H. Bustos Domecq

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H. Bustos Domecq is a pseudonym used for several collaborative works by the Argentine writers Jorge Luis Borges and Adolfo Bioy Casares.

Bustos Domecq made his first appearance as F. Bustos, the pseudonym under which Borges, in 1933, published his first fictional story, now known as "Hombre de la esquina rosada", ("Man from the Pink Corner") but originally titled "Hombre de las orillas" ("Man from the Slums" or more literally "Man from the Outskirts").

He changed his first initial and acquired a second last name (which in Argentina denotes either "old money" or simply, as in the rest of Latin America, the mother's maiden name) as Borges and Bioy Casares later used the pseudonym "H. Bustos Domecq" for some of their lighter works. (It may or may not be relevant that in the Spanish language, "f" and "h" were once orthographically interchangeable, as in "Fernando" and "Hernando.")

H. Bustos Domecq was the original credited author of the parodic detective stories in Seis problemas para don Isidro Parodi, 1942 (translated 1981 as Six Problems for Don Isidro Parodi) and Dos fantasías memorables, 1946 (Two noteworthy fantasies).

Bustos was also the alleged author of overblown essays of Crónicas de Bustos Domecq, 1967, (translated 1976 as Chronicles of Bustos Domecq), and Nuevos Cuentos de Bustos Domecq (1977), even though the authors' names were on the covers of both books.

Under another pseudonym, B. Suárez Lynch (both surnames were taken from the authors' illustrious ancestors), Borges and Bioy published the parodic mystery Un modelo para la muerte (A model for death) in 1946, featuring the characters of the Isidro Parodi stories.

The pair also did some collaborations without the use of the pseudonym, notably two movie scripts from 1955: Los orilleros (Slum-dwellers) and El paraíso de los creyentes (The Paradise of Believers). Both dealt with the exacerbated sense of manhood among the compadritos in the slums of Buenos Aires circa 1900.

Bustos Domecq provided a comic relief for cultivated Latin Americans, but also, famously, he conveyed a subtle yet unambiguous pro-allied message in the 1942 edition of Parodi -- which was not a surprise for people who knew the authors, or the tendencies of the people who gravitated around Victoria Ocampo (Bioy's sister in law) and her Sur magazine, but was, nevertheless, a contrarian statement given the state of Argentine politics at the time.

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