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The Labyrinth of Solitude

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Octavio Paz has long been acknowledged as Mexico's foremost writer and critic. In this international classic, Paz has written one of the most enduring and powerful works ever created on Mexico and its people, character, and culture. Compared to Ortega y Gasset's The Revolt of the Masses for its trenchant analysis, this collection contains his most famous work, "The Labyrinth of Solitude," a beautifully written and deeply felt discourse on Mexico's quest for identity that gives us an unequaled look at the country ...
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Overview

Octavio Paz has long been acknowledged as Mexico's foremost writer and critic. In this international classic, Paz has written one of the most enduring and powerful works ever created on Mexico and its people, character, and culture. Compared to Ortega y Gasset's The Revolt of the Masses for its trenchant analysis, this collection contains his most famous work, "The Labyrinth of Solitude," a beautifully written and deeply felt discourse on Mexico's quest for identity that gives us an unequaled look at the country hidden behind "the mask." Also included are "The Other Mexico," "Return to the Labyrinth of Solitude," "Mexico and the United States," and "The Philanthropic Ogre," all of which develop the themes of the title essay and extend his penetrating commentary to the United States and Latin America. Winner of the 1990 Nobel Prize for Literature, and past recipient of the Jerusalem Prize, the Frankfurt Peace Prize, and the Neustadt Prize, Octavio Paz is the author of more than twenty-five books of poetry and prose. In addition to being a poet, essayist, playwright, social philosopher, and critic, he has also served as a Mexican diplomat in France and Japan, and as Mexican ambassador to India.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780141188478
  • Publisher: Penguin Books, Limited (UK)
  • Publication date: 6/28/2008

Table of Contents

Preface 5
The Labyrinth of Solitude 7
The Pachuco and Other Extremes 9
Mexican Masks 29
The Day of the Dead 47
The Sons of La Malinche 65
The Conquest and Colonialism 89
From Independence to the Revolution 117
The Mexican Intelligentsia 151
The Present Day 175
The Dialectic of Solitude 195
The Other Mexico 213
Note 215
Olympics and Tlatelolco 221
Development and Other Mirages 238
Critique of the Pyramid 284
Return to the Labyrinth of Solitude 327
Mexico and the United States 355
The Philanthropic Ogre 377
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2004

    Excellent book!!!

    A very profound book, yet it is not pretentious. Unlike other authors, Octavio Paz reaches and delivers to us both style and substance in this great book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 13, 2004

    Hommage to the late great Man of Letters

    Octavio Paz wrote the definitive sociological book that deciphered the Mexican character. He correctly diagnosed that, in fact, the Mexican was stuck in a labyrinth and condemned to find a way out, and in many respects is still trying to find that way out. He understood that he would receive harsh criticism and he did. However, he stayed true to his calling as a man of letters and delivered a book that must indeed be read by anyone wanting to understand the make-up of the Mexican or the serious scholar searching for understanding in the field of Mexican history. I strongly and without reservation recommend this book, it will change your outlook on this important country and most importantly on the inhabitants and descendants of it forever.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 19, 2001

    A triple classic for lovers of Mexico

    This is one of the best (if not the best) books on the Mexican character ever written. Besides including Ridings wonderful insights which help further illuminate Paz's classic work, the book also has literary appeal, fine poetry and clear translations. I first heard of this book when reading Michael Hogan's insightful 'Mexican Mornings' which contains, among other things, Paz's delightfully humorous analysis of the verb 'chingar' and all its permutations. This is a book to keep on your shelf for a long, long time. If you lend it out, make sure they sign in blood.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2009

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