Mathew Glesson at the LARB:
A LITTLE OVER halfway through his 1943 novel El luto humano (Human Mourning), the Mexican writer José Revueltas inserts himself as a character so unobtrusively that it’s easy to miss. A government go-between, when hiring an assassin to kill the leader of an agricultural strike, complains, “First there was the agitation sown by José de Arcos, Revueltas, Salazar, García, and the other Communists. […] And now all over again…” It’s a sly wink at the fact that the novel’s scenario overlaps with the author’s life; it also foreshadows the way that Revueltas’s place in Mexican letters today is inextricably entwined with his dramatic biography.
Revueltas is a contradictory figure: titanic, maybe even canonical, yet at the same time obscure, underground, and seemingly impossible for literary society to fully assimilate without indigestion.