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 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.
RONALD CHRIST is Professor Emeritus of English at Rutgers University and a noted authority on Latin American art and culture. He has edited and translated many books, including works by Jorge Luis Borges, Mario Vargas Llosa, Manuel Puig, and Diamela Eltit. He won the Kayden National Translation Prize for his translation of Eltit’s “E. Luminata.” He is cofounder of Lumen Books and the president of PEN New Mexico.