Rodríguez Monegal, Emir (1921–1985)

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Rodríguez Monegal, Emir (1921–1985)

Emir Rodríguez Monegal (b. 28 July 1921; d. 14 November 1985), Uruguayan literary critic. Rodríguez Monegal was a prodigious literary critic, author of forty books and countless articles, and "maker of writers," whose controversial career spanned five decades and three continents. He began publishing in 1943 in Marcha, a Uruguayan magazine for which he wrote until 1959. Some of his early pieces appear in Narradores de esta América, a collection of his essays published in 1969 (2d ed., 2 vols., 1974). A writer of books as well as articles, he published El juicio de los parricidas: La nueva generación argentina y sus maestros in 1956, a work that demonstrated Jorge Luis Borges's importance and also identified themes that would dominate literary debate in Latin America for the next thirty years. Other book-length studies include works on Andrés Bello, Pablo Neruda, José Enrique Rodó, and Horacio Quiroga. After an acrimonious separation from Marcha, Rodríguez Monegal left Uruguay for Paris, where in 1966 he founded Mundo Nuevo, a magazine credited with initiating the so-called boom that brought world attention to such writers as Borges, Julio Cortázar, Gabriel García Márquez, Carlos Fuentes, and Mario Vargas Llosa. Despite the magazine's extraordinary effectiveness, its Ford Foundation support led pro-Castro intellectuals to accuse Rodríguez Monegal of fronting for the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. After a bitter exchange with his accusers, he resigned his position with Mundo Nuevo, thus hastening the demise of the magazine, and accepted an influential position at Yale University in 1968. In 1984 he finally returned to Uruguay, where he received a presidential award for his intellectual contributions. He died and is buried in New Haven, Connecticut.

See alsoLiterature: Spanish America .


John P. Dwyer et al., Homenaje a Emir Rodríguez Monegal (1986).

Additional Bibliography

Moraña, Mabel, and Horacio Machín, eds. Marcha y América Latina. Pittsburgh, PA: Instituto Internacional de Literatura Iberoamericana, Universidad de Pittsburgh, 2003.

                                      Nicolas Shumway

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Rodríguez Monegal, Emir (1921–1985)

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Rodríguez Monegal, Emir (1921–1985)