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Guide to the Luis Leal Papers, 1946-1985
Special Collections M761  
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  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Luis Leal Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1946-1985
    Collection number: Special Collections M761
    Creator: Leal, Luis, 1907-
    Extent: 67 linear ft.
    Repository: Stanford University. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Access Restrictions:


    Publication Rights:

    Property rights reside with the repository. Literary rights reside with the creators of the documents or their heirs. To obtain permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Public Services Librarian of the Dept. of Special Collections.


    Gift of Luis Leal, 1989

    Preferred Citation:

    [Identification of item] Luis Leal Papers, M761, Dept. of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, Calif.


    Luis Leal was born in Linares, Nuevo León, México on 17 September 1907. At the time of the mexican revolution, he emigrated to the United States, and established his residence in Chicago, where he continued his education.
    On september 1936 he married Gladys Clemens. From this marriage they had two sons, Antonio and Luis Alonso.
    In 1943 LuisLeal joined the United States Army, and was sent to the Pacific for two years. After his service in the Philippines at war's end, he continued his doctoral work at the University of Chicago and won his degree in Philosophy and Belles Lettres in 1950.
    In 1951, he served as President of the Chicago Chapter of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP), in 1952 he served as President of the Chicago Society of Romance Language Teachers, and in 1953, as Chairman of a Spanish section for the South Central Modern Language Association (the SCMLA).
    Luis Leal held a number of teaching positions. From Instructor, Assistant Professor and Associate Professor at the University of Chicago, University of Illinois, Visiting Professor at UCSB and UCLA, Visiting Professor/Lecturer at the University of Chicago, University of Arizona, University of Wisconsin, National University of Mexico, Middlebury College, University of Arizona NDEA Institute, Guadalajara, México, and Stanford Univeristy.
    Surrounded by mexican ambience, Doctor Luis Leal lives in Santa Bárbara with his gentle wife. His house like his heart continues open to share with disciples and friends the literary topics, memories of classrooms and the destiny of man.


    The Luis Leal papers document the personal and academic activities of a literary historiographer, mexican writer, and critic.
    Director of the Research Center for Chicano Studies at U.C. Santa Barbara and Professor Emeritus at the University of Illinois, Urbana, Leal has achieved a record of distinction as Professor of Spanish-American literature and has authored numerous books and hundreds of journal articles dealing with Latin American and Chicano literature. Especially noteworthy articles on Chicano literature include "Mexican American literature: a historical perspective," and "The problem of identifying Chicano literature."
    By the time that Professor Leal began to study Chicano literature, he was one of the most respected critics of Latin American literature, and in particular the Mexican short story. The prestigious--and unfortunately now defunct--Mexican publishing house of Andre had published five books of his: Breve historia del cuento mexicano (1956), Antología del cuento mexicano (1957), Bibliografía del cuento mexicano (1958), Mariano Azuela: vida y obra (1961), and Historia del cuento hispanoamericano (1966). With these books, and many others published in the United States and Latin America, together with the innumerable articles and monographs which appeared in all the best academic periodicals, Leal built an admirable body of work, solid and systematic.