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Manuel Puig (1932–1990)

Author of Kiss of the Spider Woman

28+ Works 4,387 Members 73 Reviews 13 Favorited

About the Author

Author Manuel Puig was born in General Villegas, Argentina on December 28, 1932. Betrayed by Rita Hayworth (1968) is an innovative novel narrating through a variety of techniques the story of a young Argentine boy who lives vicariously through the movies. Puig uses the phenomenon of compulsive show more movie-going as a symbol for alienation and escape from reality. Heartbreak Tango (1969) evokes the spiritual emptiness of the Argentine provincial life in the 1930s and the vulgarity of popular music and the soap opera. His best known work, Kiss of the Spider Woman (1979), was adapted as a film in 1985 and as a Broadway musical in 1993. He died of a heart attack on July 22, 1990. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Works by Manuel Puig

Associated Works

The Penguin Book of International Gay Writing (1995) — Contributor — 177 copies
A Hammock Beneath the Mangoes: Stories from Latin America (1991) — Contributor — 147 copies
Kiss of the Spider Woman [1985 film] (1985) — Original story — 48 copies
Happy Together [1997 film] (1997) — Original story — 39 copies
Kiss of the Spider Woman: Broadway Cast Recording (1992) — Original novel — 21 copies
Racconti di cinema (2014) — Contributor — 3 copies


Common Knowledge



Group Read, April 2021: Heartbreak Tango in 1001 Books to read before you die (June 2021)


Un imperdibile, l’opera di un vero narratore, di uno scrittore che conosce profondamente l’animo umano e lo trasmette tessendo delle bellissime storie. It is so full of love.
Mav_Danto | 32 other reviews | Jul 28, 2023 |
The structure of this book is fascinating: long passages of dialogue interspersed with retellings of movie plots, along with stream of consciousness jags and footnotes detailing modern psychological views on gender and homosexuality. It is a novel that tries to encompass multiple modes of telling. It is interesting that the details of the two main characters' crimes never really come to light - we don't understand much about the political situation or Molina's crime. It is almost as if the two men are on an island where their respective pasts are seen from a blurry distance, and that all that matters is love and forgiveness.

Valentin says something simple and profound towards the end of the story:

"It's a question of learning to accept things as they come, and to appreciate the good that happens to you, even if it doesn't last. Because nothing is forever."
… (more)
jonbrammer | 32 other reviews | Jul 1, 2023 |
archivomorero | 4 other reviews | May 21, 2023 |
I really don't know what to make of this. I particularly don't know what to make of the extensive footnotes describing the basis of homosexuality.
The two protagonists seem to have been brought together by random chance, but we discover that's not the case. Molina, it turns out, is a grass, tasked with finding out information about Valentin in exchange for parole. But is it that simple? I'm not sure. Especially with what happens at the end, I'm not sure who is using who, who is trapped in who's web.… (more)
1 vote
Helenliz | 32 other reviews | Mar 8, 2023 |



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