Balseiro, José Agustín (1900–1992)

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Balseiro, José Agustín (1900–1992)

José Agustín Balseiro (b. 23 August 1900; d. 1992), Puerto Rican writer and professor. Balseiro earned a law degree from the University of Puerto Rico (1921), and an honorary doctorate from the Catholic University of Chile. His writings are varied. His three novels move from the biographical mode of La ruta eterna (1923) to the indictment of social ills in La gratitud humana (1969). His poetry began emphasizing love and wine (La copa de Anacreonte, 1924) and ended with love and transcendence (El ala y el beso, 1983). His best-known critical works are Novelistas españoles modernos (1933), Expresión de Hispanoamérica 2 vols. (1960–1963), and The Americas Look at Each Other (1969).

Balseiro's critical essays, his creative works, his teaching (at the University of Illinois-Urbana, Duke University, and elsewhere), and his many lectures throughout Latin America won him wide recognition, including membership in the Spanish Royal Academy, Madrid's Center of Historical Studies, Mexico's Academy of Letters, and Argentina's Sarmiento Institute. He received the Orders of Isabel la Católica (Spain) and Vasco Núñez de Balboa (Panama). Balseiro also served as Puerto Rico's senator-at-large.

See alsoLiterature: Spanish America .


Juan Enrique Colberg, Cuatro autores clásicos contemporáneos de Puerto Rico (1966); Diccionario de literatura puertorriqueña, vol. 2, pt. 1 (1974).

Nicolás Kanellos, ed., Biographical Dictionary of Hispanic Literature in the United States (1989).

Additional Bibliography

Balseiro, José Agustín. Obra selecta de José Agustín Balseiro. Rio Pedras, PR: Editorial de la Universidad de Puerto Rico, 1990.

                                       MarÍa A. Salgado