Macedo, Joaquim Manuel de (1820–1882)

views updated

Macedo, Joaquim Manuel de (1820–1882)

Joaquim Manuel de Macedo (b. 24 June 1820; d. 11 April 1882), Brazilian novelist. Joaquim Manuel de Macedo was not the first Brazilian to publish novels, but he was the great popularizer of the genre in the nation's literature. His two earliest novels, A moreninha (1844) and O moco loiro (1845), achieved enormous popularity; indeed, A moreninha is still widely read and enjoyed in Brazil, particularly by adolescent readers. Macedo's sentimental tales of adventure and romance never challenged established social norms; after a good many implausible plot devices, his aristocratic young heros and heroines always manage to find precisely the mates society and family would have chosen for them. The primary value of his texts is their detailed documentation of upper-class mores in Imperial Rio de Janeiro. (Macedo was tutor to the children of Princess Isabel.) Macedo continued to publish fiction after O moco loiro, but his skills as a novelist did not develop and his reputation as a writer was increasingly overshadowed by that of José de Alencar. The most interesting of Macedo's later works, none of which attracted the audience his earliest novels had enjoyed, is As vítimas-algozes (1869), a collection of three anti-slavery novellas.

See alsoLiterature: Brazil .


Antônio Cândido, "O honrado e facundo Joaquim Manuel de Macedo," in Formação da Literatura Brasileira, 5th ed. (1975), vol. 2, pp. 136-145.

José Antônio Pereira Ribeiro, O universo romântico de Joaquim Manoel de Macedo (1987).

Additional Bibliography

Mattos, Selma Rinaldi de. O Brasil em lições: A história como disciplina escolar em Joaquim Manuel de Macedo. Rio de Janeiro: Access Editora, 2000.

Serra, Tania Rebelo Costa. Joaquim Manuel de Macedo, ou, Os Dois Macedos: A luneta mágica do II Reinado. Brasília: Editora UnB, 2004.

                                        David T. Haberly