CSU English’s celebration of Hispanic Heritage month would be amiss if we did not mention Gabriel García Márquez. In and outside of the literary world, Márquez is an impressive figure.
Márquez was born in 1927 in a coastal Colombian village, where he lived with his maternal grandparents until he left for school in the 1940s. After graduating secondary school, he attended law school near Bogota, the capital of Colombia. However, he was never able to finish his degree due to riots prompting the school to close, so he hit the road again, this time to become a journalist.
Márquez jumped between jobs and locations for years, attempting to strike the delicate balance of keeping his family afloat while also allowing himself the room to write creatively. Márquez and his family teetered until the mid 1960s, when he finally wrote the book that catapulted him to fame — One Hundred Years of Solitude. In Solitude, Márquez draws on his experience as a Colombian man living in a time of political strife and mixes it with captivating magical realism.
And thus, the life of Gabriel García Márquez truly began. His accomplishments as an author, journalist, and political activist are many. In 1982, we was awarded the Nobel Prize for “his novels and short stories, in which the fantastic and the realistic are combined in a richly composed world of imagination, reflecting a continent’s life and conflicts,” (nobelprize.org). Márquez served as a father of fiction in Latin America and was beloved across the continent. In fact, his 80th birthday party was attended by the king and queen of Spain as well as five Colombian presidents. If only CSU English had been invited too.