La Redención del Don Juan. (The Don Juan Redemption)

Future Projects Juan Luis Alborg A few years ago, while the author was going through her father’s books and documents, which had been donated to the University of Málaga in Spain, she found over eight hundred letters her parents wrote to each other during the Spanish Civil War. There they were, in an attic storage closet, neatly tied up in small bundles, his and hers, dated and numbered, in perfect condition – thanks to the dry climate and high altitude of El Escorial, outside Madrid.

Concha Alborg’s father considered himself a Don Juan. Although it’s questionable if he really was much of one, since he was married to Concha’s mother for almost thirty-five years. She did portray him as such in several of her books and he didn’t seem upset. On the contrary, he encouraged her to take good notes as he related some of his conquests she had never heard before. But “don’t call me José, call me by my real name, Juan,” he insisted. The author wondered if, like the literary Don Juan, her father would also manage to redeem himself from the grave.

He died in 2010 and Concha has had plenty of time since then to miss him and to forget him, but she has done neither.  Finding and appreciating at least his most endearing traits, like his zest for life and his immense intellectual curiosity. To commemorate the centenary of his birth in 2014, Concha organized a Symposium at the University of Málaga, “El legado de Juan Luis Alborg en su centenario” (Juan Luis Alborg’s Legacy in his Centenary). See for more information.

Concha Alborg’s personal profile of her father, with the title of “La redención del Don Juan,” has been published in El legado de Juan Luis Alborg: semblanzas y estudios en torno a un historiador y crítico literario by Pórtico-Iberoamericana Vervuert (2023).

Leave a Reply