Men of Maize—The Modernist Epic of the Guatemalan Indians
Miguel Ángel Asturias, transl. Gerald Martin, 1995 (1949)
Paperback: 466 pages
Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press; Critical edition (March 1995)
Social protest and poetry; reality and myth; nostalgia for an uncorrupted, golden past; sensual human enjoyment of the present; 'magic' rather than lineal time, and, above all, a tender, compassionate love for the living, fertile, wondrous land and the struggling, hopeful people of Guatemala.
Men of Maize is the critically acclaimed novel written by Miguel Angel Asturias. Born into poverty in Guatemala City in 1899, Asturias tells the history of the post-colonized society of Guatemala that continually oppresses its native Mayan dwellers. Asturias tells this story from a wide variety of perspectives: his own personal accounts, through the history and culture of his native land, through the actions of the government, and through the eyes of the people of Guatemala. His story is moving and it brings to life, as does the testimony of Rigoberta Menchu, many of the trials and challenges that face native peoples that are forced to defend their land and fight in order to survive, but ironically Men of Maize is a work of fiction. Though Asturias uses some of his personal experiences, this novel is not told as a testimony.
From Library Journal
This critical edition (Pittsburgh Editions of Latin American Literature) of Asturias's 1967 Nobel prize-winning work includes the full text of the novel and several essays on the book by noted scholars plus a bibliography.