The Old Gringo is one of Carlos Fuentes’s best-known works. It is a complex novel that intertwines psychology, mythology, and political events to examine the culture of modern Mexico. At the core of the story is the disappearance of Ambrose Bierce, an American newspaperman and short-story writer. Bierce, who is most remembered for his brutally sardonic parody The Devil’s Dictionary and the often-anthologized short story “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge,” left his job and home in 1913 at age seventy-one and disappeared, never to be heard from again. Speculation has held that he went to Mexico to join Pancho Villa in fighting the revolution, but there has never been conclusive evidence to support this. Bierce is the old gringo referred to in this novel’s title. The story focuses on the relationships the character forms in Mexico with Harriet Winslow, a schoolteacher from Washington, DC, and with General Tomás Arroyo, leader of the revolutionary band that is on its way to meet up with Villa’s army. The three form a triangle, exploring questions of love, respect, and sensuality in ways that highlight the differences between Mexican and American ways of thinking. A few years after the book was published, it was adapted into a motion picture starring Jane Fonda, Jimmy Smits, and Gregory Peck as the old gringo.