- Esteban Echeverría
Esteban Echeverría (
September 2, 1805– January 19, 1851) was an Argentine poet, fictionwriter, cultural promoter, and political activist who played a significant role in the development of Argentine literature, not only through his own writings but also through his organizational efforts. He was one of Latin America's most important Romantic authors.
Echeverría spent five decisive years in
Paris(1825 to 1830), where he absorbed the spirit of the Romantic Movement, then in its heyday in France. He became one of the movement's promoters once he returned to Argentina. Once he returned to Buenos Aires, he wrote "Los Consuelos" in 1834 and "Pumas" in 1837. He was a member of the group of young Argentine intellectuals who in 1838 organized the "Asociación de Mayo" ("May Association", after the May Revolutionthat initiated Argentina's move towards independence). This institution aspired to develop a national literature responsive to the country's social and physical reality. Echeverría also devoted himself to the overthrow of the " caudillo" of Buenos Aires, Juan Manuel de Rosas. In 1840 he was forced to go into exilein nearby Uruguay, where he wrote "La Insurrección del Sur" and "El Matadero". He remained in Uruguay until his death in 1851.
Echeverría's renown as a writer rests largely on his powerful short story "El matadero" ("The Slaughterhouse," written in 1839 but not published until 1871), a landmark in the history of Latin American literature. It is mostly significant because it displays the perceived clash between "civilization and barbarism", that is, between the European and the "primitive and violent" American ways.
Domingo Faustino Sarmiento, another great Argentine writer and thinker, saw this clash as the core of Latin American culture. Read in this light, "The Slaughterhouse" is a political allegory. Its more specific intention was to accuse Rosas of protecting the kind of thugs who murder the cultivated young protagonist at the Buenos Aires slaughterhouse. Rosas and his henchmen stand for barbarism, the slain young man for civilization.
Echeverría's "La cautiva" ("The Captive"), a long narrative poem about a white woman abducted by
MapucheIndians, is also among the better-known works of 19th century Latin American literature.
Esteban Echeverría Partido
Esteban Echeverría Partidois a district in Gran Buenos Aires, Argentina. It was founded on April 9 1913and named in honour of Echeverría.
* [http://es.wikisource.org/wiki/El_matadero "El matadero"]
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