José de Alencar

José de Alencar

:"For the current Vice-President of Brazil, see José Alencar".José Martiniano de Alencar (May 1, 1829 - December 12, 1877), was a Brazilian novelist. Born in Messejana, a small town near Fortaleza - Ceará, in northeast of Brazil. Alencar was the son of an important senator, José Martiniano de Alencar, and the cousin of the later, Ana Josefina de Alencar.

After earning a bachelor's degree in Law he traveled to Rio de Janeiro, and started to work for the newspapers "Correio Mercantil" and "Diário do Rio de Janeiro". At that time, "Correio Mercantil" employed other important Brazilian writers like Machado de Assis and Joaquim Manuel de Macedo. After being prevented from publishing certain articles in the Correio, Alencar and some of his friends bought the "Diário do Rio de Janeiro", where the novelist published his first romances, "Cinco Minutos" (1856) and "A viuvinha" (1857).

Following the partial success of the first writings, Alencar published "O Guarany" (1857), acquiring nationwide fame. "O Guarani" was the first of a trilogy about the Brazilian natives - the other two are "Iracema" (1865) and "Ubirajara" (1874). In those books the native is dressed as his European counterpart, the medieval knight. Since Brazil had no past (as the descendants of European immigrants thought), the solution was to create a national mythology that adapted European manners to tropical values. However this reading is conservative and has become rather outdated, as many recent studies have shown.

Alencar's grand project was to affirm the independence of Brazil in all fields . A nationalist, Alencar was misunderstood by his contemporaries when he advocated the literary use of a truly national language, despite the common use of the Portuguese language in Brazil without changes. He also defended nationalism in many other ways and in many other fields. Two famous rivals of Alencar were Antônio Gonçalves Dias and Joaquim Nabuco.

In 1860 Alencar entered politics as a delegate from Rio de Janeiro to Brazil's congress. In 1877 he was summoned to be a minister by Emperor Pedro II. But in the same year, Alencar was diagnosed with tuberculosis, and died in Rio de Janeiro after an unsuccessful attempt to cure himself in Europe.

Pseudonyms: AC; Senio; G.M.; Erasmo; J. de Al; Job; Um Asno; Ig; Serio.

Works

Novels

Urban or Costums novels

* "Cinco minutos", 1856
* "A viuvinha", 1857
* "Lucíola", 1862
* "Diva", 1864
* "A pata da gazela", 1870
* "Sonhos d'ouro", 1872
* "Senhora", 1875
* "Encarnação", 1893 - postmortem edition

Unclassified novel

* "Os contrabandistas", 1844

Historical novels

* "As minas de prata"; the first part, 1865 and the second part, 1866
* "Alfarrábios", 1873
* "A guerra dos mascates"; the first part, 1871 and the second part, 1873

Regional novels

* "O gaúcho", 1870
* "O sertanejo", 1875

Rural novels

* "O tronco do ipê", 1871
* "Til", 1872

Indigenist novels

* "O Guarany", 1857
* "Iracema", 1865
* "Ubirajara", 1874

Plays

* O Crédito, play, 1857
* Verso e reverso, play, 1857
* As asas de um anjo, play, 1858
* O demônio familiar, play, 1858
* Mãe, play, 1860
* A Expiação, play, 1867
* O Jesuíta, play, 1875

Other works

* Cartas sobre a confederação dos Tamoios, 1856
* O Marquez de Paraná: traços biograficos: publicados no Diario, 1856
* A noite de São João, lyric comedy, 1860
* Escabiosa (sensitiva), 1863
* Os Filhos de Tupã, poetry, 1863
* Ao Imperador: cartas politicas de Erasmo, first compilation of political letters, November 17, 1865 until January 24, 1866
* Ao Marquez de Olinda - Erasmo, 1866
* Ao Imperador: cartas politicas de Erasmo, second compilation of political letters, June 4, 1867
* Ao Imperador: cartas politicas de Erasmo, third compilation of political letters, March, 1868
* Discussão do voto de graças, speech, August 9, 1869
* A alma de Lázaro, 1873
* Como e porque sou romancista, 1873
* O ermitão da Glória, chronicle, 1873?
* O garatuja, 1873 (Ernst Mahle in 2006 write an opera based on novel, "O Garatuja")
* Voto de graças, 1873
* Ao correr da pena, compilation of chronicles, 1874
* O nosso cancioneiro, 1874

References

*Peloggio, Marcelo. [http://www.scielo.br/pdf/alea/v6n1/a07v06n1.pdf José de Alencar: um historiador à sua maneira.] "Alea", Jan./June 2004, vol.6, no.1, p.81-95. ISSN 1517-106X. (Abstract in English)

External links

* [http://www.cervantesvirtual.com/portal/FBN/biografias/jose_alencar/index.shtml Biography of José de Alencar - Portuguese]
* [http://educaterra.terra.com.br/literatura/ Brazilian Literature Overview - Portuguese]
* [http://tropicalgothic.com/ Tropical Gothic (University of East Anglia, MA thesis) - English]
*pt icon [http://www.dominiopublico.gov.br/pesquisa/PesquisaObraForm.do?select_action=&co_autor=71 José de Alencar's books]


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