Esteemed Filipino writers Bienvenido Lumbera, Kristian Cordero, and Ricardo de Ungria have been awarded the prestigious Southeast Asian Write (S.E.A. Write) prize in Bangkok, Thailand.
The multi-awarded Filipino authors were given their awards in joint ceremonies held on November 25, 2019, at the Royal Ballroom, Mandarin Oriental, Bangkok.
Bienvenido Lumbera received the S.E.A Write Award for 2016. Lumbera is a National Artist of the Philippines and a Ramon Magsaysay awardee for Journalism, Literature and Creative Communications.
Kristian Sendon Cordero is among the S.E.A Write Awardees for 2017. Cordero has been described as the enfant terrible of Bikol contemporary writings. His books of poetry in three Philippine languages have won the Madrigal-Gonzales Best First Book Award, the Philippine National Book Awards, and the Gintong Aklat Awards (Golden Book Awards).
Multi-awarded writer and former University of the Philippines Mindanao Chancellor Ricardo M. de Ungria received the S.E.A Write Award for 2018. Ricardo de Ungria has authored eight books of poetry and ten books of nonfiction anthologies and has recently won the 2019 National Book Award for Best Anthology in English given by the Manila Critics Circle and the National Book Development Board.
The joint awarding ceremony for the 3-year awardees was held this year after being put on hold from 2016 to 2018 due to the passing of the late King Bhumibhol Adulayadej in 2016. The awards event was restored after the subsequent coronation of His Majesty King Maha Vajiralongkorn in May this year and granted his daughter, Her Royal Highness (HRH) Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana to give the royal address and preside over the Presentation Ceremony in his behalf.
The S.E.A. Write Award was established in 1979 to recognize and honor the literary excellence of poets and writers from ASEAN countries. The award was given annually for the last four decades for specific works or for lifetime achievements which aim to recognize their creativity and create a wider awareness and understanding of literary wealth in the region.
Earlier this year, Filipino novelists Gina Apostol and Reine Arcache Melvin’s award-winning novels were celebrated in London.
The biggest all-Filipino book fair, featuring outstanding Filipino authors, was also recently held in November.
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