Biography of Octavio Paz.

Essay by onefasthonda December 2005

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Octavio Paz was a Mexican writer, poet, and diplomat and the winner of the 1990 Nobel Prize in Literature. Throughout his life, he has influenced many other Hispanic writers, and has set a foundation for future generations of Hispanic writers to overcome.

Octavio was born in Mexico City on March 31st, 1914. His grandfather was a novelist, and greatly influenced Paz into becoming the renowned writer that he was. Paz studied Law and Literature at the National University in Mexico, but refused to take his degree. However, from his youth Paz's ambition was to be a poet. When he was encouraged by Pablo Neruda, he began his writing career. From 1933 on, he published over 40 books.

In 1937, Paz married Elena Garro, but they were later divorced in 1959. During the Spanish Civil War, Paz visited Spain, and fought for the republicans. From his experiences there, he wrote a collection of novels.

By the late 40's, Paz took a break from writing novels and became a journalist. He wrote for several magazines, but eventually switched over to poetry.

Throughout Paz's life, many different aspects of life influenced him into writing his various pieces. Much of his poetry was influenced by Marxism, surrealism, existentialism, as well as Buddhism and Hinduism. During his experiences as an essayist, he wrote on topics such as Mexican politics and economics, Aztec art, and anthropology. The public appreciated his works to such an extent, that he was given the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1990, but only lived another 8 years, until 1998, to enjoy it.

One of Paz's most renowned accomplishments are his writing of "The Labyrinth of Solitude", which is what many believe earned him the Nobel Prize. He also managed to establish two major magazines, the Plural and the Vuelta. In...