Samper, José María (1828–1888)

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Samper, José María (1828–1888)

José María Samper (b. 31 March 1828; d. 22 July 1888), Colombian writer. Samper came from a mercantile family of Honda, Tolima. He received his law doctorate in Bogotá, in 1846, and plunged into politics. In his early years a Liberal with romantic socialist ideas, he began, after his second marriage (1855), to move toward more traditional political views, culminating in his return to Catholicism in 1865. Samper's abandonment of his earlier principles (added to a difficult personality) resulted in his effective exclusion from major political office until a decade before his death. It also meant that he had to earn a living by writing. His production was enormous. Poetry, drama, essays, editorials, novels, travel accounts, history, and legal treatises flowed from his pen. His autobiography, Historia de un alma … 1834 a 1881 (1881), remains a classic; so does his play Un alcalde a la antigua y dos primos a la moderna (1856). His reportage, El sitio de Cartagena de 1885 (1885), and his Ensayos sobre las revoluciones políticas de las repúblicas colombianas (1861) are Colombian literary treasures. Samper represented Colombia in the Netherlands and Belgium (1858–1863) and in Argentina (1884). He also served several terms as a congressman. He died in Anapaima, Cundinamarca.

See alsoLiterature: Spanish America; López, José Hilario.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Frank M. Duffey, The Early Cuadro de Costumbres in Colombia (1956), pp. 102-106.

Harold E. Hinds, Jr., "José María Samper: The Thought of a Nineteenth-Century New Granadan during His Radical-Liberal Years (1845–1865)" (Ph.D. diss., Vanderbilt University, 1976).

Helen Delpar, Red Against Blue (1981), pp. 47-48, 59-60, 62-63.

Additional Bibliography

Manrique, Marco Antonio, and Alvaro Ucrós M. "Apuntes sobre el pensamiento filosófico-político de José Ma. Samper." Franciscanum 31:93 (September-December 1989): 237-258.

Vásquez Carrizoza, Alfredo. "José María Samper: Su vida de escritor y la Regeneración dirigida por Rafael Núñez en 1886." Boletín de Historia y Antigüedades 86:807 (October-December 1999): 1037-1062.

                                    J. LeÓn Helguera

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Samper, José María (1828–1888)

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