“Writing is a struggle against silence.” ― Carlos Fuentes
“Writing is a struggle against silence.” ― Carlos Fuentes
That's sad news. After Terra Nostra and A Change of Skin, I haven't had an opportunity to return to his work, but I recognized he was an amazing stylist. I will continue to read him.
Fuentes left many novels unfinished considering them to be imperfections and "wounds that make the book bleed". Fuentes always postponed writing about himself: "One puts off the biography like you put off death," he said. "To write an autobiography is to etch the words on your own gravestone." R.I.P., man.
Last edited by kpjayan; 16-May-2012 at 07:45.
Yes, a Book with his profound meditations about life and its aspects and values, Kpjayan. There he reflected his "alpha-to-omega" views. He wrote there about Marx and Hitler, Marquis de Sade and François Mauriac, Delia Garcés and many others.
One night when I was in Buenos Aires I discovered—not without a mixture of modesty, poignancy, and shame—yet another dimension of the amorous gaze: its absence. Our friend Luisa Valenzuela had taken my wife and me to a tango bar on the endless Avenida Rivadavia. It was a genuine dance hall—no tourists, no light shows, no paralyzing strobe lights. A popular neighborhood haunt, with its orchestra of piano, violin, and accordion. Everyone sitting on chairs lined up around the perimeter of the wall, like at a family party. Couples of all ages and sizes. And a queen of the dance floor. A blind girl, in dark glasses and a flowered dress. The reincarnation of Delia Garcés, the fragile Argentine actress. She was the most sought after dancer in the place. Resting her white cane on her chair, she would get up to dance without seeing but being seen. She was a marvelous dancer. She evoked the tango exactly as Santos Discépolo defined it: "a sad thought that is danced." It was a lovely and strange kind of love that was danceable in both light and darkness. Half-darkness, yes.
Here's an article from el País with the reactions of intellectuals about the loss of Fuentes: Juan Goytisolo, Antonio Gamoneda, Nélida Piñón, Ricardo Piglia, Juan Gabriel Vásquez,etc. It's in Spanish, but hey, Google chrome can more less translate everything right?
Today, there will be a homage to Carlos Fuentes at the Palacio de Bellas Artes in México City. I'll try to post some pictures later today.
It is a terrible loss for the whole world, but it is more to Mexico, as we have lost not only our greatest living writer but a man with a thousand faces: the intellectual by definition, a fierce critic of our society, about politics. An essayist, always present with sharp columns at newspapers an magazines, an editor who was involved in defining many already established literary figures from Spain and Latin America. A man involved in projects so different from each other he seemed to be everywhere. He was one of the almost extinct figures that represented the Total writer, a man with a strong compromise to his age, always occupying himself in creating a better present to deliver a much better future to our nation. A man that gave his entire life to Spanish language and who was one of the believers of creating a single Spanish language for the countries speaking it. All of this with a solid speech and a great presence. always active, lucid until the last minute, a man of intentions and memory.
His books are there and can bring him back every time we read him; but his voice will surely be missed.
Mario Vargas Llosa about Fuentes death:
Only 24 hours of his decease, Fuentes' publishing group Alfaguara, announced publication of two unedited books that will come out this year.
Personas/People (to appear July 4th) it's a memoir/essay book where Fuentes portrays the figure of several key figures he met through his life and who in some way influenced in his life and works. Some of the names present in this book are Luis Buñuel, François Mitterrand, André Malraux, Jesús de Polanco, Pablo Neruda, Julio Cortázar, Arthur Miller, Simone Weil, Susan Sontag y María Zambrano.
The second one, to appear late this year, it's a novel called Federico en su Balcón/Federico in his balcony in which Fuentes bring us a dialogue between Friederich Nietzche and his main character.
Rest in peace
Must admit, I read La Region Mas Transparente a couple of years back - couldn't escape the sense I didn't know enough about Mexican history to get what he was driving at...
That is a mini-review I quoted from the recently finished books. After the initial analysis and the list of initial omissions in which Fuentes initially incurred (Bolaño, Cabrera Infante, Sábato, Pitol, Neuman, Puig) I got myself to the task of finding some more names he could have given some space but didn't. Besides being a lot of writers who in my personal opinion didn't deserved to be named (Angeles Mastretta, Eloy Urroz, Xavier Velasco, Pedro Ángel Palou etc) he also dedicated very long chapters to writers like Lezama Lima and Alejo Carpentier, who have all the right to be quoted as very influential characters for the Latin American novel, but that probably with 20 pages would have been enough, instead of 40.Carlos Fuentes, The Great Latin American Novel +
If you want to have a very wide and deep perspective from the novel in Latin America since the beggining this is the place to start. Hope this book can get translated soon as this is a very deep and intelligent approach not only to the topic, but to a man who had an amazing perspective not only of his country but his continent and his language. His knowledge for young writers and his new novels talks about the greatness of Fuentes, who despite being a consummate writer he always pay attention to all the literary movements and figures that were ascending not only in Mexico but everywhere, specially in the Spanish language novel.
Masterfully written, brilliant a times, just taking half star out because I can't believe he only mentioned once Ernesto Sábato and not once Roberto Bolaño.
Here's the list I think could have complimented the work:
Argentina: Ernesto Sábato, Juan José Saer, Alan Pauls, Rodrigo Fresán
Bolivia: Edmundo Paz Soldán
Chile: Roberto Bolaño, Alejandro Zambra
Colombia: Álvaro Mutis, Evelio Rosero, Fernando Vallejo, William Ospina
Cuba: Guillermo Cabrera Infante, Eliseo Alberto
El Salvador: Horacio Castellanos Moya
Guatemala: Miguel Ángel Asturias, Augusto Monterroso
México: Juan García Ponce, Jorge Ibargüengoitia, José Emilio Pacheco, José Revueltas, Juan José Arreola, Mario Bellatín, Sergio Pitol
Uruguay: Mario Benedetti