This article examines the efforts of Martín Luis Guzmán (1887-1976), as both an author and publisher, to cultivate his legacy within the canon of Mexican letters. He begins this autobiographical project with a speech to the Mexican Academy of Language in 1954, "Apunte sobre una personalidad," where he links his identity as an artist to a glorified history of the Mexican Revolution. By portraying himself as a writer whose greatest work is perpetually deferred, he is able to unite his disparate literary production from the previous forty years under a single narrative. Using this renovated life story, the author goes on to republish his work to great success, as seen in the official celebrations surrounding his eightieth birthday. However, the drastic change that his reputation undergoes just one year later show the limits of Guzmán's autobiographical acts, the price that he ultimately pays for attempting to so closely control his life story, and the importance of referentiality in the study of autobiography.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Language and Linguistics
- Linguistics and Language
- Literature and Literary Theory