Two philologists aspire to chair i of the RAE, which was occupied by Margarita Salas | Culture


The philologist and writer Paloma Díaz-Mas, in July 2020 in Vitoria.
The philologist and writer Paloma Díaz-Mas, in July 2020 in Vitoria.

Two women aspire to enter the Royal Spanish Academy to occupy the chair i of the institution, vacant due to the death of the scientist Margarita Salas, on November 7, 2019. They are the philologist Dolores Corbella, 61, and the philologist and writer Paloma Díaz-Mas, 66. The plenary session of the RAE held this Thursday has approved the proclamation of the two candidacies that, as dictated by the statutes, have been endorsed by three academics. The reading of the merits of both candidates will be done in the plenary session next Thursday, April 15, and the vote will be a week later, on April 22, the institution reported in a statement.

The candidacy of Dolores Corbella (Santa Cruz de Tenerife) has the support of Emilio Lledó, José Manuel Blecua and Pedro Álvarez de Miranda. It will be Corbella’s second attempt to enter the RAE, since in May 2019 she opted for the M chair, but was defeated by the playwright Juan Mayorga, the last academic to enter the Academy. While the signatories of the candidacy of Paloma Díaz-Mas (Madrid) are Luis Goytisolo, José María Merino and Soledad Puértolas.

Corbella has been a professor of Romance Philology at the University of La Laguna (Tenerife) since 1997, where she has also been Deputy Secretary General. He has also served as the director of the Institute of Canary Studies. She was co-founder of the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (CEMyR) and is part of the board of directors of the Spanish Association of Lexicography, reports the RAE. She is the author of some thirty scientific monographs and her main line of work has been the analysis of the dialect lexicon, in works such as Lexicographical treasure of the Spanish of the Canary Islands (1992; 1996). From there, she has been the co-author of various works such as the Exemplified Dictionary of Canarisms (2009), Historical dictionary of the Spanish of the Canary Islands (2001; 2013) and co-author of Canarian-American Lexical Treasure (2010) and Atlantic sugar lexicon (2014).

Diaz-Mas She has been a professor of Spanish and Sephardic Literature at the Faculty of Letters of the University of the Basque Country (Vitoria). He has published research papers on oral and ballads literature, medieval Spanish literature and Sephardic culture, says the Anagrama publishing house. On this stamp he has published the novels The rapture of the Holy Grail (finalist of the First Herralde Novel Prize, in 1983), The dream of Venice (Herralde de Novela, in 1992), The fertile land Y What we forget (2016). Also, the storybook Our millennium (1987), that of nonfiction narrative What we learn from cats (2014) and the autobiographical accounts A city called Eugenio (1992) and Like a closed book (2005). Some of his works have been translated into French, Portuguese, German, and Greek.

46 academics

The RAE consists of forty-six academic number, the squares are for life and eight letters of the alphabet do not have – nor have they had in the past – representation: v, w, x, y, z, Ñ, W, Y. Currently, in addition to chair i, the letters K, d and q, whose previous holders were, respectively, the Arabist Federico Corriente Córdoba, the philologist and Hellenist Francisco Rodríguez Adrados and the philologist Gregorio Salvador Caja.

The complex system of election for a chair in the RAE indicates, according to its statutes, that on the day of voting for the validity of the election the presence of half plus one of the academics with the right to vote will be necessary. In this case, due to health restrictions due to the pandemic, academics will be able to vote on the 22nd at the institution’s headquarters or online. They may also have previously mailed their vote.

“The candidate who obtains the favorable vote of two-thirds of the academics will be elected in the first ballot. If no candidate is elected, the vote will be taken again in the same session, and the one who obtains the favorable vote of two-thirds of the academics present will be elected, ”the statutes say. “If there is no election either, a third vote between the two candidates will take place in the same session. In the event of a tie, the precise tie-breaking votes will be held prior to the third. In this, the one who obtains the favorable votes of half plus one of the academics present will be elected. If no one obtains them, the vacancy will remain and a new call will be made ”.


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