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Machado de Assis' Epitaph of a Small Winner

"One of the masterpieces of Brazilian literature"


In these memoirs, Braz Cubas, a wealthy nineteenth-century Brazilian, examines (from beyond the grave) his rather undistinguished life in 160 short chapters that are filled with philosophical digressions and exuberant insights. A clear forerunner of Gabriel García Márquez and Jorge Luis Borges, Epitaph for a Small Winner, first published in 1880, is one of the wittiest self-portraits in literary history as well as "one of the masterpieces of Brazilian literature" (Salman Rushdie).