Munoz, Braulio 1946-

views updated

Munoz, Braulio 1946-

PERSONAL:

Born March 26, 1946, in Chimbote, Peru; came to the United States in 1968, naturalized citizen, 1978; son of Juan and Maria Munoz y Trujillo; married Nancy K. Bailey (a registered nurse), February 15, 1969; children: Kevin, Michele. Education: University of Rhode Island, B.A., 1973; University of Pennsylvania, M.A., 1974, Ph.D., 1977.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Swarthmore, PA. Office—Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Swarthmore College, 500 College Ave., Swarthmore, PA 19081-1397. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Writer, journalist, educator. Civil Construction Workers' Union, Chimbote, Peru, secretary general, 1963-64; radio announcer and journalist, 1964-66; La antorcha (semi-weekly newspaper), Chimbote, editor and publisher, 1966; theater actor in Chimbote, 1966-68; European correspondent for Peruvian newspapers; University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, teaching fellow in sociology, 1974-77; Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, PA, began as assistant professor of sociology, became Eugene M. Lang professor of sociology, 1978—, chair of social sciences division, 1986-89, chair of sociology and anthropology department, 1997-2002, chair of Latin American studies, 2003-04, chair of interdisciplinary minors, 2005. Sociology instructor at colleges and universities, including Philadelphia College of Art, Temple University, Pennsylvania State University, and Rutgers University, 1976—; University of Pennsylvania, teaching fellow, 1974-75; Rollings College, Alfred J. Hanna Distinguished Visiting Scholar, 1982, 1990, Alfred J. Hanna Distinguished Chair, 1985; Hamilton College, distinguished visiting scholar, 1989. President of Youth Convention, Chimbote, 1966.

AWARDS, HONORS:

Scholarship from Encampment for Citizenship, for Puerto Rico, 1966; Mellon fellowship, Swarthmore College, 1982; Brand Blanschard faculty fellowship, Swarthmore College, 1989; faculty research grants, Swarthmore College, 1989-2003.

WRITINGS:

Sons of the Wind: The Search for Identity in Spanish American Indian Literature, Rutgers University Press (Piscataway, NJ), 1982.

Tensions in Social Theory: Groundwork for a Future Moral Sociology, Loyola University Press (Chicago, IL), 1993.

A Storyteller: Mario Vargas Llosa between Civilization and Barbarism, Rowman & Littlefield (Lanham, MD), 2000.

Alejandro y los pescadores de Tancay (novel), Andrea Lippolis (Messina, Italy) 2004, 2nd edition, Uladech (Chimbote, Peru), 2005, 3rd edition, Marea Cultural (Chimbote, Peru), 2006.

The Peruvian Notebooks (novel), University of Arizona Press (Tucson, AZ), 2006.

Author's works have been translated into Italian and Spanish.

Contributor to books, including Rationality, Relativism and the Human Sciences, edited by Joseph Margolis, Michael Krausz, and R.M. Burian, Nijhoff (Dordrecht, Netherlands), 1986; Latin American and Caribbean Studies, edited by Paula Covington, Greenwood Press, 1992; César Vallejo: Su tiempo y su obra, edited by Fernando Rosas Moscoso, University of Lima Press (Lima, Peru), 1994; Sociedad y expansión: Dominio de espacios geográficos, edited by Fernando Rosas Moscoso, University of Lima Press (Lima, Peru), 1994; Diccionario Enciclopédico de las Letras de América Latina, Fundación Biblioteca Ayacucho (Caracas, Venezuela), 1995; Historia, Cultura e Identidades Latinoamericanas, Universidad de Lima Press (Lima, Peru), 1995; Actas: Il symposium de historia maritíma y naval iberoamericana, Universidad Marítima de Chile, 1996; Del discurso colonial al proindigenismo: Ensayos de Historia Latinoamericana, edited by Jorge Pinto Rodriguez, Universidad de la Frontera (Temuco, Chile), 1996; and Actas: Il Cenvenio di studi su texto, metodo, e elaborazione elettronica, Andrea Lippolis Editori (Messina-Milazo, Italy), 2002. Contributor of articles and reviews to sociology journals in the United States and Peru, including Theory, Culture, and Society, Comparative Civilizations Review, Americas, and Humanity and Society.

SIDELIGHTS:

A sociology professor, Peruvian-born Braulio Munoz has written books on literature and social history. His first volume, Sons of the Wind: The Search for Identity in Spanish American Indian Literature, looks at Latin American history from the viewpoint of its indigenous people. Munoz once told CA: "To paraphrase Walter Benjamin, one writes books because those already written are found wanting. What prompted me to write Sons of the Wind was the almost total neglect of the Indians' point of view in the understanding of Latin American culture. As I delved deeper into the matter, it became clear to me why this was the case: even those who supposedly wanted to defend and liberate the Indian ultimately ended up by demanding his cultural death. Thus, despite all rhetoric to the contrary, ‘Indigenismo,’ the socio-literary movement from 1920 to 1960 that set out to save the Indian, was one of the most successful efforts to eliminate Indian culture in Latin America. Although I believe it to be almost too late as far as the Indians are concerned, my book was meant to bring to the level of consciousness this aspect of Latin American culture that has been consistently repressed over the years."

Munoz further investigates literary themes with his A Storyteller: Mario Vargas Llosa between Civilization and Barbarism, in which he examines the work of the Peruvian novelist and also the man's connection to Peruvian society. According to World Literature Today reviewer Fernando Valerio-Holguin, "Munoz analyzes the many contradictions found in Vargas Llosa as a writer, critic, and politico." The same critic went on to find A Storyteller "a significant contribution to our understanding of the ‘psychocultural sediments’ hidden in Mario Vargas Llosa's writing."

Munoz's 2006 novel, The Peruvian Notebooks, deals with the topic of immigration. Munoz follows the fortunes of a Peruvian immigrant, who, like Munoz himself, came to the United States in search of a better life. Antonio Alday Guitierrez has been in the United States for more than two decades, having crossed the Rio Grande to reach his goal. He refashions himself as Anthony Allday in his adopted country, but his dreams of great success come to nothing, and he is merely a night watchman at a mall. His letters home to his family, however, portray a much more successful life for Anthony. Then, tragedy strikes when a cousin from Peru comes to visit. For Joshua Valocchi, writing in the Philadelphia Weekly Online, The Peruvian Notebooks was a "gripping story fueled by illusion and deception." Similarly, Booklist reviewer Hazel Rochman noted that "tension builds inexorably to the shocking climax," while a Publishers Weekly contributor concluded: "The book is richest when relating details of American life through the eyes of a bewildered newcomer in the early 1970s."

Munoz told CA: "It is impossible to separate facts from values or science from a moral position. The meaningful question is not whether the separation is possible but rather what is the best or correct way to understand the relationship."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Americas, May-June, 1982, review of Sons of the Wind: The Search for Identity in Spanish American Indian Literature.

Booklist, September 1, 2006, Hazel Rochman, review of The Peruvian Notebooks, p. 57.

Choice, July 1, 2000, J.J. Hassett, review of A Storyteller: Mario Vargas Llosa between Civilization and Barbarism, p. 1986.

Contemporary Sociology, May, 1994, Mark S. Cladis, review of Tensions in Social Theory: Groundwork for a Future Moral Sociology, p. 461.

Library Journal, October 15, 1982, Lawrence Olszewski, review of Sons of the Wind, p. 1990.

Publishers Weekly, August 14, 2006, review of The Peruvian Notebooks, p. 180.

World Literature Today, January, 2001, Fernando Valerio-Holguin, review of A Storyteller, p. 181.

ONLINE

Philadelphia Weekly Online,http://www.philadelphiaweekly.com/ (January 24, 2007), Joshua Valocchi, review of The Peruvian Notebooks.

Tucson Weekly Online,http://www.tucsonweekly.com/ (November 30, 2006), Jeffrey Stoffer, "Dream Destroyed," review of The Peruvian Notebooks.

Swarthmore College, Department of Sociology and Anthropology Web site,http://www.swarthmore.edu/ (July 14, 2007), "Braulio Munoz."

About this article

Munoz, Braulio 1946-

Updated About encyclopedia.com content Print Article Share Article