Scholars' Association News
Issue 33
March 2015


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Anthology of Cavafy’s poems in Braille

The Onassis Institute’s Cavafy Archives in cooperation with the Centre for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind (CERB) has published an anthology of poems by C. P. Cavafy in Braille. The anthology is the first of its kind and is a turning point that will pave the way for similar initiatives in the future. This move partially fills the gap in poetry books for the blind.

The list of poems written in Braille is as follows: As Much As You Can, Ithaca, Waiting for the Barbarians, Walls, Days of 1903, On the Outskirts of Antioch, Myres: Alexandria A.D. 340, The God abandons Antony, Nero’s Deadline, The Satrapy, The city, Thermopyles, Trojans, A Prince from Western Libya, Come Back, and In a large Greek colony: 200 B.C.

At the same time the Cavafy Archives and the Onassis Foundation have produced an explanatory video which captures the overall process involved in producing the Cavafy anthology.

As the manager of the CERB printing press, Nikolas Azoukis explains, “a book can be produced in many different ways so that it’s accessible to the blind: in a visual way, i.e. with embossed parts called dots, or using shapes that are read with the fingertip. Audio books are another sector. When there are diagrams or figures like those found in physics or algebraic diagrams or geometric shapes, we print the embossed figures on thermal expansion paper, a special paper which if printed with black ink can absorb the heat and become embossed. A standard book, like the ones we know, is normally scanned to that it can more easily be converted into Word format. We format the book so that it can be written in Braille using special software. The book is then checked to confirm that the structure and pagination is correct and then it’s sent for printing”.

Copies are available to blind and seeing readers from the Onassis Cultural Centre and CERB, as all those not familiar with this touch-based language are invited to get to know it.

Watch the video here: Ο Κ. Π. Καβάφης σε γραφή Braille

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