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Donoso, Jose



  • Existence: 1924-1996


Chilean author José Donoso Yanez was born October 5, 1924, to José Donoso and Alicia Yanez. His largely middle class upbringing included ten years of schooling at The Grange, a private school in Santiago, and a private English teacher. After initially leaving high school to travel in the south of Chile and Buenos Aires, Donoso returned to Santiago to complete his studies and entered the Universidad de Chile to study English language and literature. He was awarded a scholarship from the Doherty Foundation in 1949, which enabled him to continue his studies at Princeton University, where he and others founded a literary magazine, MSS.   Donoso returned to Santiago in 1952, where he was a journalist for five years and acted briefly as literary critic for Ercilla. Moving to Buenos Aires in 1958, Donoso met Maria del Pilar Serrano, a painter and translator, whom he married in 1961. The couple adopted a daughter, Pilar. The Donosos went to Mexico in 1964 to participate in a writers' congress sponsored by the American Foundation. During his time in Mexico, Donoso wrote literary criticism for Siempre.   After leaving Mexico, Donoso and his wife traveled between the United States and Spain. Donoso taught writing at the University of Iowa in 1965-1966, and the family eventually settled in Spain until returning to Chile in the early 1980's. He spent the remainder of his life writing in Chile until his death on December 7, 1996. His wife followed him in death on February 16, 1997.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

José Donoso Papers

Identifier: MsC0340

Correspondence, notebooks and manuscripts of Chilean writer José Donoso. The collection contains a preliminary version of Donoso's first novel, Coronacion, many drafts of El obsceno pajaro de la noche (The Obscene Bird of Night), as well as drafts of stories and other writings.

Dates: 1951-1967