Onetti, Juan Carlos

Onetti, Juan Carlos,

1909–94, Uruguayan novelist and short story writer, b. Montevideo. One of the great 20th-century Latin American novelists, Onetti wrote of the dissipation of modern urban society, the listlessness, alienation, and existential angst of his protagonists. Many of his works are set in the fictional coastal city of Santa Maria, and his fantastical characters often project an absurdist outlook on life. Onetti worked as a journalist beginning in the 1930s, in Montevideo and then (1943–55) in Buenos Aires. After returning to Montevideo, he became director of its municipal libraries (1957–75), and in the 1960s was editor of the left-wing journal Marcha. Jailed briefly in 1974 by the Uruguayan military government, he emigrated (1975) to Spain and became (1978) a Spanish citizen. His early novella The Pit (1939, tr. 1991) is often regarded as the first modern Latin-American novel and a precursor of magic realismmagic realism,
primarily Latin American literary movement that arose in the 1960s. The term has been attributed to the Cuban writer Alejo Carpentier, who first applied it to Latin-American fiction in 1949.
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. Onetti's novels include No Man's Land (1941, tr. 1994), A Brief Life (1950, tr. 1976), A Grave with No Name (1959, tr. 1992), The Shipyard (1961, tr. 1968, 1992), and Bodysnatcher (1964, tr. 1991). A selection of his short stories were translated into English as Goodbyes and Stories (1990) and his complete stories were translated as A Dream Come True (2019).
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Olivarez, Carlos Onetti, Juan Carlos Orphee, Elvira