Octavian Paler

July 2, 1926–May 7, 2007
Octavian Paler was a Romanian journalist, writer and activist. Born in Lisa, Brasov County, Paler graduated from the University of Bucharest with a degree in Philosophy and Law. Although he was a member of the Romanian Communist Party at the onset of his career, he soon fell out of favour due to his pro-Western views and criticism of the regime. This eventually led to his persecution by the secret police and, for a while, his house arrest and the restriction of his artistic work. After the fall of Nicolae Ceausescu in 1989, Paler founded the Group for Social Dialogue with a number of other writers and prominent public figures.

Paler was Vice President of the Romanian Radio & Broadcasting committee from 1965 to 1970 and was made president of the Romanian Journalists' Council in 1976. He worked as a Senior Editor at the influential newspaper România Liberă from 1970 to 1983; following the revolution, he was appointed its Editor-in-Chief. Paler's opus encompasses both prose and poetry; he is considered a major voice in Romanian twentieth century literature.