Jorge Franco was looking forward to launching his novel The Outside World (El Mundo de Afuera) at the El Castillo Museum in Medellín, but he received a call notifying him that the event had been cancelled and the venue moved to the PanAmerican Theater. Franco believes the museum board “censored my novel and cancelled its presentation. Their blindness and stupidity won’t allow them to differentiate between the reality of fiction and they feel my novel is morally wrong because it portrays the characters’ human side. For Franco, the museum was the ideal place to launch his novel, which tells the story of Diego Echavarría Misas, his wife Benedikta, and their daughter Isolda, in a fictional story that deals with love and also violence in Medellín in the 70′s. He explained that it’s important to understand that the book is fictional and while it’s based on a reality, it must be read as a novel.
As far the museum’s side of the story, director Martha Ligia Jaramillo responded to the author’s accusations and said, “we are not we ware not banning or interfering with the book launch. There are other places where it can be held. We disagree with the image he presents of Don Diego and Isolda, he presents them completely different from what they really were like. When he asked us if he could present at the Museum we said he could, as long as he respected the family’s image and he said he did. We asked him for a copy of his book. After the board members read it, they made their decision, (…) he can publish anything he wants, but we have the right to do whatever we want in our establishment,” Jaramillo said.