Today’s Dame of the Day is Ana Blandiana (March 25, 1942-). Born in Romania during Soviet rule, Blandiana’s father spent years in Communist prison before his accidental death several weeks after his release. Blandiana wrote poetry and worked as a literary editor and librarian; as the regime grew more restrictive, her work became more protest-oriented. Blandiana eventually entered politics and campaigned for an open society and an end to communist rule.
Today’s Dame of the Day is Claribel Alegría (May 12, 1924-). Alegría moved to the United States for college when she was 19, but she maintained close ties to her native Nicaragua. Her poems, novels, and essays critiqued society while championing justice and freedom. During the country’s uprisings of the 1970s, Alegría redoubled her commitment to non-violent resistance while supporting the Sandinista National Liberation Front. In 1985, she returned to Nicaragua to aid with reconstruction following the revolution. Today, she continues to live and write in Managua.