Cabrera Infante, Guillermo

▪ 2006

      Cuban novelist and essayist (b. April 22, 1929, Gibara, Cuba—d. Feb. 21, 2005, London, Eng.), penned the acclaimed novel Tres tristes tigres (1965; Three Trapped Tigers [1971]), a comic and loving portrait of Havana nightlife in the years before the 1959 Cuban Revolution. Cabrera Infante developed an interest in literature and film as a young man, and he was working as a writer by the early 1950s. He was briefly jailed in 1952 after he used profanities in one of his stories. He was an outspoken critic of Fulgencio Batista's regime, as well as an ardent supporter of the 1959 revolution that brought Fidel Castro to power. Cabrera Infante founded Lunes, a literary weekly of the newspaper Revolución, and served as a cultural minister in the new regime. He soon discovered, however, that Castro was a repressive dictator, and in 1965 Cabrera Infante went into exile, living first in Spain before settling permanently in England. For the remainder of his life, he was a vocal critic of the Castro government. He collected his thoughts on his homeland in the book Mea Cuba (1992). His novel La Habana para un infante difunto (1979; Infante's Inferno, 1984) once again showed his love of puns and textual games; the nonfiction book Holy Smoke (1985; Puro humo, 2000) explored his passion for cigars; and his highly regarded writings on film were collected in Un oficio del siglo veinte (1963; A Twentieth Century Job, 1991). He received Spain's Cervantes Prize in 1998.

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▪ Cuban author
born April 22, 1929, Gibara, Cuba
died February 21, 2005, London, England

      novelist, short-story writer, film critic, and essayist who was the most prominent Cuban writer living in exile and the best-known spokesman against Fidel Castro (Castro, Fidel)'s regime. In 1998 he was awarded Spain's Cervantes Prize, the most prestigious and remunerative award for Spanish-language writers.

      In the 1940s Cabrera Infante moved to Havana with his impoverished family. At first he worked as a proofreader at a newspaper; later, using the pseudonym “Cain,” he became a movie critic for Carteles, a weekly with a wide circulation. Cabrera Infante was essentially self-taught; cinema was one of his most important teachers. In the late 1940s he was among the founders of Nueva Generación (“New Generation”), a journal opposing the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista. (Cabrera Infante's father was an early member of the Cuban Communist Party.) With the triumph of the revolution, Cabrera Infante vaulted into a position of power as founder and editor of Lunes (“Monday”), the literary weekly of the newspaper Revolución. The Castro regime soon closed the magazine, and Cabrera Infante was sent as cultural attaché to Brussels. In 1965 he broke with the Castro government and remained abroad, eventually settling in London.

      Cabrera Infante's first noteworthy collection of short stories was Así en la paz como en la guerra (1960; “In Peace as in War”). But he acquired international renown with Tres tristes tigres (1964; Three Trapped Tigers), winner of the Bibliotheca Breve Prize given by the Spanish publisher Seix Barral. In the manner of James Joyce (Joyce, James)'s Ulysses, this highly successful novel chronicles the adventures of several young characters in Havana's prerevolutionary nightlife. It is a funny book, bristling with the textual games and puns of all sorts that characterize Cabrera Infante's work. His politics, but perhaps mostly his achievements, made him persona non grata with the Cuban cultural establishment. Among his many later publications is La Habana para un infante difunto (1979; Infante's Inferno), but even it fell short of Three Trapped Tigers. His film criticism was collected in Un oficio del siglo veinte (1963; A Twentieth Century Job), and his essays in Mea Cuba (1992; Eng. trans. Mea Cuba). In 2001, Cabrera Infante translated into English his collection of short stories Delito por bailar el chachachá (1995; Guilty of Dancing the Chachacha).

Roberto González Echevarría

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Cabrera Infante, Guillermo — ► (1929 2005) Escritor cubano. En 1954 utilizó para sus escritos el seudónimo de G. Caín. Es autor de la colección de cuentos Así la paz como la guerra (1960) y de la novela autobiográfica La Habana para un infante difunto. También ha escrito… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Cabrera Infante — Cabrera Infante, Guillermo …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Guillermo Cabrera Infante — Nombre completo Guillermo Cabrera Infante Nacimiento 22 de abril …   Wikipedia Español

  • Cabrera Infante — Guillermo Cabrera Infante (* 22. April 1929 in Gibara, Kuba; † 21. Februar 2005 in London) war ein bedeutender spanischsprachiger Schriftsteller und Filmkritiker. Er galt als Symbolfigur im Widerstand gegen das Regime des kubanischen Machthabers… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • CABRERA INFANTE (G.) — CABRERA INFANTE GUILLERMO (1929 ) Représentant significatif de ce qu’on a appelé le baroque cubain, Guillermo Cabrera Infante naît à Gibara (Cuba). D’abord critique de cinéma, sous le pseudonyme de G. Cain, cet écrivain fonde la cinémathèque de… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Guillermo Cabrera Infante — (April 22, 1929 ndash; February 21, 2005) was a Cuban novelist, essayist, translator, and critic; in the 1950s he used the pseudonym G. Caín.A one time supporter of the Castro regime, Cabrera Infante went into exile to London in 1965. He is best… …   Wikipedia

  • Guillermo Cabrera Infante — (* 22. April 1929 in Gibara, Kuba; † 21. Februar 2005 in London) war ein bedeutender spanischsprachiger Schriftsteller und Filmkritiker. Er galt als Symbolfigur im Widerstand gegen das Regime des kubanischen Machthabers Fidel Castro.… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Cabrera Infante — Cabrera Infạnte,   Guillermo, kubanischer Schriftsteller, * Gibara 22. 4. 1929; lebt seit 1965 im Exil in London; seit 1979 britischer Staatsbürger. Sein Hauptwerk, der Roman »Tres tristes tigres« (1967; deutsch »Drei traurige Tiger«), der in… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Guillermo Cabrera Infante — (Gibara, Cuba, 22 de abril de 1929 Londres, Gran Bretaña, 21 de febrero de 2005). Escritor y guionista cubano, naturalizado británico …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Guillermo Cabrera Infante — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Cabrera. Guillermo Cabrera Infante (né le 22 avril 1929 à Gibara à Cuba et décédé le 21 février 2005 à Londres au Royaume Uni, d une septicémie), était un écrivain cubain. Cabrera Infante a également travaillé… …   Wikipédia en Français

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