In India, Paz completed several works, including and met Marie-José Tramini, a French woman who would be his wife for the rest of his life. In October 1968, he resigned from the diplomatic corps in protest of the Mexican government’s massacre of student demonstrators in the Plaza de las Tres Culturas in Tlatelolco. He lived in Paris and returned to Mexico in 1969, where he founded his magazine Plural (1970–1976) with a group of liberal Mexican and Latin American writers. From 1970 to 1974, he lectured at Harvard University, where he held the Charles Eliot Norton professorship. His book Los hijos del limo (“Children of the Mire”) was the result of those lectures. After the Mexican government closed Plural in 1975, Paz founded Vuelta, a publication with a focus similar to that of Plural, and continued to edit that magazine until his death. He won the 1977 Jerusalem Prize for literature on the theme of individual freedom. In 1980, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Harvard, and in 1982, he won the Neustadt Prize. Once good friends with novelist Carlos Fuentes, Paz became estranged from him in the 1980s in a disagreement over the Sandinistas, whom Paz opposed and Fuentes supported. In 1988, Paz’s magazine Vuelta carried an attack by Enrique Krauze on the legitimacy of Fuentes’s Mexican identity, opening a feud between Fuentes and Paz that lasted until the latter’s death.A collection of his poems was published in 1990. In 1990, he was awarded the Nobel Prize.In India he met the Hungryalist poets and was of immense help to them during their 35 month long trial. He died of cancer in 1998.
“The poetry of Octavio Paz,” wrote the critic Ramón Xirau, “does not hesitate between language and silence; it leads into the realm of silence where true language lives. Stavans wrote that he was “the quintessential surveyor, a Dante’s Virgil, a Renaissance man”when he abandoned communist dogma, the mistrust of many in the Mexican intelligentsia started to transform into an intense and open enmity. Nonetheless, Paz always considered 0self a man of the left;
Books written by and about Octavio Paz
1933: Luna silvestre 1936: No pasarán! 1937: Raíz del hombre 1937: Bajo tu clara sombra y otros poemas sobre España 1941: Entre la piedra y la flor 1942: A la orilla del mundo, compilation 1949: Libertad bajo palabra 1957: Piedra de Sol (Sunstone) 1958: La estación violenta 1962: Salamandra (1958-1961) 1965: Viento entero 1967: Blanco 1968: Discos visuales 1969: Ladera Este (1962-1968) 1969: La centena (1935-1968) 1971: Topoemas 1972: Renga: A Chain of Poems with Jacques Roubaud, Edoardo Sanguineti and Charles Tomlinson 1975: Pasado en claro 1976: Vuelta 1979: Hijos del aire/Airborn with Charles Tomlinson 1979: Poemas (1935-1975) 1985: Prueba del nueve 1987: Árbol adentro (1976-1987) 1989: El fuego de cada día,
Guillermo Sheridan: Poeta con paisaje: ensayos sobre la vida de Octavio Paz. México Wilson, Jason (1986). Octavio Paz. Boston: G. K. Hall Rule, Sheila (1990). “Octavio Paz, Mexican Poet, Wins Nobel Prize”. New York: New York Times Preface to The Collected Poems of Octavio Paz: 1957–1987 by Eliot Weignberger’
Until tomorrow: Octavio Paz
Solitude is the profoundest fact of the human condition. Man is the only being who knows he is alone.