Rubião, Murilo (1916–1991)

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Rubião, Murilo (1916–1991)

Murilo Rubião (b. 1 July 1916; d. 16 September 1991), Brazilian author. Born in Carmo, Minas Gerais, Rubião earned a degree in law and in 1939 became an editor at the newspaper Folha de Minas. One year later, with the publication of his short story "Elvira e outros mistérios" (Elvira and Other Mysteries), he initiated his literary career, which was to be interrupted several times by his many other activities. He became a cabinet officer for Juscelino Kubitschek at the time the future president of Brazil was governor of Minas Gerais. In 1947 Rubião published his first book of short stories, O ex-mágico (The Ex-Magician); after six years a second book appeared, A estrela vermelha (The Red Star). Subsequent publications followed at extended intervals. Among the reasons given by the author for the sparsity of his creative output was his own dissatisfaction with his work; he apparently destroyed many pieces before they were sent to print.

In 1956 Rubião was nominated cultural attaché for the Brazilian embassy in Madrid, where he served for four years. Returning to Brazil, he resumed his duties with the state government, and in 1966 became editor in chief of the literary supplement to the newspaper Minas Gerais. Rubião published a total of six books during his lifetime. The most prominent was O pirotécnico Zacarias (Zacarias, the Fireworks Maker, 1974). Rubião's work contains elements of the surreal and the fantastic. His fictional construct leans to a great extent upon dreams and hallucinations; his characters are most often presented as victims of insanity. Through portrayals of extreme isolation, his work conveys a critical sense of life's absurdities.

See alsoLiterature: Brazil .


Davi Arrigucci, Jr., Preface to O pirotécnico Zacarias (1974).

Jorge Schwartz, "Obra muriliana—Do fantástico como máscara" (preface to O convidado) (1974), and Murilo Rubião: A poética do uroboro (1981).

Additional Bibliography

Bastos, Hermenegildo. Literatura e colonialismo: Rotas de navegação e comércio no fantástico de Murilo Rubião. Brasília: Editora Universidade de Brasília: Editora Plano: Oficina Editorial, Instituto de Letras, 2001.

                                        Regina Igel