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Benefit rewarded

Works that received FAPESP's support win 2002 Jabuti Award

ReproductionIllustration from “Festival”Reproduction

“FAPESP’s seal on the cover of a book says it all about the book’s quality”, avers Professor Lúcia Santaella, one of the greatest Brazilian specialists in semiotics and a lecturer at the Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo (PUC-SP). She talks with authority, since her most recent book, Matrizes da Linguagem e Pensamento, Sonora, Visual e Verbal (Matrices of Language and Thought; Sonorous, Visual and Verbal, 425 pages, Editora Iluminuras/FAPESP, R$ 49.00), which was given a publication benefit by the Foundation, won the prestigious Jabuti Award for 2002, in the category of Literary/Linguistic Theory. “My work is the fruit of years of research, some of it financed by FAPESP, but it would have been impossible to edit this new study, with all those pages without this support”, said the researcher, who in July was in Kassel, in Germany, taking part in a seminar at which she set out the ideas in the new publication.

“This is the 21st book, I believe that my name is well known, but even so no publisher would risk publishing Matrices of Language and Thought, for its complexity”, she believes. “Just as in other countries the university publications are absorbed by the university publishers, in Brazil, FAPESP plays this role, in an exemplary fashion, an excellent enterprise”. The professor is the author of, amongst others, Plato’s Esthetics, Pierce, Image – Cognition, Semiotics and Media, and Convergencies – Concrete Poetry and Tropicalism. The new study is, at the same time, a summing up of her works on semiotics and the presentation of a new theory on the three matrices of language and thought, based on the theorizations of Charles Sanders Pierce, which have applications in various fields, such as music, the visual arts, television, cinema and information technology.

The publication benefit was equally a determinant factor in another award of the 2002 Jabuti, this time in the Human Sciences category: Festival, Culture and Sociability (Edusp/FAPESP/ Hucitec, two volume with enclosed CDs, 992 pages, R$ 115.00), organized by István Jancsó, of the History Department of the University of São Paulo (USP), and Iris Kantor, of the School of Sociology and Politics (ESP). Already regarded as a point of reference, it gathers together 49 articles by Brazilian and Portuguese researchers, presented originally during a seminar at USP in 1999, which, converted into a book, outline a panel of the history of festivities in the national imagery, or, in the words of Iris Kantor, “a pre-history of our carnival”.

“I have no doubt that it was this benefit, by making this fine edition possible for us, that was responsible for winning the Jabuti”, explains Kantor. The researcher also recalls that the institution similarly helped in the organization of the congress that gave rise to the book. “Universities produce things that, unfortunately, have no place in the commercial market. The publication benefit is necessary, since it helps us to occupy this niche and to reach the readers”.