Fernando Alegría

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Fernando Alegría
Born 26 September 1918
Santiago, Chile
Died October 29, 2005
Walnut Creek, California
Occupation poet, writer, literary critic and scholar

Fernando Alegría (Santiago de Chile, 26 September 1918 - Walnut Creek, California, October 29, 2005) was a Chilean poet, writer, literary critic and scholar.


Alegría grew up in the Independencia barrio of the city. Poets from this barrio include Pablo Neruda, Violeta Parra and Volodia Teitelboim.

He received an M.A. from Bowling Green State University in 1941 and a Ph.D. from University of California, Berkeley, in 1947.

From 1964-1967, Alegría was a professor at the University of California in Berkeley. From 1967 to 1998 he was a professor at Stanford University and for many years he was Chair of the Spanish and Portuguese Language Departments there. He sat on the Board of Trustees at the Western Institute for Social Research (WISR) for about twenty years beginning with its inception in 1975.

Alegría served as cultural attaché from the government of Salvador Allende to the United States from 1970 to 1973. He was the representative of the Royal Academy of the Spanish Language in the United States for many years. Among the many awards he received is the Latin American Prize of Literature.

As an academic and visionary writer and revolutionary, Alegría brought prestige and legitimacy to the Spanish language in the United States of America at a time when children were punished in schools for speaking their native tongues.[citation needed]

A documentary film about the life of Chile’s revolutionary poet Alegría, ¡Viva Chile Mierda!, was produced in 2004. The documentary is a humanistic portrayal of one of the most influential figures from Chile and a key figure in the advancement of Latino culture in the United States of America.

Alegría’s "Viva Chile Mierda", the most recited poem of the Allende era, was written in the 1960s.


  • Recabarren. Santiago, Chile: Editora Antares, 1938. 162 pp
  • Como un árbol rojo. Santiago, Chile: Editora Santiago, 1968. 200 pp
  • Lautaro, joven libertador de Arauco. Santiago, Chile: Zig-Zag, 1943. 238 pp.
  • La maratón del Palomo. Buenos Aires: Talleres Gráficos Garamond, 1968. 165 pp.; 2a. ed., 1971.
  • Camaleón. México, D. F.: Edición y Distribución Iberoamericana de Publicaciones, S.A., 1950. 302 pp.
  • Walt Whitman en Hispano America. Mexico City: Ediciones, 1954.
  • Caballo de copas. Santiago, Chile: Zig-Zag, 1957. 227 pp. (Biblioteca de novelistas).
  • Mañana los guerreros. Santiago, Chile: Zig-Zag, 1964. 274 pp; 2a. ed.1965.
  • Amerika, Amerikka, Amerikkka, manifiestos de Vietnam'. Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1970. 190 pp. 2a. ed.,1974.
  • El paso de los gansos. Long Island City, N.Y.: Ediciones Puelche, 1975). 215 pp.; 2a. ed., 1980.
  • Allende. Mi vecino el Presidente. (novela). Santiago de Chile: Planeta/ Biblioteca del Sur, 1989. 292 pp.
  • La rebelión de los placeres. Santiago de Chile: Editorial Andrés Bello, 1990. 171 pp.
  • Viva Chile, M… Santiago, Chile: Editorial Universitaria, 1965. 38 pp. 2a. ed., 1966; 3a. ed., 1973.


  • Epple, Juan Armando. Actas de Palo Alto. La obra literaria de Fernando Alegría. Santiago de Chile: Editorial Mosquito, 2000.
  • Epple, Juan Armando, ed. Para una fundación imaginaria de Chile. La literatura de Fernando Alegría. Lima: Latinoamericana Editores-Stanford University, 1987.
  • Giacoman, Helmy F. ed. Homenaje a Fernando Alegría. Variaciones interpretativas en torno a su obra. New York: Las Americas Publishing Co., 1972.*
  • Ruiz, Rene, Fernando Alegría: vida y obra (Madrid: Playor, 1979).

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