Gaucho Literature Criticism: Overviews And General Studies - Essay

Arturo Torres-Ríoseco (essay date 1942)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Torres-Ríoseco, Arturo. “Gaucho Literature.” In The Epic of Latin American Literature, pp. 133-67. New York: Oxford University Press, 1942.

[In the following excerpt from a longer work on Latin American writing, Torres-Ríoseco traces the evolution of Gaucho literature from its folkloric origins to its later incarnations in the novels of the 1920's.]


Spanish America's literary history, like her history in general, may be viewed as a continuous struggle for independence. That is to say, for ‘literary Americanism.’ This concept does not imply any chauvinistic notions of originality at all...

(The entire section is 11804 words.)

S. Griswold Morley (essay date 1946)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Morley, S. Griswold. “Cowboy and Gaucho Fiction.” In The Western: A Collection of Critical Essays, pp. 111-25. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1979.

[In the following essay, originally published in 1946, Morley compares the histories and traditions of American cowboy-oriented fiction versus that of Argentinian and Uruguayan gaucho narrative, while describing the traits of a classic gaucho novel.]

The cowpuncher is not an exclusive product of the United States of America. Wherever cattle thrive on a large scale there must be men to manage them. Here, what with long grass country, short grass country, Rocky Mountain plateau, part of the deserts,...

(The entire section is 6348 words.)

David William Foster (essay date 1990)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Foster, David William. “Rural Culture Revisited.” In The Argentine Generation of 1880: Ideology and Cultural Texts, pp. 151-77. Columbia: University of Missouri Press, 1990.

[In the following essay, Foster distinguishes between the stereotypes of rural life and the attempted romanticization they inspired versus the realities of that lifestyle by individually examining several prominent works from the period.]

The basis of Argentine wealth during the period of immense prosperity from 1880 to the Great Depression is to be found in the rural, agricultural sector. The conquest of the desert, the construction of a vast railway system, and a concerted immigration...

(The entire section is 12439 words.)

William Katra (essay date 2000)

(Twentieth-Century Literary Criticism)

SOURCE: Katra, William. “The Poetic Tradition of the Gaucho.” In Cowboy Poets and Cowboy Poetry, edited by David Stanley and Elaine Thatcher, pp. 299-314. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2000.

[In the following essay, Katra charts the gaucho style from its beginnings in the original gaucho poetic tradition to its evolution into eventual Gauchesque (imitation gaucho) form.]

No continent has a monopoly on cowboys and their art, for wherever a local beef industry has arisen to satisfy consumer demand a rural society and its poetic expression of life among horses and cattle will thrive. That is particularly true of the region of the Río de la Plata—the...

(The entire section is 7048 words.)