Centre for the Study of Hispanic Exile

(Juan de Lara) Alvaro Fernández Suárez [1906–1990]

Date of Birth: 1906 Porto-Couxela, Ribadeo/ Spain
Died: 1990 Madrid/Spain (age 85)

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Spanish writer and economist.

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1906 Lugo/Spain
Born in Lugo, Spain, where he attended primary school, before being sent to San Sebastián for his secondary education.
1928 Madrid/Spain
Studies Law at the Universidad de Madrid.
1931 Madrid/Spain
Joins the Cuerpo de Técnicos Comerciales del Estado.
1931–1936 Does military service in the Brigada Obrera de Estado Mayor, where he meets Francisco Ayala and Agustín de Foxá. He and Ayala both work at the Servicio Histórico del Ministerio de la Guerra. Works at the Universidad de Madrid with Lladó. Meets Alberti, María Teresa León, Pablo Neruda and becomes friendly with León Felipe.
1936–1939 Barcelona/Spain
Goes to Geneva as government representative to the League of Nations as part of the panel of experts charged with imposing sanctions on Italy. Becomes commercial attaché to the Spanish Embassy in Rome, where he is held hostage by a group of falangists. The Republican Government moves him to Paris, and then to Madrid during the first days of the siege. Spends the war following the Republican government from Madrid to Valencia and then to Barcelona.
1939 France
When Barcelona falls, Fernández flies to Orán and then on to France. Becomes a refugee in Montevideo after the outbreak of the Second World War.
1941 Montevideo
Becomes a regular contributor to the weekly Marcha, under the pseudonym Juan de Lara. Works at the Universidad de Montevideo.
1949 Moves to Buenos Aires, contributing to La Nación, Sur and various other journals and magazines. Thanks to León Felipe, he also contributes to the Cuadernos Americanos de México.
1953 His book of short stories, Se abre una puerta... is published by Sur.
1954 Appeals to the Spanish Embassy for permission to return to Spain. Permission is granted in spite of his anti-Francoist writing.
1983 Finalist in Planeta's Premio Espejo de España with his collection of essays, El pesimismo español.
1990 Dies in Madrid.
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