Profile of the Day: Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis
On June 21, 1839, Brazilian novelist Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Machado was the grandson of slaves; his father was a mulatto housepainter and his mother was an Azorean Portuguese washerwoman. Despite being regarded as the greatest writer of Brazilian literature, Machado did not gain widespread popularity outside Brazil until after his own lifetime. Today, his novels Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas and Dom Casmurro are considered masterpieces of realist literature.