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Latino Daily News

Sunday June 23, 2013

FBI Kept File on Mexican Author Carlos Fuentes, Labeled a Subversive

FBI Kept File on Mexican Author Carlos Fuentes, Labeled a Subversive

Photo: Carlos Fuentes FBI Target

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The FBI has just released documents under the Freedom of Information Act showing Mexican author Carlos Fuentes was a target of investigation for over two decades by U.S. authorities.

The renown Mexican author and admitted Communist came under FBI scrutiny in the early 1960’s for his support of the then-fledging Fidel Castro regime in Cuba; he also supported the Sandinista revolution in Nicaragua.  FBI files show him labeled as a “Mexican communist writer” having many “subversive connections.”

Click here to view the entire FBI file on Fuentes. 

The author of ‘The Death of Artemio Cruz’ and ‘The Old Gringo’  was so feared that on several occasions he was denied a Visa to come to the U.S.  His FBI file is full of articles he wrote for several pro-Communist publications in Mexico.

The son of a Mexican diplomat he traveled the world before coming home to Mexico at age 16 and started early as one of the great chroniclers of Mexico’s history and its role in the 20th century.

Fuentes wrote over 20 novels, countless short stories, essays and had his work made into movies and theatrical productions shown throughout the world.

Fuentes is considered one of Latin America’s most influential authors having won the Belisario Dominguez Medal of Honor and the Hispanic world’s greatest literary prize the Miguel de Cervantes Prize.  Many thought his left-leanings were formed in Chile in the 1940’s when his family lived there.  He was highly influenced by the poetry of Pablo Neruda and the concept of socialism in Latin America as a tool to create social justice in the region.

Fuentes died in 2012 at age 83 after suffering an internal hemorrhage. And in spite of his ‘subversive’ label U.S. academia often sought him out to guest teach and lecture.  He taught at Brown, Columbia, Dartmouth, Harvard and Princeton to name a few. 

Mexico honored him on May 16, 2012 with a state funeral and the creation of the Carlos Fuentes International Literary Creation award – the first recipient was acclaimed writer Mario Vargas Llosa.