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Sabers and Utopias

Sabers and Utopias

Visions of Latin America: Essays

Mario Vargas Llosa; Translated from the Spanish by Anna Kushner

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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A landmark collection of essays on the Nobel laureate’s conception of Latin America, past, present, and future

Throughout his career, the Nobel Prize winner Mario Vargas Llosa has grappled with the concept of Latin America on a global stage. Examining liberal claims and searching for cohesion, he continuously weighs the reality of the continent against the image it projects, and considers the political dangers and possibilities that face this diverse set of countries.

Now this illuminating and versatile collection assembles these never-before-translated criticisms and meditations. Reflecting the intellectual development of the writer himself, these essays distill the great events of Latin America’s recent history, analyze political groups like FARC and Sendero Luminoso, and evaluate the legacies of infamous leaders such as Papa Doc Duvalier and Fidel Castro. Arranged by theme, they trace Vargas Llosa’s unwavering demand for freedom, his embrace of and disenchantment with revolutions, and his critique of nationalism, populism, indigenism, and corruption.

From the discovery of liberal ideas to a defense of democracy, buoyed by a passionate invocation of Latin American literature and art, Sabers and Utopias is a monumental collection from one of our most important writers. Uncompromising and adamantly optimistic, these social and political essays are a paean to thoughtful engagement and a brave indictment of the discrimination and fear that can divide a society.

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Mario Vargas Llosa; Translated from the Spanish by Anna Kushner

Mario Vargas Llosa was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2010 “for his cartography of structures of power and his trenchant images of the individual’s resistance, revolt, and defeat.” He has also won the Cervantes Prize, the Spanish-speaking world’s most distinguished literary honor. His many works include The Discreet Hero, The Feast of the Goat, The Bad Girl, and Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter, all published by FSG.

Anna Kushner has translated the novels of Guillermo Rosales, Norberto Fuentes, Gonçalo M. Tavares, and Leonardo Padura.

image of Mario Vargas Llosao
Morgana Vargas Llosa

Anna Kushner

Work in Progress essay by Vargas Llosa

Learn about Vargas Llosa's Nobel Prize

Paris Review Interview with Vargas Llosa

A New York Times profile on Vargas Llosa

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

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