How is This a Translation Issue?

True enough, but this happens regardless of whether we’re reading translations or books produced within our own nations.

This attitude remains even today. Ask many otherwise well-read people about Latin American literature, and they’re likely to respond with something along the lines of, “Oh, I love Magical Realism.” Chilean writer Alberto Fuguet learned this in an unfortunate way when he visited the International Writers Workshop at the University of Iowa in the early 1990s. One of his stories was rejected by The Iowa Review on the basis that it wasn’t “Latin American enough.” Heaven forbid his story might very well have taken place in Los Estados Unidos. The experience provoked Fuguet and friend Sergio Gómez to curate the McCondo anthology — McDonald’s meets Macondo — a collection of 19 writers from Latin America and Spain seeking to represent an aesthetic that better represented modern day realities in their countries. Likewise, in 1996, a cohort of Mexican authors published The Crack Manifesto, a battle cry for Latin American writers to break with the pervading Magical Realism and return to the complex styles of Borges and Cortazár. When we consider that the McCondo and Crack Movements were still necessary 30 years after the publication of One Hundred Years of Solitude, we can begin to see just how large one aesthetic can loom.

Recent Posts

Criticism Isn't Free

CR is dedicated to thoughtful, in-depth criticism without regard to what's commercially appealing. It takes tens of hours each month to provide this. Please help make this sort of writing sustainable, either with a subscription or a one-time donation. Thank you!

You could also purchase one of my acclaimed ebooks.


Got Something To Say:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


I cannot get over this stupid typo: “McCondo”

Agreed, dumbest review of South American lit I’ve seen in a long time.

Nothing like scrolling through long historical summaries of stuff we already to find the part about the book they’re supposed to be reviewing.

The title of this post furnishes a fine example of semantic ambiguity.


The Surrender is Veronica Scott Esposito’s “collection of facts” concerning how she embraced her true gender.


Two long essays of 10,000 words each on sex in—and out of—literature . . .

The first essay dives in to Nicholson Baker’s “sex trilogy,” explaining just what Baker is up to here and why these books ultimately fail to be as sexy as Baker might wish.

From there the book moves on to the second essay, which explains just why Spaniard Javier Marías does right what Baker does wrong . . .


5 essays. 2 interviews.

All in all, over 25,000 words of Latin American literary goodness.

3 never-before-published essays, including “The Digression”—a 4,000-word piece on the most important digression in César Aira’s career.

Shop though these links = Support this site

Copyright © 2018. Powered by WordPress & Romangie Theme.