Notable among the writers who appear in this anthology are Bernardo de Balbuena (1561-1627), a master of the baroque period who celebrated the exuberant atmosphere and wealth of the New World; Juan Ruiz de Alarcon (1581?-1639), who became one of Spain's great playwrights; and Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz (1651-1695), the beautiful nun whose passionate lyric poetry, written within her convent's walls, has made her, three hundred years later, a proto-feminist literary heroine.
This is a major collection of Mexican poetry from its beginnings until the modern period, compiled and translated by two giants of world literature.
Recipient of the 1990 Nobel Prize for Literature and the 1982 Neustadt Prize for literature, Mexican poet, essayist, and playwright Octavio Paz is a writer of international stature. In addition to being a writer, Octavio Paz served as a Mexican diplomat in France and Japan, and as a Mexican ambassador to India.
Samuel Beckett was born in Ireland and lived in France beginning in the late 1930s, writing much of his work in French. Best known for the plays Waiting for Godot and Endgame, among many other works, he was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1969.