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What's on today's menu?
What's on today's menu?
Ricardo Carpena

BUENOS AIRES — There was a time when we resolved everything, absolutely everything, around a café table. Or at least, that was the feeling. A coffee bar provided the perfect backdrop and the necessary mutual understanding with friends that allowed you to talk about anything at all: the world, the country, sports, sex, television, you name it. And, obviously, about politics too.

That political era seems to be over, or at least it was nowhere to be seen on Argentina's most recent election day in the capital. Clarin did a thorough — though unscientific — survey of some of the best-known bars in Buenos Aires: People simply don’t talk about politics there anymore. Not even on Sunday, when the country was voting in mid-term elections that wound up giving a boost to the opposition.

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Ideas

García Márquez And Truth: How Journalism Fed The Novelist's Fantasy

In his early journalistic writings, the Colombian novelist Gabriel García Márquez showed he had an eye for factual details, in which he found the absurdity and 'magic' that would in time be the stuff and style of his fiction.

Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez reads his book

J. D. Torres Duarte

BOGOTÁ — In short stories written in the 1940s and early 50s and later compiled in Eyes of a Blue Dog, the late Gabriel García Márquez, Colombia's Nobel Prize-winning novelist, shows he is as yet a young writer, with a style and subjects that can be atypical.

Stylistically, García Márquez came into his own in the celebrated One Hundred Years of Solitude. Until then both his style and substance took an erratic course: touching the brevity of film scripts in Nobody Writes to the Colonel, technical experimentation in Leaf Storm, the anecdotal short novel in In Evil Hour or exploring politics in Big Mama's Funeral. Throughout, the skills he displayed were rather of a precocious juggler.

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