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Hernández, Luisa Josefina (1928–)

Hernández, Luisa Josefina (1928–)

Luisa Josefina Hernández is one of the most important and innovative playwrights of the 1950s in Mexico, alongside Emilio Carballido and Sergio Magaña. Hernández. She was born in Mexico City on November 2, 1928, and has distinguished herself not only as a dramatist but as a novelist, translator, critic, and essayist. She studied theory and dramatic composition under Rodolfo Usigli at the National Autonomous University of Mexico, and received a master's degree in theater in 1955. She earned her doctorate with a study of the religious iconography of the colonial period and eventually became the first woman to be awarded emeritus status by the same university.

Hernández began to write when she was twenty-two and has published approximately forty plays and twenty novels. Her fictional works are noted for the range of their subject matter, their stylistic and structural variety, and their ironic tone and assiduous avoidance of sentimentality. Her literary production is known for her feminist critique of the macho figure and the themes of the transcendence of anger through mysticism, and the self-realization of women, among others. In addition, she has translated German, English, French, Latin, and Greek authors, ranging from Shakespeare to Euripides to Arthur Miller to Brecht. Hernández has taught in Mexico, the United States, and several other countries.

A recipient of several major prestigious prizes for literature in Mexico, including the Xavier Villaurrutia and Juan Ruíz de Alarcón National Prizes, Hernández's more recent works are the novel Almeida (1989), and a dramatic adaptation of this novel by the same name.

See alsoCarballido, Emilio; Magaña, Sergio; Theater; Usigli, Rodolfo.


Dramatic works by Hernández

Aguardiente de Caña (1950).

Los Sordomudos (1951).

Agonía (1951).

La corona del Angel (1951).

Botica Modelo (1954); El Nacional Prize.

Afuera llueve (1952).

Los duendes (1952).

La llave del cielo (1957).

Los frutos caídos (1957); Bellas Artes Prize.

Los Huéspedes Reales (1958).

Arpas Blancas … conejos dorados (1959).

La paz ficticia (1960).

Historia de un anillo (1961).

La calle de la gran ocasión (1962).

Escándalo en Puerto Santo (1962).

Novels by Hernández

El lugar donde crece la hierba (1959).

La plaza de Puerto Santo (1961).

Los palacios desiertos (1963).

La cólera secreta (1964).

La noche exquisita (1965).

El valle que elegimos (1965).

Los trovadores (1973).

Las fuentes ocultas (1979).

Nostalgia de Troya (1986); Magda Donato Prize.

La cabalgata (1988).

Secondary Sources

Gutiérrez Estupiñán, Raquel. La realidad subterránea: Ensayo sobre la narrativa de Luisa Josefina Hernández. Tijuana: Fondo Regional para la Cultura y las Artes del Noroeste, 2000.

                                Juan Carlos Grijalva

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