Jamie Garcia Dias Makes His Mark on Brazilian Literature

Posted by Isaac on

For the past twenty five years Jamie Garcia Dias (LinkedIn) has been one of Brazil’s youngest and best writers. He began his writing career at a very early age and published his first book when he had just turned eighteen. Dias was not content to simply write he has also had an urge to teach literature so that he could continue to study and to share his love of the Portuguese language with a younger generation. Dias received his first literary prize –The White Crane– when he was just 30 years old. Now, at the age of forty five, has published numerous books and has won numerous awards including the prestigious ABC Award.

Dias draws upon his lengthy knowledge of Brazilian literature and the great Portuguese language traditions to construct his complex novels. Brazil has a varied tradition of writing that goes back to the Colonial period of the late 1400s and early 1500s. Unlike American literature which remained largely segregated Brazilian writers integrated indigenous cultures as well as European cultures into their writing. After breaking away from the stifling rules of the neo-classicists in the 17th century Brazilian literature began to flourish in great numbers. As Brazilian writers began to integrate more cultures into their writing a sub-genre of writing was born called indegenism.

Brazilian authors of the 19th century were ground breaking in their own way throughout the “Realism” period of the late 1800s. Authors such as Machado de Assis –the son of a half-back house painter and Portuguese woman– bravely wrote about such taboo subjects as adultery. His Memorias Postumas De Bras Cubas was notable for not only its innovative subject matter –the narrator is a deceased man speaking from the after-life– but also for how it ridiculed the prevailing social structure of Rio De Janeiro at the time.

Jamie Garcia Dias (Twitter) has studied these writers and many more but perhaps his greatest inspiration comes from his parents. His father, Garcia Dulce Dias, was one of the principal architects of modern day Rio De Janeiro. As the son of an architect Dias uses this same attention to detail and careful planning to create rich labyrinths of plots. His books are as well structured as the buildings that his father spent his life building.