel, having your efforts for
promoting literature and the intermingling of cultures thus recognized on an
international level, in particular by the coronation of the Asso-prize 2018
that has just been awarded to your association for this

El Calisdoscopio: Congratulations always bring a smile and the
self-satisfaction for having done a good job. I am not an exception to this
rule, and I sincerely thank the GPLA for giving me this opportunity.


If you had to present El
Calidoscopio project in a few words, its course, its objectives, the
circumstances of its creation …

El Calidoscopio: So, in a few words, I initially founded “El
Calidoscopio” to value young talents in Mexico, and to teach them how to
express their thoughts in writing in order to give them confidence. The main
purpose was to increase their self-esteem through writing workshops for
children and teenagers, theaters-plays preparation, initiation to cinema,
artisanal book publishing, participation in literary competitions …. The
objective is always to express the human soul to feel better, to learn to know
ourselves to better understand others, without losing curiosity by reading what
is being done elsewhere. The colors of the kaleidoscope are endless and they
miraculously crossed the path of GPLA. What beautiful
discoveries !!!!


What is your opinion, as an
observer, about the evolution of contemporary literature, on an international
level but also in Mexico in particular, where you have been living for several
years now?

El Calidoscopio: Contemporary international literature is doing very
well; thanks to all the new technical means we can rely on. In Mexico where 44%
of the population is under 25 years old (2017), it is very important to give
priority to the training of young people, in order to stem all negative or
unrelated thoughts with their reality, because their imagination is sometimes
limitless. Literary associations should also have an interest in devoting part
of their activities to this training in order to take care of our future
literary heritage on a world level. It is important to seek and encourage the
potential. Once again all my gratitude and admiration for the work of the GPLA


We know the perennial problem of
scarcity of subsidies, which often plague cultural associations; which resource
is your association relying on?

El Calidoscopio: We are here talking about money, the common
denominator and predatory monster of so many beneficial achievements! I cannot
say that El Calidoscopio has found the good way out, but we continue our
journey relying solely on volunteerism, which also strongly inspires teenagers
and gives them the impetus to turn their dreams into reality.


If you had to share a message of hope with all those who like literature
across the world, write books or at least try to promote reading, what would it

El Calidoscopio: Literature and writing in general will always remain
magical symbols of universal consciousness, and no machine will replace that.
Reading is the essence of knowledge and allows countless discoveries.

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