Emilia Pardo Bazán

Category: Writer
Birth Date: 16th September 1851 (†12th May 1921)
Birth Place: A Coruña

She was brought up in a noble family. As her father had a great library she was very interested in reading and began to write poems inspired by Zorrilla. She got married in 1869 when she was seventeen and moved to Madrid with her family when her father became a parlamentary deputy. In Madrid she got into many literary circles and met many contemporary writers like Benito Pérez Galdós, who she had a passionate love with. She travelled around France, England and Italy, which was a wonderful experience for her. In 1886 she met Zola in Paris, the Goncourt brothers and other writers as well. She took part in the most important magazines in Galicia, Madrid and Barcelona. In 1891 she tried to get into the Spanish Academy but she was rejected mainly by the writer Juan Valera. In 1906 she was elected as the president of the literay section at the cultural centre in Madrid. The King Alfonso XIII bestowed on her the title of ??countess? 1916 she got a chair at university.

 Work & Activities

In 1876, she started to publish her first essays in magazines and her first book titled Poemas a Jaime, which is dedicated to her son. She did a good work as a literary critic in the late 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th. Most of her critic articles were published in the newspaper La Época and were compiled in 1883 in the book La cuestión palpitante with a prologue written by Clarín. After travelling to Rome in 1887 she published the book Mi romería. At that time she also wrote La revolución y la novela en Rusia (1887), De mi tierra (1888), Polémicas y estudios literarios (1892), La literatura francesa and El lirismo en la poesía francesa. In the first period of her literary productión, she wrote three romantic-theme novels: Pascual López. Autobiografía de un estudiante de medicina (1879) is about the gloomy environment of Compostela, the lyrical emotions and feminine idealization; Un viaje de novios (1881) and El cisne de Vilamorta (1885) where she describes the romantic landsape of the town O Carballiño (Ourense). Her literary production approaches naturalism with the novel La Tribuna (1883), whose characters are workmen. Her naturalist conception of the novel is reflected in her novels Los pazos de Ulloa (1886) and La madre naturaleza (1887). The environment determines the human behaviour and the rural development operates ignorance and instinctive behaviour. Her naturalist tendency ended up in 1891 with the publication of La piedra angular. In this novel Emilia Pardo Bazán described A Coruña focussing on the contrast between the middle-class areas and the poor areas near the cemetery. She changed into a realist stage in 1889 with the publication of the novel Insolación e Morriña. In 1890 her novel went towards a religous idealization as we can see in Una cristiana and La prueba. The literary production of this great writer went on with the cycle Adán y Eva, which consists of the novel Memorias de un solterón (1891) and Doña Milagros (1894) and many others like La quimera, La Sirena negra, El niño de Guzmán, El tesoro de Gastón, El saludo de las brujas, Misterios, Dulce dueño, La dama joven, Bucólica, Belcebú, Cada uno, La gota de sangre, Finaflor, En las cavernas, Un drama, La última fada, Rodando and La muerte del poeta. She also wrote short stories full of a great imagination like Cuentos del terruño, Cuentos de Marineda, Cuentos de Navidad y Año Nuevo, Arco Iris, Cuentos de la tierra, Cuentos de amor, Cuentos sacroprofanos, Un destripador de antaño y otros cuentos...