University of Pittsburgh
October 24, 2013

Papers of Influential Spanish Poet Ramón Gómez de la Serna Now Accessible Online

Pitt’s University Library System to host Nov. 4 talk and exhibit to highlight collection of 60,000 items

Sharon Blake


Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH—The works of Ramón Gómez de la Serna—a prolific poet and essayist who popularized a sort of Spanish “one-liner”—will be celebrated from 1 to 4 p.m. Nov. 4 in a free public talk and exhibition at the University of Pittsburgh’s Hillman Library, 3960 Forbes Ave., Oakland.

Ramón Gómez de la Serna in his study.

Gómez de la Serna (1888-1963) was a Spanish poet, novelist, and essayist who is known for creating a new literary genre he named the “greguería,” which offers a new and often amusing perspective on life—a brief, humorous insight expressed in metaphoric language. “Las puertas se enfadan con el viento,” for example, translates to “Doors get angry with the wind.”

His works—all in Spanish—comprise approximately 60,000 handwritten notes, clippings, photos, manuscripts, and annotated first editions from his library dating back to 1906. His writings significantly influenced the avant-garde movement in Europe and Latin America. By digitizing the collection and making it available online, the University Library System opens to the world the rich documentary heritage that defined Gómez de la Serna’s life, as well as the issues, experiences, and influences that shaped his writings.

Cosponsored by the University Library System, Pitt’s Center for Latin American Studies, and the Department of Hispanic Languages and Literatures, the event has two parts.

1-2 p.m.
Amy Knapp Room, ground floor, Hillman Library
Presentation by Mellon Professor of Modern Languages Daniel Balderston, chair of the Department of Hispanic Languages and Literatures and director of the Borges Center.  He will address the usefulness of collections, such as the new Gómez de la Serna collection, for literary research.

2-4 p.m.
Special Collections Reading Room, Room 363, Hillman Library
Public exhibition showcasing the Gómez de la Serna papers, as well as other materials that focus on Colonial Latin America and exploration, travel, and migration in the Caribbean.

Visit to view the online finding aid for the collection. For additional information, contact Jeanann Croft at 412-648-8199 or or Martha Mantilla at 412-648-7734 or