Died on this day – 12 February 1984



Julio Cortázar was born on 26 August 1914 in Ixelles, a municipality of Brussels, where his father was attached to the Argentine diplomatic service. Cortazar was an Argentine novelist, short story writer, and essayist. Known as one of the founders of the Latin American Boom, Cortázar influenced an entire generation of Spanish-speaking readers and writers in the Americas and Europe.

In 1951, Cortázar emigrated to France, where he lived and worked for the rest of his life, though he traveled widely.

Cortázar wrote numerous short stories including “Las babas del diabolo” which provided the inspiration for Antonioni’s film Blow-Up. Cortázar published four novels during his lifetime: Los Premios (The Winners, 1960), Hopscotch (Rayuela, 1963), 62: A Model Kit (62 Modelo para Armar, 1968), and Libro de Manuel (A Manual for Manuel, 1973).

In 1984, following the suggestion of his publisher friend Bill Swainson, Cortazar took a trip to Montmorillon to visit the bookshops in the Cité de l’Ecrit and it was here whilst searching the stock at The Glass Key that he sadly died on 12 February 1954. The cause of his death was reported to be leukemia. His body was shipped to Paris and interred in the Cimitière de Montparnasse.

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