Mexican novelist Carlos Fuentes has died. He was 83.
One of the country’s foremost literary voices from Mexico in the 20th Century, Fuentes spent years living abroad and explaining the country to those who were not Mexican. He was mentioned often as a candidate for a Nobel Prize, but never won it.
He also feuded famously with Mexico’s other 20th Century literary giant, Nobel Prize winner Octavio Paz, who gave a speech criticizing the Sandinistas in Nicaragua. Paz had criticized the Sandinistas for their undemocratic methods after they came to power. The speech caused effigies of Paz to be burned in Mexico.
Fuentes supported the Sandinistas and was critical of Paz. A magazine Paz directed published an article attacking Fuentes, which the novelist took as an attack from Paz.
The two men, who’d once been friends, never spoke after the dispute.
“Lamento profundamente el fallecimiento de nuestro querido y admirado Carlos Fuentes, escritor y mexicano universal. Descanse en paz,” tweeted President Felipe Calderon today upon learning the news.