Gabriel Garcia Marquez

García Márquez, Gabriel

Gabriel García Márquez (gäbrēĕl´ gärsē´ä mär´kās), 1927–2014, Colombian novelist, short-story writer, and journalist, b. Aracataca. Widely considered one of the great Latin American masters of narrative and one of the finest literary stylists of the 20th cent., García Márquez won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1982. Drawing on his own history and that of his family, town, and nation and reflecting the influence of writers such as Jorges Luis Borges, Miguel Angel Asturias, and Alejo Carpentier, his fiction focuses on the physical and moral travail of coastal Colombia, which is given universal meaning in his books. He began his literary career while a law student in Barranquilla, earning a sparse living writing for local newspapers while also publishing stories in local magazines. He left Colombia in the late 1950s and subsequently lived in many places, from 1961 on mainly in Mexico City.

His two masterpieces One Hundred Years of Solitude (1967, tr. 1970), his best-known work and the one that vaulted him to international fame, and Love in the Time of Cholera (1985, tr. 1988), present his central themes of violence, solitude, time, memory, and the overwhelming human need for love. García Márquez's style marks a high point in Latin American magic realism; it is rich and lucid, mixing reality and fantasy. Among his 15 other works of fiction are Leaf Storm and Other Stories (1955, tr. 1972), No One Writes to the Colonel and Other Stories (1958, tr. 1968), Innocent Erendira and Other Stories (1972, tr. 1978), The Autumn of the Patriarch (1975, tr. 1976), The General in His Labyrinth (1989, tr. 1990), Of Love and Other Demons (1994, tr. 1995), and Memories of My Melancholy Whores (2004, tr. 2005). His nonfiction work News of a Kidnapping (1996, tr. 1997) chronicles drug-related abductions in Colombia. Living to Tell the Tale (2002, tr. 2003) is the first volume of a projected three-volume autobiography that García Márquez did not complete.

See P. A. Mendoza, The Fragrance of Guava: Conversations with Gabriel Garcia Márquez (1982); biography by G. Martin (2009); I. Stavans, Gabriel García Márquez: The Early Years (2010); studies by G. R. McMurray, ed. (1987), B. McGuirle and R. A. Cardwell, ed. (1987), J. Ortega, ed. (1988), K. McNerney (1989), M. Wood (1990), H. Oberhelman (1991), M. Bell (1993), R. Fiddian, ed. (1995), J. Mellen (2000), C. Kline (2002), H. Bloom, ed. (rev. ed. 2007), and P. Swanson, ed. (2010).

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright© 2018, The Columbia University Press.

Gabriel Garcia Marquez: Selected full-text books and articles

García Márquez: The Man and His Work By Gene H. Bell-Villada University of North Carolina Press, 2010 (2nd edition)
Gabriel Garcia Marquez By Harold Bloom Chelsea House, 1999
Librarian's tip: This is a book of literary criticism
Gabriel García Márquez: A Biography By Rubén Pelayo Greenwood Press, 2009
Theoretical Fables: The Pedagogical Dream in Contemporary Latin American Fiction By Alicia Borinsky University of Pennsylvania Press, 1993
Librarian's tip: Chap. 3 "Intelligence and Its Neighbors: Gabriel Garcia Marquez"
Culture and Customs of Colombia By Raymond Leslie Williams; Kevin G. Guerrieri Greenwood Press, 1999
Librarian's tip: Chap. 7 "Gabriel Garcia Marquez: The Writer and the Man"
Atrocity and Amnesia: The Political Novel since 1945 By Robert Boyers Oxford University Press, 1987
Librarian's tip: Chap. 5 "The Head of State and the Politics of Eternal Return in Latin America"
Latin American Journalism By Michael B. Salwen; Bruce Garrison Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1991
Librarian's tip: Chap. 4 "New World Information and Communication Order"
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