Paulo Coelho

Paulo Coelho is a Brazilian writer and essayist. He is known for his novels ofspiritual significance, with which he has become one of the successful authors worldwide. His works have been published practically all over the world and the quotations from his texts have become commonplace in social networks. According to Biography.com, Paulo Coelho was born on August 24, 1947 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. His father was an engineer and his mother, of strong Catholic beliefs, a housewife. He studied with the Jesuits and began his law career, abandoning his studies at the end of the 60s to live immersed in the hippie culture of the moment, visiting different countries of the American and European continent. On its article, Biography.com shows us that In 1972, Coelho began his career as an author, which includes journalistic works, scripts for the small screen, stage direction or songwriting. Although his fame comes from his work as a novelist (2). Also, Britannica Online Encyclopedia in its Paulo Coelho article relate us that in 1974 he was imprisoned, accused of subversion by the Brazilian government. He married the painter Christina Oiticia and with her he adopted in the 80s the precepts of the religious order RAM (Rigor, Amor y Misericordia), with headquarters in Holland (3) .

I’m interested in Paulo Coelho work because he is a renowned creator of bestsellers of simple style imbued with a mystical inspiration of spiritual encouragement and autobiographical pieces. Through my research, I found it out that he is such as very criticized for his literature. Clearly, this is why Coelho’s Biography sparked my curiosity,“His critics dismiss his writing as New Age drivel, promoting a vague spiritually devoid of rigor” (2018). Coelho has already said that there is a prejudice against his books because he writes in a popular and accessible way and claims the literary critics, saying they are too concerned with the style and not with the content of his works, but this is not true. I can say that Coelho’s literature is simple, I would not dare to say bad, but it is linear. It explains too much each event, it does not allow the imagination and its themes, despite being some very good ones, are not usually treated as they should be, but rather they are texts to help people find meaning in the problems of their lives. Probably when I was young, I felt identify with his lecture. It was easy to understand and follow it.

Coelho is repudiated in the serious literature and not so serious, so that Paulo Coelho seems to have become the victim of social networks, but in reality his books continue to sell by the millions. So that his figure is unique, because despite being one of the best-selling writers, and he is one of the most attacked.

According to Susan Swarbrick in her article Signs and Symbolism, Spirituality and Sixth Sense,Coelho expressed his passion for literature from a young age, but his family never accepted his artistic side, to such an extent that they decided to subject him to psychiatric treatment, which included therapies as extreme as electroshock, “his parents tried their best to dissuade him. When their attempts they decided he must be mentally illand had Coelho, then 17, committed to a psychiatric facility”(2). However, according toPaulo Coelho Biography, Coelho remained interested in art, especially in theater and music. In the 60s, Coelho would start law studies that never ended, immersed in the hippie movement while continuing with his first writings and collaborating with the musician Raúl Seixas, with whom he would write more than a hundred songs and achieve great successes in rock, “Raul Seixas only found commercial success in 1973, with the album ‘Krig-há, bandolo!’, Which opened his brief and intense partnership with Paulo Coelho. The album features five songs from the duo: ‘The Mines of King Solomon’, ‘The Hour of the Train Pass’, ‘Al Capone’, ‘Rockixe’ and ‘Urubu Dog’ (3)”. Linton Weeks, author of Writer Mystery; Paulo Coelho, At Peace With the Inexplicable reports that Coelho and Seixas also published a series of comicsstrips against government. Reason which they were imprisoned (3).

In his article Paulo Coelho, Ginger Rodriguez relates that it is also a time of political radicalization, since Coelho would be imprisoned briefly by the Brazilian dictatorship due to his positions linked to the anti-capitalist left, which he expressed, for example, in the Kring-ha comic, “the Coelho/Seixas partnership also created a comic trip, ‘King-ha, which avocated more freedom in Brazilian society”(1). After being released, Coelho decided to move away from active political activism and moved to London, in a period where he worked for record labels such as Polygram or CBS, while trying, without much success, to devote himself completely to literature (2).

According to Richard Pallardy and Michael T. Calvert in their article Paulo Coelho Brazilian Author state thatshortly after publishing his first book; in 1987 Paulo Coelho wrote"The Pilgrim of Compostela" (with the original title "Diary of a Magus"). After I read the summary and some notes, in this book he narrates his experiences during the pilgrimage and discoveries that the extraordinary is in the way of ordinary people. He published it in a small Brazilian publishing house, and although it did not have transcendence among the critics, he managed to reap a relative sales success. However;according to Swarbrick,Coelho achieves what eventually became his biggest success, She states that The Alchemist(1988) is a metaphorical book full of symbols that has been translated into more than 60 languages, and that is, to this day, one of the best selling books of the last 100 years. The Alchemist was one of my readingbooks in my adolescence. What I can remember from its lecture is that combine magic, mysticism, wisdom and wonder in an inspiring tale of self-discovery. According to his critics, The Alchemist has become a modern classic. In this book,Paulo Coelho relates the spiritual mystery story of Santiago, a adolescent Andalusian shepherd who yearns to travel in search of an earthly treasure. Hia search will lead us to find very different and much more rewarding riches than we ever imagined. The travel of Santiago teaches us the essential wisdom of listening to our hearts, of recognizing opportunities and learning to read the omens scattered throughout life and, most importantly, to follow our dreams. From that moment, Coelho manages to devote himself completely to literature, also writing for the media, and converting each of his new books into authentic best-sellers. Among other of his work would be worth mentioning titles like The Valkyries, Veronika Decides to Die, Eleven minutes or Aleph, among others (2).

"Eleven Minutes" is a book that explores the nature of sex and love. It was other of my adolescence books. In my opinion I do not take the book as a rather deep erotic possesses serious content that I do not consider suitable for all types of readers. “Eleven Minutes” is a predictable lecture; however, there are moments when it makes us reflect on common situations in our lives where we use a disguise of ourselves, a part worth highlighting. I did read this book hiding from my mom because the context, and the taboos of the society at that time. Personally I liked it, I did not see the girl who prostituted herself. I saw a girl who had a difficult time and still managed to get ahead, always wanted to excel, and above all always had her family in mind. I believe that it was a clear example of courage.

Throughout his career, Coelho has received numerous awards and honors, such as the French Order of Arts and Letters, the Legion of Honor, the Flaiano Prize, the Budapest or the Fregene. Since 2002 he is a member of the Brazilian Academy of Letters and is a peace messenger of the UN.During the last few years, Coelho has promoted free access to a large part of his work, allowing free downloading of some of his books through his website. In my research, I did find that Coelho has a long list of prizes and condecoration, as well as regonitions. According to History-Biography.com webside, Coelho has Super Grinzane Cavour Book Award: Italy, 1996, Flaiano International Award: Italy, 1996, Knight of Arts and Letters: France, 1996, Finalist of the International IMPAC Literary Award: Ireland, 1997, Golden Book: Yugoslavia 1995, 1996, 1997 and 1998. Wow! This was for four consecutive years,Commander of Ordem do Rio Branco: Brazil, 1998, Golden Medal of Galicia: Spain, 1999, Crystal Award of the World Economic Forum (1999), for uniting so many different cultures through the power of language, Crystal Mirror Award: Poland, 2000, among others. As well as a few recognitionslike when he was named the second best-selling author in the world in 1998, according to the French magazine Lire in March 1999. Later,on July 25, 2002, Paulo Coelho was chosen to occupy the 21st chair of the prestigious Brazilian Academy of Letters (ABL). And on October 28, with a speech that exalts utopia and faith, he took possession of his position in the ABL. Then he got a couple morein 2007, the UN named him "messenger of peace" in the area of ​​"intercultural dialogue", and in Santiago de Compostela, Spain, a street bears his name in his honor: "la Rúa Paulo Coelho".

In the interview with Paulo Coelho, Glauco Ortolano Brazilian writer, it states that Paulo Coelho is an acclaimed Brazilian writer of 70 years old. With more than 140 million copies sold worldwide, and that he has broken several records as the book plus adaptations made in more than 56 languages, according to the information found in this article.

As I mentioned before, I did read a couple of his books in my adolescence. I liked them, and I remember them (not very well because I have a bad memory) as novels with messages of improvement that I read in the past and that is why I respect them. To be honest I can not be a good critic because I’m not a good lector. However, I like the cliche and happy endings. When it comes to writing, I'm not too many words and let's say I'm basic. So I will not judge this man, on the contrary,...