Review by Choice Review
Arguedas's suicide in 1969 was a tragic loss not only for Latin American literature but also for the cause and the culture of the Paraguayan Indians, to which he dedicated his life, literature, and professional career. Perhaps best known for his novels Todas las sangres (1964) and Los rios profundos (Buenos Aires, 1958), Arguedas wrote Yawar Fiesta in 1941 as an attempt to portray something of the social relations between the various classes and races in the Peruvian highland town of Puquio in the 1930s. The point of departure is a government edict forbidding the traditional Indian form of bullfight, which brings forth the various reactions from the different racial groups. One of the main concerns of Arguedas throughout his life was to transliterate the old Quechuan language of the Indians into an understandable and literary Spanish, using native syntax with Spanish vocabulary. The translator, Frances Barraclough, who also translated Los rios profundos (Deep Rivers, CH, Nov '78), has responded well to the difficult challenge of a Quechua-Spanish-English translation-no mean task. She has also provided a useful linguistic note, a glossary, and numerous helpful footnotes. This volume includes two 1956 essays, ``The Novel and the Problem of Literatry Expression in Peru'' and ``Puquio: A Culture in Process of Change,'' which reflect Arguedas's linguistic and anthropological concerns. For graduate students and upper-division undergraduates.-J. Walker, Queen's University
Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.