Elena Garro

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Elena Garro (December 12, 1920 – August 22, 1998) was a Mexican writer. She was once married to writer Octavio Paz.


Elena Garro was born to a Spanish father and a Mexican mother on December 11, 1916 in Puebla, Mexico. She spent her childhood in Mexico City but moved to Iguala, Guerrero, during the Cristero War. She studied literature, choreography and theater in the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City. While she lived in Mexico City she met Octavio Paz, whom she married in 1937. They had one daughter, Helena, but divorced in 1959. However, according to her final will, Elena died without knowing she was divorced.

After the 1968 Tlatelolco Massacre, she accused certain Mexican intellectuals of being responsible of instigating the students and later abandoning them. These accusations caused resentment in the intellectual community who repudiated her. In 1972, Garro left the country and lived in exile in France for twenty years.

When she returned to Mexico she lived in Cuernavaca with her daughter and 13 cats. She suffered from lung cancer due to smoking and Consejo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes (CONACULTA) covered her medical expenses. She later died from this illness.

Her work touches on the themes of the marginalization of women and racism. Most important was her criticism of the Mexican government. She also portrayed a critical vision of the Mexican Revolution (1910) in...
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