politics and finance (where have we heard that complaint elsewhere?) still further impeded the rise of a truly native literature.
Perhaps Verissimo's outlook was too pessimistic; he was an earnest spirit, unafraid to speak his mind and too much a lover of truth to be misled by a love of his country into making exaggerated claims for works by his countrymen. We must not forget that he was here looking upon Brazilian letters as a whole; in other essays by him we discover that same sober spirit, but he is alive to the virtues of his fellow writers as well as to their failings.
It is with the prose of the latest period in Brazilian literature that we are here concerned. From the point of view of the novel and tale Brazil shares with Argentina, Columbia, Chile and Mexico the leadership of the Latin-American  republics. If Columbia, in Jorge Isaacs' Maria, can show the novel best known to the rest of the world, and Chile, in such a figure as Alberto Blest-Gana (author of Martin Rivas and other novels) boasts a "South American Balzac," Brazil may point to more than one work of
- ↑ I am aware of the recent objection to this term (See my Studies in Spanish American Literature, pp. 233-237), but no entirely satisfactory substitute has been advanced.