Manuel Vázquez Montalbán


Barcelona, 14/06/1939
Bangkok, 18/10/2003



My life has been more history than life until the 1970s, then it has been more literature than life.

He was a novelist, essayist, poet and journalist best known for his detective novels starring Pepe Carvalho. An unclassifiable person, he defined himself as journalist, novelist, poet, essayist, anthologist, prologue writer, humourist, critic, gastronome, culer and prolific in general, or simply as a hedonistic and sentimental communist. In 1991 he was awarded the Premio Nacional de Narrativa and in 1995 the Premio Nacional de las Letras Españolas.

Manuel Vazquez Montalbán’s personal collection and a large part of his library are available at the Biblioteca de Catalunya thanks to a donation made by his family in 2016. The library consists of about a thousand volumes mainly focused on the humanistic field (literature, journalism and communication, politics, history, art…) but also on sports or gastronomy; the whole collection can be retrieved in the catalogue of the Biblioteca de Catalunya by searching for Fons Manuel Vázquez Montalbán (Biblioteca de Catalunya).

Both his papers (manuscripts, typescripts, etc.) and the sound and audiovisual material – mostly of a non-commercial nature, some of which contains recordings of interviews, cultural or literary programmes analysing the work of Manuel Vázquez Montalbán – as well as a set of some 300 photographs illustrating his figure, have specific detailed inventories to facilitate the search.

This website aims to bring us closer to his figure and contribute to the knowledge of his work. The website is a collaboration between the Biblioteca de Catalunya and the Asociación de Estudios Manuel Vázquez Montalbán, several experts of which have written the texts and selected the content.

“When we were kids, between Barcelona and l’Hospitalet there were twenty kilometres of vacant sites. In Montjuïc, the Expo exhibition halls that had collapsed were esplanades where we went to play football»