Martin Rivas by Alberto Blest Gana

Martin Rivas

byAlberto Blest GanaTranslated byTess ODwyerIntroduction byJaime Concha

Paperback | December 15, 1999

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Widely acknowledged as the first Chilean novel, Martin Rivas (1862) by Alberto Blest Gana (1830-1920) is at once a passionate love story and an optimistic representation of Chilean nationhood. Written shortly after a decade of civil conflict, it is an indispensable source for understandingpolitics and society in nineteenth-century Chile. The hero of the story is Martin Rivas, an impoverished but ambitious youngster from the northern mining region of Chile, who is entrusted by his late father to the household of a wealthy and influential member of the Santiago elite. While living there, he falls in love with his guardian's daughter.The tale of their tortuous but ultimately successful love affair represents the author's desire for reconciliation between Chile's antagonistic regional and class interests. Indeed, many critics have interpreted Martin Rivas as a blueprint for national unity that emphasizes consensus over conflict. In addition to providing commentary about the mores of Chilean society, Blest Gana documents the enormous gap that existed between the rich and poor classes. An invaluable text for its portrayal of contemporary social, political, and class conditions, Martin Rivas illustrates the enrichinginfluence that romanticism had on nineteenth-century Chilean literature.

About The Author

Jaime Concho is at University of California at San Diego.
Martín Rivas
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by Alberto Blest Gana

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Title:Martin RivasFormat:PaperbackDimensions:448 pages, 8.19 × 5.51 × 1.3 inPublished:December 15, 1999Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195107144

ISBN - 13:9780195107142

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Born into a mining family in Chile's north country, Martin Rivas has a real adjustment to make when moves in with a member of Santiago's upper crust. His parents are dead, and this new family is now his legal guardians. All goes well until Martin and the daughter of the house engage in a tumultuous tryst that threatens his place in the family. Alberto Blest Gana's Martin Rivas is a timeless piece of Chilean literature that examines the rifts between the social classes in the late 1800s.

Editorial Reviews

"Blest Gana's work, well known to Chilieans, is presented for the first time in English..."--Booklist "An accomplished and entertaining allegory that waited 137 years to be translated into English."--Library Journal