R. I. P Carlos!

Mexican novelist, Carlos Fuentes, died yesterday. He was 83. It’s sad when you hear about a novelist for the first time on the occasion of their death. I took a quick survey of his novels, and I’m adding his novel, Diana, The Goddess Who Hunts Aloneto a summer reading list that I’ve kicked off with the mind-twisting journal of Allen Ginsberg, Journals: Early Fifties, Early Sixties. I’m settling on Diana partly because of all the controversy it’s attracted over the years. The novel is a story about the affair Fuentes claimed to have had with American actress Jean Seberg. Since the novel came out in 1994, people have claimed that he exaggerated things. NY Daily Times sums it up nicely in a quote by NY Times‘ Paul Theroux:

It is as though with ‘Diana’ Mr. Fuentes is trying to make himself a footnote to history, since, in the thundering herd of Seberg’s lovers, he was lost in the shuffle. Read More…

Fuentes is not the only one that’s been accused of wanting to make himself a footnote to history, in a fictionalized memoir. Wole Soyinka received similar criticism after he published You Must Set Forth at Dawn and portrayed himself as some kind of super hero of world affairs. Either way, I think novelists, because they produce cultural objects, are always already darlings of history.

R.I.P Carlos!


L A Times Obituary

New York Times

UK Guardian

Tags: , , ,

I'm finishing up a phd at Duke University where I study African novels, which I believe are some of the loveliest things ever written. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

No comments yet.

Leave a Reply

Binyavanga Wainaina Has Suffered a Stroke and Needs Our Help


In a previous post announcing the #westandbybinyavanga fundraising event in Lagos, I noted that I didn’t know enough about Wainaina […]

Here is How to Support the #WeStandWithBinyavanga Fundraising


I’m not privy to all the details about Binyavanga Wainaina’s illness. So I’ve cut and pasted Lola Shoneyin’s Facebook post […]

Wall Street Journal Unveils the Face Behind Africa’s Most Anticipated Novel


Imbolo Mbue burst into the limelight late last year after signing a million dollar deal with Random House for her […]

Chibundu Onuzo’s Childhood is, Of Course, a Booklover’s Dream


The super-adorable little girl in this photograph is the Nigerian author Chibundu Onuzo. The Guardian posted the photo a while […]

Hitmaid | by Nicholas Rawhani | An African Story


After Robot. The Houghton streets are a peculiar place in the morning. Taxi-loads of pastel dressed women walk into houses […]

Choices and Diet Coke | by Tobie Ogufere | African Poetry

I feel coke

At this point, i should play it cool and tell it like it is… What good did that ever do […]