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Mistral

Book Tips - Gabriela Mistral

The Nobel Prize in Literature 1945 was awarded to Gabriela Mistral "for her lyric poetry which, inspired by powerful emotions, has made her name a symbol of the idealistic aspirations of the entire Latin American world".

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Croquis Mexicanos (Mexican Sketches)

As a former schoolteacher and journalist who was also a poet and diplomat, Mistral had a deep knowledge of Mexico, where she was invited to collaborate in the post-Revolutionary educational reform of 1922-1924 by Mexican education minister Jose Vasconcelos. Mistral, then aged 33, had never been outside of Chile before, but she turned her full attention to the peoples, cultures, customs, arts and politics of Mexico. She reveals the extraordinary moments that Mexico was living as artists and writers from throughout the land, and in many cases from abroad, sought to document this remarkable moment in the history of a nation with a long, much evident indigenous and colonial past, to create awareness of the future, and to indicate the need for arts and cultures to form an important part of any readers' consciousness. Gabriela Mistral continued to write about Mexico throughout her many travels and long career. In 1948-1950 she returned to Mexico where she again described the changes that the intervening decades had brought. Mistral has a clear eye that sees to the depth of peoples and places; she is also extremely well-informed, and her writing is clear, brief, conversational, yet full of emotion.
/Elizabeth Horan, United States

Desolación

It is awfully sad it is a clamour of despair from the womb of a woman who could never be fully a mother.
/Alfredo, Chile

Magisterio y niño

It is an excellent book, because it shows us a Mistral writer and not like poetry.
/Franco Sciolla, Chile

Platero and I: an Andalusian Elegy (Platero y yo: elegía andaluza)

It was one of the first books I read in Spanish. And over the years each time I read I can apply it to my life - how we change, the meanings change, but Jimenez knew this!
/Harriet Ann Burr, United States

Tala

Extraordinary wide-ranging poetry, providing a sense of the deep and broad experience of the lands and peoples of Latin America, and of Mediterranean Europe seen from the perspective of this Chilean woman, the first Latin American to win the Nobel Prize in Literature. Reveals a human side to the modern histories of Mexico and Spain, between the Mexican Revolution and the Spanish Civil War, events that the poet knew intimately from living in these lands. Communicates compassion for human geography and deep experience of the complex cultural ecology of the Americas.
/Elizabeth Horan, United States
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