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Gonzalo Torrente Ballester
Photograph by Elisa Cabot (1982)
|Born||June 13, 1910|
Ferrol, Galicia, Spain
|Died||January 27, 1999 (aged 88)|
Salamanca, Castile and León, Spain
|Notable works||Javier Mariño|
Gonzalo Torrente Ballester (June 13, 1910 – January 27, 1999) was a Spanish writer associated with the Generation of '36 movement.
After moving around frequently in the later 1920s and early 1930s, including a period in Paris, he returned to Spain and linked himself to Franco's Falange party. He " was an enthusiaistic Falangist and Francoist idelologue". His first novel, Javier Mariño, appeared in 1943, and he continued to publish novels almost until his death, receiving major prizes for some of them.
Despite his affiliation to the Falangists, from 1939, when he returned to Santiago to take up a university post, he increasingly distanced himself from the party. He joined in protests in favour of striking Asturian miners in 1962, and was expelled from his teaching post at the university as a result. In the mid-1960s he had a number of problems with government censors.
He left Spain for a post at the University at Albany, State University of New York in 1966, and remained there until 1973 as the University's first distinguished professor. In 1975 he moved to the city of Salamanca, where he remained until his death. After his return to Spain, he was increasingly celebrated: In 1975 he was elected member of the Real Academia Española, and was awarded the premier Spanish literary prize, the Cervantes Prize, in 1985.
Immediately after his death, the Fundación Gonzalo Torrente Ballester was set up to protect, study and disseminate his work.