Selected Writings of Andres Bello

Selected Writings of Andres Bello

Selected Writings of Andres Bello

Selected Writings of Andres Bello

Synopsis

Andres Bello was a towering figure in nineteenth-century Latin America, as influential and as famous there as Thomas Jefferson is in the United States. Poet, politician, educator, essayist, philosopher, he wielded astonishing influence and played a major role in shaping the national identities of newly independent Latin American countries. He held several key government positions, authored Chile's civil code, launched several periodicals, wrote prodigiously on a vast array of subjects, and implemented important educational reforms. Available here in English for the first time, the Selected Writings of Andres Bello, edited by Ivan Jaksic, gathers wide-ranging selections that explore such subjects as grammar and philology, constitutional reform, the aims of education, international relations, historiography, Latin and Roman Law, government and society, and many others. The Selected Writings of Andres Bello gives us a generous sampling of a gifted thinker who must be included in any understanding of the origins and development of Latin America.

Excerpt

The Library of Latin America series makes available in translation major nineteenth-century authors whose work has been neglected in the English-speaking world. The titles for the translations from the Spanish and Portuguese were suggested by an editorial committee that included Jean Franco (general editor responsible for works in Spanish), Richard Graham (series editor responsible for works in Portuguese), Tulio Halperin Donghi (at the University of California, Berkeley), Ivdn JaksiĆ (at the University of Notre Dame), Naomi Lindstrom (at the University of Texas at Austin), Francine Masiello (at the University of California, Berkeley), and Eduardo Lozano of the Library at the University of Pittsburgh. The late Antonio Cornejo Polar of the University of California, Berkeley, was also one of the founding members of the committee. The translations have been funded thanks to the generosity of the Lampadia Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

During the period of national formation between 1810 and into the early years of the twentieth century, the new nations of Latin America fashioned their identities, drew up constitutions, engaged in bitter struggles over territory, and debated questions of education, government, ethnicity, and culture. This was a unique period unlike the process of nation formation in Europe and one which should be more familiar than it is to students of comparative politics, history, and literature.

The image of the nation was envisioned by the lettered classes -- a mi-

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